Today we’d like to introduce you to Christopher Miller.
Christopher, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today?
After a frustrating experience in a corporate position more than 20 years ago, I left the company, stood outside their building, raised my fist in the air, and declared a lá Scarlett O’Hara, “As God as my witness, I’ll never go hungry again!” Well, actually I said, “I’ll never work for another person again!” But it did inspire me to action. I immediately got on the phone, called my friends and founded Rainmaker Advertising.
My very first client was a local non-profit organization and Rainmaker Advertising assisted them with branding their yearly conference. Since then, Rainmaker Advertising has focused on providing marketing and attendance campaigns for hundreds of conferences, trade shows and membership-driven organizations. Throughout the years my talent to tap into the creative muses and infuse my client’s unique selling proposition into their business marketing has benefited Rainmaker Advertising as well as my personal life.
Interestingly, I’ve discovered that this same creative skill that drives Rainmaker Advertising helps me as an abstract expressionist. I started painting with a passion more than 17 years ago. I’ve had several small shows throughout Dallas/Fort Worth where I sell my paintings. Not only have I found my own artistic voice, I’ve realized that everyone has unique creative DNA which strives to be expressed.
Has it been a smooth road?
Anyone that runs a business can share plenty of challenging stories, but each hurdle makes you better at what you do. While 9-11 was certainly a challenge for the conference industry, 2016 was a particularly difficult year for Rainmaker Advertising. Several of our long-term clients abruptly changed their business strategies but, more importantly, I lost my father to Alzheimer’s disease. I inherited my artistic abilities from my father and it was a difficult loss for me.
The death of a parent changes your priorities. It was both of these challenges that made me decide to combine the two things I love, marketing events and making art. The idea for the Urban Artist Market was born. I immediately started visualizing a market that would feature locally-sourced art, sculpture, pottery, jewelry, fiber art, 3D sculpture, clothing, printmaking, libations, and desserts that are hand-crafted and presented by the artisan community.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Urban Artist Market – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
The Urban Artist Market will be a total sensory experience for the attendee. We will feature a variety of fine work that will delight and surprise visitors. Picture walking down our aisles and viewing beautiful abstract paintings, fine pottery, hand-sewn quilts and snacking on a dark chocolate truffle made by a local chocolatier. Guests will discover unique holiday gifts for their friends and family while experiencing live demonstrations provided by the Creative Arts Center in East Dallas. The Urban Artist Market will delight your senses.
But there are two things that set this show apart from others. First, this is a curated show where exhibitors are selected for not only the quality of their work but the mindfulness put into each and every piece. We are presenting artists that are intentionally present when in the act of creating; each and every piece receives their full connection and care. This is not a show for the assembly-line product. Second, we’re seeking exhibitors that love what they do and joyfully communicate that to our patrons. These are exhibitors with good sales skills that smile, stand and extend a warm welcome to patrons as they walk the aisles. They are excited to talk about their art and share that excitement. Their excitement shows in how they manage their booths as well as their work.
All of that said, the primary goal of the Urban Artist Market is to support the local arts community and demonstrate the value of distinctive local work that is profitable for the artisan as well as personally fulfilling. It’s taken me 50 years to realize that the iconic starving artist is an outdated stereotype. Artists provide a key component to a healthy economy both locally and globally. Richard Florida discusses this transition in one of my favorite books, The Rise of the Creative Class.
“Beneath the surface, unnoticed by many, an even deeper force was at work—the rise of creativity as a fundamental economic driver, and the rise of a new social class, the Creative Class.” Richard Florida reinforces my belief that artists can meld creativity with good business skills and make a comfortable living. I look forward to producing the Urban Artist Market in October 2018. We’ve secured a sponsorship and support from the Town of Addison for the event and included several fundraising opportunities within the show that will raise awareness and donations for Metrocrest Services. This incredible organization assists families, individuals, and senior adults who are coping with crisis situations, need help stabilizing their lives, or who require support to live independently.
On Saturday, we’ve designed another fundraising opportunity to build awareness of the importance of art in our schools. The Women For Addison, whose mission is to support several non-profits who serve the residents of Addison and the surrounding Metroplex area, will enjoy coffee and light breakfast fare with the artists prior to the Grand Opening of The Urban Artist Market. Proceeds from this fund-raiser will go toward the purchase of supplies and equipment for DISD Bush Elementary School’s Art Program and is being sponsored by Mad Batter Bakery and Dunn Brothers Coffee.
What were you like growing up?
I was an extremely energetic child and was always drawn to creative projects. Whether I was baking cookies and cakes for upcoming holidays or acting as an interior designer and redesigning my teenage room, I was always doing something. Most teenagers have sports posters and basketball hoops hanging in their rooms, I had a carefully sketched graphic mural with matching curtains!”
I didn’t realize how many passionate artists live in our community and I’m excited that the Urban Artist Market will give them a platform to show and sell their work! I’m pleased with the positive response that I’m receiving from so many artists throughout the area. I’m getting submissions from a variety of local arts organizations including the Creative Arts Center, the Craft Guild, North Dallas Studio Tour and much more.
- Address: 7237 TangleGlen Drive
- Website: www.urbanartistmarket.com
- Phone: 972.788.2599
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: urbanartistmarket
- Facebook: urbanartistmarket
Steven Koye Photography