Today, I've been going back and forth with a gallery dealer who seemed disturbed by my blog: The topic I wrote about was why we artists could increase sales at our galleries if we had the contact info of our collectors. For example, we could add these to our email newsletter and then let our collectors know when a new piece becomes available - and provide a link to the gallery.
However, this gallery dealer stated the following. I won't mention the name of the gallery dealer
You bring up many of same points that I hear from artists but, respectfully,it doesn't come from a business point of view.Comment on or Share this Article →
Yes the ideas you advocate increases sales, but mostly for the artist not necessarily for the gallery. And, long term, the most interested (read
profitable) clients will migrate to buying directly from the artist.
The policies you advocate are not good for the industry. Galleries are the
best venues for artists. They allow the artists to do what they do best and
show their work in the best possible light. As business people, if we can
see that the return on our investment is being eroded then we will do something else. Passion can only take you so far and it doesn't pay the rent.
In many ways, I understand where she is coming from - if and when collectors decide to go directly to the artist, galleries may go out of business.
What Do you Think?
Should we be able to share the names of our collectors, provided we're honest and never sell behind the dealer's back? Should we either sell on our own or else exclusively with galleries? It's a sticky situation because of the room for lies and cheating.
Do you think the Internet is going to change the way art is sold in the next decade? Do we need galleries? Do they need us? Please feel free to share your thoughts. I'll type up a report if I get enough responses.
When I come to Acadia each year, I stay at the same Motel - along with other artists.... been coming her for 5 years. This Motel has been owned by the Speights for 2 generations. Jack and his wife Linda are the current owners.
Jack Speight is on the right. His eldest daughter is now graduating from high school. The younger daughter is a budding artist.
Jack, a former software engineer... last week I realized that he and his wife worked in the very same building that I did for Digital Equipment Corporation in the mid to late '80's. Yes, I worked for geeks back then, and I loved my job; however, I love being an artist more than just about anything. Back to Jack. Several years ago, Jack proudly showed his watercolor paintings to me and fellow painter, Cindy Nixon. I realized that this guy (self taught) has talent.
But then when the next summer rolled around, Jack said he was working on a novel. My initial thought was - "Oh, this guy is a serial quitter" meaning that he starts a lot of things successfully, but in the end goes back to just running his motel. While he is a successful motel owner, he is also genius prone. I was elated to hear this year that his book has been published. He will get his first copies delivered tomorrow, and I want a signed copy. I can order it through Amazon, but I'd really rather have a personally signed copy directly from the author.
It is written for a teenage audience - fiction fantasy, but I imagine I will enjoy it as well.
Jack's New Blog: Knuckleball http://www.jackspeight.blogspot.com/
Several Days ago, I convinced Jack to begin writing a blog - where he could eventually point folks to his book. I was one of the first people to follow the blog. What I discovered is "this guy can really write!" He can talk about the toilet trouble with unit 16 and make it sound completely intriguing. I've never cared so much about toilet handles before... or daughter's graduations. By the way, I've met Jack and Linda's daughters, and they are polite and easy to like. Jack's daughters' attitude toward their father make it apparent that they love and admire their dad.
So, won't you do me a big favor and help Jack get started with his blog by taking a few minutes to peruse it? He's a person worth getting to know, and if you're ever looking for a "no frills" clean place to stay in Bar Harbor, Robbin's Motel is a clean and inexpensive place to stay.
For more information on his book: Jinda Maige - Bone of Evil:
It can also be ordered from Amazon.com
Acadia Workshop Center
Artists Cindy Nixon at top of Cadillac Mountain
Yesterday, I met - somewhat reluctantly - with the owner of Acadia Workshop Center on the Island here. I say 'reluctantly' because I need to watch how many promises I get involved in. However, Gail Ribas pretty much let me determine what I want to teach and when.
Now there is a variety of subjects that I have offered in past workshops I've taught: Art marketing, Landscape Composition, Watercolor Still Life... Now that I've spent the last five years under the mentorship of Richard Schmid and Nancy Guzik, I have so much more to offer, since he's taught me things about temperature, light, and oil painitng than anyone else. Jack Beal is definitely my main mentor for composition principles and Sondra Freckelton for watercolor techniques.
Beautiful Mount Desert Island
Since the workshop will be held on Beautiful Mount Desert Island, Maine - My thinking is that landscape composition makes the most sense. I'll be taking intermediate/advanced students with sufficient experience in their own medium - as I will not be teaching how to paint. If I do teach how to paint. I'll demo in oil and watermedia - because I like both.
