Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 Review

Willie May
graphite 11 x 14 Canson
copyright Jeanette Jobson

Last year I studied Alyson Stanfield's searching questions as a review of my year artistically. I'd like to do the same again this year as they covered a broad range of topics and activities on both artistic and personal levels.
* How many works did you create?
I haven't kept count - approximately 15-20 saleable pieces and a number of smaller pieces and sketches

* What trips (local or far away) did you make to nourish your art?
The Rooms locally for art exhibitions, visited art galleries in Laguna Beach and Regina in reality. Online I wander in art galleries and museums daily to fulfill my imagination and curiosity.

* How much money did you make from your art?
About $1,000. Its a meagre amount hardly worthy of putting on paper, but it is clear money and will grow as my efforts to expand it do too.

* What classes (business or creative) did you take?

* What did you invest in that will help you to run a more profitable or streamlined business?
A new cell phone. I'm rarely at home these days. I sleep there which makes me wonder why I pay a mortgage sometimes for this permanent bedroom with rooms attached. So the easiest way to reach me is by my cell phone which is with me all the time. Investing in a new one added more bells and whistles to my electronic world and some features I still don't understand, but the little built in camera serves as an instant sketch for me to capture light, a scene, a colour. People still look at me strangely when I photograph piles of fruit or veg or toys in stores.

* Whom did you hire so that you can spend more time on your creative career? (framer, virtual assistant, housekeeper, lawn mower, bookkeeper)
I didn't hire anyone, but ignored some of the above in order to create and market. So my house looks lived in, not a pristine palace, like most people. Houses that are perfectly arranged and look like magazine covers scare me.

* Whom did you meet that has turned out to be a mentor?
Ed Roche

* What books did you read? What magazines?
Beautiful Landscapes; Colored Pencil Solution Book; From Line to Life; Artist's & Graphic Designer's Market 2007
The Artist's Magazine

* What movies did you see that inspired you?
I'm not a movie watcher. I occasionally watch clips on YouTube on drawing or painting demonstrations

* How many names did you add to your mailing list? (Note the exact number so you can evaluate your progress this time next year.)
Twenty people with access to more through art related organizations if I need to get out information.

* What habits or routines did you put into place?
More efficient planning for classes. I'm a procrastinator by nature and can be writing or drawing demos for my class in the carpark before the class begins. I have to plan a month in advance for course content and need to have those classes planned at least a week before they begin.
Timely review of upcoming exhibition submission information. I seem to either come upon submission information just before or shortly after the closing date. I need a calendar and a plan.

* What habits or routines did you eliminate?
None, I just seemed to add more!

* Where did your name or artwork appear in print? Where did it appear online?
In print on a drawing tutorial, programs for drawing exhibitions, media releases.
Online in WetCanvas, Drawspace, my blog and email signatures.

* How did you improve your website or Web presence?
Continuation of regular blog entries; signature line on emails, forum postings including blog and contact information on a number of art sites

* What new marketing materials did you add or improve on?
Information and marketing sheets for drawing classes
Postcards and business cards printed
A website has been drafted but not yet published. In 2008.

* Where did you speak about your work?
At art demonstrations, drawing classes

* What new materials or techniques did you experiment with?
Oil paints, soft pastels, colourfix paper, ampersand pastel board, Sabretooth and Canal papers

* What organizations did you join?
Art Association of Newfoundland and Labrador
Realist Artists of Newfoundland and Labrador

* What projects did you initiate?
Became a drawing instructor teaching adult and children's classes 3 times a week.
Created a written drawing tutorial.
Creation of a written drawing lesson for online classes.

On a more personal level:

* How did you care for your health and well-being?
Well....things could be better. Health wise I'm fine generally, but drawing has taken over from exercise. Drawing also leads to cups of coffee and biscuits. Back to the treadmill and basic food for a few months so clothes fit well again.

* How did you strengthen your personal relationships?
Concentration on those that are useful and elimination of those which are not. Communication.

* What vacations did you have?
A week in California, a week in Alberta and a week in Saskatchewan.

* What parties did you attend?
I really do hate parties and only go when absolutely necessary. I did go to an art association Christmas potluck and a variety of cocktail/dinner functions during the year.

