Yep, my email inbox is on steroids. I use Go Daddy for my personal email and do not love their dashboard so much, but that is irrelevant. I need to organize me my email inbox. Today my inbox has 4,084 unread emails. Yep, you got that number correct. Most is just junk. I order something and then each day I get an email with a discount code to purchase more. My usually routine is to go at the end of the month and search for those pesky emails (usually HSN, QVC, art supplies stores, printers, etc…) and just search them and hit delete. It does not really put a dent in the inbox. But today, while the hubster is doing our taxes and I have to look and find things in my email anyway. I decided to tame the beast.
So you must be saying, why don’t you just unsubscribe to these emails. Well some of them I tried to and they just still keep on coming (yes, you my local newspaper still sends me events of the month, even though I unsubscribed several times and I get the paper daily). Or, I unsubscribe and I think I get more emails. And then others just do not have an unsubscribe option (a big no-no). But since I always think I may miss out on something or a coupon code for a discount, I set up a rule to put certain things into trash, others into their own folders (art newsletters, organizations I belong to, Linkedin, vacation deals…) so know my number is at 2800.
Now all I need to do is go to that folder, and manage it from there. For the trash folder, I can just give a glimpse or just search that folder before I delete it. Hey, I don’t want to missJust that 20% off paint sale at Dick Blick’s (they also send my postcards)
Now you are probably thinking this took me a long time. I still have sorting to do, as emails come in every minute. But I have a trick that I use to get things done. I set my iphone timer to 60 minutes and just get to work till the bell rings. I have found for me that setting a timer to do a task does not overwhelm me and something gets done. Baby steps.
I have been very disturbed about the gun violence in America. So much so that I decided to paint about it. At first I wanted to make an installation. A large grouping of trees, each representing a country and hanging from the branches would be a hanging something (of what I, do not know) to show the people of America how we have so many people die for no other reason than from a gun. But I realized that I did not have the resources to execute such a large project. But I have been going through the data on the amount of deaths by guns in the USA. Many of the deaths are suicide. Which I was shocked at the large number of those who use a gun to commit suicide. I wondered if those who did not have access to a gun would have still taken their own life or was the access to a gun enticed them to end their life. But I really want to show visually how many people die because of a gun. I truly believe that stronger gun control would lead to fewer deaths.
So today in the studio I started to work on the series. Not sure what to call the series. I am sure a name will come to me.
For many years I was a marketing manager. I was very good at it. It was before social media. Some times I was called brand manager or art director. Each company had a different title, but basically all the same. How to engage people is basically what I did.
I finally created my own small business (a skincare biz) and the world of social media was just expanding. So I saw it as an opportunity of free advertising. I took every webinar I could find and viola, I learned how to promote my business and drive traffic to my website and then into my shop. It works. But it takes planning and time. So my day job keeps me so busy that I can barely put in studio time. A good problem to have, unless like me you start to burn out. I have my day business up and running and earning me a living, and after 5 years it is time for me to focus back on my painting. But I still cannot stop being that marketing person. So I started to apply what I learned for my day biz into my art. Somethings are the same, but boy are some things so different. So if you want to learn along with me of what works or not, then come on over to FB and join Art.Post.Promote or just keep on following along here on my blog.
With so many artist using social media, there have been instances of individuals copying and using your images. As much as I do not want a watermark on all my work, I think as artists we all need to protect what is ours. So here is a video I made to show how I apply a watermark to my work.
I have found that I am always having trouble locating photos that I take with my phone and can never find them again.
So I now use Instagram as a tool to help me keep my files organized also not have to worry about running out of storage.
I just snap a photo in Instagram and I just make a hashtag for it. Yep, that is so easy. So I just snap- create the hashtag- for example: #ajquilts or #ajideas. So then I can just go back into Instagram type in the search menu my hashtag and there are all my photos. Now I use to have #ajheart but other people used the same hashtag, so be unique so that you can just locate your own photos. Here is a quick video to explain it all.
When artists start out with encaustic, the first comment is “How many colors do I buy and the paint is so costly?” What everyone fails to remember is that color theory and mixing still applies. When the wax medium is melted it is in a liquid form. Just like any other painting medium. In watercolor you have pigment that mixes with water, acrylic mixes with matte/gloss gel medium, oil paints with linseed oil or liquin and encaustic mixes with encaustic medium or beeswax. You just have to stop thinking in wet and dry, to solid and melted. Once the colors are melted and liquid you can mix your colors. Remember encaustic pigments are made from the same pigments as oil paints, just instead of being in oil, the pigment is in encaustic medium.
For this exercise you will need Titanium White, Cadmium Yellow Medium, Phthalo Blue and Alizarin Crimson. I have been told that this is an exotic palette, so I blame that on living in South Florida. You will also need a matte board, brushes and a heated palette.
These are the large bricks but you can purchase the smaller size.