Thursday, September 12, 2013

Featured Area Musicians to Perform at “ARTrageous”

What is ARTrageous?  ARTrageous is an art event designed to be much like a studio tour,
but instead of folks driving all over Rio Rancho (and getting lost), the artists are either all
in one spot or in several large clusters within close proximity.

The 2013 ARTrageous will be Sept 20-21 at the Italian American Association located at
1565 Stephanie Rd SE in Rio Rancho, NM.  The opening reception will be on Friday, Sept. 20th
from 5-9 pm which will include a fundraising (raffle tickets being sold for various items) to
benefit the Sandoval County CASA. You can view a complete list of the raffle items and list of
participating artist names at the RRAA website here.

In addition to the 18 well-know area visual artists who will be displaying their work for
sale, the following musical performances will take place during the opening reception:

• 5:00-6:15 pm  Linda McIntosh, Piano

• 6:30-7:15 pm  A small ensemble of singers from the Westside Concert Chorale will
perform excerpts from the Musical Les Miserables, and several other well-known choral
selections.  The Ensemble is directed by Jerrilyn Foster and it will be accompanied by
MacKenzie Reed.

• 7:30-9:00  Tony & Anthony Russell

Friday, September 6, 2013

Painting Music

Martin Klimas is a German photographer who has developed a way to capture  the actual sonic vibrations of such songs as Miles Davis's
Bitche's Brew and others. Klimas has an exhibit at the Foley Gallery in NYC now, but you can view this amazing photography AND how it is done on you tube :

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Photography Boot Camp for Beginners

For all you artists who are NOT photographers, Amazon local deals is offering a wonderful heavily discounted opportunity to attend a photography boot camp for beginners!  The event takes place on University of New Mexico Campus October 5th for four hours.  You do need to bring your digital camera. You can read more details HERE  For more of the great Amazon local deals look HERE.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

September's Program and Guest Speaker

At this month's September 11th meeting for RRAA, our guest speaker will be the renowned landscape artists, Tom Blazier. Tom will be speaking about his work and his technique immediately following the business portion of the membership meeting. This program is offered free of charge to the public-you need not be a member to attend. For more information about the membership meeting and the location, visit the RRAA website.

Here's what Tom has to say about this months' program:

"I have always been sensitive to my surroundings. Memories of being a small boy on our old farm in Pennsylvania and later years in Arizona, Oregon and New Mexico have left indelible images of contrasting landscapes in my mind. From stifling heat to frigid cold, bone dry to moss wet, muted browns to vivid greens, open cloudless expanses to small spaces under brooding skies, these abrupt changes have fueled my imagination and my desire to paint.

Spending time in these settings has made me more aware of the many ways in which light and atmosphere impart mood and drama in the landscape. I am able to approach potential subjects with a fresh eye, where I am aware of what is not in a particular landscape as well as what is. When I am hiking the Arizona desert, I notice that it lacks the intense greens and abundant water found in Oregon. When I visit Pennsylvania, I am aware of how the rolling hills and trees obscure the great vistas seen in New Mexico. Having these frames of reference helps me identify what is special about a particular landscape and use it to dramatic effect. Discovering a hint of vivid Oregon green in the brown New Mexico desert and placing a small addition of that color in my painting enhances the “feel” of an arid environment.

Finding the right words to describe my oil paintings often eludes people who try to define the subtle effect they see in my work. “A touch of fantasy,” “visionary” or “spiritual” are a few examples suggested. Although I don’t consciously begin my landscape paintings with the goal of creating this effect, the fact that it is observable in my completed works can be partially attributed to living in regions with vastly different geography and climate. Whatever words are used to describe my paintings, it is the sheer beauty of the Southwest landscape that inspires my creative impulse, and it is dramatic lighting and atmosphere that are identifiable features of my work."

"Winter Solitude" oil on canvas ©Tom Blazier

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

PAUL COZE - Public Works from St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Phoenix, AZ

St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Phoenix, located at 24th St. and Campbell Rd, was where I first attended school (elementary) after moving to Arizona.  It was also our parish church.  I can remember when Mr.  Coze's Stations of the Cross were first displayed.  They were different than other Stations I had seen in my short life...the others were more like small placques, but these were actual paintings...larger than most and framed.  They were also different in that they were not painted in the old masters' techniques that I was so used to seeing in the Church...these were a little edgy...they made me want to study them more...they seemed more relevant to me...

 The Church is beautiful, has been recently redone with changes in the railing in the front and new paintings...

