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    Not What They Pictured

    | FL, USA | Extra Stupid, Funny Names

    (I’ve been showing my paintings at outdoor art shows for five years. I sell originals and prints, called giclee prints. Increasingly, as people look at my work and ask if I’m the artist, they seem genuinely surprised. Why, I have no idea. A couple of my neighbors and I were just talking about this when two women started flipping madly through my print rack, clearly marked “Giclee Prints (geeclay)” with the sizes and prices.)

    Customer: “Is this you?”

    Me: “Yes, it is.”

    Customer: “REALLY?”

    Me: “Maybe you ladies can help me with this. We were just talking about how surprised people are that I am the one who painted these. Why is that?”

    Customer: “Well, you have to admit, Giclee DOES sound like a boy’s name.”

    Me: “Actually, giclee is the name of the process to produce the prints. It’s a French word. I am not giclee.”

    Customer: “Well, maybe I want to talk to this Giclee guy. Where is he?”

    Not The Best Way To Spread Your Art

    | Washington, D.C., USA | Crazy Requests, Rude & Risque

    (It’s my second day as an intern at an art gallery. We have guidelines for artists who wish to submit artwork. I’m by myself in the gallery when an artist wearing cut-offs and flip-flops walks in. She’s carrying a huge canvas that is as big as she is, but I can’t see what’s painted on it as the front is facing away from me.)

    Me: “Hello, can I help you?”

    Artist: “Yeah, I was wondering if you could hang this up?”

    Me: “Well, we don’t accept walk-in submissions like this, and even if we did, the gallery owner isn’t in right now. If you go to our website, you can follow the submission guidelines.”

    Artist: “But I have the art right here! Can’t you hang it up?”

    (At this point she finally turns the canvas around: it’s a life-size, poorly-painted, VERY nude self-portrait of the artist sitting down with her hands on her knees and her hair sticking up in all directions. Worst of all, she has painted herself with her knees splayed and her lady parts in high definition.)

    Me: “Oh…”

    Artist: “I’ll just leave this here, then!”

    Me: *panicking* “No, wait! You really have to fill out an artist’s submission and we’ll get back to you. I can’t just hang up art without the owner present. Also, we specialize in abstract expressionist art, not…erm…figurative art.”

    Artist: *looking at her painting* “But this is pretty funky!”

    Me: “Yes it is, but I’m sorry, I really can’t accept it. Thank you for coming in.”

    (The artist eventually left. Unfortunately, that meant she was carrying her enormous nude self-portrait in full display down the busiest street in town. I have to admire her pluck!)

    Suffering For Art

    | Laguna Beach, CA, USA | Liars & Scammers

    (There are giant "No Photography" signs posted on all doors and all over the gallery. A gallery patron pulls out her camera and starts photographing artwork.)

    Me: “Excuse me, ma’am, but we do not allow photography in the gallery.”

    Patron: “Oh, sorry. Why can’t I take pictures?”

    Me: “These are copyrighted images and if we let everyone take pictures, they would have no reason to purchase the art.”

    (The patron shrugs, pulls out her cell phone, and walks around the gallery. She holds it up in the air while taking pictures of the wall art.)

    Me: “Excuse me, but like I said before, we do not allow photography in the gallery.”

    Patron: “I wasn’t taking pictures, I was talking on the phone!”

    Me: “Ma’am, you were holding it over your head, and you weren’t even talking.”

    Patron: “Well, it’s none of your business how I talk on my phone. Besides, I don’t think any of them were in focus.”