Artist’s Mindset

Entering Art Shows Are you juggling family and jobs while squeezing slivers of art-making into your busy world? How often do you apply to art shows? Do you ponder the opportunities of artistic exposure and camaraderie on social media? In the melee of the artist’s mind, it can be challenging to mount the technology of …

Helpful resources for Entering Art Shows Read More »

Why Should Artists Build an Email List and Send Newsletters? I can hear you groaning over that question from here. You’d rather paint or draw than write. Words aren’t your strongest wheelhouse? I get it; you don’t know what to say. And yes, like me – you speak with your hands, so while writing newsletters, …

Artist Newsletters and Email Lists – Why You Need Them Read More »

Paint your Life My first home after re-locating from the East Coast a few decades ago was a stucco, 1950’s ice-cube-tray styled apartment building in Glendale, California. The scent from my neighbor’s orange trees and the hazy, filtered sunlight made up for what the space lacked in character, and trying to capture the not-new-england atmosphere …

Watercolor: Glendale and Painting your Places Read More »

5 Tips for Showing your Art to the Public I’ll be driving south for the San Diego Artwalk in a week. Standing in my art booth, surrounded by 350 other artists and 100,000 people is a pendulum swing of contrast from the typical artists’ solitude in the studio. Like an athlete pre-visualizing for a game, …

5 Tips For Showing and Talking About Your Art Read More »

Do You Want to be an Artist? When I first considered leaping into art full time, I didn’t have artist friends to consult. So, I cold-called and emailed several artists I’d heard about, introduced myself, and asked if I could buy them lunch and pepper them with questions related to making art as a livelihood. …

Do the people closest to you Influence your Artistic Journey? Read More »

You’re a Creative Person too I just had a chat with my neighbor¬†about creativity. I talk about being creative¬†a lot at art festivals¬†and social mixers. ¬†When someone asks what I do, and I say “I’m an artist.”, my new acquaintance usually turns wistful, and replies: “Oh, it must be so wonderful to be creative. I¬†wish …

Drypoint Engraving: Asleep in Rome (& Are You Creative?) Read More »

Staggered Beginnings I started this monotype in my previous studio about¬†three years ago. ¬†Yep, that’s¬†a thousand days, people. I’m predictable in my art-making process; I get *so* excited to start!¬†The early stages of making put me in a fevered flow state. ¬†While happily playing with¬†color and shape,¬†I don’t feel hunger, fatigue, or distraction. I’m a …

Monotype: Keyhole to Springtime (& finishing what you started) Read More »

Where am I? I’ll be traveling in a few weeks, so I’m pondering light weight art supplies. I’ve written about the gear I use ¬†(read that post here) at¬†art festivals and painting workshops, but I’d love to hear what you travel with… what’s your go-to brush set, or palette? How about your fave fold-up chair, …

Watercolor: Provence Cypress (& managing ego in the studio) Read More »

How to Title Your Art Descanso Gardens is in La Canada, California.¬†The grounds boast 34,000¬†camellia shrubs, 25 acres of California Oak trees, 3000 roses and paved pathways throughout the 160 acre property. (If you listen to audiobooks,¬†you might consider listening to a book like this one while walking through a public garden or hiking a …

Watercolor: Tea House (& how to title your art) Read More »

Creative Personality Traits A¬†daily schedule with habitual, obligatory¬†segments is something I associate with grade school, corporate offices¬†and cats. But even still, I adore a creative routine.¬†As an artist, my internal compass is calibrated towards¬†distraction¬†and mental-wanderings.¬† I have Super-Hero-Skills¬†in the fine art of Not-Finishing. (Here’s a great article about why we don’t finish things, and strategies …

Watercolor Painting (and Creating Before Consuming) Read More »

No Room on the Artist Elevator Years ago (before social media), an accomplished art instructor gave me a lecture about being industrious in the art world. He said if you collected¬†all the abundantly talented artists in America, you might populate the island of Manhattan in New York. If you removed the artists who didn‚Äôt prioritize …

Watercolor: Ranunculus (& encouragement to get back into your art) Read More »

Artist Distraction Solutions Are you wrestling with distraction? Do you have a pile of reference material and inspiration you’ve been saving for a decade, waiting to be used to ignite new work?  Here are four tips to get you back to making, instead of procrastinating. 1. Read this article (4 minutes) about reigning in your focus and …

4 Tips to Beat Distraction and Get Focused on Your Art Read More »

The ideas I have for new watercolor paintings, woodcuts, monotypes, drypoints¬†and tutorial videos are swelling¬†to burst. I’ve got concepts¬†piled high enough in my cranial attic¬†to make¬†a hoarder proud, and I can’t wait to get started. But it won’t be this week, or even next week, because other priorities need to be juggled. In the meantime, …