...for the rest of the story and images, please go to my blog:


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Come One, Come All to RRAA's ART Rageous Event!

Bring your family, bring your friends, bring your neighbors to Rio Rancho Art Association's Art Rageous Event: an art show and sale. This event is being held at the Italian American Association building located at 1565 Stephanie Rd. SE in Rio Rancho-just across from Intel. Admission is free!

Opening Reception: Friday, Sept. 20th, 2013 from 5 pm - 9 pm. There will be live music, refreshments, raffle ticket sales and a cash bar. This reception also serves as a fundraiser for Sandoval County CASA-all proceeds from the raffle ticket sales will go to Sandoval County CASA.

The art show and sale continues on Saturday, Sept. 21st from 10 am - 5 pm. There will also be a "Creation Station" for the kids where they can make their own artistic creation from recycled goods. What a great way to learn about recycling and be creative at the same time.

Come on out and support CASA, support the local economy here in Rio Rancho and support your local artists!

Monday, August 26, 2013

PAUL COZE - Public Works from the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum

"...the spirit perishes if untended."   ...Kandinsky

Recently I traveled to Phoenix to spend some time with an old friend.  Kathy and I have been friends since we were twelve.  We have that kind of friendship where it doesn’t matter how long it has been since we last talked, we just pick up right where we left off the last time we were together...and our conversations are always filled with lots of laughter!

I decided to go a couple of days early because I had something very important to do.  I wanted to get some pictures of any public artworks by Paul Coze that are still standing today…

Paul Coze was the artist who, in the 1960’s and early ‘70s, was responsible for giving Phoenix its very unique southwest flair through public works…his creations spoke of our Native Americans and their way of life, of modern society, our history, technology and our future.  Mr. Coze had spent much time with the tribes in Arizona, learning their customs and beliefs…he established lasting friendships with these peoples. 

Paul Coze’s artwork is rich in symbolism…it is said that he used 52 different natural elements in the making of the mural that even today hangs in Terminal #2 at the Phoenix Airport… elements such as earth from the reservations, the Grand Canyon, Oak Creek Canyon…copper, granite and feathers, etc. Mythology also played a part in his work…his Phoenix (the bird, somewhat altered in appearance now) is still rising from the ashes at the Town and Country Shopping Center on 20th St. and Camelback Road… 

It was 119 degrees in the shade the day that I pulled up to the gates.....
 (read the rest of the story on my blog...and see the images at: 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Living in the Moment

"In this hurly-burly world, it can be hard to stop and take the time to truly be present — that state of mind in which we shut off the busy chatter in our heads and become aware...."

As an artist I was drawn to this opening thought posted in one of Richard McKinley's articles that make up his Pastel Pointers are featured on the Artist Network website.    I am not a pastel artist, but I thought his point was well said.  We need to let ourselves slide completely into the present of our art, to let the zen of our creating flow through us completely.    You can read the brief article in its entirety HERE.   

Monday, August 12, 2013

August 14th Program/Demo: Joe McDonnell Explaining How He Uses the Master's Technique

"Sandias" © Joe McDonnell

At the RRAA August 14th Membership Meeting starting at 6:30 pm, artist, Joe McDonnell will be giving a talk and demo on how he uses the Maroger medium-one that was used extensively by the Italian and Flemish Masters.This program is free of charge and the public is welcome-you need not be a member to attend. You can find out where the meetings are held HERE.

The Maroger mediums are made up in Italian and Flemish formulas. They were formulated from restoration samples at the Louvre Museum. They are a two part mastic and beeswax oil painting material that re-create the lighting effects, brushwork and the transparency of the shadows that give a painting depth without losing detail as practiced by the old European masters. Both are mixed right into the raw paint on the palette. The “Venetian” medium is based on the use of beeswax which artists found added a suppleness to oil paints eliminating evaporative cracking over time regardless of thickness of application. The “Flemish” medium gives the paint a “fresh, just painted” look, eliminating that “dry, flaky” final appearance due to the evaporation of the natural oils by the turpentine and eliminates the need for a final glossy varnish.

The Hahn/Wexler/Maroger technique of painting uses 6 tones or values - painting from fat to lean. This gives an added 3 dimensions that cannot be achieved by using oil paints, linseed oils and turpentine by themselves and is the secret of the Old Masters.

In 1963, a chance encounter in Paris, France brought together master artists Siegfried Hahn, Howard Wexler and aspiring artist, Joe McDonnell to form a teacher/student relationship and an enduring friendship.

Hahn and Wexler were teaching painting, drawing and watercolor to mostly U.S Air Force family members stationed in Evreux, Normandy and Paris, France during the 1950s and 1960s.

