Posted on 10 Comments

What Happens When You Speak Up As An Artist? Etsy Free Shipping Policy

So, this post is not going to be my usual feel good post, because there’s just a little something I want to get off my chest. Don’t worry, I’m not going to go all “Rage Against The Machine” here, but I’ve got something to say.

If you follow us on YouTube, you know that last week just about every video we posted had to do with our feelings about the new move by Etsy to coerce their sellers into providing “free shipping” and roll the lost shipping cost into the item prices. Which means we lie to our collectors, which neither Klee nor I were prepared to do.

Also, this whole policy change came with a clusterfudge of other problems as well, such as inflation of price means some buyers will pay multiple hidden shipping when they didn’t need to and shops with unpredictable shipping rates would have to price themselves out of the market. Plus, items that are fragile and hand made would be problematic to estimate shipping in the first place.

Klee and I also discovered that it’s illegal to deceive customers this way, taxes would now be charged on shipping cost, and international buyers would pay inflated price plus shipping… plus more, we lay it all out in the videos.

What was interesting about this whole thing was the response we received.

Most people that responded were in the same boat, as sellers, in facing this dilemma. Like Andy King who said “We just spent the day jacking up our prices, but like Rafi we sell paintings…so we added the cost to ship to California (which is the most expensive shipping for us typically). It’s ridiculous, because now etsy has the same stuff priced radically higher than we have it on other sites…extremely frustrating, because we even though we sell less on etsy than elsewhere, we’ve really enjoyed the platform and the fact that it’s always felt very supportive.”

Some hadn’t joined Etsy but agreed with our point of view. Like Missy B. who said “I am so glad I never did an Etsy shop. Many have suggested I do it but I would not. I watched enough videos on how to have a successful shop to know it just wasn’t for me. Now I know it is really not for me! Good for you standing firm.”

Some said our country was going to crap and went a little overboard in the comments. I’m guessing they were a little more upset than usual.

Expressions Series By Rafi Perez
Expressions Series By Rafi Perez

One person said I was whining about corporate change. She said “It sounds to me like Etsy is trying to separate the wheat from the chaff, it sounds like you don’t understand how business works. If you are selling enough art on Etsy, then this policy change should not bother you. “Rolling shipping into the selling price” is not new. It is a marketing strategy using psychology. And it works. Please do some business research before you publish videos trashing the hand that feeds you.”

To which I responded “I’m not sure you would be qualified to give me business lessons, especially because Etsy is not the hand that feeds me, they are merely one of many platforms to sell on. If anything, makers are the hand that feed Etsy. I’ve been in business for most of my life, and if you are selling cheap crap, then rolling in prices would be the way to go to trick people into purchasing by saying something is free when it’s not. You can justify it however you want, you’ll get no judgment from me, but don’t be offensive simply because you are trying to justify your point. You don’t know me, nor do you know my experience. So go on with your happy self.”

People are just different with different opinions, some will agree with you passionately, others will disagree passionately, most won’t care, and others just ignore you.

Art Chair By Rafi Perez

I was surprised to find that with the thousands of responses I received from Etsy sellers, forums of people who are upset, and plethora of videos discussing this issue, that none of the news outlets are talking about this. In fact the only real media you find is Forbes and other large outlets briefly mentioning that people are upset, followed by a plethora of quotes from the Etsy CEO talking about how great this move is for Etsy.

Etsy itself hasn’t made any kind of follow up statement… but then again they’re not facing any pressure from the mainstream media.

Small creative business be damned.

Rafi Working In Studio

So, how do I feel in all this?

Eh, I’ve moved on. Looking towards the future of my business, which does not involve Etsy. Not because I’m up in arms or looking for a fight, but because we no longer make good business partners. End of story.

I think what was most interesting about all of this is the way some people perceive Etsy sellers. Although we are small businesses with profit margins, overhead, costs, labor, business taxes, and everything else that it takes to run a business… there are some people viewing us as mentally unstable protesters, just using any means possible to bring down the government.

