art career

in the year 2000

Apparently I am on a 3 blog posts a year streak.

I started another new job and the biggest shock of all is I love it. I feel almost paranoid saying that out loud like I’m going to jynx it but I truly do enjoy my new day job. I work at a school for special needs students and I do admin work and a bit of design, and it is really rewarding.

Lets see what else happened, oh yes got married, took mega road trip honeymoon, got settled into house and job, now there’s time for ART.

 photo credit to Pamela Berry   www.pamelaberryphotography.com

photo credit to Pamela Berry www.pamelaberryphotography.com

Wedding was lovely, it was like 97 degrees out that day but the day was amazing regardless. All our family pitched in to make it happen, like legit so many people helped it was so touching to be surrounded by all that love. Drew, I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned him by name anyways Drew my now husband was such a trooper that day. He’s a keeper.

I don’t often share photos of myself on here but our photographer did such a good job I had to share at least one. Also we wrote our own vows and damn near wrote the same thing, how does that happen.

 taking a little nappy nap

taking a little nappy nap

The honeymoon was amazing we saw so much wildlife! We saw a moose 20ft away.

We also got to be in bunch of national parks with hardly any other visitors, it was amazing. Almost every trail we took we were the only people on that trail. it was John Muri-esque.

 lamar valley, my second home

lamar valley, my second home

Ok one more photo from the trip.

We camped all over Tetons and Yellowstone the last night we stayed at pebble creek and camped among the lamar valley wolf pack and heard them howl all night. It was amazing. We then woke up early and met some career “wolfers” who spot with their scopes and track the packs of Yellowstone. A wolfer named Dusty let us look through his scope and we saw the soda butte pack. It is an experience I will never forget, so glad that me and Drew got to share this time together.

So now I have a billion arts I need to art. I have a couple commissions on the docket for holiday season so that’s nice.

I have had a long break from art since my last art show in Northfield. I am a little worried I will be rusty getting back in the swing of things. Strange as it is, it is harder working on a 2nd job when you like your first, when you hate your day job the hate becomes driving force to make your passion job work. Don’t get me wrong I would not trade back AT ALL, I just need to learn to have more discipline to dedicate time to art in my spare time. Maybe the hate of a job that drove art didn’t create authentic art maybe having a job or life that is rewarding will yield more rewards within art. That’s my hope at least.

i'm picking it up

So my day job has changed... for the worse. I got strong armed by my company into managing a new security account and its quite demanding and just takes all the steam out of me. I haven't made a single new piece of art since starting this new position and that bums me out a lot. 

I know that your "day job" is supposed to be #1 priority but I just can't, I've been trying to be okay with just being my day job since graduating college. I know you are supposed to make a career of your day job and work yourself up but something is literally wrong in my brain and I CANNOT. I don't have it in me, I can't kill off the want/need of having art being my profession.  At my day job my brain is just on a loop of "screw this, this is so stupid, this is ridiculous" and I can already hear some of you saying "oh well just go in with a positive attitude instead of being so negative" well guess what Sally, work sucks all the positive attitude out of me and just chews it up and spits in on the floor. 

I feel like I can't keep wasting positive energy on work, it needs to go toward my art. I have tried to work on art after getting home from work but after the day sucking the life-force out of me I am running on just fumes, and just fumes does not good art make. I need a holiday from work, a very long holiday, and I don't expect I shall return, in fact I mean not to.

I understand it is the world we live in but how is everyone just okay with having 5 soul crushing days and then 2 days recharging where you barely get to do anything else other than chores at home and recharge and finally start to feel like a person again and then its 8pm Sunday night and you are back to square 1. Its messed up. There's nothing I can do to change it which is the worst thing.

I feel like I am trying quite hard to make the transition into full-time artist but still feel years away if not impossible to reach. I know you are not supposed to talk about sales and how you are fairing but I've been doing what your supposed to do and that really hasn't helped me so why not just do what I want to do. Anyways, sales, this year I have sunk in quite a lot of money into booth fees and gallery fees to have my work out in the world to hopefully get some momentum going forward and have seen no return on investment yet. That is a really hard pill to swallow. You often hear people say "the best investment is in yourself" well I have invested a whole lot of time and money into getting my artwork out there and right now its looking like I invested poorly and it's, I'll be honest, heartbreaking.

