Archive for the ‘art shows’ Category

Gallery Walks and Artists…Oh My!

When we were on our trip to Seattle, we didn’t have a lot of time (coming or going) to do our favorite activity – browse galleries and talk to artists. When we went to Sedona this past weekend, it was high on our list, and we were not disappointed. First up was the Native American artists at the lookout at the top of Oak Creek Canyon. These artists are all certified by the Native Americans for Community Action, and the work is wonderful. We enjoy seeing the contemporary designs in jewelry that have a rich heritage behind them.

Overlook Program: A significant development for NACA was the establishment of a partnership with the United States Forest Service, Coconino National Forest for a project called the Oak Creek Vista Overlook project. Beginning in 1988, the Overlook Project is an economic development program that allows Native Americans artisans to sell their arts, crafts and jewelry at the prime tourist location. This program has grown in popularity and reputation each year. To date this year, 280 vendors have registered to sell their crafts. For many of the vendor, money made through the Overlook is their major source of income.

We bought a plate by a Navaho artist that depicts a wolf, one of hubby’s protective animals. While I love all the jewelry, I really don’t wear much – but I do so enjoy looking. And it was a gorgeous day on the rim, with a light breeze and absolutely gorgeous views.

From Stock Photo, Scott Prokop

We strolled the Hyatt galleries in Sedona, especially our favorite, Visions Art Gallery. The glass chandeliers are always spectacular.

www.ulladarni.com

One of my favorite artists is Alexei Butirskiy. You feel like you are in his paintings.

I also like Eyvind Earle. This is Crimson Eucalyptus.

The Lou DeSerio Gallery has wonderful photographs by both father and son. You need to spend some time looking at their work, especially of amazing Sedona.

We also spent some time at a small art fair in West Sedona. Gabriel and Jennifer Ayala had some really great copper sculptures. The copper weavings are quite interesting, and all completed by hand.

All-a-Glow Jewelry has some great wire work.

This was also Open Studios weekend in Sedona. On Sunday morning we visited two fiber artists, Margaret Anderson and Mary Fisher. Margaret’s work is luminous. She uses silk and cotton as a surface for paint, rather than canvas. She’s been in Visions, Dairy Barn, and Linda Seward’s book on art quilts.

Wildfire, Margaret Anderson

I’m saving the best for last…Mary Fisher’s studio. Check her amazing studio on tomorrow’s blog.

Work in Progress Wednesday

Oh my goodness, life is busy! We returned on Monday from StashFest, a benefit for the La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum, with lots of new momentum and ideas for the business. I’ll be addressing some of the marketing issues and challenges in a later post. For right now, there are lots of new things in the works, as well as some current projects to finish.

We have two commissioned orders awaiting us. One has gone in the mail today to England, and the other is awaiting fabric and paint to arrive. On my walk this morning, I set myself the task to come up with what my “spring” and “summer” designs would look like for my seasons quilts. The marbled fabric is all ready to go, and I now have two specific designs in mind. This was a little trickier than fall and winter, because I still wanted to keep the log cabin basis for the new quilts. I’m hoping by the end of May to have the two new quilts finished and the pattern pretty much ready to go. Then I can consider the marketing for the kits.

I have a commissioned piece – a three-part triptych – that will pay for my yoga lessons, so I want to get that completed by this weekend. I have several small quilts that I am going to take apart and requilt, based on what I am learning with this year’s free motion quilting challenge. April’s lesson, about creating your own stencil, will solve my problem about wanting to do snowflakes for an old holiday quilt. I’m looking forward to trying this. The three quilts that I have requilted were all big hits at StashFest, as they were god examples of how marbled fabric can be used in traditional blocks. And I had LOADS of great feedback on how wonderful my quilting was. Yay me!

Now that I have installed Quilt Album software, I need to start putting in my quilts, especially since as I am traveling more, I can create an album to show at any time. This ties in to the portfolio we took with us to StashFest. We were able to show the article about us and the actual process through pictures, examples of Bernina garments that used our fabric, and other interesting patterns we had. The portfolio needs some updating….need to get that on the to-do list.

I really want to get to the DVD on quilting various marbling patterns. I need to perhaps start with just a couple of tutorials, and then let that determine where I go from there. As my quilting skills increase and improve, it will be interesting to see how that transfers to the marbled fabric.

Mainly I want to do a lot of sewing, designing, and quilting. So many ideas in my head! Hopefully next week there will be actual pictures to show……

Thoughts on Entering Juried Shows……

I’ve written that one of my goals for this first quarter of the year is to create some new artwork to enter into a few select juried shows. Joanne Mattera had a really interesting blog post on Monday about entering shows: When Do You Stop Entering Shows?

