Disclaimer: I receive a a small commission at no extra charge to you when you purchase anything from certain links in this post.
The most difficult part about selling art online or otherwise is that there are so many strategies out there that it’s easy to become overwhelmed. I’ve found that learning how to promote my art on Pinterest specifically is one of those strategies that shouldn’t be ignored. The reason I’m so excited about Pinterest is because I know it’s a gold mind – over the past few years, nearly all of my art sales have been the result of viral pins on Pinterest. I’ve found that sticking to the following rules and using Tailwind have improved my Pinterest views, engagement, and sales with my artwork on Etsy and my artist website.
Set Up a Business Account
Setting up a Pinterest for Business account is going to be key to tracking your analytics. Here are some pros of having a Business account:
When you confirm your art website with Pinterest, it allows you to see what people pin from your website, and adds your logo to any pins made from your site.
Once you have your Pinterest for Business account, you can start posting “Rich Pins“. Rich Pins are pins that contain important information, such as price, where to buy, and more. To learn more about how to set up Rich Pins for your business, click here.
Group boards have been integral to my success on Pinterest! When you post to a group board, your pin will be seen by a much wider audience, and possibly re-pinned more readily by others.
To find group boards, you can search Pinterest boards for a topic you’re interested in, with the word “group” as part of the search. To join, most group boards will have instructions for you to follow. You can also create your own group boards by inviting others to pin to a group you create.
Here are a few helpful art group boards that I’m a part of:
Tailwindis a magical app that lets you schedule your pins on a virtual calendar, and these pins are posted automatically and on schedule. So, why is Tailwind so great?
Tailwind is easy to use, as you can download a button to your browser and easily schedule pins directly from your blog posts, website, shop, and Pinterest itself.
You can create lists of boards for certain types of pins. For instance, I have a list called “Artwork” that contains 14 boards, and one called “Artwork and Etsy” which contains 28 boards, for those pins that fall in both categories. If I choose one of those lists and schedule my pins, that’s 28 pins scheduled to be pinned over about a week or two of time! This helps you schedule way in advance and not seem spammy.
Joining Tribesmeans that you’ll be part of Tailwind communities of people who will potentially re-pin your pins, and you theirs. Here is an overview of the stats from one of the tribes I’m in for creatives (most of the re-shares haven’t been re-shared since I’m still new, but they’ve been scheduled!):
You can also create Tribes. I ended up creating one for Small Business Artists!
Tailwind now has a new feature for scheduling on Instagram and Instagram Stories! I haven’t tried this one yet, but looking forward to it.
Tailwind also has a hashtag finder!
When I first started with Tailwind, my average monthly viewers were hovering around 42,000 – my profile had been around for awhile, and it hadn’t gone up or down for months. Within one week of using rich pins and scheduling my pins in Tailwind, and using Tailwind Tribes, my Pinterest average monthly viewers increased by 16,000, and by the end of August it skyrocketed another 22,000, with a total of 38,000 average monthly viewer increase! My average daily viewers and people engaged with my pins increased dramatically and I made some sales on Etsy.
I’m so excited to introduce everyone to fiber artist Mandi Smethells! Her imaginative fiber wall hangings are just the thing to brighten a room. You can find Mandi’s work in her Etsy shop, and follow her on Instagram and Facebook.Mandi’s work was also recently featured in the Mollie Makes magazine!
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with sculptural fiber arts?
I am a full time fiber artist living in St Paul MN. This “job” is a dream come true and something I have been working towards since the moment I decided as a child I wanted to be an artist. I only discovered fiber art a little over four years ago, and I have been obsessed ever since. I spent several years working in weaving techniques, and felt driven to discover new ways of working with the fibers and colors I loved so much. Eventually the sculptural elements I was adding to my weavings started to stand alone and are now the wall hangings I create.
What is like as an artist/creator in Saint Paul?
