Monday, September 05, 2011

4th September 2011 (+1) - Who's made a mark this week?

Is there an "Ides of Late Summer" which makes bad things happen? I don't quite know what's happening at the moment re the combination of very bad weather (USA) and civil unrest (UK)

Before the Fire - by Carol Marine
Yesterday, very bad wild fires in Texas meant Carol Marine (Carol Marine's Painting A Day) and her husband David had to vacate their house very fast in the early afternoon.  News about her home town of Bastrop, Texas suggests there has been zero containment and 300 homes have burned.  She is now 95% sure her house and studio have  been burned to the ground.  See:
When we stood in the front street, we could see huge clouds of billowing smoke. There wasn’t even enough time for them to take more than their computers. I backed my car through their front yard and up to Carol’s studio, but we didn’t take anything more than a few small paintings of Carol’s. They lost all her art that filled their house.
Carol  commented
The good news is, we have fire insurance. I'm trying to think of more good news, but that's all I got.
Just the day before the fire I had an email from Carol's husband David asking if I would be kind enough to highlight another appeal - this time a Help the Children of Africa Challenge on Daily Paintworks - which is aiming to tackle the needs of those caught up in the current famine
The UN has said up to 400,000 children in the Horn of Africa could die without aid and up to 11 million people require food assistance. 
He commented (ironically given what happened the next day)
I hope you are doing well. Carol and I are enjoying our 75th day of over 100 degree (38 C) here in central Texas!
Notwithstanding what's happened to David and Carol  - the auction is still up and running on the website that David built for Daily Paintworks.  I'm sure they will be very happy if you choose to participate/contribute to either this appeal for support or the one highlighted on Jennifer's blog.

Why not send them a message too maybe?

This post is also late I've been on "community" duty over the weekend as the Olympic Borough I live in had a very large and very contentious demonstration and counter-demonstration on Saturday - with all Marches banned by the Home Secretary and 3,000 riot police on local streets to cope with the so-called "static demonstrations" which were anything but in the latter part of the day.

Hence some considerable dislocation in my normal routine - not helped by helicopters hovering overhead, emergency vehicle sirens blaring on and off and on and riot police actively enforcing civil order in our local park - all of which added to the anxiety levels of local residents!

I've taken to staring at house details in rural areas!

Anyway - on to what caught my eye in respect of art last week. (I'm afraid I'm image light this week - I now need dinner but will try and do something about this later)

Artists, Art Blogs and Articles
After the earthquake came Hurricane Irene......Yet more posts about crises and disasters!  Now you know why I was asking about Ides!
Botanical Art

Drawing and Sketching
Coloured Pencils and Pastels

First one of those "good news/bad news" posts about the Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA)
  • The good news 
    • CPSA has published its prospectus for its annual mixed media exhibition Explore This! 8 which I will be reviewing later this week,
    • There's a NEW definition for colored pencils - which I'll also be reviewing in the near future
    • the CPSA website has a brand new look!  
  • The bad news 
    • the new website retains its top level domain name.  However, based on my current exploration it looks like every bookmark you may ever have made to information below that level is now likely to default to a 404 page (ie URL not found).  The new website had a brand new set of URLs its new structure and new look
    • which presumably means it has just lost the SEO value of all the links made in the past to the sub-domain level.  I know I have a big job to get all my links changed to the new ones!
    • The definition of colored pencils clarifies some aspects and confuses others and seems to have some internal contradictions!  More comments to follow in my review.
  • Further to my comment last week, unfortunately I think I must stop referencing posts to Richard McKinley's blog Pastel Pointers as it's now impossible to retrieve past posts via a browser.  If I post a link I assume it's going to be easily accessible for some time after I post.
Art Business and Marketing
Art Economy and Collectors
  • The Art Newspaper has a couple of articles about Damien Hirst 
    • Decision on Hirsts leaves owners in a spin marks a change in policy about how Hirst's artwork should be sold.  I'm wondering what does to values of works already sold as singletons and the suits they were originally a part of.
    • Seeing Spots announces that The Gagosian Gallery has announced that it is to publish a catalogue of every spot painting produced to date by Damien Hirst.  I think they'll need to make sure they're not running foul of the trade description legislation if they use the words "by Damien Hirst".
  • National Portrait Gallery director Sandy Nairne had a sensitive, secret role in recovering the Tate’s stolen Turners and has now written a book about it.  This is an Art Newspaper article by him which highlights My life as an undercover negotiator
  • The Art Curator is a bit different to the normal online gallery sites - it's curated and has a small number of selected artists.  The pieces include originals selling for thousands.  It also has a blog incorporated into the site which includes these posts
Art Exhibitions 

Art Society
Art Blogger
Art Education
Art Studios
Art Supplies
Opinion Polls

Last week I posted
Webware and Internet
  • For those of you who need more time working at your computer rather than being distracted by your computer - this is Anti-Social - an application for Macs which turns off the social parts of the Internet.  Now - do I need to do a call-out to those of you who I know hav e struggled with this aspect in the past....? ;)
  • Blogger’s fresh new look - on The Official Google Blog - is now being opened to everybody.  I'm went back to the old look until they sort out some of the functionality.
  • I'm not sure I'm inclined to wish Chrome Happy Third Birthday as the Google blog does - it's just locked me out of Reader.  It's decided I've got some malware on a blog that I've linked to in Reader but refuses to provide a solution!  However the post highlights developments in the last 12 months.
  • 10 Ways to Use Google+ For Promoting Your Blog
  • Just in case anybody else has not yet considered how they would cope if they had a crisis like Carol and David - try reading Using technology in crisis preparedness which highlights some of the things you may need to know how to do in order to communicate.
and finally.....

From another place that has suffered severe traumas in the last year - just to show that you can't keep an artist from karing art, there's a spin on street art in Christchurch New Zealand.  The City is still experiencing after shocks and is working its way through demolishing buildings which are too unsafe to be left standing.

So this is what street art in Christchurch looks like......


  1. So sorry about Carol's news! But she and husband are safe and that's the important thing. It unfortunately hits home two things we covered in Alyson Stanfield's organisation class this week. Having a computer backup in a second location and having a list of business info (emails, website log-ins) in case of emergency. Some of us on the class were affected by the hurricane and riots, so a fire is just adding to the disasters lately! So I hope you're right and it's just some weird end of summer thing.

  2. Good points Tina

    The list of business info also applies if Computers blow up!

    That's why all my info is now in the ether!


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