OK - this is all about a cute photo of our new kitten as she helped me with listing my 2009 prints for sale - good kitty! My kitties don't usually see my artwork (over at the studio), and found this wicker basket full of prints rather interesting. My biggest problem was keeping them from eating the basket! Thanks for allowing this little indulgence of cuteness!
Look for my PRINT SALE here: MY ETSY STORE
Friday, January 29, 2010
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 1:39 PM
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Like many artists, I frequently am asked to donate to a variety of causes - usually in the form of charity auctions to support wildlife groups, art groups, schools and more. Most of the time the causes are fairly local, and always worthy. At some point, however, I have to draw the line. I will almost always contribute to a show where a % goes back to the artist, as at least these shows are acknowledging the fact that local artists aren't typically on the high end of the income scale and could stand to at least recoup the costs of supplies. Some may argue that the mere fact that your name is getting out there and being promoted thru their event is worth its weight in gold (or canvas, as the case may be), but after 10, 15, 20 or so requests, you can only use so much good (and sometimes mediocre) advertising. I have my 2 or 3 pet charities, of course. The ones to which I always like donating, and sometimes attending, and sometimes buying. And I always feel good about donating to them. I won't, however, donate anymore to requests that I get at shows. It's too hard to verify the charity while I'm there, and the reality is I'm at shows to sell my work. It's especially hard to receive those requests if you are at a show that isn't going well too.
As I was thinking this over for the new year, a NEW thought came to me. This may be the year that I approach the charities that I especially want to support. The thought came to me as I was volunteering my time at a local grade school, watching students participate in a running program. As I'm watching them make their laps, and get their cards punched, and seeing all these smiling, determined faces I realized it would make such a great painting! And as I was thinking on the design of the painting I realized that what I really wanted to do was donate the painting to raise money for this running program. It is completely not the type of event I would usually donate to, as there is no official donation program for this event. But I knew this is where my "painting to be" needed to go. And how fun for a program to get unexpected, unasked money with which they can grow in ways they may not have realized.
So... tired of those many requests? How about seeking out your own way to donate instead? It may bring you closer to the charity, your community, and will feel great. Happy giving!
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 10:11 AM
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Now, as much as I would like to say that this is a frustration unique to artists (who don't have hired help), I'm sure many small business owners fall into the same category - the all-in-one worker bee. When I talk to people not familiar with the odd lifestyle that is the working artist, they often have images of all my days spent painting and creating in a beautiful sky-lit studio with an easel, a palette and paint brushes my only tools. Like any other small business, however, it requires the completion of many other little (and big) tasks every week. Especially when you are dealing with a control freak (such as myself).
One of my least favorite duties of the small business owner (me) is the sourcing of new supplies. I can spend hours, days, and weeks, looking for the right product, the right company, and the right price. My latest agonizing turn at this task was during a search for quality eco-friendly paper in an 80 lb cover weight in the proper size (or easily trimmable with little waste to the proper size) for printing my art cards. I found it impossible to find a pre-cut and scored size A6 card that was both 80 lb AND eco-friendly and finally decided I'll have to cut and score my own (once I do, I will also sell the blank card material separately as a supply to others with this quandary who don't have the volume to switch to cases of larger size paper). Although I'm not at the point where I can buy a pallet load (as was the minimum order from some suppliers), I can buy cases of paper. Another part of the problem was my indecision of how big the paper could be for me to easily manage. Would I print them first (on a new printer - another sourcing nightmare I'm currently working on) and then trim them, or would I trim the paper and then print on my current (smaller) printer. It seemed everyone had 65 lb. I don't like 65 lb. It feels like a cheap Walmart card at that weight. I wanted 80 lb. I wanted FSC 100% recycled. I wanted an environmentally responsible company. I wanted product made in the USA. I found some great papers, but in the end the company that I came back to was one I have used many times in the past - Neenah Paper. Their ENVIRONMENT PAPERS are a great collection of eco-friendly products and I've never had a problem with their paper products in the past. I hope to be cutting open my new case of paper soon and begin using their paper (and envelopes) for all my art cards and card sets!
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 1:21 PM
Friday, January 15, 2010
Sometimes a painting needs a little face-lift! Something about the sky in this piece had been bothering me. So, when I finally unframed it in order to get a scan of the image (something that my lovely patrons have asked me to do repeatedly!) I decided to re-paint the sky, removing some of the darker lines that had dominated it. I am so happy with the results, and hope you will be too! Look for this original to be available for auction at the SNOHOMISH ARTS COUNCIL H'ARTS charity in February!
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 5:28 PM
Monday, January 11, 2010
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 3:16 PM
Sunday, January 3, 2010
- Reviewing my desired 2010 show calendar, putting all deadlines and dates on my calendar
- Updating my website to be more interactive with my blog and other online communities
- Uploading my latest images to my online printshop: Imagekind.com
- Working on a supply list, including sourcing a new printer (yea!) as well as toner for my old printer
- Organizing my new (temporary) studio space in order to have an open studio - I'll be looking for a permanent studio space in downtown Corvallis in April when my lease is up - yea again!
- Preparing for the Bellevue Home Show
- Restocking inventory after a busy 2009! Thanks to you I'm OUT of cards and prints!
Posted by Jennifer Lommers at 8:26 PM