I’m busy trying my very best to do art every day at the moment, it doesn’t always end up being anything I can display on here but I’m working, that’s the main thing. in any event, I am busy with these two pieces at the moment, they are both about 50cm x 40cm on repurposed stretched canvas (that was a process in and of itself let me tell you!).
I have used acrylics, pastels, inks, alcohol, red tissue paper collage. The tissue paper was used by OCA (Uni for Creative Arts) to package up my coursework manual. I knew i’d find a good use for it one day.
Acrylics, Inks, collage, gels, gold foil on acrylic canvas board/panel.
Close ups of texture:
I’ve been in a bit of the creative doldrums since I returned from South Africa, artistically speaking. Pottering about with clay hasn’t really helped, it’s just made me work small and that’s not what I’m about. I decided yesterday that I needed to put all the clay away and get back to er ‘making art’ … lest I forget how.
Again, I’m working small, so I wasn’t feeling very confident. I started working with tissue and forming the texture, the ground … I wasn’t really sure where I was going other than I wanted the little panel to express a feeling of wide open space and emotional depth. Then I got to thinking about the other evening when my daughter and I were travelling home from doing our shopping. It’s almost harvest time here and the wheat and barley in the fields is very high, golden brown and thick. In this vast expanse of golden beige, there he was just popping his head out of the grasses to have a look around. So he became the inspiration for this final bit of rather naive collage.
I hope to be able to get going with a very large canvas I have sitting around downstairs next week, it’s calling to me.
A friend of mine suggested that I do a better job with the images of my work, as this is one of the primary reasons why art doesn’t sell on the internet. I had a look at one painting in specific (Windy Day at Caister on Sea) which has received a lot of likes and so on but no purchase. The original photos were very dull and in fact, when I checked them out most of them had shadow on and were taken in low light. I took this painting out into my garden this morning (the sun is particularly bright today) and redid some photos – I didn’t use the tripod but I will for all future photos of work. I think the difference is quite obvious – any comment from my peers (i.e. you 🙂 ) would be welcome?
This is a heavily textured piece and a lot of reworking went into its creation. There are many layers of material that I have sculpted. The layers were made from caulk, modelling paste, fabric, threads (metallic and cotton), sand and paint. I used acrylics, as well as metal effect paints and the base is a stretched canvas.
This image taken in reflected natural daylight with tripod.
My phone made a bleep at around midnight last night and of course I was awake, so had to check it. The message was from a gallery in New York who wanted to know if I would be interested in exploring representation through them. I am not going to break out the champagne just yet as I need to know more and what is involved – but it is a personal victory and I’m proud that I have received some recognition from a major gallery.
14″ x 11″ x 3/4″
Multi-media – featuring scraps of silver fabric, acrylics, glues and effect paints on stretched canvas.
Reworked old canvas. Acrylics, glues, fabric, hand-dyed silk, caulk and gels.
Trying some new colour combos out today. Don’t know as I like this one yet. Might chuck it 🙂
There is a little back story behind this one, though. Many years ago, I lost my youngest daughter, who was about four at the time, when we were shopping in a busy department store. My eldest daughter (who was also with me) and I, spent a frantic fifteen or twenty minutes running backwards and forwards trying to find her. The horrible thing, for me, was that I’d had a particularly vivid nightmare the night before and in it I was hysterically running through what appeared to be train carriages (also brightly lit and full of people staring at me) searching anxiously for something or someone … all the time I was looking for my little girl, I was trying to remember how the dream ended but I couldn’t! I think these kinds of dreams are called prescience … don’t know much about that. In any case, my heart was in my mouth as we ran through the garishly lit and noisy mall trying to find my baby – there had been a spate of child abductions in the area where we lived during that time, which made things even more scary. People watched me running past, screaming for my child, shaking their heads and looking worried but nobody actually did anything to try and help. We eventually discovered that she’d gone back to the parking area and was patiently sitting on the pavement by the front wheels of my car, waiting for us to come and fetch her.
All things are relative. That’s the first point of reference, I find, when it comes to putting a price to a piece of art. It ISN’T about supply and demand either, as many marketers would have you believe. It’s about concept and connections. Many pieces of mediocre art are sold at astronomical prices because the artist or artwork itself, has generated some controversy, fame or following – not because of the scarcity of the work (limited edition prints for example) or physical output of original work by the artist.
Coming to a point where an artist can accurately gauge the hard currency value of his or her piece of work, rests solely on historical feedback and constant manipulation of the selling price. There is no magic formula. Pricing a work cheaply, does not guarantee that it will sell – in fact, it can very often have the opposite effect and actually result in work being perceived as sub-standard or below par; or that the artist is naïve and does not understand the intrinsic value of his or her work. Under-valuing a work of art, I believe, is the single biggest mistake that emergent artists make but how do you avoid this pitfall? Yes, you can assign some crazy value to that oil you just did (that took you all of ten minutes to create) in the hope that someone with tons of money will walk past and offload the cash in your direction – you are very lucky indeed if that happens! Or you can sit down, carefully and examine:
How much your materials cost.
The length of time it took you to produce the work.
Comment from your peers, as to the work’s artistic merit, originality and individuality of the artist’s voice.
Feedback you may have received since the work’s creation, from interested parties – such as galleries or private collectors.
The first two points above are relatively easy to put a value on. Especially, if you have a clear idea of how much you want to earn as a professional artist on a monthly basis, then you can reasonably calculate what your hourly rate is. So adding up the values of the first two items on the above list, will give you your base line, your ‘cost of sale’. Assigning a value to the mystical ‘artistic’ worth of a painting is where you hit the big problems.
It is sometimes valuable to look at work that is being marketed at local galleries (if you are hoping to attract interest from your neighbourhood gallery owner) but that can be a constraint in itself. Just because Joe Soap’s Gallery down the road markets abstract works of a similar size to your pieces at 20 to 100 pounds a painting, doesn’t mean that this price range applies to your work. So how do you (the new artist on the block) come to a realistic selling price for an original piece of art?
I decided to do something a bit daft on this blog and put a picture below of one of my recent works and ask commentators/followers/ visitors to this site to give me an idea what they believed the work was worth – not what they’d pay for it, what they believed it was worth (these are two entirely different values :)) So please would you participate for a bit of fun? You can be entirely anonymous in your comment.
Acrylics, collage (silk material), effect paints on stretched canvas.