Thursday, October 2, 2014

Motivation and Getting my Butt in gear for my Artistic career, Reflecting on Lisa Congdon's two day course

I'm pretty excited about what's happening in my brain lately... I've reached a tipping point with my career as an artist. It's a motivational moment whose montra is "The more work you make, the more work you will get." Pretty awesome laws of attraction type stuff here- you get out what you put in and so on.  I have Lisa Congdon to thank for this nice kick in the pants. I've been following her on Instagram for the past year, and I've been really enjoying her new book Art Inc. Her book is full of helpful tips from licensing your work to taxes, etc. So when I heard about her two day course on Creative Live, I jumped at it and made sure I penciled out the time to take it. You can now buy the course  HERE

It's true that as artists we live in a time that is really beneficial to helping launch and maintain our careers. Social media and the internet are our best allies. And with hard work and networking you can't help but succeed. So, yeah I'm pretty excited! After taking the class, and reading her book, I now have a 3-5 year list of some grand goals, with a subsequent list of practical steps I can take towards reaching a few of the more immediate goals. I could talk about this for a long time, but I will hold back.  However let me know if you want to hear more, I'm always down to chat.

SO what are some of the practical steps I am taking?

Well in general, I have revamped my website a bit more- organizing it and my shop into subject matter categories such as "Florals" and "Landscapes" instead of "Paintings" and "Drawings" because honestly, the medium I use is important, but not necessarily the number one factor that people want to peruse a site or shop- usually folks want something in particular, a certain subject matter etc. (duh, face palm)

Portfolio: By reorganizing my website, I've realized that I need to flush out my portfolio a bit more. IE: I need more landscapes, should post more illustrations etc.  And overall I need to do mock ups- draw for the jobs I want, while still staying true to myself of course. That way when I approach an editorial, or publisher I have more specific artwork rather than just what I felt like making on a particular day. (still have to tweak my website- don't like the format for each portfolio category- want it to be thumbnails...)

Sketchbook: I need to get back to drawing in my sketchbook everyday. In her class, Lisa also spoke about dividing your day into 45 minute chunks. (She said this works for some people, but not all.) By doing so- you allow yourself to work on a little bit of everything through out the day- thus never getting behind on one thing should you have a few commissions at a time etc whose deadlines are fast approaching. And by working this way, I figure drawing in my sketchbook everyday is completely doable. Boom- 45 minute chunk for sketchbook drawing, done!

Can you tell I'm excited? So expect more blogging and sketchbook sharing etc.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Fondly looking back on Summer, with two new Landscape Paintings.

As leaves begin to turn from green to red, it's nice to sit back and take stock of summer.

My summer felt like it traipsed along at the perfect clip. Not too fast... and I feel that I savored every bit of it. I think living in a house with such a lovely yard in an countryside setting really helps to slow down and appreciate the seasons.

Thus here are two small oil paintings as an ode to summer now available in my etsy shop.

ALSO, please note that my shop will be on vacation from October 4-October 22nd, with work shipping on the 24th. So if you see something that catches your eye please order before the 4th!

Have a great last day of September!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Paper Garlands Once again are Available at GrayDayStudio

As you can see, with regular studio hours this fall, I am able to blog more often as well as get back to commission pieces and made to order work. Thus I am once again offering my popular paper garlands in my shop! With over 600 sold last year, this fall and holiday season should be a good one!

You can peruse the garlands HERE.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Behind the Scenes at GrayDayStudio, oil paintings in progress.

I thought it would be fun to virtually visit my studio through a few behind the scenes pictures of some paintings in progress!

Above is a large 18x24" commissioned floral oil painting I'm working on. It has undergone some big changes this past week- eliminating and adding flowers. I like what is happening here. I also lightened the background and intend to add more flowers and other fine details this week!

I've also begun to work small and I REALLY enjoy this scale. It seems to gel with my current state of life- of not always having a large period of time to devote to a single painting. (I swear the multitasking of motherhood leaves me feeling unable to focus...) Thus the scale and time limit force me to be more direct and painterly with my approach, avoiding over working.

Above: is a little rabbit in his hutch painting. Measures 8x8. It's not finished yet (still have to darken and add contrast to the rabbit as well as add the wire cage in front.)