Certainly timely for me. Her checklists of questions to ask yourself are excellent. I had success about 10 years ago with a series of shows I entered, especially Expressions in Textiles, which was more an early art-quilt venue. I would consider this my first prestigious show. I have success entering a show in Alaska each year, which is an art show, and fortunately for me they like fiber entries. I stopped entering a lot of shows from about 2006 on for two reasons: I was teaching full time and had  very little time for creating art, and entry fees were expensive (moderately so nbow, but I must say, being able to do online entries is a blessing). The entry fee was groceries. Then I entered an art quilt show two years ago and was rejected. Aside from being P.O.’d, when I looked at the artists selected, they were the “same ole – same ole” quilt artists whose work is very recognizable. That’s when I figured I wasn’t going to play with the “big girls” any more. I needed to make work for me.

Hence my decision to try for Visions and a SAQA show this year….there, I’ve said it. Big time. If I am selected, these will be two huge pieces for my resume. Which brings me back to Joanne’s article. “But at a certain point—a tipping point, let’s think of it—you want to see your exhibition experience evolve into opportunities in which you are invited to participate.”

Yup, that pretty much says what I am aiming for. Joanne goes on to say: “Indeed, most dealers looking at an artist’s resumé want to see that evolution. ‘When I see a string of juried shows on a mid-career artists’s resume, I have to ask, ‘Where’s the progression?’ says a dealer I know.”

I know I’m making progress in creating art, and I want to be mindful of shows that would add value to my resume and future opportunities. Quilt shows aren’t going to do it for me. Some art quilt shows? Visions, SAQA, Tactile Architecture…..probably. I’m not interested in dealing with the “quilt police.” My work is not mainstream quilting, although that’s a skill I use. A number of years ago we had our work in a now-defunct fiber gallery in Scottsdale. At the time I was doing different things with my “bindings.” I was serging or facing the edges of my art quilts because the technique helped enhance the message of the piece. The gallery owner – a fairly traditional quilter who worked with bright fabrics and called them art quilts – was appalled that I didn’t have regular bindings on my quilts, and she wouldn’t take a couple of pieces without regular bindings. Well, to my way of thinking, a binding would have constricted the design in a way I didn’t want.

Those pieces are now all in private collections, and I’m still spreading my wings as an artist, trying all different kinds of techniques.

Some shows I do enter – nonjuried, no-fee art shows, where fiber will be accepted. The Tikkun Olam show was an easy show, a twelve-by-twelve piece dealing with the theme, and it could be any media. I did receive a lot of feedback about the piece and some interesting opportunities – and a lot of interesting lessons (just because you say you’re a curator doesn’t mean you’re especially good at it….). There is another show like that coming up that I plan to create work for.

In retrospect, I am on the right track. My decisions seem based in reality and forward movement for me. We’ll see how everything plays out. I am behind on my piece for the Visions show, but I have a month…..less, when I think about photography, but I’m almost there…..a solid week of sewing (which will have to be next week…) should finish it for me. And then on to the rest of the first quarter list.

Work in Progress Wednesday

Not a whole lot of pictures today, but a whole lotta work going on.  We are in the process of marbling 400 fat quarters for StashFest the end of March. This is a fund raiser for the La Conner Quilt Museum, and we have been invited to participate and sell our marbled fabric. Yay! So needless to day, there are a LOT of marbling sessions ahead of us. With hubby’s health, we are being very careful about scheduling the sessions. And…we are planning ahead. Counted the number of weeks we have, allowed for vacations, and started ordering LOTS of pima cotton. Hubby is really in the groove, and the fats are looking fabulous. We pulled out one of the marbling books and are going to try some new patterns as we work. Pretreat, alum one day, then marble the next….all our mornings are set aside for this. Plus, I can’t wait to get to the Northwest. It’s been on our bucket list for a number of years. and now it’s actually going to happen. So send me suggestions for things to see and do – and eat – in the Seattle and Portland areas. We’re going to save the ocean spots for another trip. We’ll be happy, us desert rats, with rain and fog and humidity!

Those of you in the Seattle area, mark your calendars for March 31 and April 1. There should be publicity hitting any time now in your area. You can check the Stashfest website for more information. Also, we are taking small quilts with us for display purposes at StashFest, so if any of you in guilds would like us to give a talk (and perhaps a demo), please let us know.

Now, along with that are several shows I have decided to enter. Some I have recent work for, but most of them will require the creation of new work. And I am so up to the challenge. The piece I am working on now, for a show deadline in February, is teaching me – and speaking to me – a great deal. I am thrilled with how it is turning out, and even if it doesn’t get accepted to this show, I know I have created something different, meaningful, and beautiful

Here’s what I’m looking at:

Visions – 2/13 (If I’m going back out there, go big….last acceptance for a major show – Expressions in Fiber – was in 2004. And if accepted, I’ll let you in on what prompted me to go for this.).

Art Pin-Up – 3/2 (12 x 12, very do-able, and no jurying….)

Fish Follies – 4/20 (?) (great acceptance rate over the last 6 years for fiber. This year I have a really wacky fiber idea…..it is Follies, after all….)

Tactile Architecture, Hands All Around – 4/27 (one piece is already completed….)