Joe became a European student of both Hahn and Wexler, who taught him to paint with the mediums re-discovered by Jacques Maroger, a French chemist and onetime director of conservation at the Louvre Museum.

Joe was also studying at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, France and when his father was reassigned stateside, Joe attended the Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida. Joe spent the intervening years in both the commercial advertising field as well as keeping up his fine arts training and background. He stayed in touch with Siegfried and Howard by letter through the years, and moved to Albuquerque to study with and be a friend to both.

"I've kept my first Maroger medium painting that Howard walked me through step by step back in 1965. It was a landscape of the church in the town where I lived. He was so patient and thorough that I still remember his instructions."

Sunday, August 11, 2013

2013 Annual Rio Rancho Event: Sunday is Funday™!

Come on out on August 18th, 2013 to the athletic field at Rio Rancho High School for all the super hero fun at the annual "Sunday is Funday™"!  The Rio Rancho Art Association (RRAA) will be number 55 on the map. Stop by and say hello, find out more about what we do, and become a member of RRAA!

     "The 8th Annual Tony Popper Memorial, Mayor’s Sunday is Funday™, on Sunday, August 18, 2013, from Noon to 4:30PM at the Rio Rancho High School field near the corner of Loma Colorado and Broadmoor.
This year’s theme is Super Heros, bullying stops here! Attendees will be treated to live music and entertainment, fun activities for kids of all ages, informative vendor booths, and lots of family budget friendly food. A highlight of the day will be the Mayor’s challenging, relay-style Pentathlon, pitting teams comprised of Rio Rancho community members against one another in a friendly competition.
Mayor Tom Swisstack is once again challenging the community - businesses, nonprofits, kids and seniors - to a fun pentathlon challenge consisting of athletic, relay-style events where teams will compete against one another. For information contact the Rio Rancho Kiwanis Club, Dave Heil at (505) 228-7189 or; Tim Sheahan 881-0777; or visit or
Sunday is Funday is sponsored and coordinated by the Rio Rancho Kiwanis Club, the city of Rio Rancho Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department, the Rio Rancho Boys & Girls Club and other community organizations. Proceeds, after paying event expenses, will benefit youth programs in Rio Rancho such as scholarships for parks and recreation programs, the Rio Rancho Boys & Girls Club, the Sandoval County Juvenile Justice Program, and the Boy Scouts.
Come and join the fun and have a great time participating in this funnest Rio Rancho family event."

Rio Rancho 2103 "Sunday is Funday™" Events Map

Here is the vendor list (sorry we can't make it any bigger!):

Rio Rancho 2013 "Sunday is Funday™" Vendor listing

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tree-Less Paper?? How Does That Work?

This is an excerpt from the Artisan's Art Spot Newsletter. I thought that it would be great to share it with you all in case you don't know what an extensive paper selection Artisan has (especially their Santa Fe store), not to mention a great in-house expert (T.Bird)!

We're often asked,
"What's up with tree-less paper?" 

"T.Bird here! You will most often find me prowling around the paper department at the back of Artisan's main store in Santa Fe.
The word 'paper' has recently been bent, folded and stretched almost beyond recognition! Gone are the days of paper-like products being manufactured solely from tree and plant materials. Traditional paper has been made from tree pulp and bark, mulberry fibers, linen, cotton and papyrus reeds for hundreds and in some cases thousands of years. But today's new "treeless papers" are making a big impression in the art supply market.
With literally hundreds of Art supports available to today's artists, it can be confusing to locate the exact product you need to create your next masterpiece.
I am going to introduce you to three new paper-like products which are relatively new to the market; TerraSkin, Yupo, and two types of Mylar (Duralar)
TerraSkin is the newest product on the market. It is made out of rock! No really! TerraSkin is made out of a combination of calcium carbonate (marble dust) and a small amount of polyethylene (a degradable plastic) as a binder. The surface of TerraSkin is smooth and has a satiny feel. It is a remarkable surface for mixed media, including graphite, charcoal, watercolor, oil, resin, encaustic, acrylic, inks and silverpoint. And since it has no grain, it cuts like butter.
The paper can literally be immersed in water for weeks or months with no ill effects (we actually tried this out at Artisan, immersing a pad of TerraSkin in a pitcher of water for two months!).
It is acid free, archival and degradable. No water or tree products are used in its manufacture. It is available in white or translucent in a variety of sizes and thicknesses. Single sheets and pads are available at Artisan, and rolls can be special ordered.
Yupo has been on the market for a few years now. It is made of polypropylene, a very stable plastic like product which is also acid free and archival. It has the ability to seek its own level meaning that it will not buckle or crinkle with use. Watercolorists love this product. Its nonabsorbent, ultra smooth surface allows watercolor and inks to lay on the surface but also allows them to be easily "lifted" back off for gorgeous watery effects. You can even erase watercolors from the surface by simply rinsing it off in water.  Yupo is also available at Artisan in translucent or white, single sheets, pads and rolls by special order.
Duralar (Mylar) has been available for many years. It was originally used by the graphics and engineering industries, but has more recently been found to be excellent for Fine Art applications. I would recommend 2 side matte Mylar for pencil, marker, ink, charcoal, paint and colored pencil. The matte Duralar is translucent and works well for layering effects. Wet Media Duralar is a clear version which is treated on both sides to accept any wet media. Duralar is available at Artisan in single sheets, rolls and pads.

