Saturday, February 17, 2024

Sunday Musings

Sundays are quiet, since I try not to schedule jobs on my "day of rest". I wind up working anyway, of course; today it was reworking my art fair booth layout for a four day show in July, the Wyandotte Art Fair. I'm hiding a cheap excercise bike inside my 10' square tent so I can "move" around. I usally stand for about 20 hours a day for the event, which my ankles are not fond of, ha! Moving really is great for blood flow.

I've actually been working on the display and layout for a few weeks now, but I think I finally have a working design I feel great about! It's open and inviting, and my work is displayed as well as I can in that 10 foot square space without it looking cluttered.

I've tripled my jewelry display area, I've curated how the paintings will hang, and I'm adding ornaments for this show this year. It took some work to arrange it all so it doesn't look crowded or cluttered, but I finally did it, whew! I can focus now on all the sewing of walls and rain sides, etc. that I have to do to make it all weatherproof and aesthetically pleasing. I'd like to get that all done before spring while it's comfortable to do it. I'm confident I will.

It's dinner time, time for me to go now.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Artists suffer?

Generally, yes, but how? It's variable. In my case I had abusive parents (a product of a Victorian mindset plus trauma of WWII) that set me up to not see red flags in relationships until it was way too late. I could give a TED talk on the easily missed signs early on in domestic violence relationships.

How does this relate to producing art? Good question, if you know the answer to why emotionally tormented people make great art, tell me.

I have a point here, though, I promise. As an artist, my income is "challenged". Which has trapped me in more than one awful relationship. You, dear reader, can easily do something that does NOT involve me asking you for money. Nope. I am going to ask you to give a thumbs up, a like, a follow. A mouse click. That's it! a mouse click. See, the algorithms love popularity, and they'll show my work to more viewers (and they'll give me money for my work and THEN I can support myself and get out of another abusive relationship once and for all). Because being abused sucks. I was lied to, I didn't sign up for it, and I want out. So help me get out by clicking the mouse and getting the internet algorithms working for me. It's a HUGE thing you can do, help me get more eyes on my art. That puts money in my pocket, and I get to keep on making everyone happy with my work. We all need art, and I make art. I don't want to give up, and you don't want me to give up. I can't do it alone in a vacuum, I need the support (mouseclicks) of friends, fans, and supporters. Let's do this!

Thanks in advance! I gotta run and go post videos to about 13 different social media sites now. Promotion never ends!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

6th Annual Art Fair (dFAF)

I'm spending a lot of time leading up to the 6th Annual dFAF making sure everything is going smoothly for the Saturday, August 6, 2017 event featuring work by 50 artists and eight bands! Everything you need to know is on the website,
Finding artists is fun, I love looking at new artwork and meeting new people!
I'm still painting; I've been doing lots of pinstriping lately, see my new work on my website,

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Networking and Promoting

Networking, as we all know, is pretty important these days. I was happy to be able to meet with the organizers of several events that happen locally, Earth Day and Pagan Pride being two of them. They gave me some fantastic ideas on how to promote the Hazel Park Art Fair that I organize and produce, and a few new ways to get the word out about it. We met at a local coffee shop and discussed how we could help eachother have our events grow and support our community. I feel pretty good right now!

Here's the link to the events that are going to help me with mine, they're worth checking out, since they support our First Amendment rights~

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Flint Water Run

The tragedy unfolding in Flint, MI is man made. Babies, children, and adults have been poisoned with lead in their drinking water. 100,000 residents of Flint do not have a water source. The President called in the National Guard, but with only 30 guardsmen delivering to only 500 homes per day, it would take 200 days to reach every person. That's unacceptable.

So, I did what I could do: I posted on Facebook asking for help. Three people responded, very generously, with donations of water and money. One of the donors was the Congregation of Every 1 with 14 cases of water plus 14 two gallon jugs of water. I took the donated cash and bought enough water to donate a total of almost 200 gallons of water today. A good friend, B.p. LeGault, and I drove their donations to Flint today. Here are the pictures of that trip to the North End Soup Kitchen, a water distribution center for Flint residents to come and take bottled water however they can. Some walk, some ride the bus, some get rides, and the fortunate ones with cars drive.

