Thursday, March 31, 2016

Artist Statements - A Marketing Tool? - Marketing Tips

NEW WORKS FROM THE STUDIO OF ART BY WENDY

Ok, I know you are going to say how can I dishonor the most sacred part of an artist's expression: their statement!  The statement has been since the beginning of time, enshrined in everything that is pure in the artistic world.  To sully it by combining it with commerce seems to blacken it to the highest degree.  

But blacken it I must.  

Your artist statement tells so much. It says what you do.  It talks about why you are doing it. It discusses your goals for a series you are working on. It even explains why you work with certain materials.  It is a window into you and your thinking as you create your work. It combines you and your process to your work.

These are all the elements that make it the most important Marketing Tool in your bag. 

Those early painters really knew what they were doing.  Don't forget, they had to earn their bread and butter by their brush.  The successful ones were the marketers.  They understood how important it is to build a strong bridge between themselves, their process and their work.  

"I am a wildlife artist, my passion is to bring nature to life on paper." Your statement may be as simple as this or a lengthy discussion.  But it will give a window into your work. It can take many forms, depending on where you using it. My little chickadee below has his own version of my Artist Statement.

NEARLY RIPE - 5 X 7
This is part of my 'Chickadees in the Garden' Series. These little fellows have returned to the garden this spring. Their chatter and chirps as they flutter about bring new life to the garden.  It is their excitement that seems to warm all the grays and browns.  Suddenly the bits of colour seemed to blossom and grow.  Spring is really here!!

Yes, your statement is changing.  It is not a static element.  As your work moves and changes so does your statement. However, you will notice even as it changes there is an overriding element.  For me, it is my wildlife.  Yes, like you, I have tried different types of art and even different mediums.  But despite the differences there is a common theme "Bringing nature to life on Paper".  What is yours? You have one, you may not have articulated it but it is there.  Find it.  It will help you focus your work but also more importantly, focus your marketing.  Your statement is your way of connecting you, your process and your work for your collectors.  Definitely a strong Marketing Tool!! 

 Special Note: 
This week I received the 'Outstanding Service to the Arts 2016' Award from the Surrey Arts Council for all my work for the Arts in the community.  I would love to thank all the people that nominated me for this award but I have no idea who they are.  I was totally surprised.  Contributing to the community as a volunteer has always been important to me. It is really nice to get a special 'thank you ' like this. 
Me - Totally Thrilled!!
Be sure to like and share my posts. You won't miss a single one if you follow by email or Like my Facebook Page. Keep up with all the art events by joining my email list (see sidebar)

For Commission Works see here
For Private Drawing Lessons see here
For Marketing Mentoring see here
For Marketing or Art Presentations Contact Wendy 

 Have a great artful day, Wendy

Thursday, March 17, 2016

A Moment in the Sun!!!! - Watercolour Painting Tip

NEW WORKS FROM THE STUDIO OF ART BY WENDY

Okay, I must admit this posting is all about me. This is Awesome News!!   I am having My Moment in the Sun!!  The International Artist Magazine has 8 full pages featuring my art in their April/May edition!!   I am just thrilled!  I still can hardly believe it. 


When I first started out drawing and painting I read their magazine faithfully trying to learn all the key things to improve my work.  I admired all the artists and hoped to be half as good as them some day. Now suddenly, I am one of those artists.  
It  started last spring when I entered their Florals Show.  No, I wish I could say I was one of the lucky ones that won a prize or got honorable mention.  I wasn't.  But I must have been very close as last fall I got an email from the International Artist Magazine saying they liked my work and wanted me to do an article for them.  I was thrilled.  It was a big job to put it all together but at the same time very exciting.  To see it now in print is Awesome!


Here I am, #108 April/May 2016 edition - Page 102 - Using Salt with Watercolour
Pretty neat, eh??!!