Explore the possibilities. We are learning new applications for all of these products everyday! And give me a call at Artisan if you have any questions! (505) 954-4179

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Using LinkedIn To Your Advantage

"ArtSpark is a social experiment to discover how artists and arts organizations can fund their projects and engage their audience, fans and communities using social media + face2face buzz." 

I subscribe to their feed as much of what they post is oh so valuable by way of sharing information as to what works well by way of social media-particularly in the context of being an artist. I also have a LinkedIn account (the free version) and am in several art groups in LinkedIn. The dialogue and sharing of information is priceless as no one can be an expert on any of this social media stuff at any given point in time. Not to mention the tips and tricks shared by way of the medium that we love to work in.

ArtSpark posts a (usually) weekly article called, "Resource ThuRsday"-which is a way to share resources out there at our fingertips that we might not be aware of, or how to better use something that we are aware of. Such as today's post in regards to, LinkedIn. Beside's having an on-line resume, LinkedIn is a great way to promote yourself, meet other artists and discuss and share topics that you have the same concerns about. And, yes, I know of others who have picked up art commission jobs as a result of their LinkedIn account (it was a corporate art commission, so how sweet is that?).

You can find out how to create an attractive LinkedIn profile and how to best utilize other links to your LinkedIn account: READ MORE...

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

RRAA's July Program Guest Speaker: Ulysses Reid

© Ulysses Reid: Large Olla Water jar 

Rio Rancho Art Association's guest speaker for the July program will be Ulysses Reid. He will be speaking about his process and work immediately after the business portion of the RRAA monthly membership meeting.

Ulysses Reid is from the Zia Pueblo and was a hit at 2012 Indian Market. Buyers were lined up in front of his booth at 7:00 AM that first morning of market and he sold out! Ulysses is proving to be one of the best potters in New Mexico and is well respected for fine craftsmanship and also for his knowledge of Zia pottery. 

It takes about 30 hours to make a pot. The clay is gathered, sifted, mixed with water, coiled and and shaped by hand. Then it is painted with all natural mineral or plant pigments which have been gathered from the land. As the potter paints, he uses Zia symbols and designs dating back hundreds of years and also incorporates his own touch that makes it uniquely his. After the pot is formed and painted, Ulysses chooses to either fire the pot in a kiln or he uses an outdoor fire pit which is traditional. 

Ulysses Reid spent many years dedicating himself to his tribe by working for the Pueblo of Zia language and cultural preservation program. While working for the Pueblo, Ulysses coordinated several community pottery projects with expert potter Lois Medina. It was during these programs that he learned the locations of mineral paints and clays.

His formal training started in 2004 when he was awarded a Folk Art Apprenticeship Grant from the New Mexico Arts to work with his mentor Rufina Panana. In a very short amount of time, Ulysses became known for his work with Zia and Mesa Verde pottery designs.

Ulysses has shown at several art shows such as the Santa Fe Indian Market and Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

ART Can Changes Lives!

Art program transforms failing school

Orchard Gardens, a school in Roxbury, Mass., had been plagued by bad test scores and violence -- but one principal’s idea to fire the security guards and hire art teachers is helping turn it around. NBC’s Katy Tur reports. 


