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Understanding Advertising and Why You Simply Cannot Do It All

January 10th, 2018

Advertising Your FAA Artistwebsite

The purpose of this article is to address the needs of the artist on FAA trying to balance their time between creating their art and selling it.

You simple cannot do it all. Not effectively.

When is enough, enough and maybe too much? One of the biggest mistakes that I see FAA members doing is advertising with no advertising plan what so ever. They think they all they have to do is post a few times to Facebook or Tweet here and there and that's it. Or they are out there thinking they have to be on everything. Total market saturation. Neither one is the right way to go.

There are a lot of ways of advertising your FAA artwork. But in order to do that you first have to understand something about basic advertising.

Advertising on the net is not totally different then advertising main stream media. But it is different.The vehicles you use are obviously different but the basic concepts are the same. You have to reach the market place and prospective buyers with your product in a way that is most like to give you results.

Let's look at the different vehicles we see most often used by successful sellers on FAA. Facebook is probably the number one, with Twitter number two. Then you have all the rest of the social media including G+, LinkedIn, About.Me and on and on. Equate those to off the net adverting vehicles like TV, radio, newspaper, billboards, etc, etc. Put these aside for a minute because, for the purpose of this discussion we are not going to use them to promote your AW on FAA but we are going lean form them.

Now let's talk about the different approaches. To keep this as simple as possible, let's look at two different approaches to adverting.

First there is Direct Advertising or Target Marketing or Market Specific. Someone reinvents a new name for it every year or so, but it is still the same thing that it has been for 200 years.

Then you have Institutional Advertising, Generic, Top of the Mind Awareness and again all the new names people have come with.

I am assuming you have at least a basic understanding of the two different approaches above. Here is a very simple example of each.

If I have a photograph of a cowboy on a horse, I would target the western, cowboy, horse market using Twitter, FB Groups or any other vehicle where I could identify this people. I pretty simple stuff, I know, bear with me. I would do this my using the right hash tags and joining the right FB groups.

Institutional advertising would differ in that I would not necessarily even mention a photograph but would instead just be posting to Facbook or Tweeting "Visit, see the best artwork on the net". I would be promoting the "institution" FASGallery to everyone, not to a specific photograph and not to a specific market. This goes to Top of the Mind Awareness. Still really boring I know, but stay with me.

What you are trying to do is the same thing All State Insurance has done with "The Good Hands People" or McDonald's with the Golden Arches. It is a form of branding. We do marketing surveys for specific industries. We ask people what is the first think you think of when I say "golden arches" or "the good hands people".

All of these things have to be taken into consideration of any advertising plan. But now we have to talk about the meat of that plan. How do you reach the market in a meaningful way that will get you the best results?

When you get ready to actually launch your plan, you simple cannot do it all. Everyone has limits. We are talking non-paid advertising but it still cost something. The currency is time. And you simply cannot be on Facebook, Twitter, G+, About.Me, LinkedIn, and on and on and on. Not effectively. It is just simply not the best use of you time because the frequency is going to be too thin to really make the impact you need to make. You will not reach the market penetration that you will need to be effective.

This is where we start talking about Vertical Reach and Horizontal Reach, the meat of any plan.

Most people are not in a position to where they can go for total market saturation. They need to focus, limit the number of vehicles you chose to use and then use them wisely.

Here is an example. If you were advertising on radio, and there was 10 radio stations in your market, more the likely you would not have enough money to be on all of them. You would have to choose. If your budget is $1000, you would be much better off running $500 dollars on two stations instead of $100 each on all 10. $100 is simply not enough to achieve decent market penetration. It would be a waste of money.

Vertical vs Horizontal. Vertical: $500 on each of two stations. Horizontal: $100 on each of 10 stations.

In this case your $100 simple will not give you the market penetration you need to get any decent results.

If you are still with me, we now need to talk about one of the biggest reasons, besides the cost why you cannot effectively do all of the Social Media outlets. With Social Media, unlike radio, TV, newspaper and other traditional adverting vehicles you have to build your own audience. You actually have to advertise you advertising vehicle. You have to build up your own followers and friends and circles; your audience.

For advertising to be work, you have to reach some level of market penetration. You have to be in that market, advertising your gallery, often enough to make an impact, to penetrate the market.

