Evaluation is one of the “fine arts” of art fairs. Most promoters welcome feedback to gauge if their plans were effective, or determine how to adjust their planning to consider things that fell through the cracks. The better art shows will always have an evaluation form, often permitted to be anonymous. And the questions might include the following questions measured on a sliding scale from Great to Poor:
- How was our communications prior to the event?
- Did we give you adequate instruction/direction?
- How would you view the loading in process?
- How would you view the loading out process?
- How would you view the arrangement of vendors? Great, Good, Adequate, Not
- Were our staff and volunteers helpful?
- Did you utilize the volunteers to booth sit?
- How was the food? (Some events will include a lunch or snacks)
- What was the best part about the event?
- How could we improve?
Most events will ask these questions and perhaps more. And it is a benefit to be honest about the event, or offer constructive criticism that might help them improve the process next year.
When leaving comments it is very important to follow these thoughts:
- Be honest
- Be factual
- Give recommendations to improve the shortcomings
- Provide clarification of your answer. For example, if you never saw any of the volunteers, and could not get a booth sitter – tell them this, explain how expectations were set by the event, and they were not realized.
When there are significant problems at a venue don;t wait for the evaluation form – try to speak with the promoter or their staff. When a venue is large it may be possible to resolve an issue during the event.
Evaluation is a powerful tool for good. It can help the planners to improve the event. And evaluation can help the artist determine if they will ever consider participating in the event again. When an art fair is well done, well promoted and well attended there is benefit to everyone. When something goes wrong, or was missed we all falter.