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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Order of the Arrow, Pt. 2


This one was created for the purpose of fundraiser auction, to support the Conclave program for Section W1B. This will help fund program and events for next year's Conclave. Available for bid in Anchorage Alaska, W1B Conclave this coming weekend.

feather art

Order of the Arrow

This one was ordered for our Section's Chief, so the orca is appropriate. Look closely and you'll see the arrow and the "WWW" on the quill. Framed in black moulding with a dusty blue suede topmat, this piece will be on its way to Alaska this week.

art business - pricing

This came from Alyson Stanfield's blog entry. Short, to the point. -and very true!


"The golden rule for pricing your art is . . .

Start low and go from there.

If you’re too high and later have to lower your prices, you appear unsuccessful and you also tick off anyone who purchased your work at higher prices. "


Let me elaborate on this one from an art show standpoint--

I've watched artists at shows ( not this last one, these artists know better than that!) who get very discouraged at the end of a show because they did not do as well as they anticipated. So what do they do? They knock 10% - 20% off their prices on the last day! On top of that, some will even call that out to passersby: "20% off! This day only!" I rarely see people flock to that artist for a "bargain" when said artist does that. The truth of the matter is, that artist just succeeded in losing his credibility, his prestige, and possibly the respect of the customers. What happens when he returns to that show next year? Will the patrons remember the beautiful piece they had their eye on the previous year (that DOES happen!), or will they wait til Sunday because he's probably going to drop his prices? Or will they determine that he doesn't know what he's worth, he's not successful because he keeps changing his prices, and not buy from him at all because at this rate he might not even be around in a year or two?

Patrons won't buy from you just to have your art because you may not be around much longer. Patrons want you to be successful. They want to own a piece from an artist who they think is going somewhere. They don't want to pity you, they want to see your confidence! Don't sell yourself short. Don't drop your prices to try to bring in sales. And by all means, remember to keep your pricing consistant - in the gallery, in the show, and in the studio!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Wood Duck

Wood Duck

This is the last one I was able to complete before the Fair - a drake paddling contentedly on a quiet pond. I left the water effects dark and subtle, because the feather created so many water effects all on its own.

Spring Fair, Puyallup WA
If you happen to be going to the Puyallup Spring Fair here in western WA, please look me up! I will NOT be in Artists In Action like I was last Spring. This year I will be amongst several artists exhibiting in the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center. For those unfamiliar, that is the mustard-colored building just inside the Red gate. We have a full house in there! Nestled amongst the museum's antiques and artifacts are artists booths and walls of all shapes and sizes. Other artists exhibiting are Paul Langston, Judy Sleight, Karen Lucas, Dick Oldfield, Mark Hoppmann, Peggu Rowe, Hulan Fleming, Katherine Caughey, and Aletha Deuel - and of course, fred Oldfield himself.

Thursday, April 19; 3pm - 10pm
Fri & Sat, April 20 - 21; 10am - 10pm
Sunday, April 22; 10am - 3pm
The Fair itself will continue going on Sunday til 7pm.

Quick Draws
Come watch us pull our hair out as we frantically work to create a piece of art in one hour's time! We begin this at 5pm on Friday and Saturday. The results of this toil will go through live auction at 6pm on Friday and Saturday. This is a great opprotunity to own an original work of art that you could watch being created.

Live entertainment
Musician Don Allard will be performing throughout Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. We will also be treated to Western music and poetry by the Rockin' HW on these days.

It's going to be a busy four days!

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Ringneck Pheasant Pair

More experimentation with heritage turkey feathers. I like how those of the Royal Palm turkey are so very similar in coloring to the flight feathers of a male pheasant.

This was scanned on Bainbridge's dusk suede. I may try simple photography and see if those results come out any better.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

How's Your Body?

...body of work, that is.