I’m Not Crazy – 5/5 (idea is sketched)

Pushing the Limits – 5/16

Pattern Base – book inclusion, June 12

And this is just the first 6 months. So I guess a goal for this year is to get out there and enter my work! Along with trying to set up two individual shows.

It is going to be an awesome year of taking chances!

Top Ten Tuesday

What an interesting week on the web!

From JPG Magazine – shots of toys….how can you not smile?

I'm a Mac by Kristin Repsher

From Oceana, a new idea in gift giving.

From the TED blog comes a conversation with Adam Savage of the Mythbusters….love that show! The science and math is amazing. Here’s an earlier video:

An interesting video from Vimeo – have to start exploring that site some more. 29 Ways to Stay Creative……I do a lot of these already.

29 WAYS TO STAY CREATIVE from TO-FU on Vimeo.

Yes, I am a grammar freak/geek – love all things grammer, thanks to my amazing Latin teacher, Joan Daniels. So this article from The Best Article Every Day is right up my alley.

A GREAT video from the TED folks, this one on using dance instead of power point to teach “big idea” concepts. Got me thinking about using Photoshop and Illustrator to teach algebra…….

Now read this about how he created this.

Thinking about making a video showing your art processes? I am, and this article from SDA – Surface Design Association – was perfect timing. Very detailed and lots of advice.

And…Tristan is Back!!!!!! Tristan’s blog, Enchanted Revelries, is a delight of photos. Here’s one of a dress at the V&A Museum….a mourning gown. Read the story here. Tristan – I like the font……

And in the continuing spirit of sarcasm and bad taste comes this blog post of bad Nativity scenes….coffee alert here……With apologies, I give you the Meat Nativity…..

Wish we had something like this in Tucson! Fashion, Food and more from Chicago’s River East Art Center’s monthly artisanal pop-up.

Send me cool stuff you find!! Enjoy your week!

Day One, Season 3

  I chose my “Explosion” piece for today because that’s the kind of excitement I feel starting this new season three. Seasons one and two of Cocreating Our Reality were eye-opening and exciting, and for the last few days I have been building up to starting a new journey today. First, I am so blessed to be retired and able to work on art when and where I want to, for as long as I want to. I get to spend every day with my hubby, and life is pretty much wonderful. Health problems – of course, who doesn’t have them at our age. But – that’s not stopping me from living a great life.

I discovered over the last two seasons when it was time to evaluate my goals, that I hadn’t really stretched myself – or thought big enough. So I have been pondering that for the last week or so. What is it I actually want to do?

First and foremost, kind of came to me last night in the moments before sleep, is probably the one most on my mind. I need to take this season and concentrate on me. It sounds selfish, but it isn’t. I have health issues that really need to be addressed, and for so many years they went to the side as other things – students, work, hubby – took their place. If I expect to be as creative for as long as I want, and get out and be politically active, and write – do all the things I want to – than I need to focus on my health. So that is goal number one for this season: take the cholesterol medicine, take my vitamins, watch what I eat, get out regularly and exercise, track my food intake, get some yoga teachings, get my blood readings where they need to be. I actually started thinking this way a few days ago, and I’m pleased to say the exercise has already increased, as well as having a bit more control over appetite.

A second goal is tied in to all this. I am getting a second opinion on my vision issues and will work to find strategies to help with the depth perception and balance issues. A new doctor’s appointment is scheduled for next week Thursday, and I have a teacher friend to talk to about some basic yoga stretches. I always knew this day was coming, and now that it’s here, I need to learn to work with the new limitations.

Overall, for the first time, these two goals seem very positive. One hundred days from now, March 10, I expect that I will have been enormously successful at these first two. That statement alone is a major change for me. It’s very positive, rather than using the word “try.”

Business-wise I have some very specific goals.

Number three in my list is to solve the newsletter/collectors’ information issue. I am, as was said to a friend of mine, “leaving money on the table.” This has to be a regular business goal. I am considering taking Alyson Stanfield’s “Cultivating Your Collectors” class in February. That will depend on a number of things, primarily finances. I am good at reading and implementing, and since I accomplished four of Alyson’s goals in I’d Rather Be in the Studio!, I should be able to accomplish at least three this new season. So: newsletter, portfolio (which we will need for a major event the end of March), and I will look through the list for at least one other. Newsletter once a month should be definitely do-able. A collectors’ newsletter once a quarter should be reasonable. I’m sure there will be others to add here.

Number four is searching out wholesale suppliers for cutting back basic costs of making marbled fabric. As of yesterday I have a new wholesale account with Kona Bay fabrics, as we use their colored cotton quite successfully. We are looking for wholesale sources for premium white cotton, silk/satin ribbon (like Offray), and probably some other materials.

