Available Next Week on EBay- Small, Affordable, Original Oil Paintings!

Like many artists, I’m trying to figure out what my sales options are given the current economic climate. I’m also interested in seeing if I can sell art directly on the internet. And, a few months ago, I was showing some friends some of the small studies I do to work on various aspects of painting and one encouraged me to try selling them. Taking this all together, I have decided to offer a “new line” of small oils that I am calling “Studio Studies”, because, well, that’s what they are.

As anyone who paints most days a week knows, they do stack up after awhile and I have a few dozen that I’ve decided I’m willing to find new homes for.

I plan to start offering them a few at a time on EBay, starting next week. Here’s a small preview, starting with one that I photographed in progress, so it’s a short step-by-step demo of how I do these mostly 6″x8″ studies that usually take less than two hours. The idea is to quickly capture a light effect, so detail isn’t relevant. This should look familiar to anyone who has taken Scott Christensen’s Ten Day Plein Air Intensive, because that’s who I learned this approach from and I really like it.

STEP-BY-STEP 8″X 6″ STUDY (from last Friday’s post)-

An image I shot up on Dunraven Pass in Yellowstone National Park at first light. What I was working on the was the color temperature shifts from shadow to light.

Photo reference
Photo reference
Initial lay-in
Initial lay-in
Starting with darkest darks
Starting with darkest darks and basic shapes
Adding light and medium tones
Adding light and medium tones; notice brushwork to create trees
Dawn on Dunraven Pass; 8"x 6"
Dawn on Dunraven Pass; 8"x 6"

Here’s a couple more. First a demo that I did in about an hour at the Marin Art Festival of a small kangaroo which I photographed at a zoo.

Little Kangaroo- 8"x10"
Little Kangaroo- 8"x10"

And a landscape a few minutes from our house looking east from Clam Beach to the bluff. It was summer and the foxgloves were blooming. They’re not a native, but they look like they belong here in Humboldt County.

Clam Beach Bluff; 6"x8"
Clam Beach Bluff; 6"x8"

Finally, since I strongly believe that artists should help and support each other, here, from Alison Stanfield, who runs ArtBizCoach, is some solid advice on “Community”. Thanks, Alison! (Hope it’s readable. Let me know if it’s not.)

community

ART THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

The artistic mind is one that takes years to develop. Painting never gets easier. Struggle is not something that one goes looking for. It will find you. Just give it time.

Scott Christensen, The Nature of Light

New Paintings, Book Review, Camera Drama cont.

Took the Nikon D70 and lens in to our local camera store. Classic good news and bad news. The lens is fixable and is being fixed. The camera body could have been, for half what it cost new, and then I’d have a repaired (after having hit the pavement hard ), four year old camera body for the Mongolia trip in September. I don’t deliberately abuse my equipment, but it does end up with stories to tell. So, I sucked it up, decided to trust the gods, and bought a Nikon D80, the follow-on. It’s, uh, killer great. In general, it’s just more of everything than the D70. Larger file size, bigger ISO range, etc. So far, my favorite part is the bigger monitor. Very handy when photographing paintings.

Which I just got done yesterday. Here are a couple of the newest. The bison is called “Autumn”. I shot the landscape in Yellowstone last year at the end of September as the season changed. It went from sunscreen to snowing in 48 hours. The coyote, also from Yellowstone, doesn’t have a title yet. If you provide the winning suggestion, I’ll send you a pack of twelve assorted greeting cards with my art on them.

BOOK REVIEW

I promised a review of “I’d Rather Be In The Studio!”, by Alyson B. Stanfield, who runs ArtBizCoach.com, so here tis:

How many of you fellow artists out there: try this show/run that ad/enter another competition and hope that somehow, sometime, lightning will strike and you’ll sell out your show or a collector will buy ten of your paintings or a big gallery will hunt you down and beg to show your work and you’ll be on your way to fame, fortune and winters in the Bahamas or, in my case, Hawaii?

Ain’t gonna happen. How many of us have held ourselves back with this kind of magical thinking? Honestly, it really just gets in the way when you think about it. If you’re waiting for the Fine Art Fairy to come along and sprinkle you with Success Dust, then you’re probably not actively building your career in an effective, organized way. Which means you’ll continue to flail around and wonder where the money is going to come from for that next tube of Cadmium Red (for you non-artists, that’s one expensive color!).

You can “join the artists who are ditching excuses and embracing success” for starters by reading Alyson’s book, the subtitle of which is “The Artist’s No-Excuse Guide to Self-Promotion”. What I like about it is the active voice, the practical steps you can take and why they are important.

The contents are organized around all the excuses Alyson has heard in her career working with artists both as a museum curator and now as a art marketing consultant for artists. Some of the excuses include “My art speaks for itself” (no, it doesn’t), “I have no idea where to begin” (start with your art), “There aren’t enough hours in the day to do it all” (organize your information) and, of course, “I’d rather be in the studio!” (start by defining success for yourself). She then addresses each one with specific Actions, which include exercises you can do to start to get the hang of it.

One of the things that surprised me at first was her emphasis on The Mailing List. Sure, I have one and when I want to send out postcards, which I do a couple of times a year, I ask my husband, who maintains it for me, to do a label run. I put out a sign-up sheet at events and shows and he faithfully adds the new names for me. And…that’s…about….it. Sound familiar? Did Alyson ever open my eyes to what a mailing list is, can and should be and how absolutely fundamental it is to a successful career as an artist.

She has a website and a blog (and tells you in the book how to make the most effective use of both) and she does private consultations. I was going to go that route until I read the book. I could tick off so many changes that I need to make already that I’ve decided to implement those and then run it all by her to see how I’ve done and what I still need to do.

What is really all comes down to as far as she is concerned is that you have to own your own life and career and take total responsibility for it.

So, to check out Alyson:

www.artbizcoach.com (Alyson’s home page)

www.artbizblog.com (Alyson’s blog, obviously)

www.Idratherbeinthestudio.com (the book)

THE GARDEN

And just for fun, the oriental poppies are blooming in my garden. It’s raining today, which we badly need, so the poppies really add a “pop” of color outside my studio.