It's really important for an artist to make time to attend at least a couple artist receptions a month, and not just the same galleries where you are familiar with people, but a variety of them. I really used to struggle with this, as I was so busy that it seemed to be one more task added on to a big pile to-do's.
Here's what helped me; I have a quiet nature, and I just had a hard time getting started, so I just had to get used to the fact that I would probably stand alone for a while. (I still do). I learned to ask questions. Ask about the featured artist's process. Ask other attendees if they know the process; that starts another conversation. Ask them if they are an artist, it's always a compliment. Here's a really amazing technique. Stick your hand out and say, " Hi, I'm So-and-So". I'm not kidding. It took seemingly, a very long time for me to get to the obvious. I was at a reception, I knew no one. I heard a nice gentleman say, "Hi, I'm Jay". You'll think I'm nuts, but a light went on! And I thought that was the best thing since sliced bread. People enjoy meeting a smiling person who is interested in them.
I still get a little quiet when I first enter an art reception where I am unfamiliar with the other attendees, but the more I do it, the more fun it is. It's really so easy that I feel silly writing this. But I know there a a number of people out there for many reasons who are just like me. Try it, it gets easier, and the reward is many new friends. Oh, and remember to smile!
Luminous Color Explorations
My name is Jill Keller Peters, and I am passionate about using color as a language to