Number five is ramping up our Etsy shop, our Fine Art America galleries, Cafe Press, and looking in to Red Bubble, Three Sisters, and at least one other online selling site. My overall goal in all this is to be able to update these sites once a week, as well as include items from these sites in our soon-to-happen newsletters. I’ve tried setting monetary goals for Etsy and Ebay, and they are very fickle, depending on the economy. I do tweet my Etsy and Ebay offerings once a week, which certainly drives traffic to the site, but I don’t see it converting. However, I know that it is only a matter of time, as is the case with this blog. I am about to hit 1500 viewers per month, so I know it is consistency. (Concerning the blog…when Facebook changed its latest set of operating, my blog numbers dropped. Turns out, on exploration, Networked Blogs was a casualty and needed to be reactivated. Once that happened, I saw numbers increase again…..I am amazed at how net-savvy we need to be these days!)

Art-wise I also have some very specific goals.

Number six is to enter a major show with new work. The deadline for this is mid-February, and I am already hard at work on the first of two pieces. The fabric has been created, and the ideas are flowing. Here’s just some of the fabric…..

Unpolished red satin

If I get accepted, great. If not, I will have two new lovely large art pieces for our body of work. But I am putting out to the Universe that this will be show-worthy art.

Number seven is to create the kit for Marbled Seasons. Yesterday’s blog post showed the first of the four small quilts/table runners. I used to have several patterns, all of which I sold the rights to. So I just need to make more. For this goal I want this set of kits completed, and two new ideas for pattern kits, plus a rewrite of my Polynomial Quilt pattern – which I used the quilts for that very successfully in an adult algebra class to teach multiplying, and it was highly successful.

Number eight is to be completely prepared – except for minor loose ends – by March 10, for StashFest at the La Conner Quilt Museum in La Conner, Washington. We have been invited to participate, and it means marbling about 400 fat quarters in the next three months…..another reason for looking carefully at wholesale outlets! This is an interesting goal, because after our last guild presentation, I put out to the universe that it would be fun to travel and do demos in the Southern Arizona, southern New Mexico area. Well, two days later I had this email…..as Dale Anne Potter, my muse with Law of Attraction said, I was open to the possibilities.

Number nine will build on the previous. Develop a letter/sample to go to local guilds for demos and classes. I think just the development at this stage, because we will be focused on making fabric for Washington.

Number ten, under the category of Miscellaneous, comes continuing to work on Art From the Heart, a site devoted to spreading peace and nonviolence in the aftermath of the Gabrielle Giffords shooting. We had two new entries this last month, and I am hopeful for more.

Now that I have these written, I have to chuckle in that I was concerned about trying to get my goals coherent for this season. These are more detailed than the past two seasons, and they will certainly stretch me.

So Day One – I’m going to sew, work on some lists, and get ready for a small craft event on Saturday. Plus, it’s the holidays, and I want to “do more good” this year on a daily basis. May you have a really awesome day!

Top Ten Tuesday

 

Under the category of food art comes these really interesting images, found on the Cool Hunting site. Caren Alpert goes through a lot of prep to get these amazing photos. The one below is a pineapple leaf……

From Cool Hunting is a look at an eclectic furniture collection form a hotel in San Francisco. Some pretty cool stuff – but I’m not sure I’d sit in it!

Under the category of “Remember When” comes some “pre-internet” reminders……(are we really that old?)……..from The Best article Every Day. (This is in honor of Sheldon of BBT)…..


A very cool tutorial on making initials….color, glitter, easy instructions. From Lisa Engelbrecht.

If you are not a Twilight fan (don’t even get me started on lack of correct punctuation….) you will appreciate the poster from Mad Magazine…Breaking Wind, Fart 1. I don’t want to spoil it by putting it here……

From The Best Article Every Day comes a little bonus piece at the end….

I can’t find really good attribution, (I think chromestory.com), but I SO LOVE Explorer – kind of sums up what I, as a MAC person, think of IE.

And from The Best Article Every Day comes the “origin” of Angry Birds…..since I got hooked earlier this fall, I found this really funny….it’s the bonus piece at the end of protecting your Facebook account (which is also interesting….).

A new site discovered from Kathy NidaThat is Priceless. Art – with captions….how did I miss this all this time?

Admiring Herman Cain's "Thanks for not coming forward" Bouquet

And thanks to Kathy, again, for The Bitchy Stitcher. I LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. sarcasm. I am fairly fluent in the language, and I am always practicing in order to hone my skills. I practice often with my sarcasm twin Michelle.

And…another wonderful new blog, courtesy of Kathy – great rant on IQF!

Great week behind me, another great one to come! Life is AWESOME!


 

Monday Marketing

Some interesting food for thought from the Fine Art blog…Questions You Don’t Have to Answer. Interesting because I was frustrated at a recent show in northern Arizona. So many of the artists I was looking at did not have websites. One was a great painter, and I knew i would buy anyway, since I was  right there. But now I had no way of looking at his work for future purchases. Yes, a lot of folks take a card, walk on, and you’ve lost your chance for a sale. I don’t shop that way, but I’m guessing I’m in the minority. Thoughts?

