Saturday, December 25, 2010
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Last night I heard this incredible speaker and I wrote down some notes from that in hope that what inspired me will inspire you also. I hope I haven't misrepresented anything that he has said. I thought it was very valuable for artists in any discipline. Take a moment and see if it speaks to you.
(And I know this may seem ironic that I'm posting this after my previous post about a holiday sale of my art, but I like to think that some of my pieces are made purely for self-expression. If the piece speaks to someone and is purchased by them, that's icing on the cake.)
Andrew Simonet-TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, NERMAN MUSEUM
Andrew is co-director of Headling Dance Company, Philadelphia, PA
Thanks for doing what you do. This culture needs you. 99% of what is out there today visually in the form of imagery is there to sell something. You are putting out the 1% that is not. The general opinion
out there is that there is the top layer of artists/performers who make scads of money and enjoy great acclaim, to the rest it’s just a hobby. Just because you don’t achieve that overwhelming acclaim or notoriety you wanted doesn’t mean that you failed. You can’t always say what has been accomplished. Andrew thinks his real mission is telling this message, speading these words to other artists.
Artists’ lives can be burdensome and relentless. Your goal should be to build a life that is balanced, sustainable and productive.
Things that stop artists are 1) workaholism 2)perfectionism/competitiveness and 3)poverty.
1) Workaholism-Plan downtime. You need it. All artists work too hard and are too hard on themselves (i.e. I’d be more successful if I only worked harder.)
2) Perfectionism/Competitiveness-Get used to “good enough”. Why are other things in our lives good enough, but not our work? On competing with other artists, repeat this mantra-“The success of other artists is good for me.” Repeat as necessary until you mean it.
3) Poverty-Figure out the amount of money you need to live on for one year without financial panic. Figure in time/money for vacation, insurance, savings.
Mission- Be rooted in why you’re doing it-people love to connect to your mission. Some may envy that you have a mission as they’re still trying to figure it out or don’t feel connected to theirs. The world really wants you to stay close to that mission.
Represent yourself well. We need to be able to talk about and write about our work well.
Don’t shortchange your skills. Conceiving, planning, putting together and delivering a project on time takes skills that are considered management level skills in the outside world.
Partner with people who get your work. Talk to them, have coffee with them, they can move your work forward.
Placemaking-People need a HERE. Be where you are locally and share, be interested and open to other artistic work outside of your discipline. It’s important to have a local presence as well as getting out globally with your work---what you do globally brings others back to your locality, and what you do locally opens others’ minds to what can be done globally.
Community is important. It’s a loop—give---get---give---get. Figure out something that connects people.
Keep making work that is visionary, dangerous, and interesting.
Sunday, November 14, 2010
example of custom Circus Dog piece
The holiday season is just around the corner and as a big thank you for your support throughout the year I am offering 10% off (plus free shipping on anything below $600.00) on any pieces on the "Available" page of my website until Dec.19th. As you can see above, I've made a smaller limited edition version of my large "Moving Target" piece plus I'm taking orders for custom "Circus Animal" pieces made to look like your dog or cat.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
The Juggler-She was trying to keep all the balls in the air. This piece is about trying to juggle it all in life. It is a working dexterity game. It contains 5 metal balls which fit into the round holes over the woman's head. This piece is constructed of wood, tissue paper, handprinted fabric, painted metal, and wax encaustic. It measures 8"w x 10"h.
Conundrum-Sometimes I can't keep my mind from wandering. I wanted to make a piece that depicted a person's thoughts shooting around their head and pinging off of one thing or another, winding around Wonder and Imagination, occasionally getting stalled on Doubt or Skepticism but ultimately landing somewhere between a Bad or a Brilliant idea. This piece is a working pinball game with a ball shooter, faucet handles as spinners and curved metal scoops that provide ball stops. It's 16"w x 20"h.
