The 98th annual Indian Market was held last weekend in Santa Fe, New Mexico. This juried show draws over 150,000 visitors worldwide, with 100+ Native American artists from 200 tribes displaying their art.
We go early to get to know the artists and discover the stories behind their work. For example, we spoke with Raymond Nordwall (Cherokee). With the introduction of palette knife technique, his backgrounds now explode with color and depth.
Sean Flanagan (Taos Pueblo) usually creates painted drums. But this year he also exhibited 6' tall, refined metal sculptures. He said "I needed to change and grow. This new work spoke to me." Both artists felt a hunger to add new elements and experiment with techniques to keep their art alive and fresh. They were also willing to risk fewer sales if patrons were disappointed.
Take inspiration from Raymond and Sean. Rather than being complacent, introduce new creative elements into your speaking. It will take time and attention, but the rewards are worth it. The artists who combined skill and talent with a unique vision were standouts. You can too.