Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014: a year in review

Last year, I put together a top 13 of '13 list. I accomplished a lot, in no small part to my #art365 pledge. This year, I gave myself some slack. I declared that Art Related Works counted towards making art. So if I spent the day stretching canvases, or wiring work, or delivering work, that counted. There are a lot of things that go on behind the scenes that take up a lot of time, that are necessary, that are absolutely not making art. So while this year started winding down, I started evaluating if this had actually been a good idea or not. 

And decided not.

I felt like I hadn't gotten enough done this year. And then I started counting. And updating my resume. And I did actually accomplish a lot this year. No top 14 list, but here are a few of the highlights...

The grant. Once again, I was an IAP grantee from the Indiana Art Commission. Two years ago I was a FY2013 grantee and produced those large scale paintings. This year (FY2015) the grant was used to fund...

Notice the syringe. It's about 1/2" above the surface of the paper.

The residency. My first residency. A week at Hook Pottery Paper working with Andrea Peterson on papermaking. It. Was. Amazing. And that doesn't come close to really describing it. A week of making art with no distractions and the feedback from Andrea all throughout. She pulled a lot out of me that I could not have gotten on my own. She encouraged me to trust myself without thinking about what I was doing.

pulp painting (papermaking) 22" x 30"

Really, I could stop there. The residency was the highlight of the year. But a few other things happened that are worth remembering. 

artwork. I made 159 pieces of art. This is a lot. But it's considerably less than 2013's 216 pieces.

shows. I was in 21 shows. That's up from 15 in 2013. Within that, I showed in several venues which were new to me: Thaddeus C Gallery, Merge Building, South Shore Arts (Salon Show), White Ripple, Taltree Arboretum, Beverly Shores Depot, Hammond Public Library, and Uptown Evolution.

into, acrylic, 10" x 10" at Thaddeus C Gallery

Here's what next aka my plan for 2015.

#art365 needs to be a bigger force. Right after I decided I needed to be brutal about making art everyday again, I got sick. Too sick to be out of bed for a couple of days. There was no possible way I could make art those days. So, while I need to remain in the habit of making art everyday, I also need to accept that there will be days it just won't happen. 

#art365 12.16.14 gouache

The resume needs to be updated more regularly. At least once a month. I'm not entirely sure that 21 shows is accurate but that was all I remembered. It will also need to be edited severely because it's two full pages now and it's already down to 10 point type. I have 4 shows booked for 2015 already and they aren't listed yet. (Members Only and LIVE ART at Studio 659 in January and February, Indigenous Landscapes is travelling to the Indiana Welcome Center in February, and the as-yet-untitled solo show of my papermaking at the Towle Theater in April and May.)

below the surface, acrylic, 11" x 14" at White Ripple

Reach farther Despite the fact that I showed in all those new places, the rest of the shows were all in a handful of spaces. I need to move out of my comfort zone. (and out of Northwest Indiana)

pulp painting (papermaking), 22" x 30"

It has been a great year. Best wishes to all of you and yours for 2015!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

postcardswap #4

It's that time again! Yep, postcardswap #4 time.

Lori Hutton

What is it? The quick answer is you make a small postcard sized (approximately 4" x 6") piece of artwork and send it out into the world and have one sent to you, as well.

The rules: Or, maybe think of them as courtesies, or how this actually works.

Decide you want top sign up, and email me your full name and mailing address. Sign up by January 8, 2015.  Artwork must be postmarked by January 31, 2015.

Do not sign up if you are not going to send a piece of art out. Really. This will bring about tons of bad karma for you. And it really is sad for the person on the other end who sent something out and didn't get something in return. I do not like getting those emails and then have to track down who failed to follow through.

Mary Schons

Make a piece of art! Any media, any theme, but it must be handmade, by you, for this event. Photography/digital work is fine as long as it's your work. A postcard from your last show is not okay. A piece of art you made five years ago is not okay. Again, about the size of a postcard. It does not have to be an actual postcard, just that size. This should be easy, and not costly, to mail. You can put it in an envelope, or not. But please think about how it will arrive to your assigned artist. You want this piece of work to represent you well. By all means load up the back of the card with all your contact information. The person you send your card to will not be the same person who sends you a card. You will be connecting with two different artists, and hopefully through the follow up blogs and social media, you will be able to connect to even more artists.