I feel so fortunate to be a fiber artist in this vibrant community. Neighboring Minneapolis has a wonderful Center for Textiles (I teach a few classes there), and there are so many incredible artists working in the area. The seasons of Minnesota impact my work as I “feel” different colors and shapes associated with the weather. It’s inspiring!
Where do you draw your inspiration?
I definitely have developed a collaborative relationship with my older daughter who is nearly seven. We have brainstorm sessions to discuss colors and shapes, and she will even sketch ideas to work off of! She will tell everyone she meets that she suggested I make a sun. Being a mom, and observing daily the wonder and imagination of my children, is my biggest inspiration.
Do you ever receive custom requests?
I frequently have the opportunity to create pieces based on beautiful spaces, often nurseries or children’s rooms. I truly enjoy imagining the families spending time in these spaces with my work, and it brings me joy.
What has business been like on Etsy?
I am so very busy with orders and all the other facets that are a part of being a “one woman show,” and Etsy has made it so simple for me to manage listings, shipping, sales data and marketing. I value anything that makes my life easier, and I do find a lot of new customers through the Etsy marketplace.
This modern calligraphy kit was designed to take the anxiety out of learning modern calligraphy. This kit can be purchased three different ways – as an e-book, an e-book with pens, a physical book, or the physical book with the pens – you choose! The full kit contains:
90-page spiral bound workbook *including THREE fonts*
9 different lettering tools:
2 Tombow Dual Brush Pens
1 Tombow Fudenosuke
1 Artline Stix Ombre Brush Pen (color varies)
1 Pilot G2 Pen
1 Tombow MonoTwin
1 PaperMate Flair Pen
LIFETIME ACCESS to extra copies of the worksheets.
This beautiful calligraphy starter kit from Rachel Carl comes in a gift box and a short instruction page – this kit may be easier for those who have already tried their hand at calligraphy. The kit includes:
1 Oblique Pen Holder
4 of Rachel Carl’s Favorite Nibs
Small or Large, Black or White Ink Bottles
4 Ink Holders
1 Wooden Ink Well Holder
1 Calligraphy Journal for Practicing (you can customize this with a name)
2 Exemplar Alphabets of Rachel Carl’s Signature Modern Calligraphy Font as well as a an additional Calligraphy Style Alphabet
If you’re the type of person to learn more easily from video tutorials, check out these awesome hand lettering classes on Skillshare! The Art Spectrum has partnered with Skillshare to give readers 2 free months of Skillshare Premium!
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with art?
Art is something that I’ve always done, even before I knew what I was doing was considered art. It sort of just pours of my ears, even when I’m not really paying attention, I’ll find myself sketching or creating some random rearrangement of the things around me. I tell people a lot of my practice comes from not being able to sit still, and that is one hundred percent a true fact. My embroidery work began out of a desire to make my mark onto clothing but to also give my hands something to do while relaxing, (which sounds a little backwards) like watching a movie or talking on speakerphone to my mom. And before embroidery, it was doodling, and before doodling it was friendship bracelets and before that, it was making lanyards at camp. (It is no shock that I have given many homemade gifts over the years.) So armed with all of this energy and love for making, I entered college where I studied art, and was taught the importance of segregating art and craft, which just generally confused me. A lot of what I create in my art is based in my knowledge of crafting, as I think is pretty common for most artists, particularly female artists. Craft is an accessible form of art, in my opinion, so it seems pointless to exclude it from the conversation.
What is life like in Portland, Oregon? Any favorite spots that get you inspired?
Portland is an awesome place to live for artists. The rainy times can make for some great introspective creative moments, especially in the winter because the rainy gray season does provide kind of a natural “hibernation” almost, where you can kind of hunker down and get really focused on your art. That may not sound super exciting but the best part about rain is that it literally makes Oregon so green. The trees, the grass, the flowers (the roses in particular) everything grows like crazy thanks to the rain. And once the winter is over, you can really see how beautiful this place is. Being born and raised in the Midwest, the most magical thing about living in Portland is that I can drive to the ocean in less than two hours. It’s magical, it’s healing and it’s very cold.
