Friday, 23 November 2018

PLEIN AIR PAINTING - VARIETY

8x10 oil on panel 'Fickle Fig Farm' plein air painting
Variety.  It's the spice of life, they say... I find it's also the spice of my outdoor 'plein air' painting experience.  It's easy to bumble along with the same old application method, but it's boring, and it gives boring results.
 I like to change up how I apply paint.  Brushes, palette knife, scraping, smudging with my gloved fingers or with a rag, the more variety the better.  Here's this morning's plein air painting from Fickle Fig Farm. with the Alfresco painting group. The Fickle Fig is a farm market / bakery / cafe near Sidney, BC on Mills Road near the airport.

Saturday, 10 November 2018

Hey! FREE INSTANT DOWNLOAD ART BOOKMARKS



Hey!  I made these fun bookmarks with some of my  cottage / beach paintings.You can get your FREE instant download (pdf file)of all three of these cute little bookmarks when you join my CottageBeachArt Collective here.  You also get to find out all about the latest goings on with my art life.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

HOW TO STAY MOTIVATED WHILE PAINTING

I feel like all painters have challenges at times with staying motivated. 
One day you're all fired up and in the drivers seat with your painting, but just as easily procrastination kicks in.  When that happens it can be hard to get motivated.  Typically there are 2 process' for me that motivate.

1.)  the subject itself motivates...it interests me; I respond with my 'painting voice'. In this process, I already know what I want to say... I follow it to it's conclusion. This process is linear, and often it's satisfying; I feel kind of thrilled when I get a good result. Who doesn't want to make a successful painting?

2.). other times subjects don't feel all that interesting.  I want to explore things less tangible,  things a little out of reach.  Painting this way is a whole different process.  It's intuitive, and experimental and more than a little addictive.  I don't as often get a successful painting.  As a matter of fact I usually don't get one.  How do I stay motivated here?

For me, the answer is: painting.

To motivate myself I load a palette knife, brush or rag.  If I start, something usually happens.  One stroke leads to something else... questions arise, corresponding decisions are made.  It's definitely non linear.  I can work for long times laying in passages, only to scrape
off or paint over them.  It's elusive.   Occasionally something surprising happens.  That's the best feeling, when something unexpected takes my painting in an exciting direction.   Before I know it I'm motivated.







Saturday, 2 June 2018

Cottage Beach Art Etsy shop

Opening - oil on wood - by Sally Chupick - $600
Back in April I listened to a podcast on Savvy Painter which resonated with me.  
The host, Antrese Wood, was interviewing social media wiz Jenni Waldrop.  Jenni's podcast was all about selling on Etsy for artists.
Back in 2012, I had opened an Etsy shop and listed some things for sale, but it never really took off for me and I lost interest, letting it die a slow death.
So I was curious when I listened to Jenni talk about Etsy for artists on the podcast.  Truthfully I was unbelieving... I had not had success with it before.  AND neither had Antrese (the interviewer) as she mentioned in the podcast that she had also given it a whirl but it had never taken off for her either.

Let me just pause here to say that these next few months for me in my personal life are all over the map.  I have packed up my studio and I'm not painting for a couple of months until I'm settled again permanently in our new home in Victoria, BC.  I have time while not painting, to learn new skills.

I'll repeat...there were things that resonated with me as I listened to the podcast.
One of those things was how Etsy can be a platform for a completely other line of work different from your main practice.  My ears perked up!
I felt like I was ahead of the game! I actually have an extensive line of tiny paintings that I create on driftwood and on cedar that is not suitable for showing in galleries or other art exhibits. Being so small that I actually call them mini's, they dont take me long to make but I enjoy them.  I find them sort of like yoga for my art practice, taking me to a place of meditation when I work on them.  So I already have a line of work different from my main practice.
Another thing that Jenni mentioned in the interview is that Etsy's platform brings a wider audience to those artists that wish to sell art prints from their work.  My ears perked up again!
I have always sold art prints of of Kingston, and done really well with them while living here in our hometown.  I realize not everybody can afford an original painting, but many are willing to buy a print of an original, for whatever reason.
So I thought...maybe there are other people who would  buy prints of other paintings?  People who do not know my work yet.  People who live far away.  People who might not come to my website to find my work or go into a gallery.  The thing Etsy has is people.  Customers.  Etsy has a pretty big reach.  It dawned on me that I could use some Etsy help.
Long story short...I signed up with Jenni for an online course about Etsy selling.  There is a ton of stuff I didn't know, that I've already learned, that I had no clue about before.