Think of it the same way all great speech writers do when they write a speech. To make a point stick in the audience's mind they know they have to repeat that point three times. "Tell'em, tell'em what you told'em and then tell'em again".

Applying what we have known about advertising for 200 years and from leaning what we have from radio and television, 50 tweets a day or posts to Facebook, will be more effective then 5 posts a day on ten different Social Media vehicles. It will also give you more time to create your art because you do not have to manage all of those different outlets. You can actually make fewer posts to a smaller market and have better results and at same time because you are getting better market penetration which will give you better results.

In closing (thank goodness) pick one or two, maybe 3 vehicles, build up a targeted market as best you can and do the best you can to penetrate that market. I personally think two is plenty and the two that I find easiest to build a following on are Facebook and Twitter. It is obvious that if you have the time, and can give the time, the more vehicles you can do a good jog on, the better off you will be.

As this applies to FAA, if you have 1000 images, you can afford to spend the time to be a more outlets. If you under 200, you cannot. You need to be creating art AND doing marketing. The fewer products you have the more effective your limited advertising has to be. The more important it is that you focus and get the biggest bang for your buck that you can.

But the bottom line is you have to have an advertising plan and you have to be committed to it and stick to it. Plan your work and work your plan as the old saying goes.

Good Reads for more selling and advertising and better sales:

Work Smarter Not Harder To Beat The Big Guys
This Is My Response to Members Looking for Help
Work Smarter Not Harder To Beat The Big Guys
Another Response to a New Member Looking for Help
You Can Not Win the Search Was and Should Not Even Try

Low Cost Social Media Marketing Plan

September 15th, 2017

As many of you know, I come from a 40 year background in both selling art and advertising.

Having been the owner of three brick and mortar art galleries, a publishing company and an ad agency, I am a big believer in traditional advertising. The Internet has changed a lot of the thinking but the basics are still the same. Get the product seen by the largest number of potential buyers as you can. And of course, it goes without saying that it has to be done with a plan that is economically efficient.

Most advertising plans start out with a budget that is usually some percentage of the gross sales. The number most agencies will use is 15% of sales. Simply put that would mean if you do $100,000 in sales, you should be spending $15,000 in advertising. I am not interested in hearing the arguments on rather you agree with this or not. It is long-standing practice that we do not need to discuss here. I am just laying down some very basic principles so you can see what the new plan is based on. And I am not suggesting anyone has to spend $15,000. The budget is going to set itself based on your individual sales.

There are two basic concepts in play here that we are going to actually try to compromise here to keep cost down. That means the overall plan is going to be based on how long it is applied instead of how much money you spend on it in the short term.

First, advertising is all about impressions. Tell'em, tell'em what you told them and then tell'em again. Repetitiveness is crucial for success.

Second, one needs to understand the principal of vertical vs horizontal advertising. For this program we are going to go for the vertical not the horizontal. A simple explanation is that with a limited budget, you need to focus on one (or two at the most) Social Media outlet for your message. If you want to read more on vertical vs horizontal reach, Google it or read my blog Understanding Advertising and Why You Simply Can Not Do It All

Okay, so there is the basic we are going to apply here.

The program is much simpler then the prelude! :-)

Recently, I have been sharing my sales with a few of the Facebook groups that I started and the largest of the other groups I belong to. Every time I post one of these “Recently Sold” announcements to Facebook I get asked if I want to boots the post. The buy in is at a very low level or pretty much whatever you want it to be.

My idea is that for every sale you make you take from 10% - 20% of the profit you make only on that sale and boost that post for that amount. At the same time, you make sure you share those same posts in as many FB groups as you can and with as many friends that you can.

This will give you an ongoing advertising plan that is easy to keep track of and not break the bank. Part of the thinking is that if the image sells once, it will probably have a higher potential to sell again. I know that is not a 100% so please don't tell me how that is not a for sure thing. I get that.

The other thing I am suggesting is that you make the posts look exactly the same as much as possible. Using the FAA share button from the image page itself is what I strongly recommend. I never use that notification that you get that says something like help Joe spread the word or whatever it says. I only use the one from the image page on my ArtistsWebsite or Premium site.

I suggest you develop some kind of positioning phrase, or signature of some sort. It does not have to be much but it should be unique to you. I sign all of my post with just simply Enjoy! Floyd Snyder,

I also mention that the image can be bought on paper, canvas, and on consumer items. I don't really like it all that much because it is too commercial and way to long. So far none of the groups that I posted it to have rejected it so the group administrators do not seem to mind.

