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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Commissions, Eight & Sand Gallery, Painting...

The last of my commissions went out on Saturday, I hate that it took me so long to get them done, but this last group I started to feel burnt out. So now I'm giving myself this week to play around in my sketchbook. I've been feeling like i'm in a rut with my painting style. I stumbled onto this artist when one of his videos was suggested to me on Youtube https://www.youtube.com/user/mattjabbar I'm so in love with the way he uses color.

I also want to recreate Miyazaki's watercolor palette too. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhF3Q7f4ARc I've been stuck painting the same way I have since High School, the way Doc Bob taught us. I need to break some of those habits because I think they're holding me back. Hopefully this week I'll get some good ideas and some good practice in. Even though I've given myself a week, I can already feel the anxiety kicking in. I'm down to my last 20 in my paypal and if I'm not working on commissions I don't really have any money coming in.

Last month between clients I managed to crank out an illustration I've had in my head since Jan/Feb. It's for a friends gallery in Seattle and the show is titled Insectarium, which will be the last show for her gallery (it's closing in August).



If you're interested, you can purchase this piece through the gallery site [ HERE ].

I made a new instagram acct for only my art. If you're following me in instagram and you're only interested in my art and not the other stuff (cats, life stuff, or food) follow my Art IG. I'll only be posting art related pictures/updates.

And before I end this post, I'd like to remind everyone I have a Patreon Page. By supporting me on Patreon, For as little as $5.00/mo you could get an exclusive Art of the Month print and you help me continue my studio practice.

If anyone is following this blog, I apologize for the lack of updates, sometimes I get so busy I just completely forget. I'm going to try and do better. Hopefully I'll have some interesting art updates in the next few weeks.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Toy Con Toy Show & General Update


Huge HUGE *Thank You* to everyone that came out to ToyCon yesterday and came by my table. I really enjoyed all of the conversations we had. I'm really happy that you liked my work enough to bring it home with you.

I really like the ToyCon staff, they are really nice, and most of the vendors are nice too. I enjoy doing shows, getting out talking with people, discussing art, pop culture, movies, and music.



Half way into working on this Chewbacca piece I began to get frustrated that I didn't have the proper browns, and was wishing I had painted it instead. I will probably redo it at some point. I stayed up way too late on Friday working on it, then finished it about 5pm on Saturday. I scanned it and stuck it in my prints layout. Then I put together a special prints package for the show on Sunday. By the time I had everything done it was about 6 - then I ran to the printer.

About 1230a as I was cutting down the 5x7 prints for that special prints package, that's when I realized I was missing two of the prints for it. I stopped by the printer after the show to get them printed up, I will be cutting & assembling them today and listing them in [ my bigcartel shop ].

I didn't get done with show prep till 230a Sunday, got up at about 5 and left about 630a and stopped to pick up breakfast with some much needed coffee, I got to the Bridgeview Community Ctr with 15 mins to unload, park the car and set up.

After the show, on the drive home is when the tired hit me. When I got home, the husband helped me unpack my car, I got my flash drive & paper then drove to the printer and got my missing prints done. He (long time employee there) apologized, by this time I wasn't mad, he let me know that my regular guy had found a new job and let me know who was on the print staff now. *sigh* looks I have new people to break in. =)

So much to do today, back to getting commissions done and out to clients.

Thanks for stopping in to read!

I have lots of arting updates on [ instagram ] and I repost on [ Facebook ], AND I also have a [ Patreon Page ] where you get to help shape the monthly art packages that are mailed out to patrons!

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Etsy Payments - SCREWS OVER SHOP OWNERS.

A few weeks ago Etsy rolled out an update forcing all of their shop owners to turn on the etsy payment option or they'll lose their shops. Well I had my first sale with it and, they will not release funds till you reach a threshold amount of 25.00 for daily deposits. THIS IS RIDICULOUSLY WRONG. This is exactly the reason I quit using Zazzle, they have a threshold of $50.00 before they'll pay. My etsy shop earning went into the toilet after their beta tests back in 2014, and I only recently came back because Storenvy required users to participate in their 'stripe' payments, and requiring us to use stripe to participate in their market. This might work for people who are just resellers and have high product turnover. But for actual artists, this is a horrible business model.

So... I've taken down my listings at etsy. I need to do some research on where I can have a shop temporarily till October when my domain is up for renewal (then I'll be transfer it to wix since the yearly fees include domain payment).