Bed of Nails-He was on pins and needles.This piece is constructed of clay, found wood, nails, handprinted fabric, and acrylic paint. It measures 12"w x 6"h.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
I'm getting ready for another gallery show--this time I'm really excited to be doing a duo show around the theme of amusement park rides and games with an amazing oil painter named Peter Cole. I would link here to his blog or site but I don't think he has one so I'll post photos later. I thought I'd try something new and show a bit of the process of making my pieces. This piece is a bit different from some of my previous ones--(as most of them are I guess). This one is a large clay sculpt of a woman who is literally a wreck and I named her The Cyclone after the famous roller coaster at Coney Island. Here she is in transition-the first step of sculpting her took about 2 hours total. The background is on the back of an old plywood and formica tabletop that has been in my basement for years. I drew rough outlines of carnival rides and tents on the background with oil pastels, then melted wax encaustic over the entire thing (the woman included.) I have colored her face with acrylic paints and soft pastel crayons. The roller coaster in her hair is made of wire and she sits on a found wood base. The pics here show the beginning mound of clay to her semi-finished state but I'll have some better photos of the finished piece in the next few days.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
This is a redux of the carousel pictured below in the August 2 post. I didn't like the feel of the glass dome (too cake platey) over the carousel so I lost that and tried to build more meaning into the piece. The blue horse has "Leaping To Conclusions" written on his side. He's suspended from a tattered circus tent that is supported by wire trees. The carousel below moves via a 6v motor hidden underneath the round base. The horses in the carousel represent thoughts that have been reigned in and keep churning around and around. Click on the video below to see it in action.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
More new pieces, continuing on the circus freak train.This time though the freaks are domestic animals-dogs and cats. They are 6 "x 8" in size and are limited editions, signed and numbered. I am thinking of doing more of these later in the year so let me know if you like them! They are made from clay, wire and painted metal on the sides of the frame. They will be priced at $175.00 each.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Monday, August 2, 2010
Here are 2 more of my newest pieces, now all packed and ready for Uptown Art Fair next weekend in Minneapolis. Ashley's Gallopers (shown at the top) is another electric piece that contains a moving carousel under a glass cloche. Then there's the Firecracker, a rework of an older roller coaster piece of mine that I've added a 12v light to along with some graphics and a stage. The carousel piece is approx. 10"h x 12"w. The Firecracker piece is approx. 14"h x 10"w.
Saturday, July 31, 2010
This is my first turn crank piece. This piece is constructed of metal with handprinted canvas over it, clay, wood and rubber sheeting. It is called "Rat Race" and it's a take off on old rocket rides that you see at carnivals only this time the rocketships are filled with adults who are racing racing racing in circles to get to their jobs and make more money. Many many thanks to my husband Mike for working out alot of the technical details of the crank on this while I worked on the other pieces. This piece will also be for sale at the Uptown Art Fair Aug.6-8.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Haven't posted in quite awhile but for good reason--have been working on more pieces with motors, lights and turn cranks and now I have 3 new pieces that I'm really excited to show.
Friday, May 28, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Monday, March 1, 2010
I was so thrilled to get to write an article featuring my circus lamps in the current March-April issue of Somerset Studios magazine. They did an amazing job with the photography and I can't thank Jenny Doh and Pam Garrison for finding and contacting me. I'm extremely grateful to them both! Also be sure to check out Jenny's newest project site here-http://blog.crescendoh.com/crescendoh/
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Take a look at this amazing creation. This doll was created by a duo called harem6 from Romania. I just found them tonight and am so glad I did. Each of their pieces is so unique and original! If you have a chance, click here to see more of their incredible work on their blog and in their Etsy shop.
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Well I'm almost back home from the Philadelphia Buyer's Market of American Craft show that ran from Feb. 12-15. Right now I'm stuck in the Milwaukee airport due to a de-icing delay so thought I'd check in to give an update on how it all went. Despite weather delays getting to the show (I had to move my flight from Wed. to Thurs. afternoon), I was able to get to Philly by 5:30 Thurs. night and work til around 11:30 that night to get my booth set up. Alot of the other artists and buyers weren't so lucky and ended up getting to the show on Friday or Saturday. Anyhow we all persevered and the show ended up going really well. One of my dream goals was to get my work in the American Folk Art Museum shop in NYC and I'm happy to say I met that goal as they ordered some of my pieces for their store! All in all, I met some wonderful buyers and artists and got several new gallery accounts as well as maintaining the ones I already had so I'm really glad I didn't cancel when the weather reports were sketchy. Travel is hardly ever without hitches but all in all it's pretty fun to get to hang out for a few days with people who create what they love for a living.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
My cute friend Jeanee Duval and I did a trade recently--take a look at this awesome reversible apron she made for me to wear at shows! Jeanee not only makes aprons, she makes cupcakes--the kind you drop in warm bath water and they fizz and smell wonderful. Check out her blog here:
Friday, January 29, 2010
As I've mentioned previously, it seems I've become even busier than when I had a full-time job and at times I have trouble juggling it all. Thinking about how to balance everything-work, family, time with friends, and time for myself-has been on my mind alot. Part of the issue with being self-employed is that you're always at work and having an unfinished project or order in the next room is hard for me to ignore. I just can't shut it off at 5 or 6:00 in the evening and so spend alot of evenings with wire in my hands while I hang out with the fam. I have a feeling I'm not the only one who does this! When my lovely friend Wendi suggested that I include the word "balance" in one of my trapeze artist pieces because so many of us struggle to find it, I realized that she was right--I've been working on trapeze artists and jugglers without realizing how they were an illustration of my own life. Here are the new pieces-they'll be at the BMAC show in Feb. and at the wonderful Lizzie Lou's in Roundtop, TX in March.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
My crate is packed and on it's way to Philadelphia again for the Buyer's Market show....can't believe we have to get it there several weeks in advance. Maybe it's a good thing that it's done though because I've begun to get busy with orders from uncommon goods. They are carrying 3 of my pieces in their current catalog and on their website, and so far it's going really well! Above is a photo of the three pieces plus a link to them here.