There was a little glitch with the Interweave store over the weekend and sign ups for my webinar this Thursday were not available. The good news is that it’s been fixed and the link is working. If you have some time Thursday, May 16th at 2 p.m. EST to take my online workshop/webinar on found objects, mold making and casting, I’d love to have you join me. Remember, even if you’re working and not able to join, you can still sign up and watch the webinar at your leisure. Here’s the link: http://www.interweavestore.com/on-the-hunt-for-found-objects-how-to-create-new-and-eclectic-molds
Looking for a simple and fun earring project to get you started working with metal? I have one in Making Metal Jewelry and the North Light Books folks have published online to whet your whistle. Take a look at CreateMixedMedia for the instructions.
It was quite a busy Monday for me today. Two very cool things going on simultaneously. The first is that I’m thrilled and honored Jenny Doh asked me to be a Guest Curator on Crescendoh and to participate with my Art Saves story.
I have known Jenny for many years now and have always been impressed with her professionalism and passion for art and telling people’s stories. She’s a natural-born writer, editor, instructor, author, entrepreneur, innovator and so much more. I have personally watched her boost many artist’s careers into the spotlight over the years that I find it humbling that she turned her sweet spotlight on my work. I had a lot of fun thinking about my links for the week. Also, with it being Sept. 11 tomorrow, I felt an additional responsibility to ensure we take time to remember and reflect. Art not only saves, but heals as well.
Crescendoh is a site I faithfully visit every week, no matter how busy my schedule gets. Please be sure to take a look. If you have some extra time to spare, read some of the past Art Saves stories from some incredible artists. When I look through the list, I can’t help but smile to see how many friends I’ve be able to make through this amazing crafts industry.
This morning was also an incredible PR day because I was on ABC 15 Sonoran Living show with my crafty girlfriend Terri Ouellette. The set is absolutely gorgeous and large! Of course, Terri was as stunning as always. I had so much fun watching her in action…like watching an athlete at the top of his game. She taught me a lot about TV this morning by just doing her thing. The other cool thing that happened before the show was that Terri’s co-host, Stephanie Sandoval said she has been reading Explore, Create, Resinate and loving how inspired she is by all the beautiful photos in the book. How awesome is that?
We had 4 minutes for our ICE Resin segment, but I can tell you even though that’s a long time in TV land — it went by in a blink of an eye! I had an entire bracelet project stepped out and ready to go, but all I got to do was mix the resin and pour a bezel. Doesn’t matter though, it was great fun.
Terri mentioned we developed ICE Resin with my business partner, but she didn’t say Susan Lenart Kazmer. I know there wasn’t a lot of time, but I always want people to know that ICE is Susan’s signature product, as she developed it from all her experience as a master jeweler and metalsmith. As our marketing and PR person, and as a mixed-media artist myself, I work with ICE a lot and loooooveeeee it, but the talent behind its creation and bringing it to market is all Susan.
Anyhoo… I’m not sure I’ve conquered my television jitters, but I can definitely say it was an experience to remember. The video is already live on the website. Check it out if you get a chance.
I have the Last Word in the May/June issue of Somerset Studios. This is the first time, I’ve been featured in this part of the magazine and it’s quite an honor. Each issue, an artist gets to tell her personal story about a piece of art work they’ve made and the story behind the piece. Usually, the stories are inspirational or reflective in nature, often setting the final tone for the entire issue.
The piece is an assemblage I made for a sample earlier in the year for our ICE Resin booth at Winter CHA. I had just gotten back a bunch of resin castings that I did for a workshop in Cloth, Paper, Scissors magazine on mold-making. I pulled the piece I cast from a Frozen Charlotte Doll torso and head and began to build a piece around this focal. As I was in the creative process, it dawned on me the feeling of the piece is the joy my beautiful daughter — our miracle baby — has brought to our family.
However, like a lot of my work, the assemblage is also about a deeper story. It’s about me following my dreams to have a successful creative career and to live my life as an artist. This is the story I tell as part of my Last Word article. It was difficult for me to openly talk about something so intimate, but I feel it’s also another part in my journey. What I do when I write or teach or create is share my story with others. It’s about sharing emotion and common human experiences and finding connections that have deep roots.
If you haven’t had a chance yet to pick up this issue, please consider doing so. There are so many wonderful articles throughout. Seth Apter is the Artist Profile, and his incredible art made the cover so engaging. My dear friend Kristen Robinson is featured with some of her cast Paperclay assemblages and my business partner Susan Lenart Kazmer has an inspirational article on her unique journals. Oh, the eye candy! It’s honestly one of my favorite issues of all time.
It’s always strange when someone asks to interview me. I’ve been writing for a long time, and I’m a little surprised when the tables are turned and I’m the interviewee. There’s a level of control when you’re the one with the column because you get to formulate the topic idea, ask the questions and control where the story is leading.
I consider it a huge compliment, as well as a learning experience. Seriously, everyone who writes or reports for a living should have to be in the “hot seat” at least once. My talk last week with Cindy, aka Caco Smith, a wonderful glass artist and creator of Caco’s Crafty Business column in the Brandywine Review was truly lovely. She is one smart cookie. Her questions were on target, and I definitely feel she is doing her level best to help her readers navigate the often-foreign world of marketing. I really enjoyed her first column for them.