As far as in town, it’s so hard to pick a favorite place to get inspired because I find new exciting spots all of the time. The City of Portland has an amazing public art program, so there are murals and sculptures and interactive pieces of art all throughout the city, some of which are gigantic and hard to miss and others that are only three inches tall and only available to the most observant. Downtown Portland houses America’s seventh oldest art museum, the Portland Art Museum, which is filled with wonderful works and is always worth spending the afternoon in. I could keep going on about Portland, but I’ll stop myself there. It’s obviously an amazing place to live and I’m glad I’ve found it.
Can you tell me a little bit about your first solo show? What was the venue? How did it go?
My first solo show was super fun and definitely nontraditional as far as most art exhibitions. The venue was at an awesome vintage candy store here in Portland (Candy Babel on NE Alberta St), that features lots of different bright colors of candy in glass jars among cool unique vintage furniture pieces. And somewhat unsurprisingly my artwork fit in really well with the décor, since both are quirky and colorful. There was great feedback from friends and strangers on my art during the opening reception and throughout the entire month my show remained up. I can’t wait for more exhibitions, I definitely have plenty of ideas.
What are some of your go-to art products?
My favorite paint to use on fabric is Jacquard Fabric Paints, specifically:
Lumiere, a pretty metallic sheened fabric paint that covers dark backgrounds
Neopaque, a fabric paint like the Textile Color, but goes on dark backgrounds
What is your like process for creating your hand-painted t-shirts?
Each shirt is totally unique, since I hand paint every one. Currently, I’m choosing to paint a one of a kind set of images on each shirt, which is time intensive but very rewarding. The way I approach creating the designs is very similar to doodling out a train of thought. I’ll pick out maybe four or five colors of paint and then I stand over the shirt and think. Starting the piece is always difficult, since you need to come up with that first image to paint. I don’t like to begin with a specific idea or theme or train of thought in my head, because it doesn’t feel as organic as when I let my brain roam freely in my associations of different objects, just thinking about and picking one at a time. It is such a small difference, I know, but I really enjoy stepping back once I finish a shirt and finding the common thread or small narrative I created through my painted doodles. I think someday I may paint shirts that are not all one of a kind, and maybe focus on one image on many shirts, but for now I am enjoying my slow process!
It is my pleasure to welcome to the blog Australian painter Jaqueline Burgess! Originally born in South Africa and now living in Australia, Jaqueline’s paintings are inspired by a strong sense of place. You can see and buy Jaqueline’s work in her Etsyshop or on her website. You can also follower her on Facebook and Instagram.
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with art?
I was born in South Africa, and at 19 decided to travel and see a bit of the world. For 9 years my love of drawing and painting led me to a variety of part-time work – I painted murals, decorated restaurant and bar menu boards, illustrated, painted commission pieces for private homes and ended up teaching art in a London school. I communicate through my art, It brings balance and grounding to my life and it encourages my children to always create.
What was life like living in South Africa? Can you talk about how living there has inspired your work?
South Africa is so unique and diverse in its culture that naturally a sense of creativity and adventure became an inherent part of my personality. Surrounded by the Zulu and Indian cultures brought about a colourful and somewhat decorative approach to my art. Through most of my works, reference to pattern and subtle ornamentation is present in the compositions.
What is the process like creating one of your wildlife portraits?
Painting something from nature is always a special process. I begin with sourcing photos online for inspiration, a couple of sketches later I sit down with paint and brush to bring the drawing to life – finishing with the animals eyes is the most exciting part.
What are some favorite materials you use in your work?
What have been some of your favorite exhibitions and projects over the years? Are there currently any upcoming or in-the works projects or exhibitions?
Each year I set myself the goal of painting a portrait for the Archibald Prize. In 2016 I submitted my entry of a portrait of my eldest daughter and her friend to the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize and was selected as a semi finalist. Last year I was asked by a gallery in Melbourne called Otomys to create a group of seascape paintings for their sister gallery in Sorentto.