Monotype: Dandelion Wind (& praise for notebooks in the studio) Read More »

Do you use time wisely? Are you making new stuff? And sharing your art¬†on social media? Are you using free segments¬†in your crammed schedule¬†to your best advantage for creativity, exposure and community-building? Or do you surf around “for inspiration”, killing time that might be better spent making something? As Tim Gunn says: Make it work. …

Woodcut: Bergamo Window (& encouragement to use time wisely) Read More »

Artist’s Goals, Part II This is part II of plotting your artist¬†goals for the new year. In the last post, we reviewed what¬†we did (and didn’t) do in 2016 to inspire¬†adjustments for¬†2017. Did you crave¬†more art-making last year? ¬†Creative output happens if¬† you 1) reserve time &¬†2) give art your full, uncluttered focus. Art doesn’t …

Monotype: Winter Sunlight (Artist Goals – Art Studio Planning – Part II) Read More »

I had a conversation with a friend about looking at other artists’ work – especially artists who are farther along on the path, and much better we¬†are. Some painters are crippled by those sorts of self-induced comparisons. ¬†I’ve never felt stymied from looking at another artist’s amazingly realized creations. Great art fuels my creative engine. …

Watercolor: Adventurous Heart (& inspiration from George Clausen) Read More »

Its tea-drinking season, even over here in sunny coastal¬†California. ¬†Fall is a nostalgic time bracket for me – loaded with reflection of the-year-so-far, anniversaries of still-heart-prickley loss & grief (read this¬†poignant and thought-compelling essay about letting go of objects connected to lost loved-ones), and acutely visual reminders of time passing. ¬†Nightfall comes sooner, but time …

Watercolor: First Sip (& seasonal cycles in creativity) Read More »

I stayed in an old mill on a river, converted to a Bed & Breakfast Inn, while attending a friend’s wedding in Massachusetts a few years ago, and the background interior of this painting came from photos I took in my room that weekend. The figure was added to the scene from snapshots taken with a model about …

Watercolor: Novella (& the distraction of email) Read More »

I love art featuring readers. I have a pinterest board of inspiring¬†paintings of people and their books, and our descendants collecting¬†imagery of this subject will likely include paintings and drawings of people curled around laptops, balancing nooks¬†&¬†ipads on their laps, and sitting contentedly under headphones. I finished listening to the audio book The Greater Journey …

Watercolor: Laptop Nightlight (& encouragement to finish your art) Read More »

I’m still working on the nocturnal watercolor on yupo I mentioned in the last post, so stay tuned (or subscribe) for that coming soon…. In the meantime, I feel compelled to share a humorous, smart, thought-provoking essay on Why Procrastinators Procrastinate. Are you in the Staller Club too? Do you wait till the eleventh hour to …

Travel Watercolors of Italy (& staying focused on art) Read More »

What are your Artist Goals? It’s time to review last year, and make a plan for the upcoming year!  Let’s review what’s behind us, and create a rough-draft map for the pursuit of artist goals ahead, shall we? Do you go backwards through your calendar to inspect the events stacked in the last year as you plot the next …

Artist Goals – Review and Make a Plan Read More »

I raise my cup of coffee towards you & the ocean as the sun shyly peeks rays¬†over the hills behind me this morning. Standing next to our twinkling Christmas tree, I’m sending a toast out to you, blog-reader, to say Merry Christmas – to you and your family, and your friends, and even your pets. …

Merry Christmas! Read More »

Do you go to art exhibits? Various¬†sorts, like museum shows, regional competitions, art festivals, demos and gallery openings? I love attending all flavors of art exhibits, because it re-sets my measuring ruler¬†on my own work. You can absolutely see a lot of art on social media, and I’m confetti & cheering¬†grateful for the opportunity to …

Watercolor: Drinks at the Reception (& why you should attend Art Exhibits) Read More »

Getting Back to Art Before diving into art-making¬†full time, I dabbled on and off. Mostly off. For decades. Getting back to art has been one hell of a journey. In my early twenties, I painted and doodled, and kept art journals. ¬†In Rockport, Massachusetts, while renting a converted chicken coop/cottage (below) for the summer with …

Getting Back to Art After a Long Absence Read More »

Three Lemons on Blue 5×8 Watercolor Haters and Trolls in the Comments This summer, the haters are out in swarms. Among my community of artisans with an online presence , this is a frequent topic. Haters skulk behind the bluish light of their computer screens, and crouch under the cloak of anonymity, while launching criticism, …

Watercolor: Three Lemons on Blue (and When Haters leave Comments) Read More »