It feels like the universe keeps screaming at me NO, and I still don't want to listen. Maybe I am looking for too quick of results? I don't know. I still can't shake the goal of doing art full-time. Making art still feels like my purpose, and any day job I've ever held feels like the opposite. I couldn't care less about any but most of all my current day job. It HAS to be just what I am doing for now to get by, it  will never be who I am, I can say that with the most certainty of anything I've ever said. Stupid America with its job focused identities.

Do I wish I could just make art and not have to sell it to be able to live OMG YES. But that's not the world we live in unfortunately. So I just gotta keep trying to learn how to market and sell I guess which are my LEAST favorite things and I hate that its part of an art career because its the least artistic thing I can think of. 

Ok super long blog just complaining about life hahahaha sorry!

running out of sand

So I've made a bunch of cool stuff lately. I've been playing with different styles and techniques.

 wild goose island in the lake there, isn't he cute?

wild goose island in the lake there, isn't he cute?

So I love this painting. I love the colors so much, the clouds I struggled with I need to up my technique for that still also I think I need to learn to use retarder for my acrylics for clouds since it dries so fast I don't get time to think before it dries down. But all in all I love how it turned out. I want to do more like this, it was a lot of fun even if it is more conceptual than my normal stuff. 

 this one is hard to photograph

this one is hard to photograph

This bison also is something new I am trying. I have a bunch of old halfworked canvases that I am trying to incorporate into new artworks. I had a lot of fun with this one too. I think I should have made the orange background darker more like burnt orange to make it more like the actual prismatic spring but I still like how it turned out.

compare.jpg

Here I just painted over the original and tried again at the same composition. This is what I call a half day painting. That's what the original was as well, a painting you work on for a half a day for fun while watching a movie. Opposed to a normal painting which is worked on in days and several sittings. The original was also a half dayer so it is nice to see even my quick art skills have improved since starting to pursue the "art dream" as they call it. 

So there is a month left of the year. I think I want to make a goal of 4 paintings in this last month. This year has been not the best in general for me but if I am looking at the positive I have made more art this year by at least 3 fold from the previous 2 years. So if art is my positive takeaway from 2017 lets make the last month have even more art to try to balance out 

can we talk about twin peaks for a second?

So this is weird... my dad died about 2 weeks ago. It's really strange times. Half of me for most of my life has been prepared for this moment to come due to his alcoholism and the other half of me is like sad / sorta angry but subdued, like its dulled out in the far distance. It almost feels like it didn't happen sometimes. It is a very weird and awkward space to live in. I just want to watch and talk about Twin Peaks all the time recently so I guess that is how I'm coping. Coping seems like a strong word but Twin Peaks is just my solace right now. 

First off, the finale is tonight people. I CANNOT WAIT. Even if we wrap up nothing and it was all unconnected dream logic I don't even care. 

I am obsessed with the imagery of Twin Peaks. The show has a very weird color pallet of muted and jewel tones. It evokes a natural and ancient kinda of feeling with its sound-work and how vast everything feels with the wide open shots. I just love it. The characters are the best part and they've made me step into fan art.

This is art just for me, not even to display just for me just put it on paper. I don't know why that is even a kind of artwork for me now, it used to be art to sell art to learn, and art to experiment. I had this a little bit with Big Little Lies, where it was like omg they're so gorgeous I just have to put them in my sketchbook, but Twin Peaks bringing it to a new level. I just love drawing them.

 candie aka: the best new character of the new season, like I could watch a show just about her

candie aka: the best new character of the new season, like I could watch a show just about her

So Candie wears this amazing just pepto -bismol pink cocktail dress and nylon gloves OMG its just so good like the costume and her totally space cadet personality thing going on, its just so great. I need to start bringing more colors to work because I actually love this sketch but wish it had that intense pink in it.

 audrey and coop, so sad they never hooked up

audrey and coop, so sad they never hooked up

I am really into sketching more cartoony stuff at work lately, like I love this. I've also noticed sketching more cartoony helps me loosen up. Mentally and physically well physically as far as art wise. It helps my artwork feel more loose and natural and not overworked? 

 laura palmer pin up, since this doesn't already exist somewhere

laura palmer pin up, since this doesn't already exist somewhere

I've been wanting a pin up tattoo on my thigh for a long time, it will probably be a while before I get it done anyways but I am in love with this Laura Palmer pin up. I've always thought of doing a pin up calendar sometime but don't know what kind of market there is for that kind of thing anymore. I also tried my watercolors on this one, I am still pretty new to the media but I love how trees look in watercolor, like fading in the distance. Or if I never get around to getting it tattooed I might hang this one just cos I love it I rescind my past statement about not displaying it, because how cool would it be in my Twin Peaks themed den in my future imaginary house when I decorate it. 

