A 365 art challenge for 2017.
Essentialism in illustration is pretty powerful. I was working on some slow and detailed watercolor illustrations of hats when my five year old wandered over and pointed to the beret and said Paris! She then called out the witches hat, the winter hat and the police hat. I abandoned that watercolor painting (for now) and went in this direction instead.
Last weekend I was lucky enough to take part in the fabulous online course on art business offered by the inspiring Lisa Congdon. I was doubly lucky enough to have been given a VIP spot for Christmas by my husband. The VIP membership included a one hour skype with Lisa on Tuesday after the course ended. It was a great experience and I feel better prepared to go out in the world with my artwork and to stop waiting for my work to be perfect. I shifted uncomfortably in my seat when she discussed how perfectionism is a career killer.
Sometimes (often) I need to remind myself that I am still learning and that I need to be patience with my style and keep working and I will get where I need to go. I have been painting for less than a year and I enjoy it more than I ever expected. But the truth is I have no idea what my work will look like in a year or two. My personal style has not yet developed and I get frustrated waiting and searching for it and I must remind myself to enjoy the journey and keep working hard and I will get there. That there are no shortcuts. That said if anybody has some tips on honing in on a more personal style I am all ears. In the meantime I am enjoying the journey in my soon to be relocated art studio with a sketchbook always nearby.
I took about a dozen watercolors to Open Studios and I sold about half of them. JP Open Studios was a market test for the watercolors to figure out if I should keep at them and how to price them and the answer was yes keep going! JP Open Studios was fabulous fun this weekend as I love connecting with my community. And I love sending original artwork out in the world. Thank you to all those that have supported my fresh start these past months by reading my blog, offering feedback and buying artwork. I will be putting watercolors up on my Etsy shop as soon as I can get new work made, scanned and listed.
Happy Friday! We are heading to New York for the weekend to see friends, go to museums, eat pizza and other yummy foods and hopefully draw on location. Feeling the art groove in my studio lately that I hope translates to various locations. Maybe I should bring my studio good luck charm with me. Two years ago at a Disney World gift shop I saw my name on this necklace. This never happens to me. They didn't have my eldest daughter's name but they had mine so of course I bought a necklace that I will never wear and hung it in my studio. I still won't wear it, but maybe it should come along in my bag. See you next week!
Spent some time on Saturday wandering around Fenway by myself so of course I stopped by my favorite Thai restaurant for lunch. Being home with my two children full time over the summer is a lot of fun but it is also exhausting and it is important that I take time to be by myself whenever possible. So my husband Jon took the girls on a hike at Drumlin Farm and I headed to the Dick Blick in Fenway. While I did not end up buying much, being able to shop and then getting lunch at my own pace and not having to manage other human beings was such a welcome break. I left the weekend feeling ready for another week with my little girls.
Make one of these and you can carry a little bit of color wherever you go. It's super tiny and if you fill it with high pigment paints those tiny dots of paint can go a long way in a sketchbook (or two). Below the illustration is detailed instructions on how to make your own. My gift to you.
Altoid Watercolor Travel Kit:
- Altoid SMALLS tin (sugarfree) is the right size and shape with NO EMBOSSING on the lid!
- Press Sculpty of other polymer clay in the base of clean tin about 1/4-1/3 of an inch high.
- Mints pressed into Scultpy form reservoirs. I can comfortably get 12 with the tiny square mints.
- Bake according to clay instructions or around 270F for 15 minutes.
- Wash out mints under warm running water. Dry.
- Spray glaze on hardened Sculpty paint pans. Let Dry.
- Tape to cover the sides of the lid and any other area that you do not want paint on. If you skip this step the lid will not close properly and scrap the spray paint and possibly get stuck.
- White spray paint the lid. You want a few even coats followed by a glaze to make this surface smooth and durable.
- Dry completely.
- Fill reservoirs with the paints of your choice. I highly recommend artist grade paints if you can afford them.
- Leave to dry a minimum of overnight longer is better.
- Voila! When you use up the paint just refill it.
Awhile back I picked up a little illustration job to make some extra money and broaden my skills a bit. Realistic drawings of people to illustrate safe babywearing positions is not my typical art style to say the least. But I went with it and somehow made it my own. Sadly these versions won't be printed because they are too complex, just the line drawing part of them. But they are mine and I am happy to attach my name to them and making them gave me an idea for future projects. I am working on some line drawing portraits of my family with my artwork in the background.