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

May 2013 Program Speaker: Howard Wexler

Howard Wexler will be our guest speaker at our May 2013 program. Wexler studied at the Corcoran Art School and the Abbott Academy of Art, had graduated from Pratt Institute in New York, served in the army in Europe, and was in Paris studying further at the Academie Andre Lhote and exhibiting his contemporary work. Wexler has worked with his longtime colleague Siegfried Hahn since 1961. Hahn and Wexler were teaching painting, drawing and watercolor to mostly U.S Air Force family members stationed in Evreux, Normandy, during the 1950s and 1960s (which is how RRAA member, Joe McDonnell came to be his student). 
When French President Charles de Gaulle asked the Air Force to leave France in 1967, Hahn, a South African by birth, and Wexler, an American answered an invitation from a retired Air Force colonel and his wife to move to Albuquerque, where they set up their own art school that is now under Wexler's direction since Hahn’s passing in 2008.
Wexler continues to teach classes in drawing, watercolor and oil painting using the Maroger medium in their home's adjacent studio. The medium is a resin derived from the mastic tree. "I was in a transition between cubist-style abstract works and realism back then. I later became known for my flower paintings, but they almost took over all of my painting time so I branched out with landscape, figures and architectural subjects," Wexler said. His work has been exhibited widely in Europe and the USA over the past 6 decades.

Several of Wexler's students will also attend with some examples of their work as a result of Wexler's tutelage.
Below are some images that exemplify (oh, so briefly) Wexler's process:

A sketch done on site

A studio version based on the on site sketch

The painting begins based on the previous sketches

Going through many phases, this one gets closer to completion

I will say, that after having visited Howard's studio with Joe McDonnell, the end result of Howard's technique is not something one sees today, but certainly is of the style of the Old Masters. Joe, having studied under Howard, is a perfect example of what can be attained by learning this technique called, Maroger, where the mastic resin is used as a 'blending and mixing' medium for the oil paint.

Painting done by Joe McDonnell using the 
Maroger technique taught to him by Wexler

This program is open and free to the public-you need not be a member to attend! Find out more about the dates and location of upcoming RRAA meetings at our monthly membership meetings page.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

City Hall Hosting Rio Rancho Public Schools Senior Art Show ‘Rising Stars’

2012 Rio Rancho Public School Senior Art Show, 'Rising Stars' (photo by Paula Scott Molokai Girl Studio)

RIO RANCHO, N.M. - The annual Rio Rancho Public Schools Senior Art Show ‘Rising Stars’ is taking place on the third and fourth floors of Rio Rancho City Hall from April 18-30, 2013. Normal viewing hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Artwork from seniors from Rio Rancho and Cleveland high schools and the Cyber Academy will be on exhibit as part of the show.

Please join them at the reception and award ceremony on Friday, April 26 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the third floor of City Hall. Refreshments will be served and the public is invited to attend, free of charge. At this reception at 6 p.m., Rio Rancho Mayor Tom Swisstack will present awards to the students featured in the exhibit.

Participation for this show was open to all students of the class of 2013 at Rio Rancho Public Schools’ high schools. The show will be judged by Rio Rancho and Cleveland high school art student alumni. The awards are sponsored by the Rio Rancho Art Association and the New Mexico Art Education Association.

The National Art Honor Society (NAHS) students will also be exhibiting their work at the same time, on the fourth floor of City Hall, as part of their membership requirement. The induction ceremony for these students will take place on April 26 as well, at approximately 6:30 p.m. (after the awards ceremony for the senior art show). Seniors who earn membership receive an honor cord that will be worn at graduation to distinguish them as an NAHS student. The NAHS is a local chapter of the national organization that recognizes excellence in achievement and community service in the arts by junior high and high school students.

Rio Rancho City Hall is located at 3200 Civic Center Circle.

               2012 Rio Rancho Public School Senior Art Show, 'Rising Stars' (photo by Paula Scott Molokai Girl Studio)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Call For Art For Valles Caldera 10K, Half and Full Marathon 2013

The complete prospectus for this call for art is here:


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Photographing Your Pottery or 3D Art

There is a science to photographing your art correctly. What works for photographing 2D art does not work as well for 3D art. Often, when submitting images for juried shows, allowances for 3D art is made by way of accepting at least 2-3 views of the work. Many artists shortchange themselves of even being considered because, well, there is no other polite way to say it, they take lousy photos of their art because they dont' want (or can't) to spend the money on hiring it out. However, you need not 'suffer' with bad images of your work with so many helpful people out there publishing lots of DIY articles on how to achieve this goal.

The folks at Handmadeology (the science of Handmade) publishes lots of great articles to help you out with. Such as, how to photograph your ceramic pottery!

"TAKING PICTURES OF YOUR CERAMIC POTTERY (an article excerpt from Handmadeology)

Here are suggestions to help take great pictures of your pottery. Step by step lighting set up that defines three dimensional form and shows true vibrant colors.
Move a table close to a window. To make the light coming in from the outside easier to work with it’s a good idea to tape a piece of tracing paper to the window. For more information on how to do this please read this."