Well there was a weird blog rant about my Twin Peaks fan art this week. #sorrynotsorry 

i met you in the summer

So last Friday was my first gallery showing. It was a pretty small show and at a city community center art display showcase, but the show was so sweet and really touching. It was in honor of a local artist that passed over a year ago, Anthony Caponi. Tony built an art park that I worked at just after college during my graphics career. When submitting artwork to be considered for the show you were asked to include a short essay about how Caponi influenced you, whether that be through his art, the park, or knowing him in person. I wrote about my time working there and what it meant to me not knowing that if chosen to show that the story would be printed alongside the artwork on display. So seeing my story and everyone else's stories on display was really exposing at first but also very sweet. There was so many touching stories about how one man's art really reached so many people on more than just a visual aesthetics level.

I had a couple guests that came out for the show and that was incredibly sweet of them to come. So a big thank you to them.

 here is the showcased piece, matted and framed up

here is the showcased piece, matted and framed up

So next month I am doing my first outdoor show. It not a solely art dedicated show, its a festival that has crafts and food vendors as well but it more art leaning than your regular run of the mill arts & crafts fair. It is a 2 day festival called Night Market which surprise takes place at night. It seems really fun and I am excited about it. I do have a pinch of nerves/fear of not selling anything but I am hopeful that I can gain some audience and reach more people. 

I've been trying to fit in art more often because I can see improvement the more often I work at it, which duh but seeing actual improvement is a real motivator. 

I really love doing the women and wildlife/nature drawings. I find them super fun to make and relaxing I love how they look. Now, whether or not they are something that appeals to people remains to be unseen. 

 I just love drawing cartoony fish, THEY ARE SO FUN

I just love drawing cartoony fish, THEY ARE SO FUN

Fish are incredibly fun to draw. I am so into doing almost cartoon-like animals and women. I can see areas I need to tighten up, but I for sure don't want to head towards realism. I like graphic look to art. Big bold lines and colors, like I wish drawing tattoo flash was an art path I could take. 

I have been playing around with the idea of making travel artwork. I obviously already have a heavy North American landscape and wildlife influence but taking the work and marketing it as travel art. I don't know I need to formulate the idea a little further. I want to make some of my landscapes into postcards. We'll see how it turns out.

I am also excited to try more oil paintings. I finished 2 last month and they were fun and challenging but I really liked working in the medium. It makes you slow down, which is a good thing. 

 my little salmon guy

my little salmon guy

 colorado scene

colorado scene

Now the first painting I will say plays more to oil's strengths, the landscape I think I tried to approach it like I do acrylics and that's why it isn't as new feeling. With oils it feels like you have to think bigger picture than you do with acrylics. With acrylics I can lay one layer down in the background and work my way forward and its almost like you have to work opposite in oils. Which can lead to cool things like the sunset for the salmon. 

I need to play around with it more, I am always too worried about wasting or ruining a painting but I really need to be okay with making mistakes to learn so I can improve my skillset. Which duh, but it's one of those things you know it but until you do it you don't really KNOW it. 

i can has artz?

I think my first post on my website was exactly a year ago. So I've been arting it up for a year officially. Real talk, I am feeling kinda like a bummer. 

I feel like all I do is bitch and moan on this blog "I wish I had more time for art" "I wish my job was art" "the art community is so up its ass" "how do I find an audience?" and its all sour grapes. I acknowledge this. I am complaining about things I can't change which is just... useless.

But its also frustrating because I legit feel these are the things holding me back. I know I have a chip on my shoulder, I just don't know what to do about it. I want to be positive but honestly it is hard when it comes to getting my work out there. It feels like beyond just the standard hurdles of creating an audience and finding your nische, there have been additional intentional hurdles placed [mostly financial] to weed out up and coming artists of a certain economic background. 

