Transparent Opaque

work

Transparent Over Opaque Notes

I like to fool around a lot in the studio with transparent colors over various mediums and sometimes it is fun to combine them. Several years ago I was really using a lot of casein and then glazing over them with transparent oils. I recall that it was a very interesting process and with some success.  I started using casein a lot late last year and am continuing with it this year, with more success I think than in the years past.

Small Paintings

Now that the renovation of my studio is done, and I can get back to a routine of painting in the studio, I plan to start using some transparent oils over some of my casein paintings. I am interested in seeing if the transparent oils really do enhance the under paintings. From time to time I like to play with my transparent oils over opaque oils, so I have collected a fair number of colors in the transparent paints.

Linda’s Etsy Shop

I’ll share some photos here on the blog as I experiment. The best luck I have had with them is in creating fogs, mist, and atmospheric conditions. I tend to have to paint the under painting in a very high key, as the transparent paints  tend to darken the paintings, at least with oils.  I’m not much for dark paintings for myself, so it might lend itself better for tonalist painters, than for me, but it never hurts to play around with stuff you are not as familiar with as  a painter.

More musings for artists and collectors to come…

Today’s Recipe

Chipoltle Meatballs

1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
32 oz home style cooked meatballs
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons chipotle pepper sauce
1/4 cup pre-sliced green onions

  1. Preheat large, nonstick sauté pan on medium 2–3 minutes. Place water, butter, and meatballs in pan. Cover and cook 10 minutes, swirling pan occasionally.
  2. Add brown sugar, then cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, 6–8 minutes or until meatballs are glazed and 165°F. Transfer meatballs to large bowl; add pepper sauce and green onions. Toss several times to coat and blend; serve.

Transitions Career

transitions

Transitions in Career Notes

Sometimes I think back in my career and wonder why I didn’t make transitions sooner. I have found though, that transitions happen when they are supposed to. Perhaps we haven’t the skill set needed yet for some changes. Perhaps we don’t have the resources financially or the relationships yet to make the proper transitions. I think we have the light bulb go off  when we either have to make changes or want to badly enough.

Marketing Can Be Fun

My big transition for this stage of career is redoing my Country Studio. I am investing in my future and slowly giving up my dependence on other galleries to sell my work. It will take a bit of time, but after 40 years of depending on the whim of dealers, it’s time to sell my own work. Who understands it and my mission more than I do?  What better place to spend most of my time than my own beloved studio and on Deer Woods Trail?

My friends, the Junk Yard Girls made the new signs for my Country Studio. They are so cute. What an improvement! I used to have a big ugly plastic sandwich board sign that I drug out to the front gate for parties. Now I have a beautiful, free standing permanent sign installed in front of my gate. It is very easy to see. They made one for the front of the studio building too.

I’ve been doing tiny Fairy House paintings on wood to install along Deer Woods Trail to entertain my trail walking visitors as they stroll along. The trail has been extended twice, and is lovely to stroll. I enjoy a walk there from September-May each year.

I believe my big transition will be successful, but it will take hard work and true effort to get visitors coming out to a rural studio. It will mean more effort toward online sales and better management of my online venues. I may or may not need to hire someone who is more skilled in e-commerce. I will eventually be able to build my collectors club with better pricing advantages for members. Most people don’t realize that artists have to pay steep commissions to art dealers. Sometimes up to 50-60% of a sale. Being self-represented allows me to make adjustments for my regular collectors through the club, giving them a good reason to make the drive out to my Country Studio.

Whatever your situation, transitions to your career can be very positive. If you are able to use creative ideas, you can overcome difficulties, improving your situation. You may not see solutions right away. It may take some time to get good ideas. You must believe that you will, to succeed. It took me about 7 years to see my solutions.

More musings for artists and collectors to come…….

Today’s Recipe

Corn Dip

1 (15.25-oz) can Southwest corn, drained
1 (14.75-oz) can no-salt-added cream-style corn
1 (4-oz) can diced green chiles
1 (1.2-oz) package extra spicy guacamole seasoning
12 oz processed cheese product
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
Pretzels or chips, optional for serving

  1. Drain corn. Place all ingredients in microwave-safe bowl (except cheese and cilantro); whisk until blended. Cut cheese into small chunks; stir into corn mixture.
  2. Cover and microwave on HIGH 2 for minutes; stir, then heat 2–3 more minutes or until hot and cheese is melted. Let stand 5 minutes to cool.
  3. Chop cilantro; stir into dip. Serve with pretzels or chips.