So, without further ado, take a look at our conversation about marketing, publishing, mixed-media art and more.
I’m so thrilled Elena from Charity Wings invited me to join her and her amazing group of volunteers for the Seaside Soiree again this year. It was such a lovely, three-day mixed-media art escape weekend. Sheila, Elena’s business partner, is an incredible cook and she fed us the best gourmet breakfasts, lunches and dinners plus a grand luau. In addition to teaching last year, I also got some down time to take workshops from my sweet friends Cheryl Waters and Liz Hicks. These ladies are wonderful artists and instructors.
While I really enjoy teaching at all the various retreats and events, I do have to say this one holds a special place in my heart. Elena and the ladies plan everything down to the very last detail to ensure everyone is pampered and made to feel special. I can hear the call of the Southern California coast now, while thinking about the good times of friendship and art. If you want to take a sneak peek into the event, watch this little video I put together this morning.
A little video I did about my classes next month at the CREATE mixed-media art retreat in Irvine, California. Yep, these woods are the view from my back deck. Pretty huh?
Visit their website to find out more about the event and all the fabulous instructors.
I spent two days last week starting the step-out photos of my book. I know it’s shocking, but I’m doing things a little differently than the norm. Rather than going to North Light Books photo studio in Cincinnati for a week, I’m meeting with my editor in Phoenix to do the shoot.
My dear friend and co-worker, Carol LaValley is shooting my step-by-step pictures. It’s familiar territory for us, since last winter we were working together to do the same thing with Explore, Create, Resinate. She did such a fabulous job that I saw no reason to not work together again. I’m thankful my editor Tonia Davenport is so open and willing to allow experimentation. In many ways, the process is more difficult because we don’t have the fancy, fully equipped photo studio to work in, but all of us being located in the same place seems to make up for the rest.
We worked two days straight last week and got a little less than halfway done. Next week, we’re back at it to finish up. It’s not difficult to do per say, but it does take time to record all that information both in photography and written form. All steps and directions are checked and re-checked to ensure readers are getting 100% accuracy, and that’s a good thing.
I’m still writing for the next few weeks. After that, the manuscript goes to Tonia for editing and the photos begin the design process. The cover is being designed as I write this, and its coming along beautifully.
I’ve been trying to figure out how to balance my regular work duties with writing the book, along with social media, class proposals and my columns, not to mention my son’s Spring Break right around the corner. Frankly, I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. I’m at the point where I’m going to have use that big, nasty word – NO – pretty soon.
Do you ever feel this way?
Time to unplug, turn off the phone, let the world do its thing while I finish the task at hand. Why is this so hard?
I’m packing up my tools and supplies today to head off for the step-out photo shoot of my book this week. It’s exciting to continue moving through the process toward completion.
There is so much that goes into the creation of a book… so much planning and thinking and scheduling that sometimes it can feel overwhelming. That’s when you have to step back, take a big, long breath and just move forward. My grandmother used to have this silly saying: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Doing a book is just like eating an elephant. Sometimes it seems BIG, other times frightening, but then you just divide that sucker up into bite-sized pieces and start chewing. There are points of indigestion and hiccups, but there are also times of pure amazement at the process and the tangible accomplishments you can see along the way.
After all the step-by-step photos are completed this week, the imagery is ready to go to the graphic designer, whom I’ve had a few conversations with to ensure we are both on the same page, so to speak. She’s awesome, and I feel like I’m in very good hands. Of course, my editor has been with me from Day 1, and I’m looking forward to her direction and moral support this week too. There are 22 projects in the book and one necklace alone has 37 steps to it. Whew! Luckily the bulk of it has a more manageable 10-15 steps per project.
Ok, back to packing. I wanted to jump in here to let you know what’s going on and to tell you I’ll see you next week with an update on how things went. I didn’t necessarily plan to talk about the book as I’m working on it, but a lot of friends of mine as CHA said they find the subject interesting since so many artists have this on their bucket lists.
Here’s wishing all of you a very Artful week!
I’m in sunny California along with Susan and the ICE Resin team setting up our booth. We’ve been working hard for months on the booth, art samples, new products and all kinds of crafty goodness for the Winter CHA trade show.
Just a quick post today since we’re all busy little artists. I thought I’d share a sneak peek of another one of my mixed-media pieces I made for the show. I call this one 3 Little Houses All in a Row. Sorry the pics are not the best. I had to grab them quickly. It was actually still drying on my kitchen table so I couldn’t even pick the canvas up for a better view.
This is a large 18×24 canvas that is really bright and colorful. I added houses made of hardboard with images from our brand new Art Mechanique collage pack that I resined with our signature product, ICE Resin. There are bezels, resin paper leaves in the tree, a sweet little clay birdie and even some Industrial Chic charms on this canvas. Everything but the kitchen sink!
Be sure to check in with the ICE Queen eZine to see what we’re up to. Carol, our social media maven, is at CHA to collect some video and information for us.
Here’s wishing you a truly Artful day!