I hope I can make another water run very soon, they will need more than they have now, it's an ongoing need and the government is failing them. It's up to us to help now.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Lead and other toxic hazards

With the water crisis in Flint, MI, unfolding due to the lead contamination, I find myself hoping that the residents of that city are as aware of the dangers of getting lead on their skin from contact with their contaminated water as I am being a full time professional artist; I come into contact with a lot of potentially dangerous chemicals, like lead, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds, or poisonous fumes in the air) when I work, so I know how much of a health risk having lead on our skin is.

Since I use some very toxic chemicals for my everyday work, I have to constantly remind myself how important it is for me to practice good safety measures, like keeping paint off my skin, especially when it contains lead. I know many of you are thinking, "but they took lead out of paint years ago!". Yes, and no. Lead was removed from latex paint sold for residential applications, like painting your living room walls, but it can still be found in a lot of art supplies, like ceramic glazes, and even some types of artist's paints. I have been gifted old cans of paint with lead in them still, which I love using on murals since the paint is so incredibly wonderful in the way it goes on with a lot less work, and I purchased a tube of Lead White oil paint not that long ago for it's opaque (can't see through it) qualities. Even when there is no lead in paints, like titanium white, there are still a lot of other chemicals in those paints that are poisonous if ingested, and we do absorb things through our skin, which is the largest organ "on" our body. Many pigments, like cadmium, are poisonous, just like lead is poisonous.

Then there are the "liquid" carriers of the solid pigments (pigments are what give paint its color), so the paint flows. In most tubes of oil paint the carrier is linseed oil, which isn't toxic, unlike oil paint's well known companion, turpentine. While I tend to shy away from using turpentine as a thinner or cleaner, I still find it essential when I want to make a glaze for my oil paintings (so I get that wonderful depth of color that only oil paint can give). The lettering enamel many pinstripers (myself included) prefer to use is thinned with some pretty toxic chemicals like benzene and xylene, well known dangers to our health! Painting indoors isn't a great way to have adequate ventilation for those smelly thinners that are poisonous when inhaled, so I have to make sure to put a fan in the window, or open the door even in winter to get fresh air to avoid nerve damage from the thinners like turpentine, or the ones I use when I pinstripe. I've even been known to wear a certified respirator (as dust masks don't filter out the thinners with their tiny molecules that are VOC's, dust masks only filter out the big pieces of dust, the VOCs still get through and cause serious long term damage, which is why a lot of older painters shake, or die from lung cancer).

Again, it's important to keep it out of my lungs off my hands, because our skin readily absorbs these things. If I know clean up is going to be messy (and a lot of times it is), I wear special gloves as a barrier between the poison and my skin.

Remember, safety precautions are pretty easy to implement, and they really pay off in the long run! Our health is priceless, make sure you take care of yours.

Be warm and well.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Happy New Year!

Well, it certainly has been a little while, hasn't it? That's been great news, though, as I've been so very busy working I haven't had time to write about it! It's been a wonderful run for me, and I finally have a break to take time to blog a bit. I'm so thrilled to have had job after job for over a year without interruption. Right now, I"m enjoying some rest! The Henry Ford museum had me work on every single carousel animal last year, and I'm going back this year in their off season to do more touch up work on them. I also did a Brewster horse drawn carriage for the museum, as well as pinstriping on some carriage wheels, and I did a LOT of lettering on a diorama on the wall in the Roundhouse there! Whew! I pinstriped plenty of cars and motorcycles over the summer, did a couple neon signs, and generally enjoyed myself immensely! In the middle of all that, I planned the 4th Annual Hazel Park Art Fair, which was a big success. I'm so proud of that event and all the people who participated in it and made it happen. We were able to donate another $1,000 to a college tuition fund for local graduates, as well as $800 to our Parks & Recreation department to help upkeep our neighborhood parks! It was an amazing year. I'm looking forward to seeing how this one is going. It's starting off with me working on an original oil painting for this year's Dirty Show. I haven't painted yet today, but I"m sure I will before it's over! Remember, you can check my website for updates on where I'll be next! Be warm and well, see you soon!