Last year was also a huge step in opening a joint family business which comprises a coffee shop and art gallery /gift store called Sketch Coffee & Art in Towradgi NSW (follow us on Instagram and Facebook!). The concept of the store is to serve local and fresh produce, with local roasted coffee. Customers enjoy the gallery space and peruse the gift store whilst enjoying breakfast and lunch.
Sketch Coffee & Art houses only Australian and locally made artworks, textiles, ceramics, stationary, jewellery, photography, and homewares, to name a few, alongside a rotation of my own large artworks on canvas. Its a very special corner of Wollongong that encourages the locals to get creative with monthly sketch competitions. Sip coffee whilst you sketch- people love it. I have also just recently released a textile range of beach Sarongs and scarves called WEAR THE ART as well as soft furnishings for the home.
It is my pleasure to feature artist and graphic designer Rachel Roe on the blog! Rachel is a St. Louis based artist and you can check out her Etsy shop, her website, and follow her on Instagramand Facebook.
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with art?
My name is Rachel Roe. I am an artist and graphic designer based in St. Louis, MO. I work from my backyard art studio — a space my husband built for me to encourage my career as a full-time artist.
I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in graphic design. So out of college, and for 4 years after, I was a full-time graphic designer (doing art on the side) working for a company that wasn’t fulfilling or pushing my creative limits.
I’ve always had an interest in art but I never thought I could do it as a career — partly because of the sheer logistics of it but also partly because it was a scary transition from my comfortable job as a designer. But after a few encouraging voices and a leap of faith, I quit my 9-5, and started my career as a full-time artist.
What is life like in Missouri? Any places in the area that inspire you or that you generally like to hang out?
I live in the outskirts of St. Louis so I get the hustle of the city but also the serenity of hiking trails, rivers and lakes all around me.
I’m lucky to live close to some pretty amazing/inspiring art museums. However, lately I’ve been trying to rely less on inspiration and more on discipline. Inspiration and motivation can be oh so fleeting. I’m learning I may not always be motivated but I can always be disciplined.
Can you tell me a little bit about your vintage uniform series? What was the impetus behind the people being faceless?
The vintage inspired pieces were initially created around my admiration for vintage uniforms. By abstracting the faces and settings, the piece becomes more about the uniform and the type of persona it creates rather than focusing on a specific individual. The fluid/abstracted brushstrokes compliment the piece making it feel like a faded memory.
What are some of your favorite art products/materials?
I love painting on birch wood panels. Being able to see the grain beneath the paint adds a natural element to the overall composition.
What have been some of your favorite projects and/or commissions? Any exciting paintings, projects or upcoming events in the works?
I’m always honored when people ask me to paint a commissioned piece of their loved one. I’ve done faces, families, dogs and buildings. It’s always crazy for me to be painting, painting, painting and all of a sudden… I stand back and there’s a personality staring back at me. Faces aren’t always the easiest things to paint but they sure are rewarding.
I’m currently preparing for my first big art show. I’m producing tons of new works so it’s been so exciting watching my studio fill up with art.
I’m so excited to introduce everyone to painter Elizabeth Boudreau! You can find Elizabeth’s work in her Etsy shop, Whimsical Weasels. You can also follow her on Instagram.
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with art?
Sure! My name is Elizabeth Boudreau. I’m a working artist in Athens, GA, creating illustrative wildlife paintings. I graduated in 2017 from the University of Georgia with my BFA in Drawing and Painting. Since my childhood growing up on a farm in the state of Washington, I have always held a special relationship with animals. In my adult life, that relationship has turned into one of creativity and compassion.
One of my greatest pleasures in life is travel. I love to see the world, visit obscure corners of the globe and experience the wildlife and culture. Many of my travels have resulted in projects during and after the trip. An example that comes to mind is my Costa Rican field guide book, created almost entirely during my stay and displaying the creatures observed in person. This past summer I had the joy of visiting South Africa, where I was spoiled with wildlife! The result: 72 art cards to result in one large composite poster.
