Vineyard Haven

This week’s creativity involved a trip to Martha’s Vineyard with my 11-year-old son and husband. My son has been wanting to go to the Vineyard for awhile. We have raised a highly cultured foodie who enjoys chicken pesto sandwiches, sushi, lobster dinners and trips to the Vineyard. He’ll need a job soon to keep up with his expensive tastes.

We ate lunch at the famous Black Dog Tavern, had giant ice cream cones at Mad Martha’s, and spent the day just looking around. I took my time soaking up the beautiful things in all of the eclectic shops. I loved the little things like seeing a pot of beautiful flowers juxtaposed against an old rusty chain; beautiful beads at the cleverly named Beadniks, and signs reminding me of the important things in life–“relax,” “breathe,” “love.” One sign still makes me laugh when I think of it days later: “Save the planet; it’s the only one with wine.”

Playing with paint

I’ve been having a little casual artsy fun just playing with cheap watercolor paint on paper. I just took little textured sheets of paper, wet portions of it and then dropped watercolor on it and let the paint run. For this sheet, I crumpled the paper first to see what would happen. I like the almost stained glass look that resulted and the way this looks like a gathering of colorful people.

Nice summer fair

I spent Saturday at a summer fair selling my jewelry and handmade cards. I got lots of compliments on my work and the sales were OK, considering that most people came to the church fair mainly for the lamb kabobs and the white elephant sale.

I enjoyed it because I got to sit outdoors all day on a beautiful summer day. I would not have done that otherwise. And I learned something: I don’t like doing outdoor fairs. Yes, I loved being outside. No, I did not like dealing with the wind that kept turning over my display items. So it was good to do it for that reason.

Quick sketches

It has been a very busy week as I prepare for the summer fair. I think I will streamline my items this time to see whether that makes a difference in sales. Usually I take every piece of jewelry and handmade card, and I’m wondering if it is overwhelming to people. So I’m going to focus on some choice items to display nicely. I have a new card rack so I’m very excited about that.

Hopefully the summer fair will lift my spirits. I got another rejection today for another juried show I tried to get into. Geez, this is not my month for juried show affirmation. Luckily I have this wonderful virtual artist community for support and encouragement. The comments that people have left on my blog have made a big difference.

So here are just a couple of drawings I found time to do while in my little sketch book waiting for the start of my son’s middle school concert on Tuesday. One is about how busy I feel trying to juggle all the balls of my life; the other is the Warrior Artist Princess I created to ward off rejection. Notice that she is armed with a giant sketch pad and brush.

Summer fair

This week I’m concentrating on getting ready for an upcoming summer fair, which will feature artists, musicians and lots of activities at the First Parish Church in Dorchester, Mass., where I exhibit during the Dorchester Arts Collaborative’s Open Studios. I’ll be selling my jewelry and handmade greeting cards.

Negative space

I’m in a negative space today.  I just got a rejection letter from a local arts museum where I entered a mixed media painting for an upcoming show. For the gazillionth time I have entered a piece, and for the gazillionth time they have rejected me.

I just love form rejection letters–so specific:

Dear artist,

We hate your painting, thanks for the $25 entry fee that you might as well set on fire instead of give to us to have our highly qualified juror tell you that we all hate your work, yet again, and that you might as well toss out your brushes and pick up the remote control instead.

Please come pick up your work as soon as possible because we can’t stand to look at it much longer.


The museum

Well, the letter didn’t say that, but that’s how I read it.

So I feel totally unmotivated right now. I won’t be making any art today. I’ve already had one chocolate chip cookie that I shouldn’t have. And this is the last time I will ever try to get anything in this museum.

Do I sound bitter?

Gallery night

We had a special evening tonight. My son and husband accompanied me to the wine tasting and artist reception hosted by the Rhodes Gallery in Cumberland, R.I., where my painting, handmade cards and jewelry are on display.

It was wonderful to mingle and meet the other artists and to watch the gallery goers look at my items. I felt very special.

Tonight’s creative activity for Creative Every Day‘s June theme of “bliss” was setting the table in preparation of having a visiting relative over for lunch tomorrow.

I hate cleaning the house, grocery shopping and the other preparation necessary when hosting guests. But I love, love setting the table–choosing the table cloth, setting up the dishes and glasses just so, picking out the serving platters.

I have no idea what we are eating tomorrow, but it will be beautiful.

June business goals

Wow. Can it actually be June? No way! Well, way!

Actually, I’m so happy that it is finally summer. We wait for it for so long in New England and it goes by so fast. I’m going to focus on enjoying every moment.

Last month I joined a group posting on a blog in which creative entrepreneurs set business goals each month, post them and then check back on the first of the month. I think it is a great idea to break down goals. Below I have listed my goals for June, followed by the ones I listed for May and how I did with those. I love lists and checking things off:

June goals:

1. Continue to measure, size and name all paintings (five each night).

2. Photograph three pieces of jewelry each day after work.

3. Post at least 10 images of jewelry on my web site.

4. Scan in 5 greeting cards per night.

May goals:

1. Measure, size and name all paintings (five each night). [Started out great on this, but only go through about 10 paintings. I’ll continue this for June.]

2. Enter work for a South End juried exhibition and for a Rhode Island gallery. [I entered work for the Rhode Island gallery and got in! One of my paintings, some of my handmade cards and jewelry are at the gallery awaiting buyers. I will apply for the South End juried exhibition this month. The deadline is July.]

3. Pay for copyright for wording that will be on the back of my handmade greeting cards. [I did this and ordered labels with the wording!]

4. Buy calendar to help track of expenses. [I did this! It has been very helpful so far.]

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