I realize a lot of people don’t consider themselves web savvy, and perhaps that’s why they don’t have a site…or even a Facebook page. But I’m figuring the web – and art sales on the web – is here to stay. Yes, we all want the immediate sale, but in this economy, that’s probably not going to happen. I bought from the artist – prints, because the price was right, but if he’d been on line, I would have looked at one of his canvas prints. Now I have to hope I see him at another show…….

Also of interest for marketing is this article posted a while ago in What the Craft – Why Handmade is So Expensive. This is a really good look at how much time goes into each piece we make. If we totaled up all the hours we actually spent, we’d never sell anything…..

And…10 Tips to Increase Your Productivity from The Future Buzz.

For me, my productivity comes from making lists, and then determining which of the big projects to work on next. I keep deadlines in mind, although sometimes I just don’t make them. I have a couple of things coming up that are definite for major art projects, and then my lists help me organize the day-to-day items. The biggest “left-over?”

Well, there are two…..my portfolio revisions, and the newsletter development and schedule. The latter is the most important, and for some reason it just hasn’t made it to the top and actually gotten worked on. That is a goal for the start of next year, so I don’t miss out on the holiday season. However, that said, we have been MUCH better this year about approaching holiday sales.

And in that spirit….this gift basket needs a home…...see the Etsy store…….

Great marbling session on Sunday – expect to see a few more fat quarters show up in Etsy…..

Top Ten Tuesday – Eye Candy from Houston

Someday I’ll get to the Houston Festival again, but in the meantime, I can live vicariously through blogs! Here’s some great eye candy, plus a few other goodies….and Jack Nicholson……

From Frieda Anderson comes a look at some spectacular quilts from The International Quilt Festival in Houston.

Autumn Beauty by Barbara Shapel

Gloria Hansen– first place!!

Refracted Lily - Gloria Hansen

From the folks at C&T Publishing comes a wrap of market with some vendors that look so wonderful!

From Susan Brubaker Knapp comes another look at Houston Market.

A cool discovery on YouTube…I’m not one for music videos, but this reminds me of something the kids on Glee would have done. From Panic At The Disco comes “Ready to Go.”

From JPG Magazine comes pics from their latest – “Smokin'”. As usual, great stuff!!

Space Flower by Greg Byer

From Mad Magazine comes a very different offering – a look at a USO tour. From someone who ALWAYS watched Bob Hope, this article gives good insight to life overseas serving our country.

And also from Mad comes a send-up of the Family Circus….great cartoons by Bill Spleen…..

From The Best Article Every Day comes great ways to maintain your learning. As someone who will probably never stop taking classes, there’s some great stuff here to explore.

And now this….is really wrong – and oh so funny……suppose The Shining had been a romantic comedy…….someone with waaayyyy too much time on their hands……

Monday Marketing and Top Ten Tuesday – Together!!

Oh my goodness. Today is the third amazing day in a row! It all started on May 1 when I began the first season of Cocreating Our Reality and practicing the Laws of Abundance and Attraction. I started with changing my thinking to always being positive. The first week was very tough, as I became aware of just how negative many of my thoughts were. Eyeopener, to say the least.

So when I retired the end of May, I knew I was going to become a full-time artist – something I have wanted to do for YEARS. Each time I wrote an abundance check with the New Moon, great things happened. So how does Monday Marketing and Top Ten come together? Well, if you’ve been following the blog, you know that on Mondays I have been looking seriously at marketing the business and our art. It’s been all about organization and learning and getting out there. At times it seemed like I was just doing more things and not having anything to show for them.

The rationale part of me knew that I was laying groundwork, and I would have to be patient. Now here’s the top ten for us since June 1 when I started the heavy work for marketing.

* I started with lynda.com and took some classes on Facebook and Twitter, making changes and setting up pages and addresses and plans.

* After getting them set up, I then started a class in Linked In, as I had an old profile from over a year ago. Again, I worked through a class on lynda.com to do all this. So the profile got set up.

* One of the things suggested in the Linked In course was to join some groups and become part of the conversations to develop our networks.

* I joined Art Business and Art Marketing, as well as a few others, and I heard about a call for work for a show in Tucson called Tikkun Olam. All work was 12 inches square and reflected on crises facing the earth.

* I offered to help and sent out information about the show throughout my various networks, plus I made a piece for the show.

* I attended the opening reception for Tikkun Olam (see the post here) and met and chatted with the organizers of the show, two artists from Tubac and Santa Fe, plus talked to a couple of people interested in the piece I created (you can see it here – it’s the yellow piece). What was so cool was to get the positive feedback from the organizers; they loved the piece and (as I found out today) the hanging system.

* I sent thank you notes with offers of additional work to the organizers the next day.

* I got an invitation as a result of the reception to join a group of artists planning a show in October in Tubac (a major arts mecca in southern Arizona) and attended the organizational meeting today.

* This show will be October 22 in Tubac, called Anza Energy. We’re putting about a dozen pieces in the show. And…..

*One of our marbled pieces, Ocean’s Bounty, may be the piece on the main poster for the show, and…..several of the pieces – if they don’t sell – will probably go into a spa resort as part of a water show in Tubac, and….one of the galleries whose owner is also participating, has a couple of our pieces now in his gallery as part of the publicity about the Anza Energy show.