My demo was on using Salt with watercolour and then glazing over this with other colours.  My blog post  Dec 10, Adding Salt to the Mix gives a step by step pictorial tutorial on this.  ( By the way, it is a very effective way to add texture to your work.)
 The Demo page - A Friendly Face in the Forest - my demo picture and a picture of me on the left. 

My feature Picture in the Demo - A Friendly Face in the Forest - Watercolour

You may not have the magazine but you can certainly ready about the creation of this picture and using glazes after the salt has been added on my posts below: 

1. December 10, 2015 - see  Adding Salt to the Mix  

2.  January 14, 2016 - see  Have You Considered the Light

Thank you for indulging me and helping me celebrate my Moment in the Sun.  I really hope that you enjoy a Moment in the Sun in the near future as well.  

 Be sure to like and share my posts. You won't miss a single one if you follow by email or Like my Facebook Page. Keep up with all the art events by joining my email list (see sidebar)
For Commission Works see here
For Private Drawing Lessons see here
For Marketing Mentoring see here
For Marketing or Art Presentations Contact Wendy 
 Have a great artful day,
 Wendy

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Stand Back!! - Painting Tips

NEW WORKS FROM THE STUDIO OF ART BY WENDY

I like to golf.  The season is just getting underway for me so golfing is on my mind.  What does that have to do with painting you might add, but it does.  When you start your golf game, you pull out the big guys, "Big Bertha" is often what that big driver is nicknamed.  You give it a wack and start walking.  Your on your way.  Yes, you do change clubs a bit but working down from the big woods, slowly getting down to the irons as you get closer to the hole.

Very much like painting a picture.  The big brushes come out and you are painting, everything is big, loose and moving well.  Then you get 'close to the hole', down to detail.  That is where the problems start.  In golfing you can get to the green in 2 or 3 shots, even on a long hole. But what happens on the greens can really rack up the strokes.  I find the most pesky shots are those 4-8 foot putts.  Close enough that they should almost be a 'giv-me' but of course they aren't!!  You move in, grab the putter, line up and putt.  Sorry to say, it often doesn't go in.  It dribbles a little to the right or maybe a little to the left. The big problem is, it does not go in.

Sunshine and Sunflowers - 12 x 16, Watercolour

A lot like painting your picture.  You finish all the big stuff and move in for the little touch of detail, the crowning touches.  You pick up that tiny brush, paint a spot here, add a touch there, darken a bit. Wait, it just doesn't hit the mark. You dab a bit more, wipe a bit.  Oh no!  Now things are getting worse. Need to fix it here, add more there . . .   You know what I mean.  You have been there.

In golfing there is only one answer: Stop. Step back. Look at the lay of the land.  That little step has saved me many strokes.  When I step back I often see a little rise or fall of the green that I could not see when I was standing over it.  Also, it gives me a chance to regroup and re-frame my stance. Having the correct stance is soooooo important when putting.  (I wish I could say all my putts go in after that but they don't!!)

Painting that detail is just like putting.  Put that dab on, add that touch, then step back. See the picture as a whole, rather than up close.  Things will look different. Your judgement will be quite different.   Here are a few examples from my painting Sunshine and Sunflowers where I definitely saw my judgement change when I stepped back.

Painting the shadow colours on yellow proved to be very challenging.  I had planned to use my purple mixed from my blue and red colour. But when I painted that petal hanging off the right side of the flower I wasn't sure.
Detail from Painting - By itself the yellow looked dirty and the shadow too dark.  It wasn't! After stepping back I realized I had to darken it.

The same kind of thing happened when I painted the little petal hanging at the back of the flower.  By itself it looked so dark when I added the shadow.  I was already to start lifting and changing when I remembered the "stand back" rule.  When I stepped back things were very different.
Detail from Painting - I thought for sure this looked too dark! Not!  I needed to glaze over it again.

Here was a big one.  My little chickadee was all painted but the shadow not on him yet.  I knew he needed that shadow but purple seemed just tooooo much.  I finally took my brush and went for it.
Detail from Painting - The purple looked so purple but it was needed to gray the colours down and put this little guy in the shade!

