Wednesday, 31 December 2014

2014 ... A YEAR IN REVIEW - PLANS FOR 2015 - What is your Adventure?

I read a blog earlier which suggested that instead of making resolutions that are easily broken or forgotten, how about choosing an adventure? I thought this was brilliant and decided to adopt the idea immediately. I will come back to my adventure later, but for now, while reading the rest of this blog, why not ponder on an adventure of your own for 2015?

CALLA by Sea Dean - Includes Ivory double mat and wide Black Frame
CALLA
8" x 6" Windpower Matted and Framed
Ready to hang

View my online Gallery of originals please visit DAILY PAINTWORKS
Shop for Limited Edition ACEO here
 

MY 2014 YEAR IN REVIEW

I can hardly believe that 2014  has gone by so fast. The year had it's pleasures and it's headaches but all in all I'm happy to report that the slow upward climb out of this tough economy is still in progress at PAINT A MASTERPIECE.

My year was incredibly busy. I took part in 14 exhibitions and shows, 8 of them Juried and 2 Solos. At one point during ART WALK weekend, our biggest show of the year, I had two solos, two shows and a Juried exhibition running concurrently, with over 200 paintings on display in the area.

This summer, sadly I lost another gallery, STATE OF THE ART, to the poor economy, making it three in the last few years. The House of Rose Winery cancelled it's ARTISTS IN ACTION program and the OKANAGAN EROTIC SHOW was also cancelled, but luckily RITCHCRAFT GALLERY continues to do a fabulous job promoting my work. Additionally, the move into the city and setting my own larger Studio/Gallery looks like it will be a great decision for 2015.

Below is a review of my 2014 exhibitions and shows. I am very grateful to all the volunteers that gave countless hours to make each show a success.

2014 EXHIBITIONS AND SHOWS

Sustainability Conference - Juried
Art through the ages Inter-generational Exhibition - Lake Country Art Gallery - Juried
Lake Country Gypsy Fair - Show
Blue Heron Residence - Lake Country - Solo
Lake Country Library - Solo
Lake Country Art Gallery Art Bazaar - 2 Shows
Art Walk, A Step Forward - Show and Sale - Juried
Lake Country Art Gallery - A Step Forward Theme Exhibition - Juried
Kelowna Culture Crawl - Juried
A night of 1,000 lights - Kelowna - Juried
French Cultural Center, Kelowna - Rouge - Juried
Red Barn Artizan Market - Kelowna - Show
Lake Country Art Gallery Under $100 Exhibition - Juried


NEWS FROM THE STUDIO

My patrons continue to choose my SEASCAPES and WATERSCAPES as their favourites, followed by LIFE and FORM which includes animals, birds, fish and human figures. LANDSCAPES and FLORALS are also popular. No surprises there.

Sales are crucial when art is your sole income, but it's also pretty special to be singled out for recognition. Each day, my main platform Daily Paintworks, picks at least one painting from up to 250 new works posted that day. This award is called PICK OF THE DAY or AUCTION PICK and I'm pleased to say that my paintings were chosen more than 35 times in 2014. I like to think this must indicate something about the quality of my work and the extra publicity certainly helps attract buyers.

I don't pursue traditional art awards, to me it means more to recieve praise from my peers. So, thanks to all those who have praised my work throughout the year. You've told me that your work has benefited from studying my paintings online which pleases me. A GIANT thank you to those who purchase my cards, limited edition prints and paintings to pay it forward and help me with expenses. Thanks also to the many patrons that choose my work for gifts and order custom commissions like my PAL pet portraits. Your kind words and thoughtful purchases have kept the wolf from my door for one more year.

I am painting larger these days, so although I sold fewer paintings in 2014, my gross increased. Buying was polarized to the beginning and end of the year, partly because the mid year move and setting up the new Studio/Gallery took time and effort. I'm pleased to report that sales do generally cover costs.

TRUTH AND REALITY

In any business it's a juggling game to stay afloat, but professional artists are hit harder than most by the soft economy. I'm sure all artists will join me in applauding the drop in oil prices, but sadly, the cost of supplies continues to increase making margins much slimmer. Grants continue to vanish and competition from subsidized Asian art factories continues to woo less selective buyers. Most North American artists are therefore forced to price below a living wage to stay afloat. It is even tougher to stay competitive in the north with higher prices and added shipping costs.

Innovation is key to garner attention from savvy collectors: I test many new products and watch demos, to stay ahead of trends. I study and work hard, upwards of 90 hours and 7 days a week. I hear you saying "Yes but you are doing what you love" perhaps, but frankly, I would rather have a regular paycheck. Like many in the nearly retired generation with little hope for appropriate employment, recognition or support, Art is a place to use my talents while retaining dignity and self worth but it is not a place to make a living, at least not yet.

So, do what you can in your neck of the woods to support the arts. Consider what our world would be like without artists to sooth your soul, add a splash of colour and add interesting design to your world.

MY PLANS FOR 2015

January starts with a bang. Leslie Saeta is hosting 30 paintings in 30 days over at her blog. It will be the 5th time I've participated in this and each time I relax into it a bit better. This time I'm very busy with other projects so I will have less blogging, imaging, cataloging, promotional and painting time than usual. As a result, I'm probably more organized than usual, but that only goes so far in helping things go smoothly. Nevertheless, I will persevere for the 5th time and create 30 masterpieces for your enjoyment. 

To support me and help me make the whole process a lot easier, it would be super if you could link to this blog through any platform you use. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ etc.

Thanks in advance.

More in 2015 ...

TREASURE MAPPING WITH PAINT - January 31st, 2015

A fun collage class for anyone 12 and up. No experience required. 

Treasure mapping is a time-honoured tradition in the human potential movement. It is a way to filter out the unimportant to discover what you really want in your future, but this class adds the twist of placing it in the domain of artistic creation. Using collage and acrylic techniques you will create a personal and highly inspirational piece which will power you forward into a bright future. The art you create is designed to remind you of your inner strength and support you in creating the future of your dreams.

Pre-registration required by Jan 19th at 4pm. 
Register with me or Lake Country Art Gallery $75 plus $20 for supplies or bring your own.

* There is news in the wind that I may be involved in a Plein Air (painting in the park) class in the spring with one or two other instructors. If this tickles your fancy contact me to register your interest. *

Shhhhhhh - About that ADVENTURE I was talking about ...

I'm considering entering the next Art Battle in Kelowna - Ooooo both scary and exciting. If you're in the area I hope you come out to support me.