I just recently did this for an image I sold and as soon as I launched the "boost" I did make a sale of the same image. Absolutely no way in the world to know if it came from a post that the resulted from the boot.

Here is the draw back. This is pretty low dollar, directly related to how much you sell and there is no auto FAA tracking. In order for it to really be tested to where we can see if it is creating any sales, it is going to have to be a medium to long term program and you will have to track your own sales and see if you get repeats on those specific images that you boost. There is no way to tell if you get residuals or not by someone clicking on the boosted ad but buying a different image. But of course over time I would expect that to happen.

You are going to have to be willing to add to the money for boosting if the profit on the sale is very small. Or you can accumulate the money and added it to where ever you decide. I am going to add budget because I want the repetitiveness of people seeing that I am making sales giving them the impression that I have great stuff that people are buying. Some may want to consider adding 15% to your prices if you think they can stand the price increase. That is up to you.

I have several Facebook Groups that I stated to help people get seen on Facebook. You can go to any of those group pages and scroll down and see these posts that I have been making. Here is a link to the blog that has the group names and address.

Feel free to leave a comment below.

It Is Not How Long It Is How Many

June 6th, 2017

How long you have been a member of FAA or how long your image has been on FAA or on the Internet has little to do with selling it or when it will sell.

That it does, is a myth that people have bought into here because it is being put forth by a handful of people, right along with the myth that every image has to be spectacular. It does not. It only has to be seen by the right person.

The idea that an image has to be here or on the Internet for some time before it sells simply lacks any real merit. Now I will agree that the longer the image has been on FAA and/or the Internet, the more people see it and the more apt it is to sell. But that is still dependent on the being seen factor, not the longevity factor.

I started selling the first week I was here and I have been selling daily every since.

It is not how long you have been here of how long your images have been here or on the Internet. It is about how many people see your work.

When a prospective buyer sees one of your images, they don't have any idea how long they been here or on the Internet. Few people bother to look at the counter. No one says, oh, I can't buy this image; the buyer has only been on FAA for a couple months or years. Nor do they say, hey, I am going to go buy from JC because he has been here longer than Floyd.

If you upload an image and in one week 100 people see it, and I put up an image and in that same one week, 10,000 people see it, pretty sure I have a better chance of selling my image then you (now here's the part that most people hate) even if your image is a much, much better image.

The two biggest factors, even more important than the quality of your work are how many people see your images and how many you have. Quality is an issue, but it is not the most important one. That too is a myth.

Some of the images of my own work that I sell here and other places, every month, are images that people here have told me would never sell. But yet, I just keep selling them.

Barbara and Floyd Snyder Art Exhibit at Los Olivos Wine Merchant and Cafe

May 5th, 2017

Barbara and Floyd Snyder  Art Exhibit at Los Olivos Wine Merchant and Cafe

"Peace and Tranquility" by Barbara and Floyd Snyder Art Exhibit at Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Caf

A new show of photographic art by local artists Barbara and Floyd Snyder will be on view at the Los Olivos Cafe from March 2nd through May 4th. This talented married couple has each inspired the other's creative photography over time and their work shows delightfully well together in this exhibit. Each artist works both with original photography and digitally enhanced original photography, largely concentrating on scenes from nature that they feel bring an experience of peace and tranquility to the viewer. The beautiful images on view provide an engaging viewing encounter, and pieces are available for purchase by those who may wish to acquire a work that provides a lyrical commentary on nature's many gifts.

Each artist has worked in very interesting career fields that over time changed and evolved into a concentration on artistic endeavors.

They have owned and operated picture frame studios and art galleries and their backgrounds have informed their art and encouraged them to give attention to their own creativity. They have much to share with those who have the opportunity to view their work.

This exhibit is one of a continuing series of shows made possible by the commitment of the Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Cafe to showcase local art and artists. Santa Ynez Valley Art Association (formerly the Artists Guild SYV), a nonprofit arts organization with over thirty years of history in the area, coordinates and manages the "art without borders" installation in cooperation with the Cafe. A portion of art sales benefits the organization, and these collaborative efforts - a way to keep art alive and accessible in the Santa Ynez Valley.