As we gear up for the deluge of art shows, festivals, and competitions that fill up the warmer months, we should always have an eye out for the next potential gallery representation. Usually it is best to approach these in Spring-- especially in areas prone to tourism-- before the high traffic hits the local businesses. When you do so, make sure your body of work is up to snuff. Author Robert Regis Dvorak puts it very well in his book:

Selling Art 101

Body of Work
"If you are an artist who wants to sell your work, you need to have a body of work-- a number of paintings, prints, sculpture pieces, whatever you do, at minimum 12 to 20 pieces-- that look like they were done by the same person, all are about the same size, all are in the same medium, all are completed, and all have a contextual theme. Don't even attempt to go to an art gallery in search of representation unless you have that. Do not take an assortment of media, thinking that you will impress the gallery owner by your range of talent and skill. The work that you will show must be of the highest calibre-- only your very best work. Don't risk showing secondrate work.

"Think of the painters and sculptors who are well known-- Georgia O'Keefe, Mark Rothko, Willem De Kooning, Robert Rauschenberg, Helen Frankenthaler, Henry Moore, Andy Warhol, Alberto Giacometti, J.M.W. Turner. Each artist's work has unique subject matter, is consistent in medium, and has a contextual theme.

"Art Dealers are looking for new work. Do not imitate the success of others. If a dealer or critic sees a resemblance to another artist, you are not welcome. You may borrow knowledge and information, but you must do your own work.

"When you have a body of work and feel psychologically prepared to sell, be very discriminating. Pick your best, most original creative works and go for it!"

Good advice. Good book, too.

Don't ever try to put the cart before the horse and think that oh, a half dozen will be good enough to get your foot in the door. While your work may be consistent and in keeping with the same theme, your prospective gallery representative may single one particular piece out and say, "I like this one. Do you have any more like this?" You don't EVER want to have to say, "This is all the work I have!" Make sure you have ample work.

It is also a good idea to have an ample amount of your artwork available for viewing online, sold works and current works. I have picked up gallery representation by way of works displayed on my website, but I have always had an adequate amount of work available or accessable when the gallery owner wants to personally see more.

The best rule of thumb is, do not set out looking unless you have those 12 to 20 pieces. The size of your works may also influence how many you'll need. If you work in a small scale like I do, you'll want to have at least 18 - 20. Just consider what it would take to dress out a 10 by 10 booth and you should be fine.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


Kingfisher ~on Peacock wingfeather~

These bold little guys are so full of personality and so much fun to watch when they fish.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

a little Skunk...

Skunk ~ on Royal Palm turkey feather~

What's not to love about a cute little skunk? As adorable as these little guys are, you just don't see them at wildlife art shows. As a matter of fact, I'm willing to bet this will be the only skunk at the upcoming show.

I will be framing this with Bainbridge's Rosewood (seen here), and Thistle on top. So far, this is the smallest feather I'll have on exhibit - from tip to tip it's only 9 inches.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Sockeye Salmon

...and the river turns red with migrating fish.

Some sockeye salmon urgently heading upstream to the place of their birth, to begin the cycle anew. Peahen wingfeather. I like how the subtle mottling along the edge of the feather looks so much like sunlight filtering through ripples on the water's surface. I used a slightly stylized version of salmon in this one. This will be available at the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center's art show during the Puyallup WA Spring Fair, Aprill 19 - 22.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Dall's Ewe & Lamb

Dall's Ewe and Lamb
on mottled hybrid turkey feather

I attempted scanning this in with Bainbridge's Dusk suede matboard behind it. Although the feather itself is still flattened more than it would ever be framed, I wanted to preserve the downy strands of feather at the base. Turkey feathers are a lot fluffier than peacock feathers, Ive learned. I may or may not use Dusk behind it in the actual framing, I haven't decided yet.

One drawback to scanning on matboard is the scanner's light is so brilliant and the items scanned are so flat, I lose all sense of depth - there is no cast shadow. But it will have to do for now. The originals always look so much better.

I'm painting like a mad woman in preparation for this show, once again risking burning myself out. I have a mere two weeks to have all inventory completed and framed. My hanging space will be smaller than the usual 10X10 booth I have at most shows. Instead I will be utilizing one of the wooden walls inside the Western Heritage Center. These works I'm finishing up should fill that out nicely.

Keep an eye on this blog, as more paintings that will be available at the Fred Oldfield Western Heritage Center will find their way here regularly between now and the Puyallup Spring Fair on April 19th.