Fine Art Tips

How I kept up my studio practice when my life changed

This month we're talking about dreams, resolutions, goals, planning and balance. As part of that, we want to share how we have personally tackled these topics in our lives. You can read what we wrote about finding balance here, and this week, Sara shares her story of keeping her art practice going while big changes happened in her life. 


A selection of drawings from Sara's daily drawing project. 

A selection of drawings from Sara's daily drawing project. 

Last summer I lost my studio. I was seven months pregnant and knew that it didn't make financial sense to go looking for a new space, since the likelihood of me using it regularly was not good once the baby came. Not having a studio scared me. It was the sacred space where I went to make work, think, process, and be alone. I realized that I needed a way to keep that connection to my art practice even once I lost the physical space. On Labor Day 2015 (exactly a month to the day before I was to go into labor myself), I decided to commit to a daily drawing practice. I would set aside 30 minutes to an hour each day to spend with a piece of paper and some drawing materials (which so far have included pens, pencils, watercolors, gouache, conté crayons, colored pencils, thread and yarn). It was a way of staying connected to an art practice while canvases, panels and paints were impractical to use, and it was a way for me to be alone at the kitchen table to think, meditate, or zone out. I knew it would be challenging to keep this up once the baby arrived, but for that first month of September, it saved me. It was the highlight of each day, which otherwise included physical discomfort, baby preparation errands, exhaustion, and the anticipation of the unknown. In order to hold myself accountable to making a drawing a day, I posted them to my Instagram account. Even though I don't have that many followers, I do have many friends (and some strangers) now anticipating my posts. It is just the right amount of pressure I need to keep up with the daily practice, and the results have been really inspiring. There are many drawings I've made which I think will become the inspiration for future big paintings, and I am looking forward to editing the drawings into a book. There have been several occasions where I have been out an art opening or other gathering where people have approached me to talk about my drawings because they have seen them on Instagram. It's been a rewarding way to stay part of a bigger conversation while my daily life is otherwise occupied with raising my daughter. 

More drawings from Sara's project. 

More drawings from Sara's project. 

So far, I've "slacked" twice with the commitment I've made to post a drawing every day. The first time was when my daughter was born (I took a week off), and then I gave myself a break over the Christmas holidays so that I could concentrate fully on my family. While it's important to set goals and find ways to hold yourself accountable, it's equally important to not be too hard on yourself when things don't go exactly as planned (and it's important to take breaks, too!) 

I admit that it's really hard to commit to a time-based project like this when you're fully immersed in raising a baby, but it has been a really good way to step out of the daily feeding/napping/diaper changing routine and take a few minutes for myself. I've added mother to the list of roles that make up my identity, but it is important for me that my daughter grows up seeing that "artist" is still way up high on that list. 


What goals have you set for yourself, and how are you making sure that you can reach them? 

Join us in a fun project this January! On Instagram and Facebook use the hashtag #kagoals along with a photo of what you are working on that makes you one step closer to fulfilling your professional goals this year. Inspire us!

© 2017 Kind Aesthetic, All Rights Reserved.

How to label your art work.

Artists, here is a comprehensive guide to labeling your art work–on your website, for example! When thinking about your archive, it's recommended to keep things clear, visible and consistent, according to New York art advisor, Amy Snyder. "I think it's very important for artists to stick to this standard formatting to make it as easy as possible for gallerists, curators, and collectors find the details they need at a quick glance. It's so annoying to have to go looking for the basic information when it's buried, for example, in a narrative paragraph. Using this format demonstrates that you're a professional who knows what she's doing!"

Read below to see the guide and also check out this amazing DELVE service we are offering in partnership with Amy: DELVE into the Art World! During this personalized session you will assess and prioritize your professional goals as a fine artist and zero-in on the steps to achieving them with the guidance of an NYC based expert.