Catalina Island 22 Miles Across The Sea

February 19th, 2017

Catalina Island 22 Miles Across The Sea

Only 22 miles off the coast of Los Angeles lies one of the most popular tourist destinations of Southern California, Catalina Island. This rocky island that is part of the Channel Island chain, 8 miles wide and 22 miles long, has a very colorful history. The island, originally inhabited by Native Americans known as the Pimugnans, was discovered in 1542 by Portuguese explorer Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo who was sailing for Spain. Though he claimed it for Spain, it remained untouched until 500 years later when it was rediscovered by Sebastian Vizcaino.

During the next two centuries, the island was used for otter and seal hunting even though trading with other countries was forbidden by Spain. Russian traders were among those who frequented the island since there was little enforcement of the prohibition of trading. Because of the many hidden coves and Catalina's close proximity to the mainland, smuggling was a common occurrence in the area. In the 1860's even gold-digging was attempted, which never panned out.

The island remained under the control of Spain and later Mexico until it became a part of California which eventually became a state. In 1846 Governor Pio Pico gave a Spanish land grant of Rancho Santa Catalina to Thomas Robbins. It remained his property until he sold it to Jose Maria Covarrubias in 1853. Covarrubias sold this grant to Albert Packard of Santa Barbara. Packard, in turn, sold the island to James Lick in 1864 who controlled it for the next 23 years. In 1887 George Shatto purchased the island for $200,000 and created the city of Avalon. Shatto was a real estate speculator from Grand Rapids, Michigan and was able to take advantage of the real estate boom of California at the time. In developing Avalon the first hotel on the island and the pier were built. Sadly, Shatto was not able to keep up with his loan. He defaulted on the loan, and the island went back to the Lick Estate.

The Banning Brothers made a valiant attempt to perpetuate the efforts of Shatto and made Avalon a resort community with more development. Unfortunately, a fire burned several hotels and facilities, creating a huge debt for the Banning Brothers that they could not overcome. In addition World War I caused a severe decline in visitors and tourists who had been coming to the island. In 1919 the Bannings had to sell shares in their enterprises due to the downturn in the economy. It was at that time that William Wrigley Jr, of Wrigley chewing gum, enters the picture to purchase shares. He made his move to buy out most of the shareholders which give him controlling interest in the Santa Catalina Island Company.

Under Wrigley's ownership, he endeavored to promote various activities and events that included the completion of the Catalina Casino in 1929. In addition, he brought the Chicago Cubs, also owned by him, to the island for their spring training season starting in 1921. The Cubs continued to call Catalina its spring training home until 1951, with exception of the war years. From 1942 to 1945 the island was closed to tourists because it was being used as a training camp for the military.

When William Wrigley Jr. passed away, his son Philip Wrigley took over the Catalina Island Company and continued to improve the infrastructure projects that his father had started. However, with the outbreak of World War II, the island took on a different role starting with the steamships being taken over to transport troops. The following agencies and entities established themselves in several locations on the island: Avalon was used to house the Maritime Service; Two Harbors became a training area for the army; the interior of the island became a radar station under the Army Signal Corp; Toyon Bay was used for the Office of Strategic Services; and Emerald Bay became the location for underwater demolition training.

In 1975 Philip Wrigley deeded the 42,135 acres of the Santa Catalina Island Company to the Catalina Island Conservancy. Wrigley had assisted in the formation of the conservancy, and with the transfer of land to the Conservancy 90% of the island was under their umbrella. The remaining property remained under the control of the resort property owners. In 2007 a fire in Avalon destroyed several structures, but the assistance from the LA County firefighters, the US Navy, and the US Marine Corp kept the losses to a minimum. After some rebuilding, the tourists continued to flock to the island.

Catalina's mild Mediterranean climate with the low annual precipitation continues to entice visitors year round. A visitor can find several of the 400 plant species that are only found on Catalina Island. Besides plants, there are five native mammals which include the island fox, the California ground squirrel, the Catalina harvest mouse, the Santa Catalina Island deer mouse, and the ornate shrew. In 1924 bison were introduced to the island when a movie company brought them to be a part of a Western movie called The Vanishing American. The bison were left on the island to save money at the completion of the filming, which had run over budget. The bison population has now grown to over 150.

