Sunday, January 25, 2009

25th January 2009 - Who's made a mark this week?

Three people have been 'making a mark' in a significant way this week.

I'm starting with Karin Jurick (A Painting Today) because there is nothing quite like getting your work on the cover of a journal! Karin has one of her paintings as the cover of the February 2009 edition of American Artist PLUS she also has a four page feature article about her in the same edition. For a readable view of this article - which includes explanations about use of photographs and how Karin works - click here.

Plus Karin also has an item covering her new blog Different Strokes From Different Folks in Southwest Art (see Good publicity almost by accident ). For a readable view of this article, click here.

Next congratulations to the readers of this blog for voting Zen by Nicole Caulfield (Nicole Caulfield Art Journal) of Keene, New Hampshire the first prize in the The Making A Mark Award for Best Portrait by a female artist for Zen. You obviously spotted a winner....

TheMaking Of Zen by Nicole Caulfield
(coloured pencil)

...because we now need to congratulate Nicole again as this piece has now also won Nicole "Best of Show" ($500) prize at the Biennial Regional Juried Show at the Thorne Sagendorph Gallery! Having noticed last year that her small pieces were not getting looked at by people she decided to go big this year and succeeded in catching the jurors' eyes! You can read about the Private View in her blog post aptly and succiently titled OMG! in which you can also see Nicole with her child models and the paintings.

Left: Quiver by Kirsty Hall
Right: Kirsty Hall with 'Pin Ritual' her performance piece (Quiver is on the left in the window)

Meanwhile Kirsty Hall (Up All Night Again...) has had her first ever London show at Prick Your Finger, which is a haberdashers crossed with an art space, in Bethnal Green. Kirsty had a great PV yesterday afternoon. I love PVs where you get offered cups of tea, banana cake, choccie biccies and also get to sit down! Kirsty is showing some of her pin work including Quiver which is absolutely amazing! (It's the gauze hanging down in the window. The pins are stuck completely through which makes this shape into something akin to a wonderfully soft hedgehog experience. Yesterday she was giving a performance of Pin Ritual.

I got to meet Felix Ford (The Domestic Soundscape) who focuses on sound as art. It's weird when you think about it that everybody takes photos of their home and everyday surroundings - and these are not recognised as an art form - but few people make recordings of their homes and everyday activities. I also met numerous other people who will have to wait for a subsequent blog post! I loved her flier and also No-nonsense knitting commission price guide. All in all it was a very entertaining afternoon!

The death of Tony Hart
Tony Hart, who has died aged 83, made a substantial and original contribution to art education in Britain by entertaining children at such a breathtaking pace on television that they overlooked the fact that they were being educated at all.
The Guardian Obituary: Tony Hart
This was a slow burn item. I think some of the papers were maybe surprised by the number of people who started blogging about how much their art owed to Tony Hart and how fondly they remembered him. I never knew he was the man who designed the Blue Peter logo! There's Tony Hart: A YouTube tribute plus a slideshow put together by the Guardian

