I'm tipping the proverbial "hat" to myself. The past few months have been quite successful: My painting "Waiting" was selected to be in Ann Kullberg's e-book Hidden Treasures. This same painting, which earned CPSA Signature Status for me by being my third acceptance into the CPSA International Exhibition within ten years, was also purchased at a recent art fair and was my biggest sale to date. And let's be honest, sales make the rest possible. For those of you interested, I am in the process of having the image printed in giclee form to be sold in my shop soon. READ ON
My painting "Who Rescued Whom" was published in Strokes of Genius 6, by Rachel R. Wolf, Northlight Books, hitting the bookstore shelves as we speak.
My painting "Departing" earned second place at the CPSA District Chapter 119 exhibition, showing now until the end of the month at The Clifton Cultural Arts Center in Clifton Oh.
That's it for now, but there is always room for more.
This triptych study of my daughter's cat Linus has had more Facebook shares and likes and pins than I ever imagined. I did several cp paintings from the series of reference photos taken of Linus two from the graphite study. The graphite triptych sold to an extreme cat lover who set aside money from her limited retirement income for five months. She was delighted to finally unwrap the framed piece after months of waiting. As luck would have it, I was at the gallery to witness the reveal. It was a great moment for both of us. Just a simple pencil drawing, but well loved. These moments are what keep me on track. No matter the medium, if a portrait reaches into someone's heart, it is a success.
The hardest thing about being a professional artist is sales. If it isn't a custom order, what sells? Does every successful artist consider this when deciding on a subject to paint? After spending the first few years establishing my reputation, should I stick to what works? Should I, in essence, brand myself ? The collector needs to be comforted by a certain predictability, right? He/she needs to "know" me a little before forking over $1000.00. But as an artist how do I continue to be stimulated? I can't do the same thing over and over without becoming stale. How do I explore and challenge myself if I don't step off the path? I guess it has more to do with business plan and intent. Am I an artist who equates success with income or peer accolades or self fulfillment? The answer is a little of all three. Of course I would love to get paid for doing something well. Who wouldn't? But, that is not my first goal. Right now, I wish to create meaningful, well executed images that resonate with one or two (OK, let's be honest here, many) viewers. My style is emerging on its own and continues to evolve. Who knows what it will look like in 10 years. I don't feel I have time to fool around with what sells at this point in my life. There's too much to learn. I hope that along the way, someone likes my art enough to buy it. So much for a business plan. I really don't have one. I just do the art, show it and enter as many competitions as I can afford. When I actually sell something it's fantastic! Go ahead, say what's on your mind."Don't quit your day job," right?
"Waiting," 30x16" Prismacolor Pencils on rag mat board. The reference is mine of course. If you follow my blog and work at all, you will see these three characters crop up often. This is what I imagine dog purgatory to be- that somewhere in between breakfast and when mom gets home. The cat can do as he likes, but for the moment, is interested in something outside. I chose the french grays for inside and full color outside to create an obvious border between dream state and full awareness. I hope it works. I had to try anyway.
This is "Stripes Hooligan" completed. He is a little under 16x20". I used Prismacolor pencils, Prisma Artstix, Luminance Caran D'arch pencils and solvents on linen. The reference photos are mine; the cat a rescue from the Family Animal Hospital in Batavia who now resides with me. I painted this as my entry to a competition. We'll see what happens. I already have two interested buyers.