Saturday, 15 February 2014

Something Different


It's been a bit of a while since I last did a post, but new things have been unfolding, something new which I'm finding oh so very exciting and I'm going to tell you all about it today.
An email plopped into my inbox a few weeks ago, from Lilla Rogers.  For those of you who are not familiar with this super creative lady, she is the owner of a rather marvellous art licensing agency in the USA, and as well as looking after some top class artists with amazing portfolios, she has also created some fabulous courses for artists of all levels, to help them tap into new ideas and discover hidden potential.
So, I read this email with some interest...a Make Art That Sells Bootcamp was being advertised, running for several months over which several assignments would be launched.  It sounded fun.  I read the email through, toyed with the possibility of signing up and then forgot about it.
And then the day before it was due to start, I noticed the email, still sitting there in my inbox.  And I clicked on it again and read it and sat staring at the screen, thinking.
I decided, upon a bit of an impulse, to sign up.
Like a breath of fresh air, the following morning the first mini assignment arrived.  I felt a bit giddy - it was kind of like being back at school and having a teacher tell you what you needed to be doing.  There would be research and sketches, deadlines and a gallery to post work goodness, it had been so many moons since I had done anything like this, and in a way I felt I was crossing the line of my comfort zone, moving away from the familiarity of coastal paintings and cheery harbour scenes to...
....cuckoo clocks.
I didn't see that one coming, but none the less I settled down to pore over Pinterest and find out a bit more about these pretty clocks.
The emphasis of this course is FUN.  We are encouraged to leave any notion of making sales (at the moment) right at the door, and just play around with images, make really crappy doodles and just see where the pen takes us.
I filled in quite a few sheets of such drawings, and amazed myself with what evolved.
Truth be told, it had been rather a long time since I sat down and drew for fun, with no other agenda and it was a very relaxing and inspiring experience.  How on earth had I forgotten how to do this?? When had I let my work become so organised and structured?  Oh my, this course was only in the first week yet already it was opening me up to lots of new thoughts and pathways.
Instead of reaching for my paints, I dug out my marker pens and a Bristol Board and got to work - sorry, play.  I had decided on a woodland theme, and took it from there, just drawing and letting the pen roam about the paper until something took shape that I liked.
On week 2, the main assignment arrived, and we were told that we had to design a mobile phone case using our images.  I had great fun messing about in Pic Monkey and my Photoshop Elements programs tweaking my designs and I confess right now that I more or less fumbled my way along doing this, learning as I went.  I'm by no way an expert in any of these editing programs but by jove, it was brilliant!
So, the pictures above are of some of my efforts, the one on the left being pretty near as damn it to finished, and the one I will be submitting to the online course gallery to show.
I'll keep you all posted on my assignments as they unfold.
Another nice bit of news is that I finally have limited edition prints available of two lovely paintings.  Home, and Holy Island are now available in my new look gallery shop, both in runs of 100.  They are professionally printed onto Hahnemuhle German Etching paper and the feedback I've had so far from my customers about them has been fantastic.
Thanks for coming to visit me today, I'm always pleased that you do.
See you next time.
J x 

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