So……get out there and do the work – your art and your marketing!!

Visions Art Museum

   “Visions” is a major quilt art exhibit usually held in Oceanside, CA, every two years. It’s like the Holy Grail for art quilters. The Visions Art Museum has now opened in San Diego, at the old Naval Training Center, and will now host its own show. Just to be able to finally get to the museum this last trip to San Diego was a delight. The docents were wonderful and took their time showing us quilts, as well as asking us about our work. It is SO NICE to be with other artists who GET your work! One of the disadvantages to being an artist in the Southwest is unless you’re a painter or sculptor who “does” the southwest, no one is really interested in your work.

The major exhibit was Urban Landscapes and Soft City, with a special collection by Marilyn Henrion. Pictures were allowed in the outer area and in the gift Gallery. You can view a gallery of work by Marilyn here.

Here’s one of the really intriguing quilts from Urban Landscapes by K. Vellis Turan:

I purposely left this large so you could see details.

The challenge had some really interesting small quilts – 12 by 12 inches, which is a size I have just started to work with. These are all by members of the Visions Museum. Sorry I don’t have names….

Here is an example of Marilyn’s work. Her Photoshop skills are superb.

There were a couple of quilts by members in the gift Gallery – really superb work – and again, sorry for no names.

An interesting take on the “log cabin” traditional pattern, with lots of details.

Love this one. Those are definitely my colors!

We bacame members, and I am looking forward to our November trip to see the new exhibit on “Interpretations.” LOVE LOVE LOVE seeing fiber!!

Work in Progress Wednesday

I am making a serious effort to finish any new piece I start – and that includes backing, signature, binding, hanging system, and anything else – oh, pictures. I started three smaller pieces since retiring the end of May, and I am happy to report that as of yesterday each one is complete. Absolutely positively complete. I still have a huge cubby filled with UFOs, but I am certainly making progress. In fact, I spent last night working on the start of thread painting for the newest piece for my Quilt University class. More pics on that later – it’s looking pretty cool….but I need to buy more thread…oh the problems we have….

In the meantime, here’s the finished version of my rhythm piece. This started as a piece of hand-marbled green silk that I attempted to quilt about eight years ago. It wasn’t working. But my skills are improving tremendously, and as a result of one earlier class, I wanted to see if I could accept the movement in the piece with the wave design. Here’s “Rhythm of the Wave,” complete with a few added seed beads.

Here’s a closeup:

Overall I accomplished what I wanted to with this piece. It will go up in the Etsy shop in the next few days.

Also completed is my “Explosion” piece, based on a new marbling pattern we tried. My goal here was to accent the movement from the center of the piece outward, which I did with lots of diagonal stitching. Again, I’m pleased with the results. This wil also go up in my Etsy store.

And finally, a piece I completed for a show coming up in Tucson – there will be more details on the show once it opens. This piece is a look at the devastation of oil spills. What starts as a beautiful garden is stlowly destroyed by the effects of oil – called “Insidious Oil.”

Here’s the statement:

As a trained historian, I always see the past and the future in environmental events. As a fiber artist, I feel challenged to take an ancient medium and create a piece that speaks to the environment.

Oil is an insidious liquid. We need it for so much of our daily lives, and yet it can be so destructive. The discovery of oil in our past has enabled us to have the current future. But an oil spill destroys for decades, from wildlife to the water table. This piece of fabric has been marbled, using a centuries-old process of floating paint on water. The beauty of the design reflects the joy we find in a garden, a flower bed, a landscape, or the wildlife that calls a piece of land home. But oil can run away and destroy that which is so beautiful. In a spill the oil creeps through the cracks, crevices, the waterways, looking for a new resting place. It works into the land or water and remains for decades, fouling the life around it, destroying the very fabric or life, much as the black threads do to this marbled garden.

As always, I am interested in your comments. I’ll post more on the art show once it opens and I have pictures from the reception.

Top Ten Tuesday

Welcome to another edition of Top Ten Tuesday….never know what you’re going to find! Plus I love reading about what people are doing. And blogs about history – but I’m staying away from current politics – makes me too angry and depressed, and I just don’t need that! So here’s just the cool stuff….

Speaking of politics (and this will be the last time, I promise), when I do look at headlines, I scan Al Jazeera in English. If you depended on just the US media, you wouldn’t know nearly 75% of what is actually going on around the world. Forget your previous conceptions of Al Jazeera – this is good all-round news.

From Cool Hunting – a really interesting take on working with crystal – including rings and weapons….

From Cool Hunting this week also comes where to play on Bora Bora. I REALLY want to go on vacation now!!

From the JPG Blog,  a new contest – photos are FABULOUS!!

Antelope Canyon, Abstract #1 by Linda Clifford

Also from Cool Hunting, a short video of an art show in Mexico:

Cool Hunting Capsule Video: Liquid Sculptures from Cool Hunting on Vimeo.

