Swell – oil
I haven’t looked back over my year until this month, or really made a lot of concrete plans for 2012, except to keep doing what I was doing, so it was interesting to delve into the year and see just what I was up to.
Am I pleased with progress? Yes and no. I have produced a reasonable body of work this year but still am not quite where I want to be in terms of a strong, unique style. A retreat or grant project may be needed to push my concentration down a single stream. However, considering that I also have a full time job that often is more than full time, I have managed to squeeze a lot into my time and I believe I have made progress.
Early in the new year, I will share some plans for 2013.
My plan for my art business is based on most business strategy – production of product, in my case, art and visibility of brand, which is me. Sales becomes a by-product of these two activities. These are the main goals and activities fall into one strategy or the other or both.
I concentrated on waterscapes, but also moved into other areas, such as printmaking and portraiture and experimented with a palette knife which opened new territory and freedom for me.
Abstraction found itself creeping into my work, but also switching with realism. I found the abstraction a great release when I couldn’t or didn’t want to think, but just paint, almost letting the painting find its own path.
Abandoned in the Garden Glass Marbles
The aquatic theme remained throughout the year with boats and waves catching my eye. I started experimenting with stronger colours for water late in the year. A trip to PEI inspired Heat Wave with the red sand and a very hot day.
In early summer, I worked on developing some prints using gelatin and acrylic plates, creating monoprints and monotypes. There are a lot of possibilities for these techniques, but I haven’t had time to really get into them yet.
Back Pasture – Monotype, oil based ink Polar Star – gyotaku monoprint
I started work with encaustics in 2012. Its a fascinating, but time consuming venture and the supplies are not inexpensive. However, the results can be amazing and I enjoyed my venture down this path. Now the supplies and equipment in the studio, I will be producing more pieces in the new year.
Fissure – encaustic
I promised myself that I would draw more in 2012, but didn’t achieve that goal with any significant drawings produced. However, I did sketch fairly profusely, which helped hone my drawing skills and created many thumbnails and ideas for paintings.
Eye issues caused some challenges in the fall and still are not completely resolved, so it was a bit of a setback. The last thing in the world that an artist needs – vision problems! However, long waits in specialist offices left lots of time for sketching with no pressure for perfection.
It is here that I made the most progress and the progress has a foot in both priorities. In March I was accepted by Spurrell Gallery for representation and in June by House of Diamonds. These emptied the studio of pieces, mostly water related, and exposed my work and name to a broader audience and also increased my need for additional production as well as impacting pricing.
Flight Path – Spurrell Gallery
Weekend Warriors – House of Diamonds
Its interesting to understand just who is watching you, even if you don’t realize it. At least half a dozen times this year, I’ve been in conversation with someone in the local art industry who has said, “Oh, ‘you’re’ Jeanette Jobson, I’ve seen your work.” It is an incentive and a compliment to continue producing and marketing when you know that people do see, even if you are not always aware of it.
In July I took part in an exhibition on the 20th anniversary of the cod moratorium at Five Island Gallery where I entered three gyotaku pieces. They stayed at the gallery after the exhibition and I have been invited to provide new work for that gallery in 2013. The gallery is seasonal, open from May to October.
Arts Northeast, the local art group that I am part of, took on a more cohesive structure with members settling in and making plans for the future. A domain name and blog site was created for the group that is slowly coming together and we had a spring group exhibition in May and took part in a fundraising art auction for Children’s Wish Foundation in November. The group continues to evolve and grow through opportunities for networking, critiques and workshop sessions.
I took a foray for about three months into Daily Paintworks to test the waters for sales there. There are a lot of artists selling mostly small pieces there and varying degrees of expertise, so competition to be seen is a challenge. I did sell a couple of pieces but seemed to have more success on Etsy, where I stayed. I may return to DPW in 2013 and see if the monthly fee is worthwhile to try to sell there. Like all places and all pieces, the quality of work is what sells, as well as longevity in the market.
I switched over to MailChimp from Constant Contact for my mailing list production. It provides the same features more or less but without cost. The switch of mailing lists was fairly seamless. I reduced my communications to quarterly with occasional emails on specific events or sales. Numbers to my mailing list continue to grow and signup is simple from my website or Facebook page.
I changed website providers and had a fairly soft release of the new site in late November. The hosts FASO design specifically for artists and managed the switch of domain name for me as well. Paintings are well laid out in categories and available for purchase direct from the site, still at the same name www.jeanettejobson.com
I reduced the number of posts to my blog, Illustrated Life, to once a week as I really didn’t have time to keep up with it as well as social media and art production and administration/marketing. Occasionally posts appear more frequently, but the once a week timing seems to work well for now. Yes, comments and readership slow to some degree with a reduction in posts, but the spread of information over various outlets ensures all readers have information in a form that they are most comfortable with receiving.
My sincere thanks for reading, commenting and your friendship and interest over the past year. I wish you a healthy, happy, and peaceful New Year.