Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Hold This Space

I am 60 years old. Well technically I've been 60 for almost 4 months now. And for my 60th birthday I gave myself the gift of a year of dramatic rebirth. Wow that sounds scary. I'm giving myself permission to no long stand at the cliff of a decision, instead I'm jumping. 

Starting back when I was about to turn 40. A truly scary age at the time. I gifted myself a trip. A trip somewhere without family and escort. At some point in my 40th year I drove by myself to Columbus, Ohio and attended a two day Ceramic Arts event. Back in those days I fancied myself a ceramic artist. Got the $900 electric kiln rotting away in my basement to prove it. But that is another story. 

From that point on I decided to give myself decade "gift trips" to celebrate my last 10 year's achievements. When I turned 50 I drove to Traverse City and took a 4 day class from Wendy Froud, a world renown doll artist.

Both of these trips were, as you might have deduced, art oriented. Also they were both within a few hours drive from my home. I recently determined that for the past 30+ years I have only traveled by myself within the confines of about a 500 mile square patch of this earth. For some that might seem adventurous enough. But I wanted to test my leash. 

So for my 60th year, I took myself to the NYC Art Expo. Stayed in a tiny Air BnB that was only 3 blocks from the event and even took the subway from the airport. For what you may ask. For research.

Research what? Research on how I take my Art pro. 3 days of classes on publishing, protecting and selling my art in today's market.  With over 400+ innovative exhibiting artists, galleries, and publishers from across the globe, showcasing exciting original artwork, prints, paintings, drawings, sculpture, photography, ceramics, giclee, lithographs, glass works and more to inspire my own art for years to come. 

So after 20+ years of thinking about it too much and after seeing the enormous amount of potential in trying.  I am launching my Art as a business.  Hopefully by the end of 2018 I will have addressed a very long Gotta Do list of items that have little to nothing to do with creativity, at least not my kind of creativity. But never the less, are necessary in order to make a go of it. 

This is not the announcement of the grand opening of a new Etsy store. This is a "Hold this space" for future announcements. 

BTW I am attaching a link to my google folder of pictures from the Art Expo. Interspersed in between my class notes and bad selfies are pictures of just some of the wonderful art that was on display/sale at this event. 

https://photos.app.goo.gl/28TEs6pCBnSNJXiG2

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

What or Where is a Grafham

What I want and what I get out of life should really more closely align, if I've done my homework.

I have a single goal that has been my focus for several years now.  Well actually several highly related goals that all revolve around my achieving the big one.

I want to become an independent career artist.  I know I have the talent and am working diligently to obtain the necessary training.  But independent artists need financial backers.  Customers who are buying my works or who are patrons that will allow my creative juices to flow.

In the meanwhile I have had day job(s) for the past 30+ years.  Plus I have married, raised a family and kept a basically clean home while juggling these 9 to 5 job(s), plus art classes with various levels of difficulty and success. Oh and a chronic illness that has promised to stay with me for the rest of my life. There is good news on that front in that I have managed in the past few years to create for myself a therapeutic treatment plan that addresses several of my symptoms.  While allowing me to maintain my busy schedule.

The goal of leaving my day job to work exclusively on my art career is so close that at times I feel like it is breathing on my neck. Still there are items on the checklist that have to be crossed off before I can take the jump. 

In the meanwhile I have begun mentally generate a To Do list. Which when I'm good, is updated in my Evernote Grafham Studio Creations Notebook. Or at least trying to not flog myself for not having a more fleshed out Business Plan. That OCD Perfectionist deep down inside is still there.

One item that has wiggled around my brain of late is the need to have an About the Artist or CV to share with my art. Who are you and Why are you doing this?

The first coherent thought I had that seems to fit is that Grafham Studio is not a brick and mortar place. Yes I have a physical art studio. In fact I have two in my own home, having recently expanded into the family's Music room so I am not over whelmed with clay stuff while trying to focus on my painting and drawing pieces. Then there are the discussions with GalaxyDoctor that my art needs to become mobile as in easy to pick up and take with me. Hence the weird collection of Art Journals from which much of the photo selection to be added below arises.

So having addressed the where. What is Grafham?

Grafham is a wonderfully magical, beautiful, peaceful, Make-Believe, place I can go  to in my head, anytime I turn to my art. Some day soon I'm going to have to paint pictures of my wonderful place to share with everyone. Or you can start painting pictures of your wonderful places. But that is another Blogg...

Thursday, May 19, 2016

What have you been up to?



First of all I want to talk briefly about my latest addiction(s) and who is to credit for them. Not that this is any kind of excuse for not putting my thoughts down on a more regular manner. Well to tell the truth I've been laying it down on Facebook a lot lately. But not necessarily on my wall. I have been spending my time in a private group of 5000+ of my newest friends. All thanks to a lady who goes by the pseudonym of Brittany, Herself. You can check out her refreshing flavor of opinions and energizing, inspiring stories at; http://brittanyherself.com/

After following Brittany's blog and Facebook page for over a year I decided to treat myself to something I have always wanted to do for myself, take Art classes, stretch myself. Now I know those who have followed me and those who have known me for not very long will be asking yourselves. What kind of Art doesn't she do? Since I sculpt, crochet, weave, sew, garden... It's not something I've never done before and it was originally taken on as a means of improving my sculpting skills. Some time ago someone suggested that if I learned how to draw or paint faces that my sense of dimension would improve and I would become better at my sculpting. Last year I tried by challenging myself to draw a figure at least once a day for a year. At first it was interesting but then my habits slipped and eventually it was an accomplishment if I doodled on my meeting notes occasionally.

Late last year I was avoiding my art on FaceBook, when an ad popped up for an artist named Tamara Laporte. I followed it out to her Blog at http://willowinglove.blogspot.com/.

And from there became enthralled with the idea of taking an online year long art class from her. Tam has hosted these classes called LifeBook since 2012. I just knew I had to sign up for the 2016 class. So we made it my birthday gift last year. Signed up practically at ground zero for launch because she launched the class on January 1st with a special welcome class and has emailed out a link every week for that week's class. For the past 21 weeks I have been swimming in fabulous, enchanting inspiring art. Lesson after lesson. Then two weeks ago, to celebrate her move across the UK to her dream house in Devon, Tam held a sale and I bought three more of her One Time classes (Fabulous Faces, Lettering with Willowing and M3 the Mythical Beasts class series.)

This sounds so much like a commercial and maybe in a way it is. But I have felt like I so need to share with everyone these two fabulous Women and their Blogs.

How is each adventure is working out. Well that's for another Blog.