From MAD Magazine, a look at the class of 2015 (hey, it’s the teacher in me…..).

Seven Steps that May Dramatically Boost Your Happiness from Dumb Little Man – some good ideas here. One step? Follow your bliss.

If you have not discovered fractals yet (and forget about all the math involved – just go for the beauty), you need to look at Fractal World. Here’s their fractal of the week:

Shopping more at Farmer’s Markets more? If you follow Summer Tomato, you will be able to tour farmers’ markets around the world. Here’s Shanghai….

Mix zentangles, ATC’s and color, and you get Enthusiastic Artist‘s  gorgeous work!

Have a great week – send me cool stuff you find online!

An Important Call for Art Work

Since I updated my profile on Linked In, I have joined a couple of discussion groups through Linked In and have made some interesting contacts and done some very good networking.  As a result, here is a call for work that looks very intriguing, as well as meaningful. I’m planning to do a piece that looks at oil spills. Join in and become part of the group. Feel free to share this post – let’s see if we can get a lot of artists involved. Let’s get the fiber into this show.

TIKKUN OLAM: A Restoration Project
 Artists Respond to Earth’s Crises Past & Present

Presented by Alta Contemporary Art, Tubac AZ in alliance with Industria Studios in Tucson.
The Jewish Community Center Tucson, Arizona
September 15 thru October 25, 2011
Opening Reception: Sunday, September 18th 1-4 PM

In the wake of recent natural and human-made crises artists often feel compelled to respond in a tangible and productive way. Here’s your chance to be part of a group project raising money to replenish the earth. Alta Contemporary Art invites you to submit a 12 x 12 inch work of art for a collaborative grid presentation. All media welcome. Work must be exactly 12 x 12 inches, appropriate for the JCC venue and ready to hang on the wall.  Work must be received no later than September 10, 2011 (see art delivery details below). Participation is free, but artists must willingly donate 30% of sales to the non-profit charitable organization selected by the group as a whole.

TIKKUN OLAM Collaborative Grid Presentation
Entry Form
Name:
Address:
E-Mail:                                    Website:
Phone:
Title:                                       Price:
Media:

Artist’s reflection on their submission and earth’s crises past & present (250 words or less):
Nominate 1- 3 non-profit charitable organizations you would like TIKKUN OLAM to support.
E-mail completed entry form and a JPG of your work (1MB large) to mickeybond505@aol.com

Hand Deliver Your Work:
Tucson Artists: Deliver work to Marc Leviton at Industria Studios, Saturday, September 10, 2011 between 10 AM – 3 PM or contact Marc to make other arrangements 520- 235- 0797. INDUSTRIA STUDIOS, 1441 E. 17th Street Tucson, AZ 85719 industriastudios.org
Santa Fe Artists: Deliver work to Mickey Bond by Friday September 9, 2011.E-mail:
mickeybond505 or call 505-660-4085 to schedule delivery.
All Other Artists: Deliver  work to Rebecca O’Day at Alta Contemporary Art, Friday, September 9th between 3-8 PM  or contact Rebecca to make other arrangements 520-869-8626. Alta Contemporary Art, 8 Calle Inglesia (across from St. Anne’s Church), Tubac, AZ.
Mail Your Work:
Mail work to Rebecca O’Day, PO Box 252, Tumacacori, AZ 85640

Work must arrive no later than September 10, 2011 to be included in the show.
Artwork shipped via mail carrier must be accompanied with a pre-paid return.
Unsold work will be available for pick up on October 29th &  30th.  in the location it was hand- delivered from 10 AM – 3 PM.  Shipped artwork will be returned if accompanied by a pre-paid return label.

Agreement of Entry & Liability:
Great care and respect will be given to all artwork submitted. The Tucson JCC, Alta Contemporary Art & Industria Studios and its agents do not assume liability for any loss or damage of any artwork submitted while in its possession. Your entry constitutes acceptance of all conditions and terms in this prospectus. Artists desiring coverage can do so privately through their agent or one offering short-term “show”  coverage such as Artists, Craftsman and Tradesmen Insurance Program: http://www.actinspro.com.

Monday Marketing – Creating a Schedule

It’s Monday again….and it seems like all I did was read, look at emails, and set up buttons and the like. This is the “time-sucker.” So my goal for this blog post is to try and identify what needs to be done each week for marketing and set up a kind of calendar to work with.

This is what I’m dealing with: Ebay, Etsy, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Cafe Press, Zazzle, newsletters, a website, lynda.com, flickr, and a blog. I am trying to avoid doing all of this every day, because nothing else seems to get done. I’m brainstorming as I write, with the hope that by the time this post is done, I will have a plan.

Ebay: hubby handles almost all of this, including postal trips. But…if we are going to increase sales, we need more product, and I would like to help with the actual marbling. So…..marbling weekly. I do need to update the About Me page…..