Protecting the cultural and natural heritage is the cornerstone of the private nonprofit Conservancy. Catalina Island is a beach and water lover's paradise with more than a million visitors each year. The variety of activities include scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming, sunbathing, boating, glass bottom boat trips, golf, hiking, sightseeing, and much more. There is just about something for everyone. One fact worthy of note is that motor vehicles are restricted, and most residents and visitors use golf carts and bicycles.

Unfortunately, the Casino no longer operates as a casino. However, on the plus side, the former casino is now a museum that provides a good look at the cultural heritage with more than 100,000 items in the collection. This an ideal way to get a good view of Catalina's past and present. Making a trip in the future is worth the time and won't soon be forgotten.

Visit to see several images featuring Catalina Island. Search on Catalina.

Are Your Prices Too High?

November 26th, 2016

Ask any top salesman or sales manager and they will tell you that the weaker the salesman is, the more reliant they are on price to make sales. As a sales manager, it is your job to make sure that the weaker salesman is not giving away the house to make is his living. In the case of selling your own work, you are your own sales manager. You need to know how to do that job.

The less you know about selling, advertising, and marketing, the more competitive you have to be in your pricing structure and the harder it is going to be to keep yourself from giving away the house.

We see it here all the time where people are encouraged to raise their prices, raise their prices. I just don't think that that is going to work for everyone. The less the seller knows about marketing, selling, and advertising, the more the art itself has to sell itself. Competitive pricing is going to make it easier for that to happen.

Take two images, both the exact same quality and hold the same appeal to the buyer. The guy that has image A has a great sales pitch, a great story and has caught the imagination of the buyer. He is asking $500 for his image. Seller B has basically the same image with the same level of enthusiasm from the buyer and the same $500 price but his sales pitch, his story is a boring "please by my print". The advantage is going to go to the seller with the better pitch.

Now take the exact same situation but seller B has a $400 price tag compared to seller A's $500. That is going to level the playing field quite a bit.

The more marketing, advertising and selling experience and knowledge you have, the easier it is to support higher prices.

But... the answer is not as easy as just lowering your prices. That may be only part of the answer. The full answer is to go to school and learn as much as you can about marketing, selling, and advertising. Even if you hate it and know you are never going to be good at it. You will learn enough to at least up your game to a higher level and become less dependent on lower prices.

The 25-75 Rule For New Members

November 12th, 2016

How many images you have for sale is important to how many sales you can expect to make.

I would suggest you forget the threads, groups, sponsoring pages, contests, likes, favorites, worrying about the FAA search ranking, views and all of the other stuff too many people get all bogged down in. That is assuming you are more interested in selling than socializing.

You should spend 75% of your time creating and uploading your art and 25% advertising your Artist Website OUTSIDE of FAA. Until you get closer to 250-300 images I would stay that course. Once you get to the 300 images, your goal should be to add images and get the number up as high as possible. There IS a direct relationship to the number of images and number of sales.

That said someone is going to no doubt come in here and tell you about the people that have less than 100 or less 50 that sell every day. And that is true. But they are very, very, very rare and they have special circumstances such as a famous name when they came here, connections with outside organizations that promote their work or some other special circumstances.

I have been here right at 4 years (as of November 2016). I did all of the above and tracked sales and their relationship to all of the things above. I found that there was ZERO relationship to sales and everything else except adding images and outside advertising. That said, I am not one of the top sellers in FAA but I do sell every day for the most part. The top sellers never show up in the threads.

Jump in, get your feet wet and get your Premium up and running. The sooner you get it up, the sooner it will start being indexed by searches OUTSIDE of FAA.

A couple of quick tips.

Keywords are critical but make sure you do not accidentally spam. If it not in the image or directly related to the image, do not put it in the keywords. They will make you redo them if they think they are spam.

Make sure you use good descriptions with as many search terms that you can think of.

Same thing with titles. Example: "Red Rose" okay "Red Rose Mission Santa Barbara" better.

Facebook used right is a very valuable tool. There are others but you mentioned you have a Facebook page. First, forget the idea of Facebook is an avenue of staying in touch with friends and relatives. You have to think outside those old notions of Facebook.

You simply cannot get enough "friends" to make a market for your work. The secret of Facebook is joining groups and getting your posts shared. And NOT groups of only artist. If you sell Christian art, join Christian groups, if you sell florals, join gardening groups. I sell a lot of western art. I belong to all of the western groups where western buffs hang out.