You see, I love drawing and I love animals. It’s heartwarming to have the chance to pursue my passion.
What is life like in Athens, Georgia? Any favorite spots that inspire you?
Life after graduation here is a creative journey! I spend most of my days in my studio, creating personal and custom pieces. The area has many artist-friendly venues that showcase and bolster the careers of young artists. I recently developed a great relationship with Trio Athens, a gallery that shows and prints for local creatives. It’s also fun to see quirky art projects pop up around town, like knitted gnome trees that hide around unknown corners. It’s the spunk like this that keeps my love for Athens burning strong!
What is the process like behind creating your animal paintings – do you sketch, then paint? How do you go about finding references?
Typically, I begin by lightly sketching out the basic shapes of my subject, creating a composition that feels right. After the main sketch is laid down, I boldly delineate the subject in preparation for my favorite part…COLOR! My primary medium is gouache, sometimes layered with watercolor or marker.
The true delight in painting for me comes from troubleshooting. I adore the feeling of satisfaction when a troublesome area suddenly resolves with a resonating ‘ding’ from the light bulb in my mind. It is a constant process of layer, step back, observe, tweak, move on. It is so satisfying to see a piece come to fruition.
References for me are a staple, helping me create anatomy and structure in my figures. Most of my reference material comes from photos during travel.
What are some of your favorite art products/materials?
Oh, there are many great materials floating around! I will list below some staples in my studio, materials I heavily trust:
Any exciting paintings, projects or upcoming events in the works?
Yes! The studio is in full swing right now preparing for the DragonCon art show! This is my first year participating and I am very excited. A few commissioned pieces are in the works and always ready for more. I love to create and see the joy my art gives others.
I’m happy to announce The Art Spectrum’s Spring Giveaway! I’m partnering with artists Virginia Skinner and Project M to giveaway some of their lovely artwork, as well as my own, featured on some fun spring accessories. Here’s what we’re giving away:
Emeline created the brand Project M in 2010. She is a British Artist and Designer that loves to play with color and shapes.
After attending Art School in England, Emeline earned a degree at fashion college. She then worked in the fashion industry in London. First as a pattern cutter and then as a Technical Designer. Her last job in London was for the creative and fun company Ted Baker. While working in the fashion business she continued to paint in her spare time. After a few fun and successful art shows within her own home she began exhibiting at many other venues across London including trendy bars, restaurants and bookshops.
In 2005 she became a full-time artist and moved to California. She currently is based near San Francisco. Her designs are either inspired by her artwork or by things seen in daily life. Emeline makes stencils by hand or paints in blocks of color. Her drawings or paintings are then developed into print design.
Emeline has been exhibiting for fifteen years in the UK, USA and Canada. She has undertaken a range of commissions for private homes and corporate clients, including a TV production company in Soho, London and for an investment company in Vancouver. Her paintings have been published and sold worldwide. You can find her designs licensed on many products including home wear, tech accessories, fashion and wallpaper.
Her licensed art work has been seen in Nordstrom, Target, Nylon, Dot & Bo, Wayfair, Fab, Joss & Main, WHSmiths and Habitat. Designs and products have been seen in print in Elle Deco Magazine, Real Living Magazine and Design Milk. Hilary Duff picked her iPhone case design for a special iPhone collection for Casetify in 2014. She has won three challenges at Printed Village, including one for the Chicago Black Hawks. In 2017 she went to NYC to film an episode for the CNBC show “The Profit” with Marcus Lemonis – The Profit (TV Show – S4 E12) – “Swim by Chuck Handy”. In January 2018 she won the Accelerator Program at Threadless.
About Virginia Skinner
Virginia Skinner is an artist currently based in GA, with a degree in Graphic Design. Mediums of interest include digital painting, drawing, and watercolor. Virginia enjoys drawing people the most, with a focus on feminine features and general character design. She is inspired by bold colors, floral elements, and organic shapes.
