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Friday, July 31, 2009

Art Babble

Charley Parker of linesandcolors blog discovered this great site that offers "Play Art Loud," a collection of museum and art-related videos. The selection looks really interesting and I can't wait to get some time to watch some of them. Go on over to Charley's blog to read his commentary, then check out the site from there.

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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Design class--formats

Monday's first class in a new design series was about formats for your artwork, meaning the size, shape and proportion of your support. We talked a bit about the golden mean, but I don't stress this, because people get so torqued about the math component. Manufacturers make few supports in the GM. We also talked about using the rule of thirds or rabatment to locate the focal point in a rectangle. These are shown on pp. 98-99 of The New Creative Artist. Everyone seemed more aware during critique of the points we covered in the lesson. I hope to see a few more light bulbs go off during the series.

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"Something special happens when people laugh together over something genuinely funny, and not hurtful to anyone. It's like a magic rain that showers down feelings of comfort, safety and belonging to a group" Quote by Mary Jane Belfie.

Thanks to Carol Kelly from my Hithergreen watercolor class for bringing me this delightful quote.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Webinar World

Well, one Webinar doesn't make me an expert, but I know more now than I did two days ago. I had several comments on Facebook. So here are my responses to those.

First, what does a Webinar involve: It's a live, online seminar where people sit at their own computers and watch a PowerPoint presentation as the presenter (me, yesterday) narrates the slides and expands on the subject. Participants can type in their questions for the presenter to respond to during or after the presentation. I'm sure there are other formats, but this is what we did yesterday.

The first one was stressful for me, since I hadn't had the experience before and couldn't visualize how it would work without a hitch somewhere. It seemed very odd to know I was speaking to a number of people, but couldn't see their reactions to what I was saying. There were two people in the room with me, one handling the technical side of it, so I didn't have to worry about anything but my talk. In a couple of places I advanced my slides too far and had to go back, but I don't think it was too bad. Just a few seconds, actually. On the whole, I think it went smoothly.

Yes, I hope to do more of these, now that I know how it's done. I think an individual could even do it, but there are a lot of things to think about, such as what company to use for the interface, how to market the Webinars, etc. The preparation of the program alone was very time-consuming. I wouldn't want to do it unless I could do it as professionally as it was done yesterday.

For the consumer, in the ArtistsNetworkTV Webinars, the participants receive a download of the presentation that includes the PowerPoint and the narration, plus the questions. I also prepared a handout of tips on creativity that they received. The full program will be available at artistsnetwork.com, if you missed one you're interested in.

Their next one looks very interesting and will give more information on using the media for marketing and promotion.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I survived

Well, that was fun--and different from anything I've done before. These Webinars have their own protocol for signing in, rehearsing, taking questions,and giving technical support. The whole thing on their end was nearly invisible to me. We had some trouble getting set up on Jennifer's laptop, so we used mine, and I felt comfortable with that. I thought it might feel really strange not to have an audience, but there were two people in the room and I hardly noticed them, I was so wrapped up in my talk. Their next program, in August, is on establishing an online presence for promoting your art, aka marketing. You'll be hearing about it from WetCanvas. I might like to attend that one, myself.

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Big day tomorrow

I'll drive to Cincinnati to do my live Web creativity presentation from F+W Media home office. I'm ready--and I'm excited. This is a first for me. I've done lots of workshops and lectures on creativity, but it will seem odd not to have an audience to look at and still know that real people are listening in. I can't imagine what will happen during the Q&A period after my talk. I'll have to be on my toes. When I was rehearsing yesterday, I forgot to advance my slide a couple of times. I hope there will be someone watching over me on-site so that doesn't happen, but I had better take my guardian angel with me anyway. It was fun putting together the PowerPoint program, finding images to go with my main points and trying for the right tone of inspiration and motivation. I can hardly wait!

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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Mary Todd Beam's Creative Edge

Another wonderful book for mixed-media artists from Mary Todd Beam, The Creative Edge: exercises to celebrate your creative self, has been published by North Light books (2009). Filled with beautiful illustrations of finished art, the book is also packed with hands-on demonstrations and information on tools and materials. The lay-flat spiral binding makes it easy to use while following the techniques instruction. In addition all this, Beam offers inspiration to the artist, something lacking in many art instruction books. Her table of contents includes: Claiming Your Creative Edge; The Tactile Edge; The Emotional Edge; The Symbolic Edge; The Dynamic Edge; Nature's Edge; The Soul's Edge; The Edge Around Us; and The Human Edge. Whew! What great stuff! If you want to try mixed-media painting, The Creative Edge is a good place to start. Mary's earlier book, Celebrate Your Creative Self: More than 25 exercises to unleash the artist within (North Light, 2001) is also a good handbook on mixed-media painting.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Trying to think ahead

Planning my Confident Color workshop in Dayton August 19-21. I haven't given one here for a long time, so I'm looking forward to it. The sponsor is Western Ohio Watercolor Society. There are still openings, so c'mon down. It's a bargain. Contact Yuki Hall.

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Thursday, July 09, 2009

Santa Fe Workshop canceled

I haven't had official word from the workshop director, but since she has sent out a refund notice to students who signed up, it appears the workshop has been canceled. I'm disappointed. I've taught several workshops there and it's such a fun place to teach and visit. So much art you can't take it all in.

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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Workshop and Webinar

Just about ready to leave for Rising Sun, Indiana, for the Creativity workshop. Wish I could say I'm all caught up, but I'm not. I've been working on my live Creativity Webinar from ArtistsNetwork Online Seminars, Tuesday, July 28, at 1:00 p.m. titled "Develop Your Natural Creativity and Grow As an Artist." In addition to the PowerPoint presentation, there will be a live Q&A session following the program. I'll be driving to Cincinnati to do it live from F+W. Two more projects have dropped in my lap, so there may not be any down time this summer.

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Monday, July 06, 2009

Spreading the word on triads

My class has been doing so well with my series of lessons on color harmony triads. They're finally learning that they can use a limited palette of 3-4 colors and don't need a dozen or more. They've been doing swatches and small sketches up until this week. The challenge for the next two weeks is to do one high-intensity triad and one low-intensity triad painting from the eight they have been working with, which are found in Confident Color. One student has been having so much fun that she has taken the lesson over to Wet Canvas to her watercolor group.

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