CottageBeachArt is my new Etsy shop!  The focus is on cottage and beach 'art treasures'.  Everything in the shop has this vibe goin' on!  I sell my art prints and home decor, as well as my line of cedar and driftwood mini original paintings.  Although it is my shop I collaborate with daughter Holly and hubby Jeff.  They make beach jewelry and beach decor.  We all enjoy creating; launching a shop of treasures seems right.   Although the shop has a variety of niche's, I'm hoping they tie together with my theme,  COTTAGE - BEACH...we'll see how it all goes!
It's been fun learning.  And, I'm noticing a little jump in sales.   It's a time sucker for sure, but at the moment I have time,  as I can't paint while moving!  Ugh! Moving house is a pain. It feels like it's been going on forever, as we've moved twice in the past 2 years already!  This move to Victoria is our final destination, and we are really looking forward to completing it, and living there full time!

Mr. Whale

Pacific Pebbles earrings

Morning Garden art print







Tuesday, 10 April 2018

New directions

Over the Edge - oil media on wood- 12 x 12 - $400
As some of you may know already, I have been hanging out in Victoria, BC for a number of months; I'm loving' it!  BUT heaps of changes in my home life also mean juggling changes to my art business too.  I'm considering all options:)

These past few months, I've learned to work in a new shared studio space instead of my beloved home studio, but it's actually working out okay, despite a few hiccups in my routine....ie: having to clean up after myself after every session!  ha ha...ya that's not so great, but I get on with it.

Not everything about moving is great...like I'll be leaving good friends, and I'll be much further away from my darling grand-kiddies...but overall, I know it's the right thing for us now.  And after the winter this year in Ontario...ya...well need I say more?

I'm realistic in expecting it will take a while to find my niche with any galleries in BC,  but in the interim  I'm happy to continue to show some work in Ontario at these galleries:
Studio 87, Perth, ON
Kingston Frameworks, Kingston, ON
Meraqi Art Annex, Kingston, ON 
Little Pumphouse, Gananoque, ON

*newsflash*...I am currently doing in depth study delving into new ways to share my work online; stay tuned...I'll share more about that asap!  



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Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Again, Again, Again...!


What instinct is built into an artists DNA that compels them to paint the same subjects over and over?  I've often wondered about this.  I think, returning to the same subject matter for an artist, is a little like finding your way home.   You might go out exploring from time to time, but its always nice to get home, isn't it?  
"Home is where the heart is" after all.   Sorry for the cheesy quote, but  it does apply.  
An artist learning their chops needs adventures while they grow their visual language.  Exploring subject matter and different techniques is how one learns to feel what to keep and what to let go of.  Truth in painting is about getting in touch with the good feels, the ones that are right for you; your home base so to speak.  What you have to say works from this place of centre.


Children know this instinctively.  When they experience something they love, something that makes them laugh, love, feel joy...what is their squeal, shout, exclamation?
"Again... Again...!! "  


  I feel like I'm always returning to a place of flowers.  Even when I know it's a bit too 'girlie' and often considered "oh, so cliche"...even when I think I want to paint something 'way cooler'.   And so...I go out and explore other things;  and when I'm done, I head 'home' again.     



Monday, 1 January 2018

Ignoring the critics and doing what you love

3 works in progress, oil & coldwax on wood
Going forward into the new year brings heaps of new things for most people, and I'm certainly no exception.  I've got so much to be thankful /grateful for.  Most importantly my family... but also for my art practice. 

I love, love, love, to make art that feeds my soul.   This means tuning into what I love, exploring possibilities, embracing risk and yes...pretty much ignoring what others think.  It's not like I don't hear what others think, I do...but I prefer them in the back seat(or the trunk) while I do the driving.
2017 has been an exceptional year as I fit changes into my lifestyle that in turn effect my art. Moving, a ton of traveling, and consequently, loss of studio space and time has forced me to find new solutions to make my painting practice work for me. Basically, size and process's change according to the spaces. For example small space; smaller works, new larger shared studio space...well, we'll see now wont we? heh.
Thank you to all my clients and friends who have supported and encouraged my art over this past year and made 2017 an excellent year for me.  I'm excited to see what 2018 holds!

PLEIN AIR PAINTING - VARIETY

8x10 oil on panel 'Fickle Fig Farm' plein air painting Variety.  It's the spice of life, they say... I find it's also ...