Sunday, December 21, 2008

21st December 2008 - Who's made a mark this week?

Danny Gregory's book An Illustrated Life has made it to the Amazon Significant Seven (Best of the Month in December) - which at this time of year is a really wonderful thing to happen and I guess is every author's dream come true!
Danny Gregory's An Illustrated Life is a visual delight of color and texture--a funky and frenetic "book about books people have made," perfect for chronic doodlers, journalers, and art lovers. Sharing vibrant excerpts from the notebooks of 50 illustrators, artists, and designers, each accompanied by an introduction by the artist, An Illustrated Life is a gorgeous, intimate exploration of the creative process.
Amazon - Best Books of December
Many congratulations to Danny and to all those artists and illustrators whose sketches and illustrations are included in the book and who are "all following the same path - to the back cover - one page at a time". You can:
Let's hope we see lots of new people keeping sketch journals in 2009. Now you did all remember to include one on your "Christmas present to me" list didn't you?

Making A Mark Awards - the interactive slot

On Wednesday I summarised the Making A Mark Awards - The nominations to date are...... Don't forget!
  • You've got until midnight tonight to make a nomination. Being the shortest day doesn't make a difference!
  • The polls to vote for your favourite will be posted on Wednesday 24th December.
Art Blogs
Art Group Blogs
Art Business & Marketing
...if you are in business, you need to know what is going on. Being oblivious is not going to help you avoid getting burned by what is going on.
Art competitions
Seraph by Celia Bennett
Oil on canvas on board, 380 x 300mm (15 x 11 3/4")
© the artist / Image courtesy of NPG Press Office
Art copyright
Art Economy
Art Education and workshops
Art and photography exhibitions
  • The New York Public Library has joined the existing institutions participating in The Commons on Flickr. The Commons is a project which aims to increase access to publicly-held photography collections, and provide a way for the general public to contribute information and knowledge. A requirement for participation in the program that institutions may rightly claim "no known copyright restrictions" on the content they share. It has some amazing images - save it up for a lull in the Christmas festivities?
  • However it's sad to see the way Yahoo 'fired' one of the key people responsible for "The Commons" as part of the Yahoo layoffs - read Not quite what I had in mind by George Oates who has been at Flickr since Day Zero. She also wrote this thoughtful piece about community Community: From Little Things, Big Things Grow on A List Apart in May this year. See also the comments below about the impact of the recession on webware companies - and the fact that you might be surprised which might also be in the firing line.
Art History
Art supplies
Book Reviews
here’s a list of lists from various corners for art, design and photography books for 2008
  • Charley Parker (Lines and Colors) has produced a post about Best Art Book Lists. I'm so glad somebody did this - I toyed with the idea and decided I didn't have the time to hunt down all the links!
Tips and techniquesWebsites, webware and blogging
  • This week I commented on Comment Spam - how to recognise it and what to do with it
  • Silicon Valley is not immune from the credit crunch. It's a good idea to stay alert to the fact that internet and webware companies may well meet with difficulties in the current economic climate. This month Pownce was acquired by Six Apart and shut down. It was supposed to rival Twitter but was self funded and never found the finance or support for expansion. There was a very limited time slot to grab personal data. Back in October Rafe Needleman (CNET) identified 11 troubled Web companies: The next Kozmos? - which includes Twitter and MySpace. Note this is nothing to with whether the product is any good and everything to do with whether they have identified an effective business model which generates enough revenue! The big question mark is over Twitter which doesn't have a revenue model as yet and Skype which was acquired by eBay for an absolutely enormous sum.
Here, in no particular order, are 11 online services companies that could face a similar fate. Several of them are 2008 Webware 100 winners. Like I said, popularity isn't enough.
and finally.....

Presentation is all - I'm indebted to Stephen Fry and his extremely popular Twitter feed for showing me what Christmas looks like in Bloomingdale's windows (I think I finally twigged what Twitter might be about!)


Normal posting will resume some time in the New Year. I'm going to have a short break after all the posts relating to end of year reviews/awards/plans for next year - partly due to the need to have a break and partly to try and tackle all the stuff that hasn't been done while I've been ill. (Yes, you're right - thatis a contradiction - but I'm sure you know what I mean!)

Over the next ten days or so I shall be posting:
  • 22nd December - A Review of Blogging Art in 2008
  • 23rd December - A Review of Art on the Internet in 2008
  • 24th December - Shortlists and polls for (1) Best Artwork and (2) Best Portrait by a Female Artist (poll opens)
  • 29th December - Making A Mark Awards (Part 1)
  • 30th December - Making A Mark Awards (Part 2) - including the results for Best Artwork and Best Portrait by a Female Artist
  • 31st December - My Personal Review of 2008
  • 1st January - My Plan for 2009
I hope you'll be able to look in - and join in - while enjoying your own seasonal festivities.


  1. Hi,

    I find the book "An Illustrated life" to be a great gift for those related to art.
    If one's still missing a gift, here's a good choice.

    To you and all the readers, I wish a Merry Christmas with lots of good things.

    Kind regards,


  2. An Illustrated Life is on my wish list too.

    Thank you, Katherine for your encouraging comments about my etching. I'm sure I'm not the only artist who gets such an enormous boost from your support. It's most appreciated.

    Lots of wonderful links here this week!

  3. Dear Katherine,
    One of the great blessings of this past year, for me, was finding "Making a Mark". It is a remarkable and enriching experience to follow your articles, commentary and multitude of links. But, Katherine, how do you do it !?! (I've often wondered if you are really just one person, or a team of brilliant and generous clones.)
    However you accomplish all of this, you have won a devoted and very grateful reader.
    Wishing you the very best for a splendid and prosperous 2009.

    ps. I'd also like to say Hello and Best Wishes to your amazing community of fellow artists. It is a joy to follow your work.

  4. Thank you Robyn and Annie

    Annie - I'm afraid to say the only thing that is being cloned at present are the fat cells due to spending far too long in front of the computer!

    Those of my blogging friends who have met me will confirm there is only one of me - even if the ripples around the middle are doing the middle-aged midriff thing!

    Jose and Robyn - I'm sure we won't be alone in ejoying an "Illustrated Life"

  5. An illustrated life...

    Have been reading lots of good reviews about this book. Can't wait for my copy to arrive.


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