Monday, September 27, 2010

Looking to the Future

This summer has been the busiest that I can ever remember! I can't recall the last weekend where I did not have to be somewhere, or do something! The rest of the time was spent creating, and preparing for the art crawl I took part in just this weekend. I had a good time, and gained valuable experience learning to talk about my art with strangers.

I even met some other fiber artists that are interested in starting to get together as a group for inspiration/critiques. I'm excited about this! It will certainly be nice this winter, to have another group giving me reason to get out and meet!

I also get to spend the winter biting my nails over whether or not I make it through the final round of decisions on a book submission! The book is Art Quilt Portfolio: The Natural World – An Inspiring Collection of Art Quilts By Martha Sielman. One or more of my three submissions have made it into the second round of judging. I would LOVE to make it into this book, as pretty much any pieces I do are usually nature based. So, a better fit could not happen!

Right now, I am entering a planning and assessing phase. I need to decide on some goals to set, and things to try. Magazine submissions? More book submissions? Try my hand at teaching? (How to get people to sign up for classes or retreats at my studio?) I have some ideas, but am not sure how to proceed with some of them yet.

Has anyone had experience with teaching classes from their home studio? How do you find students? I'm a full time artist, and my connections are probably somewhat limited as a result. Any venues I'm unaware of to reach potential students?

For now, enjoy some images from the art crawl, some are from the preparation station and some are from the actually crawl.

Eden Prairie: Wetlands and Trees 1


Pear Onesie

Before the crawl: This is my newest and first complete series of work! Eden Prairie: Wetlands and Trees 1-9

Segmented Birch, Birches, and Shadow Branches

Close up detail of Eden Prairie: Wetlands and Trees 9

Used a sideboard table for my small framed pieces

During the crawl: You can see the Dolly Llama in the far side there

Scarved: I hand dyed and embellished some scarves

Hand dyed and stamped onesies - currently have them up on my Etsy site now
I did not sell a ton or anything. Just a few things. But I gained a lot of confidence practicing talking about my art. This also meant, practicing speaking with strangers - while staving off panic attacks! I can only imagine this will help me move closer to teaching!

So, I have spent some time already thinking about my next goals.

  • Help form the local fiber artist group in my neighborhood (there are at least four or five of us in this neighborhood alone!)
  • Try to start teaching! (I will need to decide WHAT to teach, and figure out how to find people to teach!)
  • Start submitting to some of the call for entries on the SAQA site and the local Textile Center's call for entries
  • Try to submit to at least one magazine! (I'm a bit further on this one, as I have a piece almost done that I want to try and submit!)
  • Continue to organize studio more
  • Start planning the logistics of hosting retreats in our home - what to do, how to find "retreaters", consider "special guest" teachers for the retreats
  • Keep creating!
 I have a tendency to slip into dormancy after a sale or crawl that isn't as successful as I would have liked. I tend to stop creating afterwards...once this lasted something like six months and was awful - and awful for those that live with me! This time, I am determined to avoid this hibernation/licking my wounds time. Afterall, I did sell some things. But, I gained something even more valuable - experience and confidence!

What are YOUR goals these days?


Norma Riehm said...

I really like how you set up your work for the crawl. Your house is a perfect back drop for your pieces. And the framing is a perfect finishing touch. You are a very gifted artist. Now you need to find a gallery that will take your pieces on commission to sell. You go girl!

Janet Hartje said...

Love your attitude! Your work is beautiful. Your are always thinking ahead to the next step. I agree with Norma, a gallery would be a good goal.