According to Amy, the convention for giving the details for a work of art are:
Line 1: Artist Name
Line 2: Title, Date
Line 3: Media
Line 4: Dimensions in inches (Dimensions in cm) [Almost always these are the unframed dimensions; if providing the framed dimensions, that should be indicated. Also for a photograph or print it is not unusual to provide 2 dimensions – one for the image size and one for the paper size.]
Line 5 (if appropriate): Edition X of X [If the piece is a monoprint or unique photograph, you might want to put the word "Unique" on this line.]
Line 6 (optional): If the piece is signed, stamped, dated, numbered, you can note what information there is and where it is located (recto or verso). For example, "Signed and dated on verso."
Line 7: Price [It's worthwhile for a work on paper or photograph to indicate in parentheses if the price given is framed or unframed.] 

Thanks, Amy, for sharing your expert knowledge! Artists, feel free to get in touch with us if you are interested in learning more about DELVE into the Art World and how this personal consultation can help you!

 

© 2017 Kind Aesthetic, All Rights Reserved.

New Partnership with AKArt!

If you're an artist or artist-associated entity looking for professional PR and Publicity help, check out AKArt*, our neighbors who provide consultancy and advisory services to artists. Contact them to analyze your short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals for both traditional and digital press and publicity opportunities. Let them know we sent you!  

Their professional services, matched with the DELVE Toolkit, can truly light the fire under your art career. The Toolkits for Artists and Creatives will help you find more time to make work, grow your audience, and communicate your practice beautifully and effectively. Read on below to learn more.

*AKArt is an art advisory agency, as well as an independent curatorial platform, with unparalleled experience developing major art initiatives from the ground up, offering  private + corporate curation, collection management + creative consulting on strategy, programming, exhibitions, strategic partnerships, brand development, marketing, public relations, events + sales.

© 2017 Kind Aesthetic, All Rights Reserved.

Packing art work- paintings

A friend of Kind Aesthetic reached out to us inquiring how she should best pack and ship some paintings of hers, without hiring professional art shippers. Here's some info to get you started.

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

 *white gloves to handle the work  
  *enough clean space to spread out
  *blue painters tape
  *stronger plastic tape
  *bubble wrap with 1 inch big bubbles, foam or soft material (no peanuts)

SOME RULES
 *your work should be in the same orientation when packed as it should be shown- always mark which side is up on the piece somehow
 *never let tape touch the art directly
 *use the blue tape on the packing that is closest to the piece, so it's easy to see and remove- you can use the stronger plastic tape on outer layers of protection
 *most everything you use to frame and pack the work should be archival
 *pay special attention to edges and corners 
 *use bubble wrap with the bubbles facing out around the actual piece
 *cover your package with Fragile stickers

From Flickr,  by louisa_catlover

From Flickr, by louisa_catlover

Now to the actual painting: 

1) Cover the front of the painting with a sheet of soft-spun Tyvek or glassine and tape it to the back of the painting or the stretcher bars.  This can be done twice if you wish.
2) Completely cover the front of the painting with a piece of cardboard the same size of the painting.
3) Place styrofoam or cardboard corners around the corners of the piece. You can make them or buy them.
4) Wrap the piece with bubble wrap with the bubble facing out and tape it up.
5) Wrap with another piece of bubble wrap with bubbles facing in and tape it up.
6) Place the work in a cardboard box and stuff the space around the work with bubble wrap or other similar materials. The piece should be suspended in the center of the box with packing material surrounding it on all sides. (see image above how to make your own box or acquire at a place like Uline, Uhaul, etc.)

If your paintings are really large (over 30x40) they should really be hand delivered or handled by an art shipper. If you are using a common shipper, it's recommended to build a wooden box or crate. You can see tutorials on line, like this one.

Make sure your package can handle a one-inch deep gouge, jostling and general knocking around, and remember that common carriers don't have climate controlled vehicles. And don't forget the paperwork! Assure your piece is labeled inside and outside with all the correct info and get tracking and insurance.

As far as which carrier to use, everyone has their own preference- check with studio mates and other friends.  

Good luck! Who ever is on the other side of this package is sure in for a delight. 

  

© 2017 Kind Aesthetic, All Rights Reserved.