Art Blogs

  • There's a nice piece by M. Stephen Doherty Remembering Andrew Wyeth on the American Artist website.
  • Deborah Paris (A Painting Life) has recently had a couple of blog posts about her "artists statement". In the first she explains why she has not had a good attitude towards them (ie so many of the ones she's read have been both "incomprehensible and pretentious" which is a description I'd very definitely agree with (and I guess I wouldn't be alone!) and in the second Artist Statement Part II she explains why she is revising it, how she went about it and provides the 'before' and 'after' versions.
  • Dan (Empty Easel) has started a series on Overcoming Fear: An Inspirational and Practical Series for Artists. He's planning on doing four articles covering the following topics (and I've included the link to the first):
  • Sarah Wimperis (The Red Shoes) has developed a lovely triptych of the sea at Kennack and is having a wonderful time sketching her local coastline
  • Gesa Helms (Paint and Pastel) has a lovely post about Wolf Kahn and his colour palette - see A bit of learning: Wolf Kahn.
  • Gesa has been lino-printing this week as has been Jeanette Jobson (Illustrated Life) - see Ripples who has also been combining them with coloured pencil. I think lino-printing is going viral!
  • Cindy (Skating on the edge of infinity) is the requisite 'nothing whatsoever to do with art' post this week. She went to The Western States Inaugural Ball eat rubbish food, lost her coat and acquired a very odd looking partner ;) but all in all seems to have had a really good time. She's also decided to split her blog in two and have all the political posts on a new blogspot blog so that this one can be just for her art.
  • Brenda (Serendipity Patchwork ) in Australia has been playing around with online colour generators Different palettes
  • Being creative on Blue Monday was my contribution last Monday to thinking of ways to stay creative when the mid-January blues begin to hit home.
Art Business and Art Marketing
  • Selling art online became a mini theme last week and will be a big theme in the course of this next week (galleries online / print on demand etc). Posts included:
  • users spend an average of 51 seconds reading a newsletter and
  • only 19% read the entire newsletter
Jakob Neilsen
  • Clint Watson responded to my post with this post Do You Want Traffic or Do You Want to Sell Art?
  • Note also Deborah's very clear and transparent statement about pricing in the side column of her sales blog Deborah Paris Fine Art. Note also how Deborah has effectively created a gallery in Blogger by removing all references to dates.
  • Do artists understand what a niche is? Should style come under marketing? Maybe not - on the other hand it might be what makes your work sell. Empty Easel has an article by How to discover your niche and style by Aggie Villanueva who uses computer-manipulated photography - which was then referenced by the Imagekind blog. My main reason for including it here is that I'm afraid I have to take issue with her definition of niche ("your niche is what you know"). The use of 'Niche' in marketing is actually about identifying the market segment you serve - in other words it defines the answer to "who are your customers?"
a small specialized group identified as a market for a particular range of products or services.
Chambers Dictionary
Art Economy
  • Results being reported and overall prospects in the markets as a whole generally continue to be pretty bleak and gloomy. As I've said before, the worst is yet to come............which is what makes the focus on selling online in an efficient and effective way so pertinent and is the reason I'll continue to focus on this next week.
  • The figures have finally been published and in the UK we're now officially in recession
  • Current expectations are that there will be very significant reductions in the prices of contemporary art. For all of us who always said the contemporary art market had been hyper-inflated at the top end this will come as absolutely no surprise at all. According to ArtTactic in its Art Market Confidence Survey there has been an 81% drop in confidence in the art market since May 2008. You can read the summary by clicking the link - it includes an interesting list of what are being termed blue chip contemporary artists. It also provides some parameters for long term planning.
  • Confidence hits rock bottom: US & European Contemporary Art Market Confidence Indicator drops 81% from May 2008.
  • Recovery will take years: 52% of the respondents believe it will take more than 3 years for the market to start picking up, and more than half of these believe it could take more than 5 years.
  • Bottom falls out of the high-end of the market: The confidence has weakened in all of the higher price segments (particularly above 0,000) since the last reading in May 2008
ArtTactic - Art Market Confidence Survey
Komala said prices will tumble 30-40 percent this year, partly because auction houses concentrated on promoting a small number of contemporary artists, whose prices became inflated.
Bloomberg: Art Auction Prices May Fall 40% in 2009, Larasati Chief Says
  • On the auction front:
    • After the recent Christies announcement (in this post last Sunday), it appears that Sotheby’s Amsterdam is set to cut two-thirds of its 60 employees.
    • Online auctioneer and aspirational storeowner eBay is struggling to cope with the economic downturn. It reported a significant drop in both revenue (7% decline) and profit (31% drop) for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008 compared to the same period last year. However it beat analysts' estimates of the expected decline. Marketrap announced that that eBay Reports Results and Investors Continue to Sell. The notion is that eBay will continue to be hit so long as merchants continue to go out of business. On the other hand if I were eBay I'd be wondering when Obama is going to get to grips with monopolistic providers like Google and eBay.
Art competitions
Art Exhibitions and Museums
Art Supplies
  • Bullrushes on claybord - work in progress is the beginning of my assessment of the pros and cons of using coloured pencils on Ampersand Claybord
  • Oil Pastels 101: A Comprehensive Guide to Painting with Oil Pastel by Robert Sloan on Empty Easel is really good article on oil pastels
  • Prick Your Finger, where Kirsty has her show and PV has a website (soon to be revised) and a blog called Prick Your Finger. It's an amazing place - they source UK yarns which are produced by small independent producers in an appropriate way (eg Cornish Organic, Blue Faced Leicester and English Alpaca) and also spun in this country rather than being sent away to be spun. No Rowan on the premises. A complete treasure trove for any yarn addict.
  • I also saw buttons produced by The Glass Pingle. It was very weird standing in a shop in Bethnal Green looking at beautiful buttons with an etsy store address on them!
Genre Art
Tips and techniques
Websites, webware and blogging
  • This morning I provided an update on Feedburner in Feedburner: Techcrunch and transferring my feeds. (For those having difficulties with feeds you might want to try referencing A Making A Mark Guide: Subscriptions 101 (Feedburner)
  • Flickr is hyping its new uploadr (v.3.1.3) - BUT why oh why didn't I read the forum first where there are huge numbers of complaints about it not working?! I downloaded it and it doesn't work just like the last "improved version so I decided to go back to version 2.5 - the only one what works all the time. Except they're removed it from the site - so at the moment I can't upload anything to Flickr.
  • I don't know about you but I am very decidedly NOT in love with Google's new favicon - and the BBC obviously must think along similar lines because they're inviting people to design a new one!
and finally............

Here's a satellite image of the Capitol - before and after people arrived for the Inauguration this week. Wasn't it really amazing?

I tried to tie into the Inauguration with my post on Tuesday Living the dream - how conscious are you of your own competence?


Anonymous said...

Hi Katherine,
Thank you for the mention!

My escort for the is dying that I doodled on the picture (giving him dreadlocks in the process). Wait til he sees what I do with the pic of us with Senator Begich lol!

Thank you for the mention, am working on a long post on ceramicist Richard Notkin who spoke at the Renwick Gallery tonight in Washington DC.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link and the kind words, Katherine. I'm glad you enjoyed the work.

It was good to meet you. I'm sorry that we didn't get a chance for a more in-depth conversation but I was quite scattered trying to talk to everyone. Pin Ritual is usually a bit quieter and more intimate to perform than that but it was fun for me to experience it in a different way.

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