EBSQ Friday Five

New art blogged by EBSQ artists this week!

From left to right: Giraffe Sunset by Dia Spriggs, Inner Glow by Ann Hoffpauir, If I can Toucan by Jennifer Love, Rainbow Rooster by Carol DeMumbrum, and Prince of Thieves by Gretchen Del Rio

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EBSQ Friday Five

Wild Ride by Georgia Papadakis
Wild Ride by Georgia Papadakis

1. Illustration vs. Fine Art – Georgia Papadakis has a excellent post on these two art forms, their overlap and distinction, and what they mean to her journey as an artist.

2. Mandala of the Month July – This month’s mandala from Maureen Frank is titled Blessings in Disguise. It’s free to download!

3. Adventures in Teaching at AFICC – Michelle Lynch shares, in depth, her experience teaching a doll class at a large convention.

4. Sign up for the 2013 EBSQ Ripped Off Show – I’ve been participating in this show since 2008 and I look forward to it each year. You partner with another artist, choose something from their portfolio, and RIP it OFF. Then, if you choose, you and your partner trade artworks.

5. 5 Products that Need Licensed Artwork – Another goodie from EmptyEasel.com. Can you guess the 5 products before visiting the link?

EBSQ on Blogging

Blogging can either be a joy or seem like a form of torture, sometimes even both. We live in an age where people not only ask, “Do you have a website?” but also “Do you have a blog?” In some cases blogs have even taken over the role of website. Here are some words of wisdom from our very own EBSQ Bloggers.

Amie: Write. Even on the days you don’t want to write, write. Share your work. Share some thoughts. Share someone else’s post you really enjoyed and want to riff on. Consistency is the key. And it’s so hard. But your writing will be better for it, and your audience will appreciate knowing they can depend upon you for something new to think about on a regular basis.

Melissa: You have a blog. You want people to read your blog. Speaking for myself, the absolute worst thing you can do is let it languish. If I check your blog regularly and there is rarely anything new to read, I am going to stop checking in. I’m not saying post something every day and I’m not saying that every post has to be pithy, riveting and informative. Brief is fine on occasion. I would rather read something short and engaging than long winded and dull. Pictures are good, too. You have a camera phone, so use it. If you see something that you think is funny or interesting, take a picture. It can make great blog content when paired with a few lines of explanation. There are all manner of things you can do make your blog a place people want to stop by. Explore the possibilities and resources. Your blog should reflect you and say what you want to say, but not everything in your post has to be thoughtful text wrested from your soul. Enjoy what you are doing, do it regularly and readers will follow.

Amanda: Beware the dark side–multimedia overload. As artists we all want our blogs to be beautiful and inviting. But there is such a thing as too much decoration, too many widgets, too much clutter. It can be incredibly frustrating trying to read a blog that is overloaded with fluff. Worse are the music players that begin assaulting your ears before you’ve had a chance to read one word. Don’t forget, people come to your blog (including potential buyers) to read what you have to say. They want to know more about you and your art, not be bogged down by games, widgets, and endless slow-loading images. Ask yourself this question, when people come to my blog are they looking at my super cool blog background or the painting I just posted? Don’t let your blog overpower your art and your thoughts! Find a balance, so the two compliment one another–not fight each other for attention.

Thinking about starting a blog? We recommend: WordPress.com, Blogger.com, LiveJournal or for something a little different Tumblr.com.

EBSQ Friday Five

The EBSQ Friday Five offers a brief look at noteworthy news from around the EBSQ Artist Blogosphere. This week’s is a congratulatory edition, to highlight the amazing and award winning talents of EBSQ Artists.

1. First Place in the American Art Awards – Congratulations to Alma Lee who won first place in the Cubism category for the American Art Awards!

Dog Pile by Alma Lee

2. More than Thrilled –  Congratulations to Brenda Boylan who won Best of Maine in the Plein Air 2010 Awards!

3. Missouri Watercolor Society Invitational – Congratulations to Kathy Jurek who won an honorable mention for her painting Button Pusher!

4. Dancing with Dogs Revisited – Congratulations to Cathy Darling for winning third place at the Intermountain Society of Artists Fall Show!

