Last night was nothing short of fabulous.  We had 140 people hanging onto Paul’s every word about the SURTEX show and trends… many scribbling notes furiously. One artist tweeted this at the 1/2 hour mark:

#ask_art – so incredibly helpful – already 4 pages of notes!

This was the third year Paul Brent has done the Ask Call right after the SURTEX show and he takes his wrap-up very seriously – with is great for the rest of us!  I loved how he even looked at what he predicted for trends last year and let us know if he was right or not. 🙂

In addition to the SURTEX Wrap-Up that he entitled “The 9 Things I Learned About Trends at SURTEX”, Paul also fielded questions from artists. (Well – pre-fielded, we really need your questions the week before each call so we can get organized.) Here is what he covered:

  • Is it a good idea to look to the UK & Europe for upcoming trends?
  • Trend timeline – is it too early to “design to trends” now if an artist plans to exhibit at SURTEX next year?
  • With the economy improving, do you think manufacturers will stop playing it so safe with art themes and selections?
  • What do you think of the trend of some very established stationery companies and licensing agents not exhibiting at the National Stationery Show or SURTEX in the past few years?
  • Do you do direct mail before a trade show and if so, how do you find companies to target?
  • What do buyers expect to see and be able to take with them from an artist’s booth?
  • How do you determine if a licensee is legitimate and if they would be a good fit?
  • What is the best way to show your art without investing in a trade show?
  • What do you think is the best way to display work at a trade show?
  • How should I follow up from leads I got at SURTEX?

I love doing these live calls and watching what is resonating with people online while we go along. Here are some things that were tweeted (we use #ask_art during the call so people can find each other)

This is the most informative call ever! #ask_art

I really like that regarding trends- “put it through your filter”- still needs to be your own personal style! #ask_art

holiday motifs – some artists make a career on just holiday #ask_art

Others prefer Facebook so we have a stream going at Here are a few comments from there as well:

Really enjoying the conversation, many ideas springing up my mind, greatly appreciate this.

Very informative call tonight. Paul’s tips sparked at least 3 visual ideas. Thank you 🙂

If you buy the replay, not only will you get the audio to listen to the hour long talk, but you will also get the 5 1/2 pages of notes from Paul’s SURTEX Wrap-Up.  He went through it so quickly that I was thrilled to know I can now read it as well as listen again.

The replay and Trend Notes are only $20 thru Saturday, June 9th.  Click here to get your copy today…

Thank you for your participation, feedback and purchase of these invaluable calls.  All of them help to entice experts to return for multiple calls and new experts to agree to participate.

Here’s to your creative success!

– Tara Reed

Next up on the Art Licensing Info Ask Call schedule – Jeff Grinspan on Wednesday, July 18, 2012.

Mark your calendar and head to to submit your questions.