I don't know what it is with me and not keeping this blog updated on a regular basis. Maybe this would be a good New Years Resolution: monthly blog posts. I'll write it down now in my planner. We'll see about my follow through...out of my 7 resolutions from this year, I stuck with 1: Do some culinary exploration. (I made risotto, vegetarian tacos, homemade pizza, pierogis, and a curry. I tried and dried out some chicken thighs; cooking meat makes me psycho, as my patient boyfriend will attest).
SO. 2018 was a really nice year. I took some classes online to up my art game, and am so happy I did! I took The Whimsical Sketchbook from Sketchbook Skool (https://sketchbookskool.com), which was amazing. I started using colored pencils, markers, and pastels in my work on top of the watercolor, and everything is looking so vibrant. I also took some Skillshare classes (https://www.skillshare.com), one of them being a pattern design class, and am hoping I can do some cool things with this in the future.
Notecards have been on the brain all this year. I came up with what feels like a million designs (it was only like 15 designs, I am being dramatic), and am in the process of creating a little business with my mom and wholesaling them in 2019. Fingers crossed it goes well! Right now I'm selling them locally at shows and in a gift shop and in a couple galleries. It will be kind of fun to see how far they go.
The Old Shell Gallery has a huge place in my heart and brain, and so this was another year of ups and downs and cartwheels and "you've got to be f-ing kidding me"s. It is a cooperative gallery created and run by the Les Cheneaux Area Artisan Cooperative, of which I am a member with a lot of other really talented artists of the eastern upper peninsula of Michigan. The 3rd year of the gallery is just about to wrap up for the winter, and I am looking forward to using that time to create some really nice stuff for next summer. This year I was relying heavily on my notecards and prints, and so I will do the same next year, except I also want to have a lot of originals available of various sizes and prices for all budgets. My favorite events of the year were International Knit In Public Day, where a bunch of knitters got together and sat under the pavilion to knit and chat and eat cookies, and the annual Art Garage Sale, where artists put in their misprints/seconds/bad ideas/old art into the gallery at a really reduced rate for one day. I get rid of all of my originals from editorial jobs (they're all on weirdly shaped individual bits of paper most of the time since I do so much photoshopping), misprints, stuff leftover from art school that I'm *finally* ready to part with, old notecards, things like that.
I went on this kick of putting sassy/very annoyed text below (or on top of?) floral patterns. Things like 'Thanks for Mansplaining that to me', 'Same Shit Different Day', 'Deathly Allergic to Drama', etc. It was funny while I was doing it, and I think I needed to get some steam out, but I don't think this will be a direction I want to go in the future. It made me spend a lot of time being irritated at the people that made me feel these things in the first place, not only when I was doing it but then later when they were hanging in the gallery, people were asking me about them, I got prints made...Yuck! I'd rather write all of that stuff in my diary and be done with it.
My garden is always a huge inspiration for my work, and this year was no exception. Morning Glories, Zinnias, Bachelor Buttons, and Sunflowers all made appearances, but I do no justice to the real thing! I am already planning my garden for next year and getting super nerdy about it: borrowing gardening and high-yield flower growing books from the library, testing the soil, putting down rock phosphate, potash, compost, measuring and drawing grids so I can fit as many flowers in there as possible....OMG I can't wait.
There are a million other things to write but this has already taken me an hour and half, mostly me flipping through my photos and sighing 'memoriesssssssssss'.
See you all next December!
Joking! I will post monthly. New Years Resolution No. 1.