You can read the rest of the article here.

I, for one, am looking forward to see what some of you do with this wonderful DIY article. Please let us know and leave us a comment here.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Image Sources Just For You!

Since one of the mediums I work in a lot happens to be photography, I never have a shortage of image files to work with in my art studio. However, a lot of artists who paint do not dabble in photography and struggle with finding images that are 'kosher' to use without infringing on copyright. Well, yes, then there are some who never concern themselves about that at all and as a photographer, I find that disregard to be along the lines of piracy!

But, there is a way to get  your hands on images and use them legally. The nice folks at ArtSpark explains how:

"In a world where text is everywhere, visual representation of ideas, process and data is more important than ever to capture (and hold!) the attention of your intended audience.
Two of ArtSpark’s favorite treasure troves for visual images, including photographs, illustrations and icons, are FREE (although attribution is required for one and suggested for the other).
1) images with a Creative Common license.
You can access Creative Commons images easily by doing an “advanced search” and scrolling down to the Creative Commons area.  The attribution license “lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.”  I have found great images and illustrations (also drawings) on this way, and even developed a couple of relationships with fellow creatives.  (NOTE:  you can search and access/download content without having a account.)"
You can read the rest of the article here.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Professional Development for Artists Made Easy

Most artists are pretty good about seeking out classes and workshops in order to fine tune their technique and ability with their medium(s). However, when it comes to professional development  it is more often avoided rather than sought out. In fact, sometimes, I think people view it like the plague! Yes, if you are an artist with a desire to sell your work, that automatically makes you a small business owner, like it or not. So, why wouldn't you seek out ways to hone your business skills so that you can sell more of your art, thus giving you even greater excuses to create more?

If the chief reason why you don't seek out professional development is due to accessibility and cost, then I think I'm about to give a dead end to that 'excuse'!

Enter the Creative Capital Professional Development Programs (PDP)!

Here's the 'low down' from their site:

Artists can now access selected workshop content at home, in the studio or wherever there is a computer with internet access.
When? 7-9:30pm EST. Most webinars are offered on Mondays.
We offer at least two live webinars each month, so there are new opportunities to enhance your career year-round.

Where? Anywhere!
All you need is a computer with sound and an Internet connection.

Everyone is welcome!Who? Everyone!
Designed for artists of all disciplines and at all career stages. If you're new to professional development or just interested in a refresher course, there is something for everyone.

How Much? Only $25!


So, now what's your excuse?    : )
What would make it even more fun is for several to get together at one person's house and tune in on a webinar topic. After the session is over, share with each other what you got out of it. I think you will be amazed at what can unfold from there.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Who Loves to Market Themselves?

Nearly every artist I've talked to complains about how they hate to do their own marketing. If they could have someone else do it, that would be better (but most of us don't have that kind of budget!).

So, you want your work to sell. But, you hate marketing your art. Sounds like a pretty big conflict, doesn't it? It's as though 'sales' and marketing' are dirty words (or, a dirty job).

ArtBiz coach, Alyson Stanfield sums it up beautifully and calls a spade a spade, methinks-in her article titled,

"So You Don't Feel Like Marketing"
(by Alyson Stanfield)

Remember when you were a kid and your mom asked you to clean your room or to pick up your toys?
Remember the wrath that was imposed upon you when you replied to her request with a whiny “But I don’t feel like it, Mom”?
Pouting Boy
It’s time to ask yourself if you’re being your same childlike stubborn self when it comes to marketing your art. Are you avoiding too many marketing tasks because you “don’t feel like it?”
If you are trying to make money from your art, you are responsible for certain tasks that you may not feel like doing.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Why Didn't I Think Of This?

Sometimes, when you see someone's simple solution to a problem that has plagued you nearly all of your life, you think to yourself, "why didn't I think of that?". Because the solution was so simple and under your nose, so to speak.
Barbara Delaney who writes for "Cloth, Paper, Scissors" magazine shares some of these dirt simple solutions she learned from other artists:

"Thoughts for Thursday: smart tips from clever artists (written by Barbara Delaney):

I am lucky to be able to work with all of the talented contributing artists for Cloth Paper Scissors. Not only do I get to see their art, up close and personal, and learn new techniques, I also pick up some great little tricks along the way.
I decided to share a few of these tips with you.

