Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Home Front - MAM Art Blog Award Nominations 2011

You are invited to nominate art blogs which make a difference to the practical aspects of our artistic art and/or make life at home with the artist that bit better.

There are three awards:
  • NEW in 2011 The Art Innovation of the Year Award
  • “The Moose” - the award for the best animal in an illustrated blog
  • The Most Gorgeous Mouthwatering (MGM) Studio of the Year
I'm particularly pleased to be introducing the last award and can't think why I hadn't thought of it before.  Art bloggers are a creative lot in more ways than one!

NEW in 2011 The Art Innovation of the Year Award

The Art Innovation of the Year Award is awarded to highlights those artist bloggers who experiment and/or create and/or share innovations which help the practice of other artists. 

The sharing may be through:
  • the invention of a new tool or art medium to aid artists
  • testing and reviewing a new art medium or material
  • experiments with existing or new art media, materials or equipment and the creation of a new way of doing things 
Ester Roi - who invented the Icarus Drawing Board™
see my 2008 post The new Icarus Drawing Board™
I've been very struck in recent years by artists who are art bloggers who have gone that extra mile and addressed their practical needs by creating a new tool or experimenting with new media - which they then share with other artists.

Ester Roi (Ester Roi Fine Art) (see right) is a good example of the sort of person I mean.

Some have shared within a commercial context - especially when, like Ester, they have invented, commissioned and manufactured a new material or tool which is not cheap to produce.

Others focus on sharing new ways of working with media, materials or equipment produced by others.

The net result of all their experimentation and sharing is that for many of us our kit and materials now look very different as a direct result of their efforts.

We've all benefited and this award is one way we can share our appreciation!

Only an independent art blogger can receive the award.  My only constraint on this award is that which relates to all the Making A Mark Awards ie the awards exclude all corporate blogs.  MAJOR manufacturers whose business is art materials and equipment cannot receive the award and neither can they nominate.  However independent art bloggers who have developed a new tool or material and are selling it commercially are eligible for the award.

In this first year, I'm also going to take a liberal view as to what can and cannot be included in terms of dates of when it was introduced.  Ideally I'm looking to make an award in relation to 2011 but am willing to stretch this timeframe.

Now for the more established Making A Mark Art Blog Awards.

“The Moose” - the award for the best animal in an illustrated blog

"The Moose" Award for the best animal in an illustrated blog is named after the first winner of this award.  The animal can be wild or domestic, a perennial subject or the studio pet.
  • 2010 Jeanette Jobson's (Illustrated Life) three-legged cat Tripod wins this award. Tripod seems to rule the roost and the turkeys at the Jobson home in Newfoundland despite only having three legs. Now of course he also has the added distraction of an artist in the family who's rather interested in fish! He's also featured in very many drawings and paintings over the years and has always come across as an animal with a strong male character. He's become a bit fussy with age (don't they all?) and only occasionally now consents to model - for a fee!
  • 2009 Kimberly Santini (The Painting a Dog a Day Project) - This is to reflect Kimberley's total commitment to her painting a dog a day project since she started in 2006. She has created over 800 furry faces, posts consistently and to a high standard and won the Fifth Annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship Commemorative Art Poster Competition . In addition Kimberley and her patrons have, through sales of her paintings, raised over $5,500 to benefit animal welfare
  • 2008 Tracy Hall (Watercolour Artist). This Award is just one of the many which Tracy has won in 2008 with various Miniature Art Societies in the UK and USA. This Award is for "birds" in a generic sense and a rook in particular and recognises two of her principal achievements in 2008.
  • 2007 Gayle Mason (Fur in the Paint) - “Out of Sight”  She has consistently produced excellent drawings of both dogs and cats during the course of the year – and shared her art materials and approaches as well on her blog 
  • 2006 Maggie Stiefvater (Greywaren Art ) - Moose No contest - Moose won by a mile. Maggie Stiefvater characterises her cat Moose as a "criminally insane cat, furry muse, catcher of moths, grabber of ankles" but I think he's a total star. He's been breaking ACEO records and has also been featured in an article in Art Calendar about daily painting blogs. I fully expect he'll be having to complete his own tax return very soon. Moose gets the prize for being most often featured in uncommon but totally typical images of a cat.
The Most Gorgeous Mouthwatering (MGM) Studio of the Year