It’s just so interesting sometimes, to see how people react to what they believe is going on, without actually looking into it. Reading some of the comments, I was like “Did you even watch the video??”

Either way, we got so many amazing and supportive responses from so many people around the world, that it makes up for the idiots who think I’m a radical or something.

The truth is we are always going to be facing some challenges in our creative business, and how we handle it is up to us. Whether or not people perceive me as a victim, someone who is standing up and moving on, or some troublemaker, is none of my concern. Only I know what is good for my business, and honestly whether or not someone stays with Etsy or they go is none of my concern. They ultimately know what’s best for their business, and I support their decisions.

Personally, I will not advertise free shipping and not actually provide free shipping, it may not seem like a big deal and really it isn’t, but I will not compromise my ethics in order to make an extra buck. I will also not support a company who is willing to force their partners into doing such things at the expense of said partners. It also makes me sick every time I see an advertising from Etsy offering free shipping to people knowing that that person is paying inflated pricing… just not willing to do it.

All I know is that I’m looking forward, getting excited about my new chapter and new e-commerce ventures, and having fun… that’s all that matters.

If you want to watch the videos that started this adventure go to

Posted on Leave a comment

The Art of Imperfect Art – Talk By Rafi Perez

I’ll be doing a demo and talk about the beauty of imperfection at the Santa Rosa Art Association on February 23 at 9am.

I will share some of my experimental techniques, insights, advice, philosophy and inspiration while assisting in pushing outside of comfort zones by allowing the participants to get comfortable with making mistakes and seeing what comes out the other side. Embracing imperfection, and viewing it as perfection is my ultimate message.

Members and guests are invited to bring whatever art project they are currently working on and I will assist with the time remaining.

Urban Swinery Art By Rafi Perez

One of the subjects I’ll talk about is Wabi-sabi to describe the perfection of imperfection. According to Japanese legend, a young man named Sen No Rikyu sought to learn the elaborate set of customs known as the Way of Tea. He went to a tea-master who tested the younger man by asking him to tend the garden.

Rikyu cleaned up debris and raked the ground until it was perfect, then scrutinized the immaculate garden. Before presenting his work to the master, he shook a cherry tree, causing a few flowers to spill randomly onto the ground.

Abstract Gold By Rafi Perez

Wabi-sabi understands the tender, raw beauty of a gray December landscape and the elegance of an abandoned building or shed. It celebrates cracks and crevices and all the other marks that time and weather leave behind. It is to see the singular beauty in something that may first look decrepit, ugly, or unfinished.

Ultimately, wabi-sabi opens space for love. Love for others, and no less for ourselves. Love for our virtues and our scars, our strengths and our vulnerabilities.

It is this love that can lead to a deeper satisfaction with life. A deeper satisfaction with our art and creativity. To allow for the happy little accidents that can enhance the feeling of an original work.

After all, in a lifetime of fleeting moments, one after another, what bigger gift than to stare in the eyes of beauty – whatever form it may take – and to revel in its reflection of love.

The Santa Rosa Art Association meets at Pensacola State College, Milton Campus, in Building 4800 at 9 am.

Posted on Leave a comment

Today Is The Last Day For Calendars

Ho Ho Ho and such! I’ve got some important news about ordering, Holiday shipping times, and all the craziness involved.

I also wanted to make sure you guys are aware that today is the last day to order Calendars. That is December 5th, 2018 until 11:59PM Central Time. At midnight I will be pulling the listings down. Thank you so much to everyone that ordered a Calendar! I appreciate you guys so much.

Calendars

Last year some people missed the deadline, and wanted to know if I can “help a brotha out” but alas I could not, and I felt really bad about it, but it would have messed up the orders that were already placed.

Also, in the last blog I put information about holiday ordering and shipping times, it’s important, so I’m going to share it again.

Calendar-2019-button

HOLIDAY ORDERING AND SHIPPING FROM RAFI AND KLEE

Order cutoff dates are as follows, to ensure timely delivery for Christmas. Domestic orders (continental US), for bespoke (made to order) items: December 11th. Limited collection (ready to ship) items: Dec 17th. All international orders: December 3rd.