I learned this  helpful tip from Kari McKnight Holbrook. SO simple . . . and SO smart!
You know those little plastic clips that hold bread bags and the like closed? Kari uses one to keep the end of a roll of tape accessible.
No more searching for the end of any tape roll for me!
I picked up this little tidbit (and lots more!) on Kari's Cloth Paper Scissors Workshop DVD (Backgrounds to Bindings).
Coming soon!

You can read the rest of the article here...

Solutions that are so simple and brilliant. Why didn't I think of that?

Thursday, February 7, 2013


Or How to get started as an artist

I've been a graphic designer, website designer and photographer for more than a decade. But I have not attempted to make a living from my photography until this past year. The thought of beginning a career in art is absolutely daunting!

There is a very helpful series of articles on Art Biz Blog about the initial steps to getting started. It is a great read and I'd highly recommend looking for more articles similar to it.

The steps the blog outlines include seriously setting aside time to create and WORK on your art. It is a lot of work to be an artist. Not only do we need to create the actual piece of art, capture the perfect photograph, sculpt the incredible statue, but we also have to do the business side of pricing the art, marketing ourselves and maintaining finances. Discipline is key.

You've heard the adage 'it's not what you know, it's who you know'? Well use your network to begin building your contact list now. This list should have names, mailing addresses and email addresses of past buyers, galleries, fellow artists of differing genres, friends and family and business people - anyone who can assist you going forward with your business as an artist.

Seek out fellow artists and groups of artists, like Rio Rancho Art Association, to commune with. These people should be a mix of genres of art, stages of careers as artists, etc. This helps with the 'been there, done that, wouldn't do it that way again' advice we seek when starting something new. That's part of why I joined Rio Rancho Art Association; to garner the expertise of other artists and get to know the art scene in NM through those who have been part of it for awhile.

Promoting your art without the use of words is futile. Thus we need to begin our art careers, and continue them, by writing. We have to write the artist biography, write the descriptions of the artwork, write the thoughts that are in our heads down on paper or speak them to a voice recorder. If you have no idea what to write, as the Art Biz Blog suggests,  write about others' artwork. Go to a museum or pick one of your favorite artists and write about their work.

I'll be on this journey with the rest of you new career artists (and those of you who need a revamping of your current career). We'll be disciplined, contact-gathering, interactive, literary self-employed artists together! Best of luck.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Your website - a living, evolving thing

    An artist updates their body of artwork as often as able, adding new works, revamping and recreating past projects. Artists are always evolving and moving forward.

A website used to showcase a portfolio should be evolving and moving forward too.

    Many of us (myself included) are so focused on creating art that we forget or neglect our websites. The thought of maintaining them with the latest creations and completed or in-progress works of art is just one more thing to add to the mix of the daily tasks. But it is a necessary task to add if an artist is interested in garnering more new and repeat buyers.

So how often should a website be updated?

    Well, ideally as often as there are new works to be shared, or when a piece is sold. It is certainly a best practice to mark a piece as sold on your website so other interested buyers continue to peruse your other works of art.

    If you are unable to update your website with an image and a copyright caption each time a new work is completed, consider setting a timeline and making a date to maintain your site. Every four to six weeks at the most, log in to your site, upload some new images of your latest completed art or work in-progress or simply update your blog or artist statement if it has evolved.

    The web is a living, growing entity and content that is updated more often attracts more repeat users which could lead to more sales and exposure.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

How Do You Describe Yourself And What You Do?

In a recent article on Linked In, writer, Jeff Haden brought up some interesting points about what not to do in describing yourself. In his list of 16 terms one should not use to describe one's self: things that I hadn't given much thought to, but I'm sure I've done what he advises NOT to do. I think, as artists, we should take a good hard look at our artists statement and evaluate to see if we have used any of these terms (or, terms like it) to describe ourselves and what we do in our art.


by Jeff Haden

"Picture this. You meet someone new. "What do you do?" she asks.
"I'm an architect," you say.
"Oh, really?" she answers. "Have you designed any buildings I've seen?"
"Possibly," you reply. "We did the new student center at the university..."
"Oh wow," she says. "That's a beautiful building..."
Without trying -- without blowing your own horn -- you've made a great impression.
Now picture this. You meet someone new. "What do you do?" he asks.
"I'm a passionate, innovative, dynamic provider of architectural services with a collaborative approach to creating and delivering outstanding world-class client and user experiences."
All righty then.
Do you describe yourself differently – on your website, promotional materials, or especially on social media – than you do in person? Do you use cheesy clich├ęs and overblown superlatives and breathless adjectives?
Do you write things about yourself you would never have the nerve to actually say?"