Jennifer Billig

Before you mail it out: take a pic and email it to me. And take a good picture. I'm not going to edit it for you. Whatever you send me is what's going to get put out on the interwebs. Please put your name on the jpg file for me. When you email me that, also send a link to wherever you want me to direct people: your website, etsy, blog, facebook, etc. You can also post it to whatever social media you are on. Please use the hashtag #postcardswap. And if you can tag me, I'll reshare it. There will be a google open gallery post, too. Additional info can be added in there, like process, inspiration, etc. I will put together several blog posts following up with pictures of your art and a link to your website (or wherever). I cannot post your artwork and links if you don't send them to me. That may seem kind of obvious, but half of the artists participating last time didn't bother, so please remember to do it!


Let me know you want to be a part of this swap! Know someone else who may want to join us, invite them! The more the merrier!

The photos in this blog post are from postcardswap #3. If you click on the #postcardswap label at the end of this post, it will take you through to all the previous posts and you can check out all the great artists who have taken part in the last three swaps.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

in the studio

This week... a continuation of small interiors and landscapes.

12.17.14 ink and gouache

12.16.14 gouache

12.18.14 gouache (text)

12.19.14 gouache
Also this week, I had another papermaking feedback session, which went very well. We also swapped art, so I now have another piece by Gregg Hertzlieb in my collection. My husband set up a door on some sawhorses for Gregg's visit and it made such an enormous desk. I don't know why I balked at that idea previously. That will be getting moved into my studio later. Out of the studio - I delivered work for January's Members Only exhibit at Studio 659. And got word that several paintings sold from both Paul Henry's and Thaddeus C. Gallery. So I treated myself to this piece by Richard Kooyman

Sunday, December 14, 2014

in the studio

I started this week with a small gouache study based on my studio. Robin Kalinich posted in the Ink & Alchemy facebook group, asking to see everyone's studio, which made me think I ought to just paint it. I'm looking for angles and architecture/structure that I'm not having in the landscapes I've been working on. Also, this piece has an initial layer of text in ink, which is mostly obliterated (and that's okay) by the additional layers of gouache. 

ink and gouache, 5" x 5"

The paynes grey in the lower right corner gave me some hope that I could get the gouache to work in a way similar to the pulp painting. So from there I did some landscapes. You'll notice I did not title them. I decided dating them was sufficient for now.

12.10.14, goauche, 4" x 6"

12.11.14, gouache, 4" x 6"

For the rest of the week, I went back to interiors. I think I will be exploring here for a bit. I wasn't sure what to expect when I posted them online. Although I occasionally do draw things along this line, I don't usually add color and they never get posted. These has been really well received among my online followers, and I'm very thankful for that.

12.12.14, ink and gouache, 4" x 6"

12.13.14, ink and gouache, 6" x 4"

12.13-14.14, ink and gouache, 4" x 6"

12.14.14, ink and gouache, 4" x 6"
Also, this week I had another feedback session on the papermaking. I'm finding these very beneficial. I hope to have two more before the end of the year. Out of the studio this week, I went to White Ripple's Second Saturday opening. It was a full house! Both of the previous shows I have work in are still up: Small Works, and Indigenous Landscapes. I also have another opportunity to exhibit in the works for later this month, more on that next week!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

in the studio

In the studio this week, I've been still playing around with this piece. Layering, layering, layering.

I've also started gathering feedback on the paper I made during my residency. I included this as part of my grant proposal and I've had two official feedbacks. One at my place and one not. This is not at my house. I do not have this kind of free floor space in my studio.

Out of the studio this week, I had an opening Friday at Thaddeus C Gallery in La Porte. I have ten small paintings in FOOT LONG! a small works show also celebrating the gallery's 10th Anniversary. Next week: I have another feedback scheduled midweek. Saturday is the 2nd Saturday opening at White Ripple. The Small Works Show is still up there. And I think ink and gouache will make a return.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Throwback Thursday

Finding the silver lining always makes me sound like a bitch.
Except today.

I never talk about my family here, because this blog is all about art. But today, my son wandered away from school unnoticed. He has severe autism and is completely non-verbal. And he was found safe and unhurt. If autism isn't on your personal radar, let me tell you that kids with autism tend to wander. They often don't understand personal safety and therefore are not afraid. And when they wander, they die. Often. In fact, usually.

So today's throwback is silver lining. And my silver lining is safe at home now.

silver lining, 2013, charcoal, conté, ink, watercolor pencil