I prepped a new batch of canvasses the other day. By "prepped" I mean I prepared backgrounds, selected papers, did layouts, glued, glued, glued. I have this compulsion to completely cover the canvas with paper. Which I did. Once they are dry I sand all of them then gesso bits here and there - usually with a white gesso, but sometimes with Daniel Smith Venetian Red.
I knew what I needed because my "eyeball inventory" told me so:
Before 4 Bridges.
This is a new system for me. At my request, John made a display gallery in the room off my studio. It is a complete visual of what I hang in my booth (plus replenish stock). So, at a glance I can tell whether or not I have enough inventory. If all the nails are occupied I have enough work for 2 back to back shows. If not, I need to count up my nails and see how much I need of each size. Easy and brainless. It also allows me to see color schemes, compositions and other details of my completed pieces such as whether they hang together as a group. I have found this incredibly useful and look at it several times a day.
When I am staging a show (like Venus Envy, which hangs tomorrow) I use a floor layout. First I see how much linear wall space I am allotted. The I put a tape measure on the floor, extended to the length of my allotted space. I lay paintings on the floor to see what will fit. Then sketch it out. If I have more than one wall, like that bookstore show I did in December, I will photograph the site, measure the linear space, then sketch it out. My lovely assistant (and Rock of Gibraltar) John will then use my sketch to determine the "real" measurements required to hang it all 60" on center. Thank goodness I don't actually have to do that math.
It's eyeball all the way for me.