Sunday, January 04, 2015

Closer to Home in 2015

 St. John's Harbour

I always make plans for the year that lies ahead of me. A plan provides me with goals and is a way of measuring progress towards those goals.  Not knowing where you're going can be amusing for awhile, but it often leads to stagnation and the making the same mistakes over and over.   At the end of the year, there are no measurables to determine if you've moved ahead or been successful.

  Salmon Cove rocks

So what is needed in a plan for art?

  • A plan needs to be structured
A plan should be definite in objectives with tangible goals that can be measured against.  For instance, ket's say you want to learn how to paint with a new medium.  State what that medium is, how do you intend to learn how to use it (self teaching, workshops, videos, etc.), how many pieces of art you will create with it and how you will define success in becoming adept at the technique.

  • A plan needs to push you outside your comfort level
We all love to sit in that comfy space, surrounded by what we are familiar with, whether tools or people. Sitting in the space never allows us to make mistakes.  Moving into areas outside that comfort zone pushes our creativity, adaptability and ensures exposure to new ways of doing things.  There is nothing like problem solving and being uncomfortable in creativing work or art related situations to make your brain work and ideas flow. Mistakes are how new techniques are born!  Embrace them.

  • A plan needs to be based on business principles
If you want to be recognized as a professional artist and sell your work, art must be treated as a business.  Like any business, there are areas to concentrate on and monitor which can increase revenue, improve marketing and branding that help the business thrive.

Professionalism is vital in all areas from business to production and presentation of your work.  Long gone are the days of eccentric, egotistical, difficult artists as the expected norm.

  • A plan needs to be flexible
While structure is required to form goals and measurable results, a plan needs to be flexible enough to adapt to situations and opportunities which arise during the year.  Perhaps a plan to have work in a gallery falls through, so ensure that the research is in place for an alternate gallery.   Or maybe partway through the year, you receive an opportunity to do a big commission when you had planned on a smaller series. Weigh up the pros and cons and if the commission is better than what you had planned, jump at it and put the series on hold.

Wetland Hoar Frost

So what are my plans for 2015?  I'm calling it the Closer to Home year.  I will be exploring more of my local surroundings, from local seascapes to my own 16 acre 'backyard'.  So much is left to capture on this island and I've barely scratched the surface.

Flatrock Harbour
I'm keeping my resources closer to home in terms of a new website and island based reproduction availability in 2015.  With currency conversions flipped from the a strong Canadian dollar to a weaker one, US options are no longer an option.

Cat and dog eye comparisons

I'm expanding my range of workshops and yes finally offering an online workshop in 2015 - I just bought a camcorder specifically for it, so no turning back now!

I'll be having a solo exhibit in June at Peter Lewis Gallery of my series of wooden boat paintings. I will also be looking at gallery opportunities outside the province - not closer to home I know, but exposure and marketing are needed outside this small island to secure visibility and revenue opportunities.

Whatever your plans for 2015, I wish you well and look forward to connecting with you during the year in person, online or through email.  My studio door is always open for artists and collectors to stop by for a coffee or a chat.


theartistsday said...

I wish you lots of new paintings and success in 2015 Jeanette. I wish I was close enough to drop by for a cup of coffee!

Gary L. Everest said...

Hi Jeanette,
Great photos! Really enjoyed seeing them. Your goals and plans, however, wore me out. I'm almost embarrassed to admit to loving a spontaneous approach to what's to come.
Of course, as you aptly point out, such an approach often does lead to the same old mistakes and bad habits, but for some unknown reason, that doesn't bother me as much as it should. Go figure!
Who can ever really know what's going on in their own head? Anyway, you're analytical method to ensure success certainly works for you! :) Don't change a thing and the New Year will bring a productive year with much success.

Jeanette Jobson said...

Thanks so much Mary, Happy New Year. I know you will continue to produce beautiful paintings in 2015 and I wish you were closer too. I'm sure we'd have a lot to talk about.

Hello Gary
I guess my business side kicks in when I consider the year ahead and the fact that I develop my art as a business leads to a plan to guide me. I like the sense of accomplishment at year end of meeting goals set. It doesn't always pan out that way, but helps with my growth as an artist.

If there wasn't the motivation/need to work at my art to keep the wolf from the door, I probably wouldn't have a plan, but do what I wanted when I wanted.

Jennifer Rose said...

I didn't make any plans for 2015, but reading over your list makes me think I should lol

suzanneberry said...

I've been trying to type here but my eye keeps getting distracted by you amazing slide show!!! Your "The End of Summer" is stunning! Low Tide ..Wow! amazing work my friend.

and an amazing post...Gale Force 2...oh my...okay, i'll focus...your post is most enlightening and very wise. thank you for sharing all of this valuable information.

and thank you too for your very kind words my friend. i've been away from your work too long! i wish you all the happiness and success possible in the new year!

Jeanette Jobson said...

Oh I'm just a list maker Jen. I need that to focus my head and ensure I actually do some work. I think your plan is working out quite nicely whether its a decided plan or not.

Suz, I'm enjoying painting my fish and water, but get sidetracked by people and other things from time to time. I may even find a brush in my hand again this year. Yikes!

I need a plan to make myself accountable and push myself to action, otherwise I'd be prone to sit around eating bonbons and dozing all day.

Don't be a stranger, I've missed you.

E.M. Corsa said...

Love the sketch of Flatrock Harbor - so fresh. I just found your blog and will be returning often!

Jeanette Jobson said...

Welcome to my blog and so glad you like that sketch. I look forward to seeing more of your work - the cats and birds are delightful.

Unknown said...

Great post and lots of ideas, for me, as well as you. I hope 2015 is very successful for you.