Above: a 6x6" oil painting of a tree and field that I see on my drive home in Chadds Ford, PA. I love this tree in the constantly changing field and I look forward to painting it through out the seasons. (Again this one is currently unfinished but I intend to fine tune the fence a touch more.)

So expect to see many more small works in the future! and for more behind the scenes follow me on Instagram

Thursday, September 4, 2014

NEW Onward to the Sea, varied edition of my indigo bags

I recently received some interest to see my full edition of my Onward to the Sea tote. Thus I made a listing this morning of the remaining 6 bags that had yet to make their debut.

I like how each bag is unique and one of a kind just like individual waves themselves. #9 even looks like a hillside my the sea. Always fun to see how these evolve.

Have a great Thursday!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

NEW (ish) original work at GrayDayStudio

We moved at the end of June... and I finally feel like I can raise my head out from under the deluge of boxes and odd home projects to say Hello! Plus I've been away from the blog as I soaked up the summer and good thing since now it is September.

I have a renewed sense of inspiration and dedication to my career, and this fall is going to be great! I've been reading Lisa Congdon's book Art Inc  and it is really getting my butt in gear. I appreciate the artist interviews peppered through out that offer practical success stories and tips as well as different approaches that have worked for each individual. Thus, there is no right formal to being a successful artist- the main ingredient is hard work. SOOOOooo I'm very excited. And as a result I will be blogging more, Promise!

But back to my shop! Over the summer I added these three new original paintings.


This fall I will also be offering prints of my original work, so stay tuned to the blog and my shop for news on when they arrive!

My commissions have begun to pick up and earlier in August I received a commission to paint a Hydrangea to pair with a Peony painting the customer had purchased from me.

I'm currently working on a large commissioned oil painting. My Customer wants a black and white striped table cloth with purple and green flowers and a gray background.  Above is the preliminary sketch. It is currently quite a bit further along now, but not enough resolved to share an updated picture ;)

Also this Fall, I will have more regular studio hours where the husband will have the kids three days a week so I can work uninterrupted. Of course I will continue to work when they nap and at night when they are asleep (and if I'm really in the zone- before they wake up in the morning, but since one of them usually finds her way into our bed at night, sneaking out in the morning isn't always as easy!). However, since I have regular studio hours, I am beginning to offer my popular paper garlands once again. Here is a little trio of pastel garlands that I will list later this week. 

In the meantime, here are the garlands that are currently available, more will be arriving very soon!

So yes, lots of scheming and planning over here. I'm applying to late fall/Holiday craft events. I'm going to approach local boutiques to sell my 5x7 stationary cards, party garland packages, etc. And then continue to paint original work as well as work on my Children's book.

It's very exciting and I look forward to sharing more with you my blog readers as I continue down this road.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

In full bloom for Summer, NEW paintings plus a 20% off SALE at GrayDayStudio

I can't believe it's already July! Happy Summer everyone. I've been a bit quiet on the blog lately because we just moved this past weekend, which really started in May with packing and all. Phew! I'm getting my new studio slowly set up, and I look forward to painting outside this summer and offering more landscapes. In the meantime I have a few new original paintings in my etsy shop GrayDayStudio!

above: Budding Bouquet, oil on canvas, 8x10

Four Peonies, Oil on wooden panel, 8x10

A Handful of Peonies, oil on wooden panel, 12x12

Down at the Shore, oil on canvas, 8x10

Have a lovely beginning of your July! To celebrate save 20% off my entire shop from 7/1-7/15. I will share pictures of our new digs once we are all set up. If you care for sneak peeks simply follow me on IG @GrayDayStudio, and my private account is @GrayDayatHome

Thursday, May 15, 2014

NEW original Oil Paintings at GrayDayStudio

Hi all (boy its been a while! Yikes, sorry about that...!) Just popping in to check on my blog and wanted to share two new original paintings that I listed in my etsy shop, GrayDayStudio, this month.

Above is "Orange Roses" painted in oil on a 10x10" wooden panel.

"In a Setting of Her Own" Oil on panel 12x12"

There are also a few new silkscreens in the shop as well as a new edition of my "Onward to the Sea" tote bag.

(life has once again been busy- with our son's 1st birthday, then Easter and Spring Break... and now it's May which is almost half way over! I hope to do some personal blogging here soon so stay tuned!)


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