Order-Deadline-Rafi-and-Klee

Shipping time

Usually, it takes 2-7 business days, but most shipping companies do not work during weekends. Strikes, severe weather conditions, flight delays, increased volumes, and other unforeseeable issues may cause an increase in shipping time. So keep that in mind.

The Happy Art Tour THAT
The Happy Art Tour THAT

Oh, btw… You’re awesome and we love you. I know it’s been all business with deadlines and ordering for the Holidays, so I want to take the time out to say, I really appreciate you and thank you for being so supportive.

-Rafi

 

Posted on Leave a comment

4 Special Stocking Stuffers To Give From Rafi And Klee

That time of year is upon us where we desperately try to remember what the people who are near and dear to us would like in their stocking. In the spirit of the holidays I have compiled a list of our most popular stuff to stuff a stocking with.

These are gifts that are both affordable and meaningful from our collections of fine jewelry and fine art.

Rafi and Klee Christmas 2015

PLEASE NOTE: While people are generally overflowing with joy and uncontainable excitement, this season can also cause a bit of stress for us with increased orders and workload or winter storms that can drastically impact delivery times. It is important to us that you get your gifts.

Order-Deadline-Rafi-and-Klee
Order cutoff dates are as follows, to ensure timely delivery for Christmas. Domestic orders (continental US), for bespoke (made to order) items: December 11th. Limited collection (ready to ship) items: Dec 17th. All international orders: December 3rd.

Ok, now that’s out of the way, on to the fun:

Tiny Hammered Disk Earrings – Sterling Silver and 14k Solid Gold “Mini Gong” Earrings $59.00

Mini Gong Earrings
These elegant little sterling silver concave disk earrings feature subtle hammered texture, beautiful light play, minimalist design, and mixed metal versatility with 14k solid gold hexagonal beads nested in each disk. They wear perfectly for dress up or dress down and look amazing with just about anything. These just might be your new favorite wear everyday earrings.

shop-now

 

Three Little Birds Wall Art by artist Rafi Perez Original Artist Enhanced Print On Wood $25.00

Curate Your Space
This is a high quality print of my work on textured archival art paper. I enhance my prints using either ink, paint, pastel, or a combination of mediums. Each one is unique, this Piece is mounted on wood and ready to hang out of the box. It is completely hand crafted by me, with unique texture patterns added by hand, no two are exactly the same. These pieces are signed and dated on the back. Check Out rest of my CURATE YOUR SPACE pieces.

shop-now

Green Fluorite Crystal Necklace – Solid Sterling Silver – Raw Fluorite Octahedron Crystal – Long Layering Necklace $60.00 (Was $75.00)

Green Fluorite Crystal Necklace
A luminous raw pale green fluorite octahedron sits serene in it’s solid sterling silver woven bezel. The design is reminiscent of cathedral windows and old world lanterns, centering on the beauty of the light that passes through the crystal. A modern interpretation of a beautiful relic from times gone by. This fluorite crystal is raw and translucent with some beautiful crystal inclusions. Worn alone or layered with shorter necklaces, it makes a contemporary but organic statement.

shop-now

 

Four Seasons – 4 Piece – Tree Paintings on Reclaimed Wood By Artist Rafi Perez $131.75 (was $155.00)

Seasons of change
Original Abstract Textured Tree Mixed Medium Paintings on Re-purposed wood Part of “The Seasons of Change Series” This series came together over a period of time in which I experimented with the feeling of the season. Eventually the Seasons of Change evolved to what you see now.

shop-now

 

Also! Don’t forget! Calendar Order deadline is tomorrow, December 5th. Please order yours before they are gone.

Shop-Calendars-2019

Posted on Leave a comment

Calendar Ship Date And Updates

I am so appreciative and grateful of the response I’ve been getting to the Calendars. I’ll be honest, I was a bit surprised at how many of you showed excitement over the new designs. Truly, from my heart, I thank you.NOB-Mockup-8

My plan is to have all the calendars ready to ship no later than December 15th, which will put the calendar in your hands before Christmas. My goal is to ship them the same day I get them from the printer, so it may ship earlier, either way I will keep you updated.

