Thursday, January 23, 2014

Fall in love with art this Valentine's Day

fall in love with art 2014-2-web

Next month my annual Fall In Love With Art event will (finally) be on Valentine's Day and I am so excited! There will be delicious cupcakes and some new mini paintings and collages. Speaking of new artwork, I better go so I can finish making some new pieces and take some pictures of them.

In the meantime, you can look at this year's campaign. These are some of the first photos I took this year, part of an all-day photo shoot on New Year's Day.

fall in love with art 2014-4-web

fall in love with art 2014-5-web


fall in love with art 2014-6-web

fall in love with art 2014-7-web

fall in love with art 2014-web

here are all the details:

Fall In Love With Art
Friday, February 14th, 2014
5 - 9 p.m.
The Fine Arts Building
Downtown Chicago
410 South Michigan Avenue
Studio 632F on the 6th Floor

free and open to the public

Monday, January 13, 2014

Nobody's "pefrect"

A funny thing happened while I was working on the cover for my new art book, Imperfect Things. I made a ridiculous spelling mistake and didn't catch it until after I had taken a few pictures.

imperfect things cover design

I was too focused on making sure the photo was in focus and well-lit to notice. I don't think I will use the misspelled version for the cover, but I think I will put it inside the book somewhere.

imperfect things cover design

This is the image I plan to use for the cover, though I am tempted to reshoot it in the daylight. I took these photos in my studio after it had already gotten dark. It wasn't even that late, but you know how the winter is. I have a feeling it might look even better with natural lighting filling it in. Pretty ironic, isn't it, to be so perfectionistic about the cover of a book called Imperfect Things?

imperfect things cover design

imperfect things cover design

I took some close-ups of the title. I'm not sure what I will use them for yet.

imperfect things cover design

imperfect things cover design

But I think that one of these would be good for an ebook cover. Well, I better stop blogging and get back to writing now. The cover needs a book to go with it!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Taking It Easy

design for the new sign I'm getting from Objectify Homeware

Being a serious artist with a full-time day job is hard work. It's like having two jobs. I already knew that working at an intense pace could take a toll on my mental health. I've burned myself out many times before. But last year it also took a toll on my physical health. I caught a cold that never really went away and then developed into pneumonia. For three days I came to work, even though I was so exhausted that it took me so long to get dressed that I had to take a cab to get there on time. Once I finally saw a doctor and got my shocking diagnosis, I committed myself to 7 days of convalescence.

Since then, I have realized that I've been working too hard. The week before I got sick, I was applying to literary agencies like crazy and not getting enough sleep. And before that, I was studying like crazy for Jeopardy, and before that, I was working on my novel like crazy, and before that, working on commissioned artwork, and before that, I was working on my screenplay like crazy, and all year long, I was applying to art shows like crazy. But all the while it never occurred to me that I could relax and take it easy. I'd hurry to my studio on the second Friday of each month, rushing to get things set up in half an hour, riding a wave of stress and adrenaline, trying to convince myself I work well under pressure. Well maybe I do, but that doesn't mean that I have to.

And so that's why this year I have decided I'm going to take it easy. From now on, unless it's a very, very, very special occasion, my open studios will start at 7 instead of 5 or 6. And as for art shows, I am opting for quality over quantity this year. Last year I think I did some really exciting shows, but at times I felt like I might be spreading myself too thin. I have some big plans for this year, but I don't want to wear myself out executing them. So, as a result, I will not do as many art shows.

One show that I participated in last year paid me to display my artwork and even sent a messenger service to pick it up and return it once the show ended. I'd like to get to the point where that's the rule and not the exception. It would make things so much easier. After all, isn't it hard enough being an artist without also being hard on myself?
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