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The battle goes on, but it feels like I’m winning this time

Imperfection 1

I was diagnosed with Small Cell Carcinoma in October. There have been chemo and radiation therapies since. Last Sunday, I slept from 2PM on with the help of one of my anti-nausea meds. The last several days I have been up until after 9, my old bedtime.

A week ago I dropped off “Imperfection” (above) to the Harlow Gallery, easily a two hour drive from here. And, two hours to return. I was not up to that kind of a drive. Today, it might have been more fun.

Today, I also thought about a proposal that could go to 3S and Space. And, I continue to think about it though I haven’t put pen to paper yet. I worked on the next two of the “Imperfection” series, both of which are larger than the one at Harlow.

And, here I am.

The Rochester Library show went up last week, which incorporates most of what I have completed since I was diagnosed.

Holding It Together

“Holding It Together 1” demonstrates another of the artistic concerns that I have embraced recently. Both this series and the “Imperfection” series are monochromatic. These, however, utilize a myriad of materials that are either painted to approximate the color of the canvas or inherently are a similar shade.

Hommage to the Surrealists

“Homage to the Surrealists” uses no paint. The native color of the materials is what is important, along with the textures and translucency.

So, along with a renewed interest in Photoshop, which I also purchased this week, I am exploring my best in 2-D art.

 

 

 

The website

For those who follow my blog, you are aware of last week’s dilemma. Phone calls were made; I do have a discounted rate, and a written document to fall back on now.

This is the first time I have ever been able to put up this much work in this nice a format without it being technically dreadful.

Please check it out and share it with your people: http://www.dadartthurst.com  Please visit frequently because this is my online retrospective,and I am adding almost daily. It was meant originally to go back only as far as 1985, but I have unearthed some rather interesting vintage stuff. Well, not quite vintage, but close!

The hidden costs of being a professional artist

The questions have made the rounds for many years in my head as to how much do I have to spend to do this? Being an artist is one thing, and the costs for that are strictly what I need to purchase supplies. Framing is optional. I can hang the finished work with tacks or nails or tape.

And, then I entered the world of showing the work. Now, I had to make sure the work was “ready-to-hang”, and learned to read the fine print as to what that means. Framing was no longer optional, and I had to learn to putty corners and repaint frames. I also learned early-on that as much as I love museum glass, I was going to use commercial glass, and hope that my patrons loved the work enough to protect it from UV light.

Since I entered the professional world, I have also become a certified framer, and own a decent mat cutter, and know my way around putting together paper pieces without horribly upsetting the budget. But, that is mainly because I can take care of the labor, and I don’t go for the best frames, just something reasonable. Everything that comes in direct contact with the work, like mat board and foam core, though, is acid-free.

Most of my work is oil-based, and on canvas. Skinny stretcher bars warp, so I make it a point to get the thick stretcher bars for big work, ie. larger than 16″ x 20″.

All of the above is fine and predictable. What I was never taught in school is what the marketing would cost. When I set out in 1987 to really start to make “my name”, I found myself spending more on slides and postage. Then, there was a trip to New York so I could do what was known then as the “humility shuffle”-complete with a two-night stay in a Manhattan hotel, food, etc. It was considered a mini-vaca, but I still worked one solid afternoon with my late husband canvasing the galleries before I actually approached them. I did get a slot in a group show. Then, I shelled out shipping and  insurance to not sell anything.

The Internet has eliminated the need for the slides, but not for an occasional disc, and the related postage. But, it has not completely negated any expenses that may not have been anticipated.

Enter the required website. The web universe is free unless you don’t code. And, even then, space needs to be purchased. And, then there is that pesky domain name.

I have done well so far with this blog, and I even picked up a gallery and two sales through it. I am on it enough that I get a fair Google share through my name. But, Tuesday night, even though I have a few half-assed attempts at building a site out in Internet land, I had a curator who really wanted more than I had posted on a site, and not to have to wade through all of the 2014 posts here.

On Wednesday, I found a web builder that appeared to be low-cost, with a free domain name included, for the first year.  Ah, I signed up, without a way to find the true cost after the introductory one-month $1.95. Yikes!! It was $21.95 per month!! I called them to cancel, and talked to a very nice rep who presumably set me up with a site for $9.95 plus their security fee which is an additional $1.95. So, I worked for the last three days to build a great looking site, and the platform is a delight to work. But, this afternoon, I checked my billing info and I am set up to be billed for $21.95 next month. REALLY??

I set out after that to resurrect the weebly site, and though it isn’t great, it’s free. If I want to add my domain name I can, but that puts into a more premium status and hence, I pay for the domain and the right to eliminate their name from my present one with them.

So, Monday, I will find out if I am out $3.90 and some time-I just hope I have two now working web sites!

The season begins

I have to say, it was a nice break. I dropped off three fairly new pieces including “Artificial Butterfly” to KAA for their “Waste Not, Want Not” all-member show. Next Saturday, the show opens. In two weeks, my first solo of the year opens at the Kittery Estates. That show will be comprised of the canvases from last year.

Otherwise, a business day. I am quite upset with WIX, and the bogus $24.99 charge I paid for a domain name that they won’t even attach to my website unless I spend an additional $50+ to make it premium. The domain name will move as soon as I am allowed to move it. And, WIX. We’ll see. It has not been the easiest program to work. Even today, I tried to add pages. The pages are there, but I was unable to post the images I wanted to on them. Really frustrating!
I am now playing on tumblr.com too.

Yesterday, one of the pieces I worked on was one that had gotten wet, and I thought I was going to have to toss it.

This piece is beginning to tap my native heritage for inspiration.

This piece is beginning to tap my native heritage for inspiration.


Remember not to give up on something just because it gets unsightly pink spots!