The Most Gorgeous Mouthwatering (MGM) Studio of the Year is for the Most Improved Studio of the Year and reflects the continuous efforts of many artists to improve our studio and working environments

  • 2010 Cathy Johnson Shed of Reality: a place called sanity The brilliant thing about this project was that Cathy set up a blog to track the whole process of creating a new studio in a shed. It not only provides a record of the various trials, tribulations and achievements, it's also a marvellous source of information with lots of links for anybody else trying to tackle a similar project.
  • 2009 Lisa Call (Lisa Call - Contemporary Taxtile Art) - For me there was no contest - this was a really heavy duty makeover and it was all photographed and documented using photo archives and blog in Lisa Call's studio makeover
  • 2008  Tracy Helgeson (Works by Tracy Helgesonplus Doug and Ginger and all those who helped with the new studio.  Tracy moved her studio, had a new floor laid, new walls and storage sorted, painted it all, bought and installed new studio furniture and then renovated her ex studio/new sitting room - and took photos and took us all through the process with her. Talk about comprehensive! [This award was originally made under The “Tales from the Frontline” Amusing Musings Trophy - now retired.  It prompted the creation of this new award in 2009]
Nominate an art blog for a Making A Mark Award

This is the last of the posts inviting nominations for the Making A Mark At Blog Awards for 2011.

I've been keeping a list of art blogs which have had "made a mark" during the course of the year but I'd also really like to hear from YOU as to which art blogs have had an impact on you.

What YOU need to do - it's very simple!
    • Identify the title of the Making A Mark Award that you want your nominee to be considered for
    • Leave a comment on the post on this blog inviting nominations for that award - BEFORE 24th December
  • WHICH BLOG: Identify
    • the name of the blog, its URL (eg "The Art Blog" and
    • the name of the blogger
    • (Note: prizewinners who have won in the last three years are not eligible - but only in relation to the specific award that they won)
  • WHY: Say WHY you think this blog should be considered for a Making A Mark Award.
That's it! Simple!

I'll collate all your nominations and comments in relation to each award and consider alongside those blogs which I have in mind as being worthy of consideration.

The Making A Mark Awards will be announced on the 29th and 30th December.

See my Making A Mark website - and below - for the aims of each prize, a list of previous award winners and an outline of the reasons why they won.

Note: All nominees and nominators are linked to both from this blog and my main website page where all the past awards and nominees are listed

So over to you - who do you think merits being nominated for these three awards?  Answers as a comment on this post please.

Links to the other posts seeking nominations can now be found at the top of the right hand column


  1. Award: 2011 “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”

    Name of the blog with URL: “Ester Roi’s Blog”

    Name of the blogger: Ester Roi

    Why: Ester's Icarus Drawing board has opened up new avenues of artistic expression for me, and allowed my abilities to expand. Her generous sharing of techniques helps all artists increase their capabilities.

  2. I nominate Ester Roi for “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”
    Ester Roi’s Blog:
    Blogger: Ester Roi
    I think Ester's Icarus Drawing Board is an amazing invention. Kudos to her for her creativity and follow through in getting it produced.

  3. Award: 2011 “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”
    Name of the blog with URL: “Ester Roi’s Blog”
    Name of the blogger: Ester Roi
    Why: Ester's, Icarus Drawing Board is an outstanding example of creativity and invention, its potential is awesome.

  4. Art Innovation of the Year award: Ester Roi continues to use her blog to share her innovative use of new art materials, in new ways unique to her. She inspires so many of us artists to innovate, to strive, and to create. - Michael Menius, Forestville, CA.

  5. Award: 2011 “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”
    Name of the blog with URL: “Ester Roi’s Blog”
    Name of the blogger: Ester Roi
    Why: Her Icarus board is a great innovation, she shares so many of her new ideas and results of experiments in view of techniques in her blog - she really deserves the award!!

  6. Award: 2011 “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”
    Name of the blog with URL: “Ester Roi’s Blog”
    Name of the blogger: Ester Roi
    Why: The incredible Icarus Board and that she is so generous with her ideas!

  7. Award: 2011 “The Art Innovation of the Year Award”

    Name of the blog with URL: “Ester Roi’s Blog”

    Name of the blogger: Ester Roi

    Why: The Icarus board is so unique, well thought out and becoming a 'must have' tool for certain wax media techniques. Ester is very generous in sharing her knowledge on her blog and really deserves this award.


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