Do not just join and start spamming them with your images. Check out the group and watch what others are posting.

DO NOT put a link or a sales pitch in your posts. Put the links that go back to you to your AW where it is seen ONLY if someone clicks on your image.

Interact with the group. Make comments, make friends, like and share other people's post and they will do that the same for you making for a much broader based reach.

But remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint.

Selling is Not Selling it is Problem Solving

October 29th, 2016

Selling Isn't Selling - its Problem Solving and Filling Needs

You will find six different definitions for the word "selling" if you look the word up in the dictionary. Six. However, not one of them will give you the real meaning of the word you need if you really want to maximize your own or your staff's sales efforts.

So what is selling?

Selling is problem-solving through the fulfilling of someone's needs.

No matter what product or service you are selling, your clients and customers come to you hoping you can solve their problem. Of course, they don't always see it that way themselves, and, all too often, you or your staff fail to recognize it.

If you really want to totally understand the selling process, one of the best ways to do this is to look at it from the buyer's perspective. What problem (need) are they expecting you to solve? Where does it originate? And what are the main motivating factors driving that particular buyer's need?

To do this it would help to have at least a basic understanding of Maslow's "Hierarchy of Needs": Self-Actualization, Esteem, Love, Safety, and Physiological. Maslow writes that all human behavior is motivated by unsatisfied needs that fall into one of these general categories. Therefore, buying is motivated by a need based on one of the above elements of Maslow's Hierarchy.

For our purposes, we can group most, if not all, of your client's needs and Maslow's Hierarchy into two different categories:
Physiological Needs - Basic needs such as air, water, food, sleep, etc. For the most part, these are needs that one cannot live without.
Psychological Needs - Love, esteem, self-recognition, recognition by others, acceptance.

Think about the products you sell and which of Maslow's categories is motivating the need for your product.
For an in-depth understanding, I suggest you Google Maslow's "Hierarchy of Needs" and read more. The theory is not all that complicated and should be "a must read" for anyone making a living from selling.

Selling Benefits not Features.

Okay, so now that you understand that your customer has needs, you have to know how to satisfy them. You satisfy their needs (solve their problems) by giving (selling) them the "benefits" of your product that go directly to solving their problems, not by trying to sell them "features" that have little or no value according to your client's needs.

For example, if you are selling automobiles, and your prospect is a young married couple with rug-rats in tow, you probably don't want to be showing them all the fancy features of that really sleek, 2-door, 2-seater sports car. This feature-ridden beauty may mean a nice fat commission to you if you can get them to go for it. But it probably has zero benefits to the couple if their needs are for a family sedan or mini-van to haul the family around and drive the neighborhood kids to school when it is their week for the car-pool.

Frequently, we see sales people trying to sell something to their customers because if fills more needs of the salesman than the customer. The Bigger commission, old merchandise that needs to be moved, doesn't have the right product or any other number of reasons will motivate a salesperson to try to sell something that fails to solve the problem the customer was hoping to solve. This, all too often, ends up with a dissatisfied customer.

The next time you wait on a customer, think of yourself as a problem solver. Try solving their problems by matching their needs to the product with the best features that give real benefits toward filling their needs. Solve your customer's problems, and it becomes a win/win for both of you.

Remember this and you will close more sales.

Historic Buildings, Everywhere You Look

October 24th, 2016

Historic Buildings, Everywhere You Look

When people think of historic buildings, they mostly think in terms of the White House, the Empire State Building or Independence Hall. But if you just look around as you are traveling, they are really all over the place, almost everywhere you look. Here are a few of my favorites that I found as I wander around the good ol' USA. I hope you enjoy them!

Remnants Of The Grapes Of Wrath John Steinbeck Quote by Barbara Snyder

If you take River Road out of Soledad California and drive across the farm fields towards Carmel, you will see many remnants of the 1940 Steinbeck, Grapes of Wrath era. This old barn above is one of many. Talked to the owner of this property that has been in his family for generations. The building was in much better shape during the depression and when it was not full of produce during the harvest season, they allowed the homeless farm workers to use it for shelter during foul weather conditions. Both his father and grandfather had passed down stories of the Steinbeck era and he was willing to share those stories with any that would listen. I spent about two hours with him and it was very enlightening.