Its hard not to take it personally. I for the life of me do not know how artists who don't come from money start from the bottom up. It feels as if things are set up to help established artists further establish themselves. I don't know what the stepping stone is between no audience/no establishment/no expendable cash to having a client base large enough to be able to afford to appear in art fairs, and it bums me out.

OK, venting complete, I feel better.

So positive stuff. I am so into drawing currently. It makes me happy and I am more apt to work on an illustration after work because its 1000% less set up, I can just dive in. I know a lot of my illustrations are made pretty much just for me, like beyond me there is probably no market for them but I'm not mad about that because I just like making them so much. 

 like how gorgeous is this, I am in love

like how gorgeous is this, I am in love

 I figured if I am doing American landscapes, I should include some native american women, this is based off a photo of a shoshone woman

I figured if I am doing American landscapes, I should include some native american women, this is based off a photo of a shoshone woman

 my beautiful Celeste in that moment you felt her heart sink into her stomach, I try not to post the fan art I make onto my professional site but she was toooo pretty, big little lies so good

my beautiful Celeste in that moment you felt her heart sink into her stomach, I try not to post the fan art I make onto my professional site but she was toooo pretty, big little lies so good

I love them. I love my women. I could draw them forever. I have collected a bunch of reference photos and want to branch out in body types and races and what not. Mix it up more. 

I am also still working on landscapes and wildlife because I love them too. I love mountains and animals so much I can't even. 

 so far improved from my zion painting from this time last year, so thats a plus

so far improved from my zion painting from this time last year, so thats a plus

 some dog portraits I did for a friend's sister, the dog on the right was challenging with such short fur and all one tone but I am happy with how they came out

some dog portraits I did for a friend's sister, the dog on the right was challenging with such short fur and all one tone but I am happy with how they came out

Sometimes I feel as far as art that all my positivity goes into the artwork and all I have left is sour grapes to promote the work. When I think about drawing or painting my work I feel calm, happy, peaceful, when you ask me about selling/marketing my reaction is blechhhh and anxiety. 

So despite all my bitching I did enter in a couple of art shows, and god if they read this blog I am sure my applications will end up in the bin but hey I am being honest. I am not about to drink the koolaid. I need to get out there and meet my market/create a market and I need to learn how to not be such a bummer about promoting my artwork.  

trial and error

Well we are coming up on the end of the year here; classic reflection time and member berry season. So in looking back on this year these are my observations.

I'll start with the lows. Arts & crafts shows aren't for me. It's not my crowd. I know that galleries aren't my crowd either though. I don't know where my crowd exists. I don't know where to go with my art. I don't know how to sell my art. I have been trying to share and sell my art for going on 5 years but more of a real effort this past year. 

A long time ago I was told that it is selfish to hold onto my art and that is meant to owned by people other than myself. I have hit many walls trying to pursue art as my fulltime career, and my kneejerk reaction to failure is to think "omg, this isn't worth it, obviously it wasn't meant to be, there is no room for my art in the world" That negative funk lingers for a while but always fades away and those words said to me take its place.

it's selfish to hold onto my art, it is meant to be owned by others

I don't know if this is even true. It could have just been nice words to placate me. Yet, I can't shake them. It has become absolute true concrete fact for me somehow. My artwork is meant to be owned by others, it belongs to people, it doesn't belong locked in my storage unit or the shelves of my closet. My art belongs in the world. So knowing that fact means I need to figure out how to do this, and this figuring out how business is the bane of my existence. 

Ok some of the highs. I made more artwork this year than any year prior, and by a lot, at least tripple my normal output for a year. I completed my first ever outdoor mural that was 14ft long, so also my largest artwork to date. I had more requested artwork this year than any year beforehand. I started the year with 10 followers online [all family/friend relations] and as of this morning have 50+ followers online, not thats anything really in the scheme of online but hey 5 times as many as I started out with.

On a more personal note, my family and friends have more supportive than ever this year in my endeavor of pursuing my art career. They are the best part of this journey and I don't know where I would be without them. 

