May
12
2010

Jerry's Knows the Average Joe by TMNK

 


Forgive me if this sounds like an advertisement or some sort of paid endorsement. It's not. Jerry's Art Arama is, for this artist, more than a corporate entity that merchandises the art supplies we use. They're real people who dig art and have made a business from supporting that which they love.


I was discovered by one of the owners of Jerry's on the streets of New York. And shortly thereafter he and his wife began to collect my art. They never tried to pressure me to switch from purchasing my supplies from "The House the Oyster Built." Instead, they just offered to be a resource for exposing me to new products and supplies, and continued to be patrons. More importantly, my new found friend was always accessible, responsive, and supportive.


So, I of course have links on my blog to Jerry's, and have featured their logo on some of my exhibition flyers and web page. It's the least I could do. Besides it being an expression of the friendship I feel, it's just good business, one hand washing the other. But as an artist, I'm not much into promoting corporate interests, business out to just profit off the little guy. But like I've said, from day one, my experience with Jerry's has been that these are "real people" who, like myself, are in the business of art, but REALLY love art, artists, and collectors. Art is in there blood, literally.


So, why now, do I decide to write this, what amounts to a public endorsement? Well, much like my initial encounter with Jerry's, just call it fate. I was at the building hosting the G40 - The Summit exhibit, working on my Installation, when I decided to take a walk around and check out the other artists. That's when I encountered Joe Iurato and the awesome mural he was painting.



As I scanned the area trying to get a sense of what he used to create his work (as I am always trying to learn, grow, get inspired), I saw a plastic bag laying on the floor that looked like... Could it be? Yes it was, Jerry's Artarama. I smiled a private smile, and walked over and said "Yo, Joe, you get your supplies from them too?" His reply, and I quote, "Dude, they're the greatest, I love Jerry's, I'm there all the time." I smiled and shared my Jerry's story with him, then snapped this picture.


It made for the perfect story for me to share with my patron, the unofficial sponsor of G40. In this day of ATM machines and corporate entities with their overseas customer service call centers, it's special to have a relationship with a business that cares about the "Average Joe" and a "nobody" like me.
-TMNK

menobodyknows.com
May
12
2010

Three Steps to being a Better Painter in Three Months by Mike Rooney

 


Here's a three step list of things that are guaranteed to make you a better painter.
Paint.
Paint.
Paint.
There's no substitute for painting. Reading about it won't do it, watching DVDs incessantly won't do it, and taking workshops one behind the other won't do it either.

If you would challenge yourself to paint at least five times a week, i know for a fact that you'd be so much better in three months that you'd be ashamed of what you've done up to this point in your art career.

How do i know this?

Personal experience.

It started when i read a book on painting by Kevin McPherson and he stated that to get really good, you needed to do 100 "starts," which are small paintings where you block-in the scene. Finishing is not important. It's getting the big shapes in, in the proper value and color note. They should only take about 45 minutes to complete.

The rub was that you had to do it in 90 days. thats one a day and two on some days. what i learned from this was that you could see the vast improvement for yourself from #1 to #50 and then from #50 to #100. It was awe inspiring. The fringe benefit was that i learned painting discipline and to not let errands, or personal issues, or lack of inspiration derail me. I was going to do it! some days i had to do four to catch up if i HAD to take a day or two off from painting for something important.

four years later i still love to paint at least one painting everyday! and all you have to do is look at my stuff from four years ago and you'll see that painting, painting, painting is the sure-fire way to get better in a short period of time.

So go do #1 today and don't stop 'til you hit 100 three months from now! You'll be glad you did!

Take the challenge and post your work on our Flickr Page

Mike Rooney Painting Every Day
May
12
2010

Artist Statement: Sell the Sizzle by M Theresa Brown

Sizzle! That's what an artist's statement should be! It's not your biography or your story. It's about what makes you tick as an artist in your particular field. To quote Elmer Wheeler, "To sell the steak you have to sell the sizzle!"
What does that mean? Well we have observed two very relevant target areas of interest here. That of the person looking at your art or browsing your website, and that of the Gallery who is getting ready to show a few of your pieces.
When we are representing our own work, the average viewer asks predictable questions similar to: "When did you first learn that you had this talent?" or "How long have you been doing this?" To which we all answer something like "Oh, since I was a child" or "forever" or "I just started" or something along those lines. In self representation we are rarely asked what awards we have won, what galleries our work is in, or who else had bought our work. So it is easy to see why, when an opportunity arises for an artist to present or show his work in a Gallery setting, we might easily write our artist statement based on the questions that our clients ask. It makes plenty of good sense!
Save the Gallery some time and impress them by re-thinking your bland artist statement. If you are not marketing yourself, then these people are. They have to write blogs or post on Internet sites or insert a piece to the local arts calendar to market and promote you. YOU can actually do it best if you think outside the box.
Galleries also want specifics. Interestingly enough, your awards or who you studied under or who most influenced your art are of most interest to Galleries as it is their job to make you interesting to a prospect. Even if you don't have a wall of awards, the Gallery (as we were told) will "puff it up." That's their job!
As a general rule, when self promoting, your client is face to face with you and so your artist statement is, in essence, you. You are building a relationship with that client as part of your artist statement..
So how are you going to present yourself in that statement? How are you going to deliver the sizzle? Art galleries will tell you that the biggest mistakes that artists make when creating an artist's statement is make it predictable and boring. For starters, don't begin your statement with "I loved art as a child" or something to that effect. Everyone loved art as a child or started with a box of crayons! That sentence alone brings in the "ho hum" factor before the next sentence has even been read.
With that in mind, no one really wants to read a chronological history of your life leading up to your career as an artist. Use adjectives to add sizzle. Use a thesaurus to help you replace predictable words or boring phrases. There is nothing wrong with studying how another artist writes a statement but remember that you need to make it your own. What would happen if several artists decided to copy an identical statement and they all sent it to the same Gallery? Or all put it on their blogs?

Think outside the box with your artist statement. Be unpredictable but readable. Can you surprise a Gallery? You can if you back away from the standard statement and don't go all wordy and predictable. You may think that all of this is obvious but you are just one of dozens sending an artist's statement to a Gallery. Make yours the one that stands out!

ArtCareerExperts.com

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