Thursday, September 30, 2010

Let the Meandering begin!

This weekend I'll be exhibiting my art in the Upper MN River Art Crawl, or "the Meander". This will be my fourth year. It involves 45 artists in many different studios in the area. The studios are quite spread out (I've heard you can hit them all in the weekend if you really try), but it's timed to coincide with the peak fall color, so the drive is fun too. Two years ago, I skipped a year of exhibiting, and I got to really experience the Meander for the first time - it was so much fun!

This will be my second year exhibiting in a town right at the heart of the Meander - I saw at least 450 people at this location last year, and it was crazy! This runs from 2-6 Friday, 9-6 Saturday, and 9-4 Sunday, plus an hour drive each way for me, so it's a loooong weekend.

Here's a link if you want to check out the site, and if you know anyone in the area, be sure to let them know about it! Last year, it rained the whole weekend, but the weather forecast is great for this weekend, so hopefully this year will be even better!

Friday, September 24, 2010


Thought you all might want to read a little more about me. If so, check out this feature. I'm the second one down on the page.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Some great artist quotes

I ran across a site for western artist Jack Sorenson today while looking for a good cowboy quote to add to an Etsy listing. I'd seen his work before, but didn't know his name or anything about him. He's an artist for Leanin' Tree, the company that makes all those gorgeous western themed greeting cards.

Anyway, in my glancing through some information about him, I found three great quotes that I want to share:

-"I didn't have the guts to become an artist, I had the ignorance."

OK, had to start with the funny one. There are days I can totally relate to this frame of mind.

-"I've known all my life that I was going to be an artist. It's like a preacher being called - it's what I'm supposed to do."

Love this! I wish I'd known so early in life that I was going to be an artist. I knew I liked to draw, but somehow it never even occurred to me to actually become an artist. Maybe I just didn't have enough faith in myself (still don't sometimes).

-"God gave me my talent and I was afraid of facing him one day if I didn't use it."
And this one is my favorite. What a good inspiration for following your talents!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Back from the show

Well... I was right. Besides myself, there were two other people I'd call artists in the common sense of the word - a painter down the aisle from me and a charcoal artist in another building. There were also a half dozen or so very talented jewelers and a wood carver who I would call artists. Everything else was crafty stuff.

So far, I haven't made back my $110 entry fee, but I gave out a lot of business cards and directed quite a few people to my Etsy shop. I also had many more commission inquiries than I'd expected, and I gave away a pack of cards as a donation to a hospice - with my name and website on the back of each card! ;) Hopefully something more will come from all of it.

That said (and other than raining all day Friday), it was a fun show. Very well put together - fall decorations, healthy options at the food stand, live musicians almost constantly, and a crew of ladies coming around to relieve us artists/crafters for bathroom/meal breaks.

My mom came with me on Friday, so I didn't get a lot of work done other than an hour or so while she looked around, but today I was alone, and I spent most of the morning working on a new drawing. Here's the photo I'm working from (another of my own photos):
And here's the drawing in its current state:
And detail of the harness:

And even though I probably shouldn't, I like to support my fellow artists, so I usually buy one thing at each show. Since the other artwork didn't appeal to me, and since I have a friends' wedding coming up for which I've ordered a new dress, I decided to indulge in a new necklace to go with the dress. Now, I'm not a jewelry person at all. I wear my wedding ring and a necklace my husband gave me about 5 years ago. Maybe earrings on a special occasion, and that's it, but this piece was just so gorgeous and will go with my dress so perfectly that I just had to have it:

Sorry for so many photos, but it just looks different at every angle, so I had to show it off. I can't wait for the dress to arrive to see how they look together!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Off to a show!

I'm off at 6:30 tomorrow morning to a fairly large arts/crafts show (Slayton Autumn Boutique, Slayton, MN) about an hour and a half from home. I've never done this show before, haven't even attended it, so I have no idea what to expect. I've been to "art/craft" shows before where I'm the only "artist", and I'm hoping this isn't the case this weekend, but I've got two new drawings and a new line of notecards (the beagle drawing) since my last show, and I'm excited for feedback on them.

It's going to be a long weekend - 9-8 Friday (hoping to get there between 7:30-8 to set up) and 9-3 plus packing up on Saturday plus the 1.5 hour commute four times. I'll be exhausted come Sunday, but I'm looking forward to meeting some new artists and customers. The other good news is I'm taking a vacation day from work tomorrow, so regardless of how I do at the show, I'm still getting paid by the hour! ;)

Wish me luck!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Featuring andreenharris art

This weekend I'm featuring Carole of andreenharrisart.

Carole lives in Tucson, Arizona and has been an artist for over 30 years. It all started with an acrylic paint set she received for Christmas at age 13. "I’d already been drawing a lot before then, but playing with actual paint was the point this became a serious pursuit for me." Her joy in art comes from being able to control the world in her paintings - to take the ordinary and change color, value, and composition to make it into something compelling and exciting for the viewer to experience.

Here's her favorite item from her Etsy shop - Hug

"It really strikes a chord with so many… especially those of us who grew up as horse crazy girls, whether or not we still indulge that passion or just fondly remember it as a happy part of our childhood dreams. I spend a lot of time at horse shows and this is a common scene, so when I caught it on film I had to capture it in paint."

My favorite of her works, as well as being one of my top three favorite works of art I've found yet on Etsy, is Training Day

This piece resulted from Carole's visit to Al Mararh Arabians and seeing this gray gelding being schooled. I love it for the exquisite lighting, and as a pencil artist myself, I can appreciate the work that goes into getting all the textures so perfect.

I'll leave you with a quote from Carole that so wonderfully defines what it means to be an artist: "I feel that the gift I have is ultimately to enjoy drawing and painting so much that becoming good at it is inevitable considering how much I do it. That’s the real gift, to find something in life one enjoys so much that there’s a need to spend as much time as possible practicing it."

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Beau and a bow!

First off, I spent my lunch break at work drawing, did some finishing touches this evening, and I think I've finished the drawing of Beau the beagle for my little sister.
Here he is in his entirety:

And close up shots:

I'll take a fresh look at him in the morning, and if there's no changes, I'll give him a coat of sealant, and he'll be ready to go to the print shop with me tomorrow afternoon to get prints made for my art show next weekend.

I'm hoping my sister still likes him. I talked to her last night, and she'd just found out that Beau had killed one of her kittens (she's a rare person that likes dogs and cats equally). She's pretty upset with him right now, so I hope she still likes the drawing!

Just after I finished him, I looked out my studio window and saw a bow of another type:

Isn't it beautiful? Was much brighter than this. Cameras sometimes just can't do justice to nature.
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