Image Above: Mission Santa Barbara by Barbara Snyder

Mission Santa Barbara, also known as Santa Barbara Mission, is a Spanish mission founded by the Franciscan order near present-day Santa Barbara, California. It was founded by Padre Fermin Lasuen on December 4, 1786, the feast day of Saint Barbara, as the tenth mission for the religious conversion of the indigenous local Chumash-Barbareno tribe of Native American people. The mission is the namesake of the city of Santa Barbara as well as Santa Barbara County. The Mission grounds occupy a rise between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains and were consecrated by Father Fermin Lasuen who had taken over the presidency of the California mission chain upon the death of Father Presidente Junipero Serra. Mission Santa Barbara is the only mission to remain under the leadership of the Franciscan Friars since its founding, and today is a parish church of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Pitkin Conrow Victorian Mansion Arroyo Grande California by Barbara Snyder

If haunted houses are your thing, you can visit this beautiful, restored victorian mansion on Valley Road in Arroyo Grande, California. A laughing ghost by the name of Alice is said to occupy the tower room. She also loves cats and also plays with her young male friend that also lives in the mansion. If you want to read more about this historic treasure and the ghosts that haunt it, click on the click to purchase link. No purchase necessary just to read the story.

Pauls Place by Barbara Snyder

Paul's Place is located just off Highway 176 in Waldon California just east of Lake Isabella in Kern County California. It has been a family run business for over 75 years.This particular building is of significant historic interest because it once served as the shower and bathing house for dam workers during construction. You can click the purchase link above for more details, no purchase necessary.

Creek Street Ketchikan Alaska by Barbara Snyder

Creek Street is a historic area of Ketchikan, Alaska. The street is actually a boardwalk mounted in stilts on a high slope on the east side of Ketchikan Creek, east of the city's downtown.Creek Street is infamous as being Ketchikan's red light district, roughly between 1903 and 1954, and some of its attractions are commemorations of this past. Its origins lie in a 1903 city ordinance banishing brothels from the city center to the "Indian Town" area on the east side of the creek, and it operated until the brothels were outlawed and shut down in 1954. Numerous houses of prostitution sprang up on this difficult terrain, supported by wooden stilts. Famous among them is The Star, which was one of the largest of these businesses, and Dolly's House, which is now a museum. Winding into the hills above Creek Street is Married Man's Way, a trail used by patrons of the brothels to escape raids. Click the purchase link for more details. No purchase necessary.These are only a few of the hundreds of historic buildings I have photographed over the years. To see more great photography and art from around the world including the Old Masters, visit Enjoy!

Pebble Beach, Monterey Peninsula Golf Meca

October 19th, 2016

Pebble Beach, Monterey Peninsula Golf Meca

This is the view (left) of the clubhouse at Pebble Beach Golf Links that golfers see when standing on the tee at the 18th hole looking straight into the back of the clubhouse. Of course, no one plays the hole to cut across the bay. Not on purpose anyway.

This is one of the most famous golf courses in the world and very often tops the lists of Best Courses in the World. It is also the course that most people, worldwide, say they want to play, putting it very high up on a lot of "bucket lists".

Pebble Beach also is the home of one the PGA Tour's most famous, yearly tournaments, the AT&T, Pebble Beach Open and Pro-Am event. The yearly "clam-back" was originally founded and sponsored by the famous crooner of all time, Bing Crosby. Bing, of course, has moved on to greener fairways in a better place bu the legacy continues on as it still draws a star-studded crowd of Hollywood stars and Fortune 500 billionaires.

Bill Murray of Ghost Busters fame is probably the most followed players on the course during the 4-day event were unlike other pro-ams, the celebs actually can qualify to play on and finish with the pros on Sunday.

Pebble Beach is now owned by an organization that includes none other than Carmel By the Sea past mayor and Hollywood giant Clint Eastwood. Clint, now in his 80's no longer plays in the event but he still attends and does live guest commentary on the network broadcast and is usually in the booth for the when the trophy is won.

The 2016 edition of the tour event drew 180,000 spectators and millions of viewers. The event was played on three of the Monterey Peninsulas premier golf courses: Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill Golf Course, and Monterey Peninsula Country Club Shore.

Monterey Peninsula Foundation is proud to host the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. In the 2015/16 fiscal year, the Foundation donated $10.8 million to support local nonprofits in Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito Counties.


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