It’s my pleasure to introduce painter Anne Ward! Please enjoy the interview and leave a comment at the end to let us know your thoughts. I encourage you to check out her website and subscribe to her email list.
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your journey with art?
I’d always dreamed of being a painter. I remember hours spent sitting and looking at Time Life books with paintings by Impressionists. When I was about 11 years old I had a paper route so that I could earn money to buy the items needed for sketching that I read about in books I checked out from the library. I filled the walls of the room I shared with my sister with my endeavors. I was so lucky to have family and friends who championed my work. My Aunt Peg gave me my first set of oil paints when I was 15. I was beside myself with glee. To this day she still has my earliest paintings up in her home. I have 5 brothers and sisters and when we were growing up we didn’t have a lot of spare income, but my father worked at an airline which allowed us all to fly for free. My parents really valued travel and exposure to museums so I was incredibly fortunate to have seen so much of the world at a young age. I studied art in high school and continued on to UCLA where I chose to get a degree in history…but I was always drawing and painting whenever I had spare time.
After college I was so lucky to get a job working for a movie writer/director named Lawrence Kasdan. I was responsible for running his office, reading scripts, being on the set and being a gatekeeper to the busy demands on his creative time. I worked on a few movies in my time there and lived for nearly a year in Santa Fe working on a movie called Wyatt Earp and a year in Paris working on a movie called French Kiss. It was an incredible opportunity to deeply understand what goes into the creative process on a large scale. I taught my boss to learn to use a computer (this was indeed a LONG time ago!) so that he no longer wrote his scripts in longhand form on legal pads. I learned so much about focus and creative dedication and fun from him. All the while I worked there, I was saving money to support my dream of taking time off to finally learn to paint. I was still reading art instruction books and after 6 day work weeks on location, I would spend my Sundays studying art and painting. I sold my very first painting to a film coworker in Santa Fe and I was so thrilled.
After being in Paris for over a year I left my film production job to begin my dream of taking time off to paint. My parents had given me an outdoor easel and my boyfriend at the time urged me to bring it along on a weekend trip. We were in a small village in France. I must have worked easily 15 hours on that tiny attempt to capture light! By the end of the weekend it was pouring raining and a man with one arm held an umbrella for me to finish, people had brought me food and welcomed me into their homes, children had helped me with my clumsy attempts at speaking in French. I was hooked. The way an easel connects you to people and nature and the environment is such a special privilege! I realized that if I could do this I would live the happiest life ever. I quit my job in Paris, I returned to LA and within two weeks I had magically met a group of painters who had dedicated their lives to this ‘plein air’ thing. It was a somewhat unusual pursuit at the time to find people devoted specifically to plein air and I spent hundreds of hours outdoors learning from these generous artists.
So while I’m mostly self taught, I was so lucky to have been exposed to incredible painters who taught me exacting ways of seeing light. I began showing paintings and was fortunate to gain a following of collectors who supported me. I went through a divorce and painting was my anchor. With two children I realized that I had to figure out how to squeeze in painting. One of my mentors and a painter I greatly admire is Dan McCaw. He suggested that I should ‘always paint in my head’ when there wasn’t time to actually paint. Such good advice. I could be mentally prepping for the moment when I actually had time to paint. I read an article by another art hero of mine who eventually became a dear friend, Peggi Kroll Roberts. She described raising her kids and painting and setting up still lifes and painting small between loads of laundry. I began setting up my easel in the kitchen at night after the kids were asleep. While I didn’t have time to chase the light outdoors in true plein air fashion, I could grab whatever was in the fridge and set up ‘problems’…impossible color combinations or green on green, pink on pink etc. It forced me to see/question assumptions about colors and figure out where the actual chroma belonged. I was obsessed with taking the same objects and painting them indoors and then outdoors at various times of day to understand how light can transform even ordinary objects. Doing this allowed me to better understand color.