If anyone still wants one of those Rebel pins, email me. I have a few left.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

March Portrait Special

The entire month of March I'm having a portrait special.

$35.00 for Sketch Card Sized paintings and $45.00 for 5x7's.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Show Season Wrap / Research & Development Time

For me show season wrapped up last weekend with the Chicago Pop Culture Convention.  I've never done a show that has over lapped with the Holiday shopping season before, so I wasn't really sure what to expect.  Even though sales were incredibly slow, several small framed paintings found homes. Which, you know, this is something I've been trying to do more of.  Hopefully this will be my focus this coming year:  Art 8x10 and smaller, framed, ready to hang 100.00 and under.

This year (2016) overall sales were down, because attendance was down. Several friends of mine speculated it was because of the political atmosphere of the election.   Personally I have yet to see (from my end being freelance) that the economy is getting better. I guess only time will tell.

Next up: 
Now that show season is over it's time to get working on advancing my painting skills.  For a while, I've been itching to experiment without worrying about messing up expensive watercolor paper. I just feel like I'm severely lacking the experimentation element of art, being so consumed with finishing work to sell.

Over the weekend I got a peek at Brian Stelfreeze's Artbook. I absolutely love the way he uses color. And I've been in love with Drew's work since I was old enough to realize who he was. So I bought a few things: books from Amazon (Amazon Prime 18% off w/free 2 day shipping) and a new sketchbook from Michael's (YAY 50% off coupon).

I may have time to just play and start recording some of this for video episodes on my YouTube channel and maybe make some of it only available on my Patreon site.  Which is another thing I really need to work on.


This week, I'm cutting and decorating mats for the smaller works from my convention art bin. I'm also going to try and squeeze in some personal sketch/art cards. I'll be listing everything in my Etsy Shop as I go.

Till next time!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Dr. Robert Miller

Today I found out that my High School Art Instructor had passed away on November 2.   For years I've been trying to locate him, my old high school didn't have any forwarding info, and any internet searches always came up empty.  I'm feeling a little heartbroken that I will never get to see him again.

Dr. Robert Miller more so than any other person had such an immense impact on my early art career.  He really did care about helping his students succeed, and if you put in the effort he would help you to become a better artist.   His classes were not for the weary, or for the students thinking they were going to get an easy grade.

I always marveled at his drawing skills. That first demonstration he gave on how to draw a skeleton, I wanted to draw like that.  His pencil renderings were a thing of beauty. Every mark he made on the paper had it's purpose.  'No Chicken scratches were allowed'. Something he'd say about those short little wispy lines he'd see us drawing.

Doc Bob got me into Art Competition, I still have my ribbons, they are packed away at my parents house.  I really enjoyed it and it was something I really missed once I was out of High School. I will always remember him saying (when we'd get the exacto knife from him to cut mats) 'count your fingers' and you'd count them out loud, he'd hand you the exacto and say 'I want you to have that many when you're done.'

Doc Bob also got me my first scholarship, a week of 'Art Camp' at the University of Illinois.  He gave me a bunch of supplies I would need and told me, as long as I used them, they were mine to keep.  I still have the watercolor palettes, some of the paints and I think I still have a brush or two.

Senior year I spent so much time in the Art Department it felt like home. Even now when I looked through the pictures I had taken so long ago, nearly all of them were taken in the art department.

I'm sad that I will never get the chance to tell him that his guidance and instruction in those early years helped mold me into the artist I am today.

For what it's worth -
Doc Bob, Thank you so much for being an excellent teacher and mentor. I am deeply grateful and you will forever be remembered.

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/aurora-beacon-news/obituary.aspx?n=robert-miller&pid=182468331&



Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Zurko's Haunted Halloween All Night Flea Market and Meeting the Mighty Wez

The Wheaton All Night Flea Markets have become some of my favorite shows. This past weekend was no exception even with the sluggish sales (thanks cubs game).  I had signed on to do this show earlier in the year (probably around June), and it wasn't till sometime in September did I realize who the media guest was going to be.   Vernon Wells!  I was excited and nervous at the same time.

Day of the show I get there super early, and found out that my booth was right next to his, now I was really nervous, I think it was just the anticipation of meeting him and giving him a print of the drawing I made of his character from Mad Max 2 / The Road Warrior.

Once he got there it was all good, probably one of the best evenings I've had in a loong time.