Etsy: the bulk of the organization is done. But…I need to be adding product on a regular basis, which means I need to keep making things. It would be nice to have one new product up each week, if not more often. One of the goals this week is to add some of the major artwork (even though I don’t expect to sell it on Etsy, it is more exposure) on the site, as the pictures are redone. I want to continue with the circles marketing, which, if I have enough products, could be done every day – 15 minutes for this. Plus, I need to keep working…….

LinkedIn: profile is done, and I have registered for several groups for business. I have found already difficulty in keeping up with reading emails each day from the groups and have already deleted one group. This week I will determine which groups look to be the most advantageous. I also need to complete the setting up of a profile of artwork.

Facebook: I read this several times a day. I have a fan page which needs serious work, as well as Art From The Heart, which is to support healing art after the Tucson shootings in January. I have added FB buttons to my blog and this week to my website. I have read the Terms and looked at all the privacy settings. I also went through the photo stream stuff for FB and fixed photos for both the personal and fan page. I need to really think through what is going to happen with the Fan Page.

Twitter: I am finishing a class from lynda.com on using Facebook and Twitter for business, and I highly recommend the site. For #25 you can choose different trainings all available for a month at your schedule. I picked up all kinds of little tips, most of which have already been implemented. But….and this is a BIG but….the time for tweets and what to tweet. By syncing a lot of the programs, my blog appears on Twitter, FB, LinkedIn, my tweets appear in a couple of places. I don’t think I can go further with this – the tweet button is on the blog and soon to be on the website. This is one area that needs some serious scheduling. Since I use TweetDeck (which is free…), I can schedule and keep track of who’s following and what is getting retweeted. So…I’m going to use Sundays for scheduling business tweets for the week, and I will look through the twitter feed once a day to see if there’s some good stuff to retweet.

Cafe Press: I have a site, a free one, so I am limited as to the number of products I can put up. I haven’t looked at this in several months and it needs serious work. To have a store isn’t much money each month, and I could have a lot more products available, but the issue is marketing and driving people to the site. I have some great digital stuff already to go, and I need to start planning around the holidays, reading about marketing through Cafe Press, and so on.

Zazzle: Ditto for Cafe Press……both are not a high priority right now.

Newsletters: oy, it’s been months since a newsletter went out, and I have all these contacts where nothing is happening. I used Constant Contact last year for a few months, until I couldn’t keep up with the demands and school at the same time. I was happy with it, but disappointed that not many people actually read it. I need to go back to a newsletter and offerings at least once every three weeks, and more during the holiday seasons. I need to check out Mail Chimp, which is free, and I have heard people have good luck with it. I’ll try and make this a priority this week.

Website: Most of the changes to the website have been made by my wonderful web lady Suzan. I need to get a couple of buttons set up, and then do something about newsletters and contacts. I also have some pages to add on Digital Marbling (TN), and I need to evaluate “print on demand” for artwork. This is a “need to think about” topic…..

lynda.com: I have until Friday to finish my month of training. I still need to finish Twitter, and I want to get the html newsletter course done. I am not going to continue with Dreamweaver because it isn’t a priority.

Flickr: I have photos up, not all of them with copyrights, and there is a class on lynda.com if I have time. I’m not really sure what I want to do here….

And finally, my blog, Marbled Musings. I went a bunch of months with no new writing, and I’m at maybe three times a week. I need to get back to at least four times a week, and eventually every day. I have plenty to write about…and I need to stay up with my Google reader – as well as comment more on some of the posts. This is probably the biggest area for marketing that I have to schedule.

Weekly:

* Marbling fabric

* Work on Etsy products

* Sewing and other design

Mondays:

* Add Etsy product

* Add Etsy circle information

* Read newsletters from LinkedIn groups

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog post Monday Marketing

* Google reader and at least three comments

Tuesdays:

* Add Etsy circle information

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog post Top Ten Tuesday

* Google reader and at least three comments

Wednesdays:

* Add Etsy circle information

* Read newsletters from LinkedIn groups

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog Work in progress Wednesday

* Google reader and at least three comments

Thursday:

* Add Etsy circle information

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog – Thursday Thoughts

* Google reader and at least three comments

Fridays:

* Add Etsy circle information

* Read newsletters from LinkedIn groups

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog Photoshop Friday

* Google reader and at least three comments

Saturdays:

* Read Twitter feed

* Blog posting on Specials

* Google reader and at least three comments

Sundays:

* Read Twitter feed

* Schedule Tweets for the week (i.e. Etsy, Ebay…)

* Blog Sunday Stories

* Google reader and at least three comments

Goals for next week:

* FINISH LYNDA.COM

*Update “About Me” page on Ebay

* Update Etsy products, especially note cards

* Evaluate how calendar is working

* See if buttons are added to the website

* Decisions on what will happen with the Facebook Fan page

* Long-term thoughts – what to do with CafePress and Zazzle

* Read and decide about Mail Chimp for a newsletter

* Spend some time thinking about what the website still needs….

Okay, I think I have a handle on this…we’ll see next week as I evaluate how the week goes. And…I’m taking some online classes!

Thoughts??

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