Taking an Idea to the Marketplace — The Smaller Picture pg245

Colorful companion to my memoir The Incompetent Psychic

Faux Louvre festival booth 2015

2004

Winding up the first Willows Theater set I mentioned my idea for a festival booth. Adam started sketching and I hired him. Within a month my display booth was designed, engineered, welded together and laminated with luan. It was clamped, hinged, riveted and fit together perfectly as a seven-foot tall room under a 10x10 canopy, and came apart to move in six fairly heavy, yet manageable pieces. It could also be clamped into various configurations for different size spaces.

Between gigs that summer I painted faux marble and a dancing corinthian column on it to also promote my decorative painting business. — From Chapter 13

Luck, magic and generous friends with brilliant skills are the only way a sole proprietor with hermit tendencies can ever hope to catapult an idea into the world. I’m talking generosity that goes far beyond monetary renumeration, and the brilliance it takes to quickly sketch an illuminated map through an impenetrable labyrinth of dead ends and mistake monsters to help make that idea come true. Computer whizzes, philanthropists and Adam the amazing builder showed me how to turn a field of rocks into a castle.

My initial idea was pretty sketchy. I wanted to understand what made museum masterpieces timeless by studying and sketching the originals and their frames. I wanted to transform these raw studies into watercolor interpretations, and finish each with unique, colorful frames by finding and refinishing unwanted gold and silver moldings. I needed to sell enough of them to support myself. I also had to visit important museums in great cities — both to see more of everything and write off travel as a legitimate business expense.

Okay, the castle Adam built me was only a hundred square feet and folded up into a trailer, but it was magnificent. The Faux Louvre booth traveled to over 150 west coast shows and was solid enough to withstand forty knot winds. Thank you Adam and Rooster Productions! Thank you everyone who helped make a seemingly impossible fairy tale of an idea become real for fifteen years… and ultimately live happily ever after in art lover’s homes all over the world.

A signed copy of Mernie’s memoir is available at www.etsy.com/listing/839838936

Unsigned copies can be ordered wherever books are sold.