So I will wrap up this member berries blog post with the most recent / probably last finished painting I will do this year. 

 turned out more fall like than intended, also a little more bob ross like than intended lol

turned out more fall like than intended, also a little more bob ross like than intended lol

Fall somehow crept into this painting but I am ok with it. Overall I like this painting. I wish I could have captured a little more vastness, this seems a little close feeling for me. The lodgepole pine on the left is meh, only because I had no reference photo for it, I clearly need to go get some more reference photos in person is the answer! *wink* I also would like to work on blending but spoiler alert, that is a goal for next year as I step into the world of... oil painting.

Original oil paintings coming 2017, lets see how awesome or how awful it is.

progression

Well, this past weekend's craft show was a bust but I guess I learned my lesson about knowing your crowd. But hard to know what the crowd is or is gonna be without trying some things. The next show I am doing is crafters / makers only, so maybe the audience will be more open to art. I am really still not into the idea of galleries, maybe I should look into coffee shops but even then, they have become almost gallery like because soooo many artists are looking for their showcase.

I also learned that apparently there is always one lady at a craft show that is going to passive agressively deflate your mojo with a sly ass hatted remark. I feel like I am usually someone to just let things slide but these craft show shady ladies dig deep yo. It put me off my game for a day each time. 

But since I have the best family ever, I feel like I can bounce back from those haters. Seriously I have the most supportive friends and family and am so thankful for them. They are national treasures and I want to build them all vacation homes and make it so they can all retire because they deserve it and they are just so awesome. 

My friend Meredith requested a cardinal in winter painting for her Grandma. I had so much fun making this one.

 he's a little grumpy and I love it

he's a little grumpy and I love it

I love how the bird looks and the background, I still struggle with tree branches and bark. I should do some practice pieces of just tree branches, to up my game.

So I love how it turned out, but when comparing it to an older artwork of a cardinal I love it more. 

 just wow

just wow

Don't get me wrong I still like the one on the left but not often do you get to see side by side comparison of your skill level. My boyfriend always tells me that my technique has improved and being a woman you assume he is just placated you but I guess I actually have, which is really cool and awesome to see. 

I am in the midst of making a new northern lights painting, people seem to love them, and I had one ordered by my gracious aunt at my last show.

Lets hope new and more art is on the horizon and next year turns out even more art and success. 

on the road again

I am an inspiration/reference material hoarder. There, I said it. I must have a million things I want to make paintings about, yet I still wanna get more ideas. I need to work on the follow through on getting more paintings cranked out. I think that November and Decemeber I am going to have to take a lot of 'me' weekends and get stufft doned.

Next Saturday is my second craft/artisten show atempting to sell my wares. I hope it goes well, I have my hopes up, but not my expectations?? If that is possible. 

I feel stuck between the 2 factions of art. I am not the gallery type, and I am not lowest common denomiator type either. I need to find my niche market, I feel like it is out there I just haven't found a way to connect with them. 

I have at least 2 commisioned paintings on deck for the holiday season, which is good. I mean thats 2 more than any other year. I think honestly I need to make more new stuff. Perhaps that shall be my Thanksgiving goal, paint something everyday during the 4 day break. Less the day of the craft show.

I am kinda pumped to set up my booth again, I feel like it looks hella awesome.

 a little crowded but idk I like it

a little crowded but idk I like it

 and of course my fly ass vintage table cloth

and of course my fly ass vintage table cloth

balance

Couple things to get out of the way. I decided to roll the dice and do some art/craft fairs. I know they are a gamble and most likely I won't gain any audience or sales, but I gotta get out there somehow. As we know I am not a fan of the gallery scene just because its all concept no substance and its not about engaging with the audience, its more selfish type art, which I think is important but isn't my main focus. I like working with people I like hearing people, I like making artwork for people. So I am betting on my artwork and taking the plunge into arts/craft shows.

If you are so inclined [whoever if anyone is reading this] the shows are:

October 22nd 10am-3pm @ Knights of Columbus KC Hall in Hastings, MN

November 26th 10am -3pm @ Holiday Inn Hotel Conference Center St. Paul NE in Lake Elmo, MN

So I finished my commissioned bear painting.