I encourage you to read the article in its entirety and browse through some of the comments (more than 1,700 weighed in with their comments-and the comments often reveal even more helpful information). Although it is true, that no one is as knowledgeable as you are about what you do, we should give more thought to constructing our descriptions instead of taking a 'confetti' approach. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Things You Should Know In Regards To Entering Art Competitions

Having been a juror and a curator of art competitions, I can say that there are mistakes that are consistently made by entrants that negates them from becoming a contender in the art competition they are applying for before the reviewing process is done.

According to John R. Marsh, owner of Light Space and Time On Line Gallery, about 30-35% of the submissions for 12 recent art competitions that yielded over 8,300+ images, were missing the mark. In this article, John shares his insights as to how to not only avoid these mistakes (and what they are), but he also gives sound advice as to how to put your best foot forward (so to speak):

"8 Mistakes To Avoid When Entering Art Competitions"
(article written by John R. Marsh)

"The following are some of the most common mistakes that we see each month. When entering any art contest, try to make sure that you are not making some of these common mistakes when entering juried art calls and juried art competitions:
1. Thoroughly Understand the Competition’s Theme & Allowed Media
Understand what the art organization (who is running the competition) wants from the artist. If the prospectus or rules state that the competition is for 2 dimensional art, do not submit your jewelry, sculpture or crafts. If it says no photography, do not expect the organization to provide to you an exception. There are numerous other venues and organizations who are conducting calls for your type of art.
If you have any questions or concerns about the theme or what is acceptable media, contact and discuss this with the organization’s event staff first, prior to submitting your art. You can save yourself and the event staff a lot of trouble, wasted time, effort and money."  YOU CAN READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE HERE.

The advice the Mr. Marsh shares with his audience in this article is one that all artists should sit up and pay attention to. I would also add that if you are not willing to learn how to photograph your images properly and prepare them for submission, then, for heaven's sake, hire a professional to do it! If you don't know of one, ask around amongst fellow artists and see which name is used the most and go with that one. Especially if your work is 3D-it is very difficult to photograph 3D art objects properly. I would advise on not taking a DIY approach to this. 

I've heard artists complain about the art work that wins the overall competition (as in, 'why did that one win?')-trust me, a lot of this has to do with submitting a good quality image of your work to begin with. When it comes to on line entries, the juror can only go by what they see in front of them. More and more art competitions are done by on line submissions, so if you want your best shot at any of these, be very mindful about following the submission guidelines and submitting the best image representation of your work.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Photography, The Internet, Copyright issues, Oh, MY!

From the blog, "Plagiarism Today" comes a great article that grapples with the myriad of complex issues that photographers today face amidst the landscape of the internet, social media, and other platforms:

The Challenge Faced by Photographers

Photographer ImageEvery type of content creator faces serious challenges these days.
Writers are plagiarized, spammed and scraped constantly online while the fledgling eBook market faces serious piracy challenges. Filmmakers face obvious piracy issues and are having to depend heavily on box office revenuesdue to a shrinking DVD market. The music industry’s downfall is well-documented as piracy and a shift to digital has deeply cut into sales.Despite recent gains, music sales are still down considerably from just ten years ago.
No matter what copyright industry you look at, the Internet has provided both great opportunities and severe challenges. READ MORE HERE...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Choosing between a haphazard approach to a 'on purpose approach'

Does this sound like you:

Do you...

-feel like you’re constantly scrambling to get your artwork finished in time for a show? 

-juggle many responsibilities and feel overwhelmed or frazzled from trying to get it all done?

-wish you were more organized so you didn’t waste time looking for things in your studio or rushing to complete tasks? 

-wonder why you never get around to writing or updating your artist bio? 

Well, you’re not alone! 

The Rio Rancho Art Association is pleased to present our frist program for the year 2013 (and what a great way to start the year!) with Christine Herman who will be our program presenter for the January program. 

Christine Herman is a creative catalyst coach and professional artist dedicated to guiding artists to find their greatest truth through the joyful gateway of creative self-expression. Her presentation will help artists to organize, get creative and make the most of their time and activities:
This program will take place at the Jan 9th monthly membership meeting at 6:30 p.m. at the St. Francis Episcopal Church Hall located on 2903 Cabezon Rio Rancho (the church is located on the corner of Golfcourse Rd. and Cabezon Rd.) in Rio Rancho. Meeting locations and program content is subject to change. The programs are free of charge and you need not be a member to attend. Find out more about each of these presenters by clicking on the links that are highlighted.