I’ll be open the second weekend, June 11-12 from 11am to 5pm. You can find directions to my studio and more information about this annual Humboldt County art event here.
Between now and the 11th I’ll be posting a painting every day so that you can see what I’ll have available. They will be small works and very affordable. Here’s today’s featured painting, a vermillion flycatcher which I saw near Tucson, Arizona during my March trip to the Sea of Cortez:
"Vermillion Flycatcher" 5x7" oil on canvasboard $50
I’ll also have prints and cards, plus a selection of my large, framed pieces, including my latest major work, “Then They Walked Out Into The Morning Light”.
Then They Walked Out Into The Morning Light 24x48" oil
This is the fourth time I’ve gotten into Art of the Animal, a prestigious national juried show held each year by the Bennington Center for the Arts in Vermont, and the second time with Mongolian subjects.
I got the email telling me to go the site and check the acceptance list yesterday morning at 9am. It was in alphabetical order, so I slowly scrolled down, holding my breath. And saw my name. Twice! I entered three pieces, so two out of three.
One of my goals for many years has been to have my paintings accepted into juried shows that are outside the “wildlife art ghetto” to which the genre of animal art has been foolishly and ignorantly consigned by many in the mainstream art world, even though great artists who these same people often admire also painted animals.
Clearly, the good folks at Greenhouse Gallery don’t share that bias, bless their hearts.
I’m proud to be an animal artist and know that our genre’s best work easily stands with the best in any other field of representational art. And I also know that to paint animals successfully requires a specific depth of knowledge that is not appreciated by those outside the field.
Here are the two paintings that will soon be on their way to San Antonio, Texas:
Done for the Day 17x30" oil on canvasboard
Takhi Stallion, Hustai National Park 17x30" oil on canvasboard
I did a number of art festivals in the San Francisco Bay Area for a few years, including the Marin Art Festival the year before last. What I have found as an oil painter is that the street fair style of events don’t provide a targeted market for what I do. After skipping last year because of the economy, I decided to go back to the Marin festival. It’s a well-established destination event held on a big, grassy field near the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Marin Civic Center.
Side view of VW Eurovan packed and ready to go
I like that fact that it’s a flat rate for a space and that once you’ve been juried in, you are invited back and given a $100 discount on the entry fee. Knowing I will be able to count on participating year after year means a lot to me as far as my yearly planning. Communication from the people running the festival is excellent. They go out of their way to find ways to drive sales, especially this year. Besides postcards provided free to the artists in whatever quantity you request (each one good for a $10 free admission), they sent an email to all the artists with a free pass to print out that we could forward on to our mailing list. Other things they tried this year to drive sales were handing out “coins” that could be redeemed for a $10 discount on sales over $100 and a silent auction, which did generate sales. There is also a raffle.
Back view of VW Eurovan with propanels
Besides the artists and fine craftspeople, there is gourmet food, live music and members of a local “circus” who provide amazing stiltwalkers and costumed raffle winner announcers. Well-behaved dogs on leashes are allowed. Someone does face-painting for kids and there are special activities for them, too. There are lots of tables with umbrellas and chairs for people to plop down in for a break. It’s all calculated to encourage people to stay as long as possible.
My booth at the festival; they request that you "spill out" into the walkway area
I’ve decided that the Marin festival will be my one yearly Bay Area “appearance” due to time and distance constraints. My plan is to build up a following and identity as the artist who paints Mongolian and animal subjects. I feel that I made a good start this year. I had sales, got quality sign-ups for my mailing list and was able to tell my “story” and make myself memorable.
Don’t know if I’ll have time to post anything since I hope it will be a busy weekend. It looks like it’s going to be a beautiful, weather-wise, so the crowds should be good. I’ll be in booth 105S. The festival is on the Lagoon at the Marin Civic Center. Traveling home on Monday, so stay tuned…
The propanels are up and covered with paintings. The studio is about as clean as it ever gets. There’s new prints and cards. I’ll be baking oatmeal cookies tonight. And, at 11am Saturday morning, it’s Show Time! The 12th Annual North Coast Open Studios .
If you’re out and around in Humboldt County this weekend, consider checking out a few studios. Our county has an amazing variety of artists and the community is very supportive.
I’ll be open on Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 5pm. This year I’m offering a selection of small, affordable works ready to hang on your own wall or to give as a special gift.
For more information on this great event, here’s the link to the official website, which includes a directory of artists with examples of their work. maps to all the studios, photos of many of the artists in their studios and more.
In the meantime, Niki is resting up for his big socializing opportunity:
Coming up soon is North Coast Open Studios the weekend of June 12-13 and, the following weekend, June 19-20, the Marin Art Festival. I’ll have framed paintings, prints and cards at both events, plus a variety of small, unframed affordable original oil paintings. I’ve been doing new ones in between working on larger paintings and it’s a nice way to take a break from the more complex pieces.
I generally do these in two sittings, plus maybe one more short one for final tweaking and try to keep them fairly loose and simple.
Rooster 8x10" oil
Chipmunk 5x7" oil
Three Tule Elk, Point Reyes 8x10" oil
Coming up: a new on-going series on how to improve your paintings, based on all the mistakes and false starts I’ve made over the fifteen years I’ve been painting in oil. So it will be a looong series. ;0)
You can see it here There will not be a physical show. Images of the art, in a variety of media, will be published in the summer issue of the magazine and a selection will included in a limited edition book, both due in March. I’ve made it into the book and greatly look forward to getting a copy.
Lesley Humphrey, who placed first in painting in Ex Arte Equinus II, was the painting juror for this year. Her juror’s statement is here and is very well-written.
And if this image looks familiar, yes, this painting was juried into an American Academy of Equine Art show earlier this year.
Lost Coast Daily Painters in having a big, Big, BIG holiday sale this Saturday night during Arts Alive in Old Town, Eureka, California. This may be your last chance to get one of our paintings listed in the Buy It Now section of the blog. I’ll be there with the other artists at Kathy O’Leary’s studio upstairs at 208 C St. from 5-9pm. We’re even offering free gift wrapping and can handle shipping if you find that special gift of art for someone who lives out of the area.
Here’s a selection of what I’ll have available. Almost everything will be $50-$95. They are all original oil paintings.