 "Bear Family" 18" X 24" acrylic on canvas

"Bear Family" 18" X 24" acrylic on canvas

I like everything about it, except baby bear's face. That little face caused me more trouble than I care to admit. I am satisfied with how it turned out but wish it was better, my reference photo was so tiny that it didn't give me much help so I did struggle getting his little face in there and looking cute. The mama bear was a breeze, as were the lupins, I really had a fun time painting those. I just love adding flowers to paintings. I actually really like the willow branches, and how the bark turned out. I know I am not hitting it on the nose for photorealism but I am not sure if that is where I want to be heading. 

I also worked on a couple other paintings this weekend. I tried doing some experiment paintings where you just go with it and it usually turns out crap, so I'm still on the fence if it did turn out crap.

Ok I kinda love how this looks and also see the problems. I love the gold on blue, omg I love the gold. I get Klimt's obsession with gold leaf. Gold is fun. I think the elk photo I chose as reference was taken at odd angle so when it is silhouetted his body looks stumpy. I still like it though, real talk, I'm into it, as of now. I am sure I'll look back at this in a week and be like ew junk. 

I also attempted another northern lights painting, because I miss and obsessed with my old one.

I went too dark with the sky and too pastel with the northern lights. It is hard to find that balance yo. My blue's weren't doing it so I added a little black which darkened the sky too much. I think also this is a kind of painting that needs to be large, I keep trying to make it work on a small canvas and it isn't working. I think I need to go big with this and try again.

I have started a new dripping bird piece and am pretty excited to see how it turns out. I am pretty settled on an osprey but I don't know what bird to pick. I also toyed with the idea of doing another animal instead of a bird, but birds have the most fluid motion, that translates to the drips. 

I feel like I am in a better swing of things, now having weekends generally open to work on my artwork. Whether it be actually painting or preparing for art/craft show, or getting reference materials. I am hoping that I am able to keep at it like this and make the transistion to doing this as my main gig instead of my side hustle. 

against the wind

I finally had a legit full weekend of working on canvases. The canvases were fighting back however. 

It is becoming increasingly clear I need to work on making the switch from career to artist; not that you can really call my day job a career but still, it gots to go. I don't hate my day job its neutral to me, I have no feelings about it one way or another however it eats up all my time and sucks the energy out of me. So when I do go in to working on what is currently my weekend craft, I have nothing left in me because weekday job used it all up.

I think my current reachable goal is to be able to go down to part time / 3 days a week. I would like to be able to do that within 6 months if not sooner. However that would mean making $400 $500 a month from artwork sales, which I've never done. So we'll see. [that saying should be my family's crest]

I'm still working on my bear painting comission. I am hoping it leads to more work. I really enjoy comissions because I think I try harder when making something for someone specifically. I really enjoyed doing the mural I recently completed. It is going to sound obvious but working with that much color brought me joy. There is of course doing what you love the actual painting act which is rewarding but being around the color was what I really enjoyed. I liked playing with the colors and I miss being able to "go to work" and be immersed in color. The color gave me life almost.

So long story short I need to quit work and be able to do art, it will be simple right?

Here is the one painting I finished this weekend. I like it but yet I feel like it is missing something. I like playing with silhouettes and color, but I am not sure what I feel is missing. I wanted to capture a dusty old bison in rut running against the wind, the smell of hot summer in the grasslands where the rocks just radiate heat like an oven, and the breeze is even warm and dry against your face, where the badlands just feel so vast and empty. So yeah, that rambling, that's what I wanted to paint. 

ain't got no suitcase

So I got the rejection email from the artist in residency program I applied to. Schwang-wang-waaaang...

Honestly I wasn't expecting to be accepted because, keepin' it real, I'm not totally ready, I don't really have a voice yet and my skill is decent but not excellent yet, and I know I need to make a larger cataloug and yada yada yada. The thing is ugggg that takes so much tiiiiime. I would love to do it everyday, but my god, how do people have the spare time to work at it daily or weekly? I honestly only have time to drag out all the art stuff once a month at most. I really think people underestimate how much time and work it takes to hold a fulltime job and work at your passion, when they say stuff like "follow your bliss." 

I also am regrettably a glass half full kind of person deep down. I know I had no chance really for this residency I know I need more development I know there are a lot more people than me that probably deserve it more and are more talented, I know all this but deep down there is a seed of "what if?..." I can't decide if I love my seed of wistful hope or hate it. The thought of "what if?" is motivational and detrimental at the same time. Hope is motivational; rejection can be debilitating. 