5. Daniel Smith Reference Catalog – And a belated congratulations to Jennifer Lommers for placing 3rd in the Daniel Smith 8th Annual Customer Art Contest!!

Have a great weekend everyone!

EBSQ Friday Five

The EBSQ Friday Five offers a brief look at noteworthy news from around the EBSQ Artist Blogosphere. This week it’s all about July’s fresh pressed art!

1.

Bucket of Bows by Gwen Bell

2.

Up the Creek Again by Fawn McNeill

3.

Haley by Joanne L Gallery

4.

Custom Vampire Portrait by Christine Striemer

5.

Steampunk Unicorn Damask by Jayde Hilliard

The talents at EBSQ are so diverse you can find just about anything you can imagine.  Have a great weekend!

EBSQ Blogger of the Week: Kathleen Ralph

This week’s EBSQ Blogger of the Week is a prolific artist, working in pencil, watercolor, acrylic, collage and more. Her passion for art shines through in every piece she creates.

Who and where are you?

I am a mom, artist, writer, chocolate addict, and a hippie who was born at the wrong time.  I have an intense love of nature, that can occasionally be at odds with my love of technology and my obvious geek tendencies. I live in a place that manages to reconcile all of my personalities, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  A vibrant city in the foothills of the astounding Rocky Mountains.  The view out my kitchen window is of snow-capped peaks.  Every morning I take time to look out that window and get a shot of inspiration from that great view.

Surveying the Kingdom

How did you get started art blogging?

I started blogging just after my youngest child was born, writing about the adventures of raising young kids.  I remembered how much I loved writing and started a blog called Pencil Shavings to get my writing and poetry out into the world.  Later I met some wonderful women online, when I tried selling some excess life inventory on eBay, who convinced me to start creating and selling my art (they are still some of my best on and off-line friends).  It was lucky that my original blog was called Pencil Shavings because I kept the name and began writing about making art.

Last year I started the 365 Days of Art project and the blog has been the major vehicle for that project as well as the new offshoot I started The Postcard Project which now has it’s own blog.  It’s a good thing I love writing with two blogs running at the same time.

Like Stained Glass

Any tips for other EBSQ art bloggers?

My number one tip is:  Social Media is your friend.  If you don’t have a Facebook fan page or Twitter account look into it (and link them to your blog and vice-versa).  Most artists sell to people who know them, so the more people feel that they know you, the more likely they will become a collector of your art. You don’t have to tell everything about yourself, but being friendly and chatty like you would be with a friend is a lot more engaging then just listing the bare bone facts about your blog entry.

Keep your blog current.  With my 365 Days of Art project I’ve developed the habit of posting nearly daily, and having new content keeps your readers committed to coming back.  Also having some kind of photo or image with each post is a big bonus for people who want to read an art blog.  A picture really is worth a thousand words.

Hand Study

What’s your musical inspiration of choice when you’re working in your studio? And do you have any rituals associated with your creative time?

I have very eclectic tastes in music.  Right now I have The Tragically Hip, Barenaked Ladies and JackSoul on heavy rotation in my iPod.  But most nights when I’m painting I’ll listen to jazz on the radio and during the day I likely to listen to classical music.  CBC Radio 2 is my friend these days, playing both of those genres.

I can’t seem to create any art unless there is a hot cup of coffee or tea going cold on the table next to me, usually at just the right spot for me to accidentally dip my brush into when I’m really getting into the process of painting and letting my hand go on auto-pilot.

So Comes Sorrow

What’s coming next from your easel?

Right now I’m working on a new project called The Postcard Project where I send out original art in the format of a postcard to anyone who wants one (and asks for it)  That is really focusing me on being productive and getting something small painted at least every other day.  The pond down the road from us is teeming with bird and frog life this spring and I’m finding myself down there a lot making sketches.  I suspect a series of bird and frog paintings is imminent.

Thank you Kathleen for being an EBSQ Blogger of the Week!

If you are an EBSQ Artist and would like to be considered for Blogger of the Week just add us to your blogroll. I’m searching EBSQ profiles weekly for links to artist’s blogs. If you aren’t an EBSQ Artist, what are you waiting for?

Join Today!