Wednesday, December 31, 2008

My goals for 2009

I'm not a fan of New Year's Resolutions. In fact, I'm not especially fond of goal-setting, either. But 2009 is a big year for me, as it is the year I will (hopefully) graduate. Also, I will be turning 30 in 2009! So, here are my artistic goals for 2009:

1. Graduate with an M.A. in painting
2. Have a great graduate show and sell lots of paintings
3. Get my art and [interior] design business off the ground
4. Start my own website
5. Set up an Etsy store

That should keep me busy for the next 365 days.

What about you? What are your goals for 2009? If you have also listed your goals on your blog, feel free to link in your comment. Also, for those of you who have sold on Etsy, how do you like it? Any other recommendations?

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Christmas 1984: the year I got the Barbie Townhouse. I'll always remember it as the Best Christmas Ever. And I hope Christmas 2008 will be the Best Christmas Ever for you. Merry Christmas!

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

America for sale - cheap, 1989 [from the archives]

America for sale - cheap, a drawing by Tiffany Gholar, ink on paper, 1989

"America for sale - cheap" | 1989 | Ballpoint pen on paper

My first little piece of social commentary art. This is a sketchbook drawing I did when I was 10 years old. In case you can't read my wonderful handwriting, the helicopter pilot is saying, "Let's buy the Sears Tower" and the sign on the map of the US says "America for sale cheap."

I had overheard my parents discussing the sale of the Sears Tower. There was talk of a possible sale to foreign investors. Of course, now I realize I should have drawn the "for sale" sign on my home state of Illinois.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Thanks, Fuel My Blog!

Today Brooding Beauty is the featured blog of the day on Fuel My Blog! I'd like to take this time to welcome everyone who came to visit from Fuel My Blog and I hope you'll come again. As those of you who are also bloggers know, it is hard to figure out how to promote yourself online. The internet is crowded, the blogosphere is crowded, and it seems like there isn't much room left.

So I am glad to get whatever recognition that I can. Thanks again!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Silver Belles

A theme running through this account of silver is that it was never solely a rich man's pleasure. Silver has a universal appeal and a powerful hold on the imagination; for century after century it was the necessary luxury.
--Philippa Glanville, Silver : History & Design

Now that I no longer work in retail, this time of the year seems much less dreadful. No longer do I spend 8 to 10 hours a day with several versions of the same holiday songs being burned into my consciousness. Honestly, between working in retail and singing in the chorus in elementary school, I feel like I know every word of every Christmas song. Just for once, I wish that people would distinguish between songs that are about Christmas and those that are actually just about winter. "Sleigh Ride," "Baby it's Cold Outside," "Let it Snow," "Winter Wonderland," "Marshmallow World" and "Jingle Bells" are not about Christmas. They are about winter. We could keep playing them until February or mid-March if we really wanted to. But I sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who actually listens to the lyrics.

You could say that the color trend I'm writing about is also like these songs, not just for the holidays, but for the winter. Icy cold silver is very hot for this winter. I've seen it turn up in many unexpected places, even in a sofa from Chiasso. The imagemap below displays a sampling of some of the silver pieces that have caught my eye:


1. faceted metallic ottoman from Chiasso
2. Skyline sofa from Chiasso*
3. Silver Ocean Globe from Urban Outfitters
4. madison quilt + shams from West Elm
5. Starburst Wire Wall Mirror from
6. Argent Dining Chair from Eurway

Silver is the color of sleek, streamlined, futuristic things. It is cold, clean, sophisticated, and modern. Naturally anti-bacterial, it symbolizes purity. This particular property of silver was exaggerated in legends of it warding off evil, for example, the silver bullets that can mortally wound the undead. And so historically silver has been used in the rituals of many different cultures. Its traditional role as a "necessary luxury" has been revived this year. These pieces almost seem to say, "treat yourself to something new." And their metallic gleam emphasizes their newness.

However, one drawback of metallic fabric is that you really need to see it in person. Photographs of it can be very misleading. And there are few fabrics more hideous or ghastly to the touch than poorly designed metallics. So if you see some silver furniture online or in a retailer's catalog, perhaps you can take a break to "test drive" it while you're out doing your holiday shopping. You can put your feet up on a silver ottoman while visions of a winter wonderland dance in your head.

*The Skyline sofa from might be discontinued, as I was unable to find it on their site. If you want it you should probably call to see if they still carry it. (The number is 1-877-CHIASSO )

Monday, December 8, 2008

20 One of A Kind artists

I went to the One of A Kind Show at the Merchandise Mart yesterday, which is my second-favorite art and craft show of the year. (As you may know, The Renegade Craft Fair is my favorite.) What I love about this show is the variety of artists that show their work there, and the high quality of their workmanship. I came home yesterday with a tote bag full of postcards and business cards from the artists I liked, and here are some pictures of their work with links to their sites:


Fabric works by Wycliffe (Linc) Bennett

Glass figures by Noga Silk Art Glass

Paintings by Bekah Ash, who also sells apparel with her designs on it

Portraits by Chantal Baros

Cross-cultural pop art by Xiumei Zhang

Fabric sculptures by Martha Napier

Textile art by Mimi Damrauer

Sharron Parker makes amazing art pieces from felt.

Exquisitely detailed miniature trees by Paul-Andre Leblanc


Hand-painted specialty boxes from Marilyn Grad, who also makes great wall art

Case Island Glass sells these beautiful plates, as well as beautiful bracelets (I bought one last year)

Great felt throw pillows from Jen Hopwood.

Though they're called, they also sell home decor items, like this


Silk wraps from Twist Wear

Incredible wool scarves from Marzena Gabrel Designs.

Recycled fabric flower pins by BaaBaaZuzu

Afterward, I had a chance to visit the Artist Project show, which was just below the One of A Kind Show on the 7th floor. It featured a nice assortment of up-and-coming artists. Here are a few who caught my eye:

Sara Ryan's scenes of pop art intrigue

Jason Brammer's intriguing steampunk style Time Machine installation

The fine art drawings of Kris Jones, who even has a book of his work for sale.

Josh Harker's Knots & Tangles Sculptures

Every time I go to The One of a Kind Show, I feel so inspired. And I hope that someday I will get a chance to participate as well. The show usually runs the first weekend of December, so save the date (and your money) for when it comes again next year!

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Friday, December 5, 2008

I'm on ArtSlant Chicago now

I just set up a profile on ArtSlant Chicago: It's supposed to be "A rich resource for the artist, the collector, the curator and the art lover."

We'll see.

I have signed up for so many free profile listings online that it's hard to keep track of them all!
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