* What new hobby did you take up?
Rock carving, jewelry created from beach stones

* Where did you volunteer?
Moderator/teacher for Drawspace
Board member for provincial Art Association
I have also exhibited at the following:
Spring Art Show AANL April 2007
Fall Art Exhibition AANL October 2007

Women in Art Exhibition RANL October 2007

Health Care Foundation
Art Fundraiser November 2007
City of St. John's Art
Procurement Program November 2007
Small Works Exhibition AANL December 2007

Best of Show Award 'The Artist's Cat' RANL April 2007
Make Me Think Gong - Katherine Tyrrell, Making A Mark - December 2007
Writing down accomplishments brings them into sharp focus. The black and white words make me realize where I need to focus for the coming year and helps me understand shortcomings of the previous year that I could have worked harder on.

So, what do I want to achieve in 2008? There are a number of things that I want to do, but first I need to manage my time more effectively to avoid burnout. I work full time, teach 3 times a week, take on commissions and create my own art as well as volunteer on the board of the Art Association. It spreads me a bit thin and becomes stressful sometimes.
1. Time management - I want to continue doing what I ENJOY doing and eliminate the things that cause stress. I need my creative time to be productive.

2. Organization - This goes hand in hand with time management. I have done a lot of writing which is scattered over computers and files in the house and it needs to come together in a couple of different formats. One electronically so I can find it easily and two, in logical written, bound forms for filing and reference.

3. Marketing and promotion - I have made some inroads into this in 2007 but not nearly enough. It is an area that fills me with a fair bit of dread. I hate selling myself and my work. But I know that I have to do it to succeed. Both electronically and in person.

4. Craft Council Membership - I believe that this membership will open more options to me in terms of potential customers and exhibition/promotion options. As well they have a juried process of entry which gives more credibility to my work.

5. Exhibition submissions - I want to try my hand at some juried competitions to see where my work sits in the eyes of others who are not local.

6. Development of prints and cards - The market in this province doesn't bear a lot of high end purchasing power when it comes to luxury items such as original art, so I have to work around that. I will still have originals, but will invest in prints and cards to target new markets. This then ties into #3 - the scary marketing and promotion...

7. Local painting and drawing - I have lived in Flatrock for 8 years and haven't really painted or drawn much that is local. I hope to change that in 2008. I want to create an art piece at least once a month of a local scene. Flatrock isn't the most beautiful town in the world, but I will find areas of interest, cropped images, different mediums and colours to bring it to life.

8. I want to face my drawing fears face on. Flowers and landscapes. Some of that may be tied into # 7.
There are many more things that I want to do, see, experience and try out, but I know from experience that if I cast my net too wide, I'll miss and not get anything. So I'm trimming the list a little, to hopefully do-able, items. I'll review these things again mid-year and see what needs adjusting.

Newfoundland will be the first to see the New Year into North America, having the most easterly point at Cape Spear, so I'll take advantage of this to wish all those westward of me Happy New Year and know that those east of me have already toasted the New Year and are likely tucked up in bed by the time it reaches these shores. As for me, I'll likely be in bed too when it arrives. I've gone past the time when staying up, partying in the next year, was fun. Now its just plain old hard work and bed is a much more desirable choice. Yep, I must be getting old.


Tracy Hall said...

Good luck to you with your plans for 2008, Jeanette - what a very good idea to review the past year this way! I wish you a very productive and peaceful New Year from another windswept shore across the ocean!

Terry Banderas said...

Happy New Year and I hope you have a nice, successful 2008. You will celebrate the new year way before California....but I am like you..early to bed is the way to go. Also, I might add, you are actually very young yet and still probably "feel your oats". Feel like I know you somewhat as I do other bloggers I keep in touch with.

Jeanette said...

Happy New Year Tracy!

Thanks Terry. Its funny how we get to know people through their electronic words and images. It makes them seem like old friends - which they are in many ways. I know 2008 and will be happy for you.

Laurel Neustadter said...

What a great set of questions! Congratulations on your accomplishments. I am having the same issue with exercise ... I often find it is a choice between exercise and art. In 2008, I am going to try to put exercise first. I'll see if I can really do that!

sorcha said...

You wrote "Flatrock isn't the most beautiful town in the world", but I definitely have to disagree with you there.

But seeing how I've been stuck on the prairies for 6 years, I think I have "the grass is greener on the other side" syndrome. It's easy to take things for granted. Like the ocean. And trees (LOL)!

Maggie Stiefvater said...

Good luck with 2008! Marketing and prints will change your artistic life -- promise.