In the heat of the moment it is often hard to keep cool.  But when the urge to fiddle hits you, remember 'stand back', regroup, look at the whole picture.  If it doesn't help you in painting, it  will certainly help your golf game!!

Special Note: I will be giving a demo at Opus and Framing Store, Langley, BC, Saturday, Mach 26, 10:30-12:30pm.  "Combining Your Photo References to "Get it Right".  This hands on demo will give you lots to think about.  Demo is free but you much pre-register at 604-533-0601.   More information here
 Be sure to like and share my posts.
You won't miss a single one if you follow by email or Like my Facebook Page. Keep up with all the art events by joining my email list (see sidebar)

For Commission Works see here
For Private Drawing Lessons see here
For Marketing Mentoring see here
For Marketing or Art Presentations Contact Wendy 

Have a great artful day, Wendy

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Answering the Call of Nature - Part 2 - Marketing Tips

NEW WORKS FROM THE STUDIO OF ART BY WENDY

In British Columbia, Visual Artists are very lucky.  We have a very enterprising lady, Eve Lees publishing "The Artist's Journal".  Eve is a former newspaper editor who saw a need in 1997 to put together a journal of Art Calls and Events happening in BC.  I have asked Eve to be my guest today on my blog to talk about the The Artist's Journal as it is a very valuable resource for visual artists.

I have benefited in so many ways through the Artist Journal.  I had the opportunity to be Artist in Residence at Mount Revelstoke National Park (read about that here), I plan my outdoor markets schedule in a cohesive manner because I know about the events early in the year and I even knew about the 23 day Artist in Residency on the boat from Vancouver to Shanghai in time to enter.  (No, I didn't enter, I decided that was a bit too long for me to be on a boat but I knew about it in time to enter, did you?)

QUIET MAJESTY - off to the Guide Outfitters Ass. of BC  anniversary convention in Victoria as a result of reading about the call in the Artist Journal.

Here is what Eve has to say about The Artist Journal:
"Hundreds of arts organizations regularly submit their events to publish in The Artist’s Journal. As an individual artist (and not a “member of the media”) you may never know of many of these calls. But more important, they are Calls you won’t have to search for yourself – it’s all here for you in one publication, allowing you to spend more time creating your art.
You’ll get all of B.C.’s Calls For Entry in one publication – at a much lower cost than joining each individual Arts Council to see their Calls in their members-only newsletters – including all the Calls that won’t apply to you (Arts Councils are an umbrella group for all art genres, not just painting/drawing artists). There are over 95 Arts Councils in B.C., so at approximately $40 a year for a membership, multiplied by 95 . . . well, you do the math. 
A one year subscription of this quarterly publication (four issues yearly) is $16 for one year or $28 for two years. It is available only by e-mail. Between each issue, subscribers are e-mailed the Calls For Entry that arrived too late to make the publication deadline."

I really like this added feature of the emailed Calls for Entry that arrive too late for publication.  I have often taken advantage of them. See here for More information on "The Artist Journal"

Just a little disclaimer here: This is not meant in any way as an advertisement for Eve's Journal, there is no kickback for me but I do feel it is a valuable resource to put in your kit-bag and worth investigating. If you know of other valuable resources for Artist Calls let me know and I will certainly pass them along.  Awesome art is setting in studios because artists just "can't know about everything".  
My picture "Sunshine and Sunflowers" is coming along well but not complete.  As you probably guessed those pesky yellows are giving me a run for my money.  It will be up and ready for next week!!

 Be sure to like and share my posts.
You won't miss a single one if you follow by email or Like my Facebook Page. Keep up with all the art events by joining my email list (see sidebar)

For Commission Works see here
For Private Drawing Lessons see here
For Marketing Mentoring see here
For Marketing or Art Presentations Contact Wendy 

Have a great artful day, Wendy