Free Day to the Rescue

For AAD 66 & AAD 73

Spring has this way of sneaking up and taking me by surprise every single year. I’m like, hey, it’s February for God’s sake! Give it a rest! Just wait a minute, let it snow again, be foggy for a day, or rain or something! I’m not done with winter yet.

It’s a rush I’m never ready for. So, thank God for this extra day (happy leap day!) and a “free week” for my blog assignment in one class and a postpone due date for the other. And to really push my lucky charms, I’m going to kill two assignments with this one post. (even though I told myself I wouldn’t do this) The subject matter of the classes is correlated; they’re both for the purpose of advancing my skills as a professional artist (did I just call myself a professional artist?!) so I think it’s justifiable. The prompts compliment each other – “define your market” and “what inspires you?”. A couple of example given for the ladder were; a cat on a sweater, a sweater on a cat…? and to that I say yes. Yes, in fact I have been inspired by that. Here’s proof.

And yes, I’m inspired other things besides my cats; by gifs on insta and fb, and the fact that my pinter worked to print 30 color pages without any problems. Also by going to the park with friends…

 …when the plum trees are blooming (in spite of wishing the grinch would steal spring)

…our dog napping in the sun, maybe getting more done than me.

….my daughter taking the initiative to sew and leave selfies on my phone, (that I’ve been forbidden to posit pics of) my younger daughter’s determination and dedication on her rainforest assignment, and the fact that I got caught up on laundry again.

As far as digitally related stuff; being asked to do a couple of logos was a boost.

…. and here’s where I segway into the other prompt topic….”my target market” – that’s a little trickier than to tie down than a sweater wearing cats and dogs napping in the sun. (and for the record, no cats were harmed in the making of that sweaterwearing cat video and no children were harmed by the sweaterwearing cat)

My work mostly consists of work that involves painting, whether it be commissioned decorative art, faux finishing, hand lettering, etc. Then there’s also the logos that I do…

…so that’s graphic design. I like the diversity in what I do but it can be difficult to specify my client base and know where to focus my marketing. 

The work I do really could appeal to anyone. I have a large painting “party” gig scheduled for the beginning of May, and a smaller class I’m teaching at a school at the end of March. I’m doing some pro-bono work for the DelOro theater (does that count or is it just a mom voluntering) making small props, planning stage backdrops and directing the students painting them. Also a commission painting for a gal; whimsical portraits of her friends two cats. (I know. What is it with all the cats!?) 

I could focus on hosting painting workshops, say at retirement communities. So that’s making contacts at the administration office. I’d really like to lead plein aire painting classes. That would be passing out brochures to people at the park…?

Then there’s my own art – for that it’s contacting galleries and staying informed with “calls to artists”. Also getting my work posted on an online art reproduction site like “fine art america” or “satchi”.

I will admit, sometimes the diversity can feel scattered and un-professional. Especially when I try to narrow down my focus to a “target market”. My skills have many different applications, but seriously lack in the technical department. I’m still dismayed at the fact that I can barely figure out how to order things on etsy, much less get my own site up and running. Uhhhg! Why is this so hard for you?!, I ask myself. And I don’t know the answer. But when I look back and see my progress in technology and business savvy over the last 6 months I tell myself it’s worth the struggle.

Even if I am burning the midnight oil, posting this at the eleventh hour. Whew!