Once the deadline passes in 4 days, its go time. That’s when the craziness begins and the process truly gets started. Speaking of deadlines, I noticed that there are several calendars sitting in carts, I really hope whoever you are, you don’t miss the deadline, because once I have my final order number, that’s it, these are coming down.

Rafi-Calendar-in-carts

If you haven’t gotten one yet, please order online, by following the link below. I have it set up this way so that I can keep track of the orders. I will not be selling calendars in person at the market, sorry.

shop-now

Posted on Leave a comment

20% Off And Free Shipping! All Rafi Art And Klee Jewelry

It’s that time of year again! When big companies have sales and everyone loses their mind shopping. Usually this time of year is not a big deal for us since we don’t have the advertising budget to promote ball buster deals… which, I’m not even sure I know what that is, or if I got the term right.

Cyber week sale! Nov 20th-25th Enjoy 20% off all items in our shops, no coupon code necessary. Take advantage of free shipping (domestic only) on all orders!

Art and Jewelry sale (1)

We do, however, have a beautiful and amazing small dedicated few that would rather get hand crafted art and jewelry from us than the mass produced big box store merchandise.

Because of this, Klee and I decided it would be awesome to have a sale for our awesome following and collectors!

Art and Jewelry sale (3)

Cyber week sale! Nov 20th-25th Enjoy 20% off all items in our shops, no coupon code necessary. Take advantage of free shipping (domestic only) on all orders!

Also my Calendars are now available for order until the December 5th deadline.

I would appreciate early ordering so I can have them all shipped out by the shipping date!

Art and Jewelry sale (2)

So visit our online stores:

shop-now

Visit Rafi’s Art – https://rafiperezart.com/

Visit Klee’s Jewelry – https://kleeangelie.com/

Buy Calendars – https://rafiperezart.com/shop/25052164/2019-calendars

Oh, wait… it’s Door Buster Deals… that makes a little more sense.

Posted on Leave a comment

2019 Limited Edition Rafi Art Calendars Available

I am very excited to announce that this year will be the second year of limited edition calendars to be released by me. There was such an amazing response last year that I am even more excited about this project!

Each series calendar has art that was carefully chosen by me in order to convey the message that I would like you to carry with you throughout the year.

This year, the first 50 orders will receive a free gift with their calendar!

2019-Calendars

Same as last year, I will be taking pre-orders online from November 4th – December 5th. Please make sure to order before the December 5th deadline, I had a few people that missed the deadline last year and couldn’t order a calendar. Also, these are pre-orders only, I will not have calendars with me at the market. Contact me if you want a calendar but are unable to prepay online.

You Can Pre- Order The Calendars On My Web Store.

shop-now

All orders will ship by December 15th. Receive a 10% discount when you order 2 or more at a time. Use discount code at checkout: CALENDARS2019 and save!

Mock-Up-Birds-8
2019 Birds Art Calendar has a collection of happy bird images on branches. My idea with this calendar was to bring a pop of color and joy to any drab work space. This calendar has no suggested nudity.

Marine-Mockup-8
2019 Marine Creatures Art Calendar has a collection of my colorful and bold water animals that I work on when inspired. The idea with this calendar was to bring a little of that calm and beauty to any space. This calendar has no suggested nudity.

NOB-Mockup-8
2019 Nature Of Being Art Calendar is a collection of powerful and beautiful tree people. Due to some of the powerful images and nudity, this calendar is meant for a more personal setting.

Mockup-4
2019 Sunflowers Art Calendar is a collection of some of my most empowering and bright pieces. Each image is accompanied by a short quote that puts the piece in context. This calendar has no suggested nudity.

