Wednesday, February 23, 2005
Illustration Friday: Sorrow
I originally wasn't going to participate in this Illustration Friday, because i just thought it was so darn SAD. I immediately started feeling guilty because of my last debaucle of non-posting, and several weeks ago I decided Illustration Friday would be a great, non-intimidating, somewhat social way to get my creativity back on track. I also remembered a photograph that is on my mostly-retired blog The Avalanche
right after I had slammed my finger in a closet door I was attempting to dismantle. Pretty pathetic. My husband thinks I have an extra-sad (and extra-cute) pout. I can't say that I'm sorry for the cuteness because, like I said, this week's topic was just so darn SAD ... and I didn't want to make anything so SAD.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Illustration Friday: Flight
This is my first submission to Illustration Friday
*edit* Okay I am a huge geek. This is the Illustration Friday from not one but TWO weeks ago. I must have linked myself some wackity way. I will try to catch up and do the correct one now!
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
How to be Creative
Yesterday as I was leaving class, I remembered being in that same building as a anxious high school senior, toting around a big black portfolio to be reviewed by various art schools. I remembered tag-team waiting in line for three hours with my mother to speak to the Grand Wizard of Portfolio Reviews, the guy from Rhode Island School of Design, only to have him flip through my portfolio and say, "good ... no ... okay ... okay ... i don't think so ... good ... okay ..." I can't remember what exactly MICA had to say about my artwork at the time, but I know that on that day, when I was waiting in line with hundreds of other young artists, most of whom I thought for sure were more talented than me, I didn't think that I would be walking in and out of that marble building every week, a student of one of the top-ranked art schools in the country.
It makes me a little proud of myself.
Here's some great reading material by Hugh MacLeod: How to be Creative
Friday, February 11, 2005
I had a "Now what?" sort of moment this morning. I haven't worked this week. I spent Monday and Tuesday attempting to legally change my name (resulting in fruitless hours at the MVA and a cryptic phone message from the District Courthouse), then Wednesday and Thursday were my domestic duty days. At least I didn't watch the soaps. I had done all the busywork I could do, and so this morning I could actually focus on The Kitschen
. Scary! Didn't go in the studio! Didn't know what to make! Too scary to think about what to do next!
So I read. I looked up books about starting a business, about marketing, about the art-making process, then I went to Borders to browse them. I didn't come home with any of the things I thought I would buy.
I'd like to think that I have some sort of special connection to Salvador Dali. His artwork always appears in my life at some creatively ripe moment. Perhaps Dali is just such an art icon that he continues to pop up everywhere, but artists like Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso are just as pervasive figures, and while I love their work just as much, it never crashes into me like Dali's does. I have a running list I keep of my encounters with the artist, and what is going on in my life at the time. Lo & behold the feature article in ArtNews
is Dali: Kitsch or Avante Garde?
Coincidence, you may say, but I tell you, Dali is my artist-friend from the undead.
The second item I brought home was Urgent 2nd Class: Creating Curious Collage, Dubious Documents and Other Art from Ephemera
by Nick Bantock. If you haven't experienced any of Nick Bantock's books, I encourage you to run out and look at the The Griffin & Sabine Trilogy
right away. They are magical and inspirational. I have also read The Artful Dodger
, which is a sort of visual autobiography, I suppose. He goes into detail regarding his methods of creating things at various points in his life, but I am very excited to see what he has to say about creativity from the instructional standpoint.
What a serendipitous afternoon it was! I think this weekend I will have to make pieces in honor of two of my favorite artists!
Monday, February 07, 2005
Week III thoughts
After spending the past week thinking about my business, I realized that one important thing I neglected to do in the past is identifying my market.
Who is interested in my work? Who do I *want* to be interested in my work? Should I change my work to match my market? Or should I ditch my market and find a new one who is interested in my new work?
I think what I would really like to do is form some sort of collective. Not a cooperative; not a Co-Op. I really like the independence I have working from home; I have a studio that is exactly how I want it, and I don't have to keep set retail hours. It has all the benefits that I sought in being my own boss. I don't want to lose all those things by opening a retail space with all of the extra responsibility that entails: a significantly higher overhead, employees, inflexible hours, etc. I can already see disadvantages to running a co-op. I can see the gallery/space losing momentum because there are too many opinions on the gallery's operation, personal drama being brought to work, and confronting artists who aren't doing their part. I am already worried about it! What I would like to do instead, is to manage a COLLECTIVE of artists, all working and promoting themselves independently, but supporting one another and sharing ideas with each other, and coming together occasionally to do events at various venues. This is a very vague idea, of course, but I think I am on to something.
In class, this week's discussion was about creating a brief speech about your business. I should be able to answer the following questions briefly and in such a way to generate interest in, well, myself!
WHO AM I? WHAT DO I DO? WHY SHOULD YOU BUY FROM ME?
Our small group didn't get very far in addressing these questions in class tonight, but we did have another interesting discussion. My classmate and I both agreed that it is easy to call ourselves artists but difficult to explain in detail what that means. For example, she is a graphic designer, but her passion is painting, and she has a hard time saying, "I'm a painter and this is what my paintings are like ..." Likewise, I often introduce myself by saying, "I'm an artist and I make jewelry," and people are more inclined to ask details about my jewelry than my artwork. I think this is because non-artists feel like they can't talk about art because they feel like they don't really know enough about it to say. It's the only field of arts like this. People will easily say what kind of music they listen to, or their favorite movie, but when it comes to art, they'll say something like, "Oh I don't really know much about art," or make some obtuse reference to a cousin who draws horses or something else to that effect. My classmate says that she feels like non-artists put artists out in some other world. We commiserated that saying we were art history majors in college was a conversation stopper. So we're trying to figure out how to make saying "hey, I'm an artist!" Sound interesting and accessible!
Small Business Links, Volume I
Thursday, February 03, 2005
Hi! My name is Flissy and I am an artist and maker of things. In June 2003 I started my own business. By that, I mean I had made some jewelry that I thought people would like to buy, and I got myself a Tax ID. I worked part-time and spent a lot of time making jewelry, and trying to promote myself. I quickly ran out of steam, seeing that running a business is more than collecting sales tax, and quickly discouraged by rejections and slow sales. I got married (yay!) and bought a dump of a townhouse that you can see at The Avalanche
that we made into a lovely home.
My day job made me miserable. I knew I never wanted to be the sort of person who is consumed by her job, who comes home and curls up and cries because she knows that tomorrow she has to do it all over again. So I quit. I enrolled in a Creative Entreprenuership certificate program that is a partnership between an Fancy Schmancy Art School and the Business Department at a local college. I am investing more of myself into my artwork and my business, because I know that as challenging as it is to be an artist and a small business owner, I will still be more happy, and a better wife and better person than I could be doing anything else.
Wednesday, February 02, 2005
This is a test entry so that I may design my weblog. WHEE! Content to follow. An thanks to my husband for helping to make my blogspot look so pretty! YAY for pink! I'm so totally girlie!
I am an Artist & Maker of Things.
Visit my shop at Etsy!
I'm on MySpace
Books to Check Out
Print & Color Affirmations! Fun!
In the Fridge
Art & Small Business Links
Small Business Administration
US Patent & Trademark Office
Artist Help Network
The Kitschen's Favorite Weblogs