I know, I KNOW! When I started this blog I said I would be better at keeping up. I'm sorry, I've been busy. I feel like I'm being the guy who doesn't call after a first date. I've left you waiting and wanting more. It's okay, you can admit it. I do feel as though I owe you an explanation.
So what exactly HAVE I been up to you may wonder (or maybe you're not wondering- but I'm going to tell you anyway)...
I've been compiling some of my favorite paintings into a book. This task, at first, seemed much easier than it really has turned out to be. For one, when I photographed a number of paintings, I had not really considered ever making a book. I just photographed them before I shipped them off to my clients so that I had a personal record of the work. Since I do not intend to ever make prints of custom art, I had not focused on image quality. Sadly, some of my work will have to be omitted from the book because of this, while others I have managed to edit successfully.
In addition to the images, I need text. I enjoy writing, so this task is not a painful one. However, since so much of what I do is a) personal b)spiritual, it was difficult to write about my art while keeping information about each custom painting general, as not to reveal personal information about my clients (very important to me). Eventually I decided to approach it as I would a conversation with someone who was asking about my work. Information about my process, and my personal experiences, and symbolism, but not discussing spirits related to specific clients or paintings.
After receiving my first 'proof' copy, I decided that rather than a small book, I would prefer go all out and do a hardcover (10x8") book. This, naturally, means that I have had to re-format and basically re-create the entire book. Luckily, having completed a smaller version I am better prepared for the task.
The result is something I am quite happy with. There is always room to grow, and I look forward to finishing up the final proof and making the book available for purchase. It's been a great learning experience. My new motto for 2011- GO BIG, OR GO HOME!
So, other than creating a book, I was running a number of art swaps. They are wonderful, fun to run, and inspiring. However (!) I was finding myself a bit over-worked by the time Christmas came...not to mention the dent in my pocket book from shipping costs...but I would gladly do it again!
I also am scratching out plans for a 'how to' book on Art Swaps. This book I hope to publish through Amazon, but I can't even give a rough idea of how long it will take me to finish THAT project. I'll keep you posted.
In the middle of the swap and book writing process, I was also completing some commissioned watercolours. It's been a crazy autumn/winter!!
Now as I look ahead to 2011, I am first off struck by how quickly 2010 flew by. Why is it that as I get older, time speeds up?
Second, I've decided a few things for next year (this is my public commitment). I've decided that next year I will be much more intentional in my actions. That is to say, that I will spend more time 'in the moment' rather than looking ahead and planning for the tomorrow that continues to elude me. I'm going to spend more time creating- not planning to create. I'm going to spend more time practicing the guitar- even if it sounds terrible (really, it does). I'm going to play more board games (even though my 4-year-old usually wins). I'm going to be open (emotionally) and trust in MYSELF enough to know I can handle other people's re-actions.
Third, I'm considering taking a stand against consumerism. Now, this may not be popular with a lot of people, I get that, and admittedly as a single Mom I don't spend a lot of money to begin with so my 'stand' may be likened to a toddler standing on a box of soap. However, I was first prompted a month or so ago when I watched the Canadian documentary ,"How to Boil a Frog" (I recommend it, and encourage you to look them up online). The documentary outlines 5 major problems and 5 solutions. Even if you are not a believer in global warming, I think we all agree that pollution in any form = bad. But I digress...
One of the families on the documentary had gone without purchasing new items for a year (other than one day they were allowed to purchase new items). Everything else had to be used/ thrift store purchases. I like the idea from an environmental stand point rather than a financial one. The idea being the same as that behind buying used cars- keep what we already have out of landfills. SO, in addition to all of the above, I have been researching how MY family can help the cause. A bit of an experiment. I'm still hashing out the 'Rules of Engagement'...suffice it to say this girl still has limits. Sorry Mother Nature, but I can't buy used underwear or shoes. It just grosses me out. More power to all that can...but....*shudder*
I'll be sure to document our progress. Perhaps another blog?! Who has the time?
One thing is for certain, no matter where YOU are, and what you are celebrating, I am wishing you all the very best for 2011! May you all find something YOU are passionate about, and find a way to bring it into fruition over the coming year.