 

Charts Color mixes

work

Charts and Color Mixes

I really enjoy trying out a lot of different charts and palette mixtures for painting. I have a photo of one in this post. It is pretty sloppy because I was in a hurry. For those of you who are new to the blog, I have designed a color mixing system that works very well for myself. I have a 3 ring binder for all of my palette charts. Every palette I want to experiment with gets charts.

Linda’s Etsy Shop

The first is all the possible mixtures I can make with the palette. I do this by using a stripe both vertically and horizontally on a sheet of index paper(Card Stock)of each tube color in the potential palette. I use the stripe colors, which become a grid, to mix the color and put a swatch in the blank middle spaces. So, if I have a square made of a thalo blue stripe, a FUB stripe, and two Cad red light stripes, I would mix one portion FUB, one portion thalo, and two portions Cad red light to make that mixture, and so it goes through the entire grid. At the end, you have a lovely chart with all the possible mixtures for that palette. You will know immediately whether you like the palette as is or whether you need to make changes. In a year you can go back and remember exactly what colors you used for that chart, and each particular mixture.

Transparent Opaque - image  on https://lindablondheim.com

Most of my charts look better than this. I usually write the tube colors in a list on the bottom of the chart.

 

The second chart is a color value chart made with black and white to tint and tone the color from the initial chart.

The third chart is a compliment value mixing chart, leaving the black off.

This gives me a great deal of information to thoroughly understand the palette I am about to use for a painting.

charts

The chart for the painting above was made with the following:

Rose

Yellow Ochre

Paynes Gray

Cad Yellow Medium

Cad Orange

Prussian Blue

UB

Titanium White

I really like the  diversity of the above palette and it makes beautiful charts.  I am finding that it works well for both oils and caseins. I spent most of January using my casein paints in my home office, while my studio was under renovation.

Small Paintings

 

Today’s Recipe

Jessie’s Calzones

1 portion pizza dough-divide in half
1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 8 oz Ricotta Cheese
1 bag shredded Italian cheese
favorite pizza toppings- mushrooms,pepperoni,peppers,onions,etc.

Preheat to 350
Roll out each half pizza dough into circles
Spread on ricotta cheese
sprinkle cheese on top
fill with favorite toppings
fold sides together in a half circle
crimp with fork to seal.
Bake for 12-20 minutes
Heat 1 cup spaghetti sauce for dipping.
Plate and serve with ramekin of sauce for dipping

Have a swell Valentine’s Day!!!!

 

Schedule Changes

schedule
Schedule Change Notes
Sometimes a simple schedule change can increase the pleasure of an artist’s career. Despite what most people think, being a professional artist takes a great deal of energy. We have a bad habit of mismanaging our schedule, filling it with time wasting and unproductive activities. Sometimes it is good to step back and consider whether the automatic habits we have formed, are really helping us create and sell art.
I came to the realization late last year that I was spending more time at my town studio than I need to. Since my town studio is inside a store, Paddiwhack, there is staff there to handle sales, and my assistant also works there part time. She watches my back when I’m not there. I discovered that Saturday is the best day to be there, and one day a week is enough. I have adjusted my schedule there.
This year I am spending more time at my Country Studio, watching over the renovation and planning activities there for friends and collectors once the studio is tip top. I have more painting time now and more time to explore nature. I’m not as tired. I save gas, and expenses as well. I have a productive schedule each day.
Time hurries along faster and faster as I age, which makes me very determined to use my schedule very wisely. Assuming you are a working professional artist who needs to sell your art, here are some questions to ask yourself for saving schedule time:
Why am I entering juried shows in museums and art centers? Do I expect to sell, win prize money, gain recognition,build my resume?
Have I gained any of the above?
If not, is it wise to continue?
Why do I belong to art associations or art centers? Companionship and socialization?
Are they helping me to sell my paintings? Are they helping me to improve my art skills?
What art events am I doing each year and are they bringing me good income? Examples might be paint outs or sidewalk shows. Have you considered the time you are using? Gas and expenses? Time you are away from marketing to your collectors and potential collectors? Time at your easel in your studio to produce good work?
How much time do I spend on social media? Have I studied and learned which platforms are successful and produce actual sales?
Each one is different and there are many steps to success, consuming a lot of your schedule. I post to all of them, but Facebook gets most of my attention, as I sell paintings there. Instagram is beginning to produce sales as well.
What Studio habits take the most of my schedule?
Is there any way to streamline those tasks and free up more time. I do most of my ordering online, saving shopping time for studio supplies. I keep the studio organized and tidy, keeping me on task with little wasted time.
Do I use a newsletter or write a blog?
My blog is a great way to communicate and my most success for a schedule saver is to use an editorial calendar. It was the best thing I learned for blogging and newsletters. I stick to it regularly, staying ahead by about six weeks for blog posts. I no longer have to try to come up with topics on the fly. When an idea comes to me I put it in my editorial calendar so I have something useful to write about.
Do I keep an idea list?
I have one on my IPad. When ideas for paintings, marketing, blog topics come to me, I add the idea to my list. It might take a week, a month or years to actually implement the idea, but it is waiting for me when I am ready.
Should I spend time taking painting workshops or classes?
If you honestly feel that an artist can help you to grow your skills, then yes. Be careful to make sure the teacher is right for you. I know more than one outstanding painter who is a poor teacher. Get referrals from other students. Perhaps online classes will take less time and be less expensive than travel.
Should I invest time in my online presence, online art galleries, your web site?
If you are selling reasonably well, face to face, then yes. Your website is important and worth your investment, but it needs to be tended to and nurtured regularly. SEO will be important. Research will be important to success. Some online shops do produce sales. I use Etsy and Daily Paintworks. Others I have tried have not worked well for me.
Be aware that time is your most valuable resource and schedule is vital to use time wisely.
More musings for artists and collectors to come…
Today’s Recipe
Bacon wrapped carrots

