Catching up with Paul Dorrell's blog this morning and see that he and I are thinking alike with his advice on preparing consignment sheets for works being left at galleries. One of the first things I did with my first Windows 3.1 computer (a short lifetime ago) was learn how to keep inventory info on MS Works Database. Through much trial and error (story of my life) I converted several ledger books of earlier inventory to appropriately named columns and fields and learned how to sort it a dozen different ways. From that, I can extract certain works and print out records and consignment sheets. It also gives me a record of each gallery, what they've sold and when, plus track a certain piece through various galleries, important because I like to shuffle them around to keep inventory fresh... wouldn't want to mistakenly return an unsold piece a year or so later... how embarrassing!
I added a comment to his blog post, noting similarities and differences (comment #3.) I might add that although I have this massive database that continues to serve me well, I'm sure there are newer programs which would do a better job... and include a photo of the work for easier reference. But the thought of dealing with the logistics of such a move is mind boggling! I do keep inventory image files (high resolution .tifs) in folders by year, so if I check the database, the inventory number tells me what year the painting was created and the folder the image is in. The inv numbers are simple: 2007-47-A/C ... the last letters indicate the medium as in: acrylic on canvas, or whatever.
Apparently there are quite a number of artists who are not keeping good records of their work, or at least are not presenting a properly prepared info sheet of works they bring in. This is what I'm told when my galleries thank me for being prepared with the details they need to have. It's good to have my own records rather than depend on whatever a gallery decides to use in the way of receipt... which might even be overlooked; it happens! I use a three-hole punch for all gallery papers, each with it's own three ring binder. Email correspondence is kept in gallery folders on computer. I can trace my work back through the years to the beginning of time. Granted, there are a few voids and some images are still waiting for slides to be converted to digital.
Entertaining thoughts of switching to a Mac with the next computer upgrade... does anyone know if I'm going to be able to transfer this data to their system? That would certainly be a game stopper if not.
Above photo appeared in a local decorator mag a few years back... rather overdressed, don't you think?