Because I designed these calendars for myself and Klee, I also added a few non official holidays:

Along with all U.S. Holidays,
-January 13 – Make your dreams come true day
-February 16th – Do a grouch a favor day
-February 17th – Random act of kindness day
-February 22nd – Single tasking day
-February 24th – Tortilla chip day
-March 16th – Everything you do is right day
-March 19th – Let’s laugh day
-March 22nd – International goof off day
-March 26th – Make up your own holiday day
-April 14th – Look up at the sky day
-April 17th – Haiku Poetry Day
-April 23rd – Take a chance day
-April 30th – Honesty day
-May 4th – Starwars day
-May 5th – No pants day
-May 14th – Dance like a chicken day
-May 21st – Talk like Yoda day
-June 1st – Say something nice day
-June 8th – Best friends day
-July 3rd – Compliment your mirror day
-August 8th – Happiness happens day
-August 16th – Tell a joke day
-August 31st – Eat outside day
-September 4th – Eat an extra dessert day
-September 13th – Positive thinking day
-September 28th – Ask a stupid question day
-October 28th – International Observe the Moon Night
-November 24th – Celebrate your unique talent day
-December 19th – Ugly Sweater Day
-December 24th – Eggnog Day

I am currently taking pre-orders for calendars.

Shop-Calendars-2019

Posted on 1 Comment

The Happy Art Tour – Pensacola Nov 1st

As a lot of you know, Klee and I recently have been working on a large scale art installation project. This was a huge endeavor in which we created our own rooms to be an interactive full sensory experience.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

We were working for about 6 months in total secrecy and couldn’t share anything with you guys, which for me personally was a struggle. I apparently can’t keep a secret to save my life. I secretly told a bunch of people about the secret installation.

Luckily for me, now that the soft opening has happened, I get to reveal some of the exciting details.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

A few months ago we were approached by Gabrielle (she’s awesome), who wanted us to create large interactive art installations as a part of something that was going to be called The Happy Art Tour (THAT), and immediately Klee and I got excited. This was something that each one of us wanted to do in our own special way for a long time now.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

I’ve wanted to create a fantasy world installation where the viewer would become immersed into the art of the installation and become part of the experience.

The Dream Forest – Designed By Rafi Perez

The Dream Forest was conceptualized and designed to allow the observer to explore the nature of happiness itself, through an immersive interaction with whimsical ancient beings that come to life as you meander through their magical realms. Each one explores a different facet of the “gem” that is happiness, asking thought provoking questions and offering words of ancient wisdom.

I’m also pretty sure Klee has always wanted to create a Firefly experience.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

The Firefly Room – Designed By Klee Angelie

The Firefly Room was conceptualized and designed with one simple desire in mind – to capture and share the whimsy and magic of an early summer evening at dusk, when the day’s work is done, time seems to stand still, all seems right with the world, and all that needs to be done is to sit back and experience the childlike joy of watching hundreds of fireflies dance around you. The firefly room simply asks you to breathe deeply… take in the sights, sounds, and smells of nature, and revel in the experience.

A special thanks to Monica, James, and Gabby, whom helped us finish the rooms in time for the soft opening, we couldn’t have done it without them.

Here is more information on this awesome adventure that we hope you experience.

The Happy Art Tour (T.H.A.T.), is Pensacola’s first multi-sensory creative adventure. Using experiential mediums throughout the entire space, T.H.A.T. worked with local artists to build ways for visitors to view, hear, touch, smell, and taste some of its exhibits.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

The space is open to the public from November 1 to December 31, 2018.

Intended to be a short-term installation that will travel from city to city, T.H.A.T. occupies over 8,000 square feet of space at 401 N. Baylen St. in Pensacola, Florida.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

The downtown location has been revamped completely and features countless photo ops that will delight both the most social-media savvy visitor and those eager to try something new.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

Using tons of recycled material, T.H.A.T. created its space with over 1,000 plastic bags, hundreds of beach balls, gallons of colored paint, and thousands of square yards of fabric. It’s a sight that must be seen to be understood and appreciated.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

Local artists include:

Rafi And Klee Studios- Rafi and Klee Perez (Hey it’s us!)

