Monday, June 29, 2009

BFlies and DPhotos

Last Friday was my first time at portraiture with my new camera. Therefore I took a great many photos, probably to the annoyance of everyone else although they didn't say anything. I am glad I did as our model was an elderly man with Parkinsons so he had great difficulty in keep his head up. However his presence was such that I think he would make a great painting. On coming home I uploaded the photos to the computer and got a thrill in seeing how I could zoom in even further to the extent that every age spot was in high definition. Of course I bet I would feel differently of course if it was my photo on the screen.

I was so relieved to get my exhibition paintings finished. Now back to more photo realistic work and jewellery making to try pay the bills.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Mist Eyed

I have painted like a maniac this week. Finished three paintings for "Out Of The Blue" the 2009 New Zealand Art Guild Exhibition which runs throughout July. But then this afternoon turned round and did a rush commission- a pendant for a birthday present. The cat's name is Misty incidentally.

Been taking my digital camera everywhere. Thanks to an angel from Auckland I now have a laptop that I was able to upload the software onto and I'm away and laughing. So far have taken shots of the mountains covered with snow and the cats in compromising positions.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Favourite Things

My Dad always used to said that a bad tradesman blames his tools but I've found that with art you should always ensure that you use the highest grade materials and tools that you can afford. Over the years I have gradually built up a stash of "stuff" but I always come back to the same few tools that I use over and over again. One favourite is just the common pencil and today at life drawing I had an epiphany when I realised that I love using a 4B. For some reason it is soft enough for sensitive shading yet sharp enough to make a crisp image.

We had a series of three longer poses after our warm up exercises today. Usually I find myself becoming quite tired but today the time seemed to fly by and before long it was time to pack up and go home. The great thing with life drawing is you learn to embrace imperfection as there is no way you can complete a satisfactory drawing in say, one minute. You also experience happy accidents when in few short strokes you convey all that you need to say. I just wish I could do it every day.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Otane Arts and Crafts Exhibition 2009

I was up until late Wednesday last week printing and packaging cards for our exhibition at Otane which opened the following Thursday afternoon (28th May 2009). Quite a crowd attended the opening, many invited guests and friends of the members. They were intrigued by the Mr MacGregor's Garden display that the Herb and Garden group had been working on for several weeks.

The first sale I took was in the first few minutes when an envelope was handed to me with a cheque to buy one member's painting worth $550. Within that first hour another painting sold plus a few cards and some of my stuff. Within two hours we'd sold $712.50 worth of work. Came home buzzing. So much for the recession. I didn't go to the centre for the next two days but heard all about it from other people. A reporter from a local radio station went among the crowd and did short interviews which were broadcast on Central FM throughout the weekend. That publicity really helped and over those days another four paintings sold plus three from the cash and carry bin. I had a phone message that all my soaps had sold out so sat up until late Saturday night painting more.

Then the cold snap hit. When I got up Sunday morning the sky was steely grey. I was trying to finish pricing my stuff when Glenys arrived at 9.15am so she finished doing that while I slapped on some war paint and changed into my tidy artist uniform. We got to Otane just 10 minutes before the centre was due to open. Our group was on kitchen and raffle duty and I sat in the art room with another artist fully expecting the crowds to rush through as they had been doing. However as the day wore on it became colder and colder and apparently people's fingers became too frozen to open their wallets as I only took $31 that day and $24 was for my work!

Although I was sitting there figuratively twiddling my thumbs it did give me an opportunity to listen to the comments about the paintings. Most people were drawn to the photo realistic pictures and I even heard one guy say "Well you can tell it's a good picture because of the high price on it". Works with more artistic value were overlooked. This was reflected in the "People's Choice" voting as well.

We left Sunday at 4pm in semi darkness and by the time I got home it was beginning to snow. I fed the animals and headed inside to get the fire going before snuggling down for the evening and nodding off on the sofa. When I woke up I kept rushing to the front door and turning on the outside lights so I could watch the snowflakes landing on the lawn. Yeah big kid!

I had a relaxed Monday morning before Glenys and I headed back down to Otane for the afternoon. We sat and drank tea and ate dark chocolate to keep our spirits up as by 3pm we'd only taken $17. Then in the last hour a lady came with cash and bought a painting worth $350.00 (done by a very talented artist in our group so I was thrilled for her). I toted up the cash and Glenys and I had all the bank deposit forms filled in for her to take in today. At 4pm the doors were closed and we packed up and moved tables back into place for art on Wednesday.

I sold so many things over the weekend, all small but perfectly formed. Enough to cover the phone bill anyway. Definitely the way to go in these hard times although perhaps I should be painting some photo realist pictures for our next exhibition!