2 lb fresh carrots, peeled
1 lb bacon
Nonstick aluminum foil
Cooking spray
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Peel carrots, then wrap 1 slice of bacon tightly around each. Place on foil-lined baking sheet (wash hands); coat with spray.
  2. Bake 20 minutes; brush with syrup. Bake 8–10 more minutes or until bacon is crispy and carrots are tender. Place on serving platter and sprinkle with salt; serve.

 

Women Artists Observation

women

Women Artists Observation Notes

I been thinking about women artists and why women in general handicap themselves in career. This post will probably anger a lot of women artists but it is my blog and I have the right to muse about the way of the world.

I have observed that most of the truly successful women artists are either single or highly independent in their partnerships and marriages.

Linda’s Etsy Shop

Most of the women artists I know, put off their own career needs to assist husbands’ businesses or career moves. When husband retires, wife retires too because he doesn’t want to give up travel or retirement dreams. In reality, no artist needs ever to retire as long as they are well enough to paint. Many women artists miss career opportunities to care for children’s needs and I mean grown children.

Testimonials

I attended a picnic event with another artist once. I knew no one save the artist who brought me. I sat at a table observing the crowd. The men and women separated by gender. The women talked about children, grandchildren, shopping, hair salons, celebrities and other women. The men talked about world, national and local news and politics, the stock market, finance, real estate and sports.  I struck me powerfully that men still dominate the world for a reason.

I was chastised several times by women who join women artists associations, because I do not join in or participate in these groups. I see no need for them. I don’t need to be known as a woman artist. I am a painter, no gender bias needed.

I raised two daughters alone. I worked by day as a chef and by night and weekends as a painter for 13 years. I cleaned houses, cooked for restaurants and worked as a caterer during the hard years of their childhood, but I never gave up my art. As a grandmother now, I set limits on visitation, though I love my grandson so much. My job after all the years of sacrifice, is to be in business for myself and to be a painter. It is all I ever aspired to. My dream has come true.

I fully admit that I do not play well in the sand box and have no interest in sacrificing my time and dreams to assist someone else’s career, childcare, or retirement.  Contrary to popular belief, women cannot have it all, but they can have their share if they are willing to work hard and set limits to others. My daughters well know that my career was hard won and I’m not about to give it up to convenience their wants. I help them in many ways, including financial when needed, and a monthly fun night with my grandson, but they understand the limits to my time. I worked hard for my time and it is precious to me.

Women artists need to treat their job as a job, if they ever expect to be successful. Putting their job on the back burner for others is altruistic but not realistic if they plan to be truly successful.

My advice for women artists is:

Set limits for others

Value your time as an important resource

Set a schedule for painting, marketing and business each day

Study painting, marketing, computer skills

Don’t hide from business requirements. If you are unwilling to learn and do business, hire someone to do it for you but it must be done.

Be professional in your dealings with collectors and other artists.

Work at least 40 hours a week at being a professional artist.

There are many more skills needed but if you cannot do the above, enjoy being a hobby artist and don’t worry about making a living from art.

More musings for artists and collectors to come…

 

Today’s Recipe

I saw this recipe for pie crust on Facebook. It looks great!

1 sheet of puff pastry

Cinnamon mixed with sugar

Place pastry on waxed paper. Sprinkle pastry with cinnamon sugar. Roll pastry, long side up into a roll, like a cinnamon roll. Slice in thin slices. Place slices in a circle on another piece of wax paper and top with a piece of waxed paper. Roll it out with a rolling pen until it is thin like pie crust. It is so pretty. Use two  to make a pie, or use it for strudel.

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