On the last day - or maybe two days... I plan to give an art marketing seminar. Since there won't be any painting during this time, my guess is that the space can accommodate more attendees.
Please Give Me Your Feedback
Please give me your feedback - would you be interested in attending if I were to offer this workshop? Would you prefer more painting, or more art marketing? Would you prefer oil or watermedia? It's likely that there will be some outdoor studies, but much of the design and finished painting would take place in the studio (it rains a lot here).
Would you prefer 3 days of painting/2 days art marketing or 4 days painting/1 day art marketing. ??
Thanks for your time. I hope to hear from you soon. Please email me or send me a comment on this site or my blog:
The Bubbles - twin mountains that lie at the end of Jordan Pond at Acadia National Park - are visually too alike for a painting. My goal in redesigning the landscape was to make one peak slightly different from the other. Here is a photo I took yesterday.
Here is a painting I did last summer - the result of a plein air study combined with photographs. I wanted to make the left Bubble recede since it's slightly farther away, so I put a glaze of opaque white over the distant mountain and obscured the top with a cloud.
"The Bubbles At Jordan Pond" Watercolor and Acrylic on paper 11x14.
More to come in the following days. Oh, and the large rock at the bottom was actually there last year - it's still there now, but the water level is higher.
It's show and Tell Friday
I'll be posting a short blog on a separate website specifically designed for The 20 Hour Studio Challenge.
With writing and step by step teaching examples, I've logged in well over 30 hours this week, and I feel good. If you haven't gotten a full 20 hours in, don't fret. The whole idea is to increase our working time in the studio - so that we can reach our artistic and business goals.
Being slightly accountable to others makes a difference in our productivity - plus we get to brag at the end the week. By the way, today is World Drawing Day - or something like that. The American Artist forum is hoping you will drop everything and draw.
As Clint says, now Go and Change The World. I say, Change Your World.
I've been writing blogs for Clint Watson's newsletter since last October. Today, Clint created a new site - where I'll be posting blogs, articles about "Creative Productivity". On occasion, I'll blog about interviews that I've conducted with professional artists who manage their time and careers effectively.
If you're interested in receiving this information, go to:
www.20hourstudiochallenge.com and sign up for our Email Newsletter - click on "Join The Challenge"
Let's spur each other on to greater productivity with quality. We'll all feel better if we spend more time in the studio, and at the very least, we'll have a body of work that we can feel proud of.
Lori W.S. Comment on or Share this Article →
Acrylic on Paper
I'm preparing for my annual painting trip to Maine
When weeks like this happen, I have so many things to get done before leaving that I begin to feel a bit overwhelmed. As many of you are aware, I shared two weeks ago that I am challenging myself to working 20 hours a week at my craft (being both writing for art publications and painting).
This is one of those weeks that is totally different... getting new tires on the car, packing (always a huge distraction)... well you get the idea.
I will be in Maine - painting plein air studies for almost 2 weeks and writing as well. I have no doubt that I'll get in 20 hours plus of work. This is easy to do once I have arrived at my painting location. I'll bring my laptop with me and post my accomplishments on Fridays... mostly, they'll be watermedia studies because I'm not essentially a plein air painter. I rather enjoy working larger paintings from my studies later in the studio.
As usual, I'll be working on my next article for Watercolor Magazine while in Maine as well, and also - will be taking long walks on the carriage roads and along the shore. Physical exercise in beautiful locations brightens my outlook, relaxes me and seems to get the creative juices flowing for new adventures as an artist.
But here's what I'd like you all to consider:
Although I may have gotten the 20 hour challenge started, Alyson Standfield and Clint Watson were the folks who passed it on to the greater world of artists. It's not up to me to keep the momentum going - it's up to you all as a group of dedicated artists.
So Carry the torch,
and if my names drops out of it, that's OK with me. What is important is that artists everywhere put their best efforts forward, continue to use social media to market their work and yet at the same time, not let that Social media take over their studio time. Yes, I realize that sometimes this can be difficult to do, and I'll be writing more in the future about living a balanced artistic life. Nope, I'm not the greatest example of someone who does it right - in fact, it's a constant struggle for me... the reason why I must challenge myself to do the right thing.
So Keep On Keeping On, artists! And remember, if we have no body of work, we have nothing to market.
Please take up the torch and share the challenge with your fellow workers - don't worry about reporting back to me - report and be accountable to each other, and you will live a happier and more productive life.