Blue Collar Creative

The Alcohol Ink Lady- Rachel Eidson

And many others!

The Happy Art Tour THAT

Tickets to T.H.A.T. are on sale now and must be purchased in advance, online. Admission is $30, $28 for active military, and free for kids ages three and under. The space is available for private parties, school field trips, corporate events, and will host various theme days (to be announced). The grand opening of the space is aptly timed with the Foo Foo Fest, which is an active community outpouring of support for the arts.

The Happy Art Tour THAT

We are both extremely excited for the opening in November and look forward to every one experiencing not only our rooms but the entire experience. Yeah, this is one experience here in Pensacola you are definitely not going to want to miss, and we are so proud to be a part of it.

We will be going again and again while it runs, it was so much fun!

Buy-Tickets-Button-rafi

Posted on Leave a comment

Mark Your Calendars, It’s Art Showing Time

I am excited to announce that I’m so busy that I have no idea what I’m actually doing, so this list is for me as much as it is for you.

Well, let’s jump right in, get your datebooks ready set and GO!

Artel Gallery Rafi Solo Exhibit Reception Sept 13th

Rafi-Artel-Show-Poster-2018-2

The show is called Sunflowers & The Nature Of Being. It is meant to ignite the spark within the imagination of the viewer as he or she explores the art, discovering a collection based on beauty, nature, and the human spirit.

Join me for the reception on Sept 13th from 6 -8pm.

What: Sunflowers & The Nature Of Being Solo Show Reception

When: September 13th, 2018 From 6pm-8pm

Where: Artel Gallery – 223 Palafox Pl, Pensacola, FL 32502

Why: Because it is AWESOME!

Show runs from Sept 4th – Oct 19th.

 

“LIVE” Rafi Solo Exhibit Reception Sept 15th

Come-See-All-My-Crap-2018-2

I am very excited to announce that I will be having a solo show at Live Juice Bar & More in Downtown Pensacola. I have some super secret pieces that I am working on that will make their debut at the show. The show is called “Come See All My Crap” and you will be seeing over 80 works of art.

There will be good music, good food, good people, and a lot of fun.

Go To The Facebook Event Page

Join me for the reception on Sept 15th from 7 -9pm.

What: Come See All My Crap Solo Show Reception

When: September 15th, 2018 From 7pm-9pm

Where: Live Juice Bar and More – 532 GARDEN STREET, Pensacola

Why: Because it is AWESOMENESS!

Each month Jaco’s features a new artist whose work will hang on the walls of the restaurant for that month. The night of the reception they also have free wine tasting of that months featured wines.
So, we will have featured art, a featured artist (me), and featured wine (not me, but still awesome) at the same event, sitting right on the water… and YOU are invited!
Join me for the reception on October 3, 2018 from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm.What: Jaco’s Rafi Perez Solo Show Reception

When: October 3, 2018 from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Where: Jaco’s Bayfront Bar & Grille – 997 S Palafox St, Pensacola

Why: Because ART AND WINE!!! HELLO?!?!

And that’s it for now…

2018 Rafi CalendarsOh yeah!! – I’ll also be taking pre-orders for the 2019 Calendars in October so keep an eye out for that!!

Posted on Leave a comment

Solo Show At Artel Sept 4th – Oct 19

I am excited to announce that I will be showing my art in the alcove at Artel Gallery in beautiful downtown Pensacola.

Rafi-Artel-Show-Poster-2018

The show is called Sunflowers & The Nature Of Being. It is meant to ignite the spark within the imagination of the viewer as he or she explores the art, discovering a collection based on beauty, nature, and the human spirit.

I’m hoping it will be a window for self discovery, dialogue and inspiration. Show runs from Sept 4th – Oct 19th.

Join me for the reception on Sept 13th from 6 -8pm.

What: Sunflowers & The Nature Of Being Solo Show Reception

When: September 13th, 2018 From 6pm-8pm

Where: Artel Gallery – 223 Palafox Pl, Pensacola, FL 32502

Why: Because it is AWESOME!