Now I am happily remarried to painter and author Ian Roberts. We share a studio and I am always inspired by his approach and patient allowing of a painting to progress. He is an amazing painter. Before anything heads out the door we discuss what might be popping out or distracting from the whole of the picture plane. I am dyslexic…so when I see a painting I see an abstract pattern of shape and color…Ian sees the ‘underneath’ of painting in the form of composition so I really am blessed to have that influence.
My children are older but I still set up still life on the back porch so that I can paint from life while also preparing meals. I am SUPER inspired by our beautiful garden and the vegetables and flowers we grow. My second love is pattern. So I have been making patterns to accompany my paintings and experimenting with putting them on bags, totes and fabric to use in my still life paintings. I love the idea of art being useful in the world so that even if someone can’t afford an original painting they could have something beautiful like a coffee mug that makes their day happy. I also have a few images that are reproduced and available online at Pottery Barn. Also, as a means of using my art to be of service in the world, I made an app that pairs my paintings which an intention for the day. It is free and has a simple meditation included to create more calm in a topsy turvy world. Its called i-intend on iTunes and has been downloaded by thousands of people around the world.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I’m SO inspired by pattern, light and color. I’m obsessed with infusing my work with the the joy and wonder I feel in our garden. I think that beauty is such a stabilizing force and I am always in pursuit of it. I find there is truth, integrity and absolute joy to witness things growing. It is humbling and powerful to feel connected to the growing cycle of things in the yard. A tiny seed becomes a carrot in 120 days. Amazing! A grasshopper that perfectly matches the color of a leaf on a lemon tree. That’s magical! Things that could easily be missed given the ‘important’ distractions of my phone. I’m inspired by bringing that experience of how I feel in nature to the walls of someone’s home. I’m using our daughters and the arrangement of light in our dining room as the backdrop for a painting I’m working on now. I think its important to use the truth of the things I love in my life as elements in paintings. I’m going to be incorporating more of my patterns into my paintings. I’m also inspired by painting on the Ipad and using it as a tool on days that I don’t have time to be in the studio. A daily practice of creating is so critical to my work.
What have been some of your favorite exhibitions that you’ve been featured in and why?
I once had a solo show based on a line in a book by Eckhardt Tolle about ‘spacious stillness’. That really is how painting feels to me. Its a wordless expansive feeling. The show was a series of outdoor still life paintings and some landscapes and moments where I had felt spacious stillness. An elderly neighbor who was no longer able to travel remarked ‘Thank you for taking me on that journey’. I was so moved by that. I’m always honored to show work at Marcia Burtt Gallery in Santa Barbara. Marcia has been one of my art heroes and part of me still can’t believe that I get to show my work alongside hers there! It’s also an honor when I have shown work with the California Art Club at their juried show. So many amazing painters.
What has been your experience with art associations? How can they be helpful for artists and their businesses?
I have been involved with the California Art Club which was founded in 1909. There are wonderful opportunities to go on paint outs and gain exposure to new ways of thinking and approaching work. When I was very new to painting, the club offered so many opportunities for exposure and submitting to shows. I think clubs and art associations are so valuable because making art can be a solitary endeavor. Its so important to find the people who inspire you along the way. I used to keep a binder of paintings I’d seen in magazines as ‘reminders’ of what made me really excited about painting. It helped me to figure out what and how I wanted to paint.
What have been a couple of your favorite projects and commissions over the years?
One of my favorite experiences was getting to help chef and restauranteur Suzanne Goin choose some of my paintings for her house. I love having the opportunity to do that and find images that resonate for people in their homes! I really admire Suzanne and all that she has created so that was a special experience. I also did a commission for my friend Laurie David of some of my kitchen counter/garden paintings. A lemon, an avocado and a radish…it was so fun to paint things I love for her beautiful home. Recently a dear friend and collector bought a large number of paintings of mine and Ian’s for her home. That made me so happy to imagine all those little snapshots of my life together in one environment.