Do I feel debilitated by this rejection? No. However, this is my I don't know 1000th something rejection, so they just don't pack a punch quite like they used to. Of course, I mean I am a little disapointed because anytime you put yourself out there and get shot down without any critique or feedback its frustrating because you don't know where you need to focus your efforts to grow. [and a little sad I offically won't be going to Montana anytime this year now]

I think rejection is fundamental for artist growth, or personal growth for that matter. You need to be ripped down raw in order to not only toughen up your skin but to learn what it is to be raw. Raw you is real you, and real you is the you that needs to be the person you are putting out there. [if you can make any sense of that lol] Not only because learning to be your authentic self is important but because when you are always raw rejection starts to hurt less and less. I know a couple artists that were lucky enough to achieve some success right after college and have been working in their medium all of their adult career. This may be some deep seeded jealousy talking but it's my honest opinion that artists [or people] who are granted early success and faced no battles to acheive said success have their work suffer for it. Their work become stagnant and they don't improve upon their skills because they have never been challenged. Now it can be argued they don't need to improve because they have already been granted success, but I think that fights against what it means to be an artist or person.

As Captain Picard said "Inside you is the potential to make yourself better, and that's what it is to be human. To make yourself more than you are."

I also feel like I know that the rejections I've faced are leading up to my destined... non-rejection?... Or acceptance, as I've heard its rumored to be called. I know that I will definitely appreciate my non-rejection more now than I would have say 6 years ago. It will a gift when it happens and not a given. 

ask and you shall receive

Not that I directly asked, but I recently had a little diatribe about my disatisfaction of art education and availability of truth and helpful information for artists. Low and behold, while youtube searching for ''artist success" I came across a video series made last year about just that.

So this guy, Tim Packer, stepped up to the plate and made some videos giving aspiring artists some real concrete advice and tips of the trade. He makes incredible artwork, his stuff is super unique and beautiful, and he has an amazing Canadian accent. [makes me long for the day MN is adopted by its true parent Canada] 

He is an established sucessful arist and he is sharing what he has learned and putting it out there in a non-condescending, totally accesible way. He's not just talking about the personal/mental side of what it takes, he's doing videos about acutal art composition. 

I also like that he doesn't stress any particular style and sends the message that there is room for any style of artwork in the art community, as long as you put in the work. Which is refreshing to hear. 

Check him out at:  http://www.timpacker.com  

Why website? Why now? Why no use complete sentences?

[caution: slight animosity ahead, it only lasts the first 2 paragraphs I promise]

You may be asking yourself what's the point of starting this blog/website now? 

Like so many of us, upon my arrival to college I was told to let the dream die of becoming a professional artist since its not a real job. [truer words cannot be said] I was talked into majoring in my University's experimental new major of "DIVAS" [Digital Imaging Animation & Sound] since it would combine my love of art with a degree that would lend to an "actual" career. 

It turns out real jobs suck. 

But what is adulthood if not discovering you made enormously expensive mistakes because you were forced to make gigantic life decisions at the age of 17 on the whim of suggestions from people paid into tricking you into a lifetime of debt. Dress it up anyway you like but that's what it is.

Bitterness aside, I realized I don't want a real job. I want to make quality stuff for quality people, and that's about as far as you can get from any "real job" I've had. To quote Leopold Bloom "There's a lot more to me than there is to me!" 

Art lives deep down in my core, and I bet it does for you too if you're crazy enough to be reading this. It's like the first time you see a mountain, and you feel it, you feel it almost in your spine, you feel just a primordial umph within you. You know that this [the mountain] is important and all that other fleeting stuff is blown out of the water by how incredible and simple it truly is. Yeah, so art is pretty much like that...  

Problem is now that I've seen a couple mountains and painted a couple paintings I'm hooked on that umph feeling. I want you to have that umph feeling, and I want to make it my life's work to capture that feeling in any way I can down on canvas and paper to share with people so that they can even for a brief time have their fleeting stuff blown away into the distance. 

I may be late to the game attempting to start my pilgrimage as an artist, but I know it's what I'm passionate about and I know it's what I'm good at.