Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Web Site Complete!

Ahhhh -- it's been a very long wait, but well worth it I think. I am pleased to announce that is officially complete! Of course a web site is always a work in progress and in order to be found by search engines it needs to constantly be changing. So it will never be done. Thank you to Wendy Theberge, the "speed demon" of web site design who finished my site in a flash. You can look at her work at And, thank you to Jothan Cashero who did all of the initial design work and got TraillWorks rolling online.

New to the site are the HomeWorks, CardWorks, SpecialWorks, and LessonWorks pages. You can browse through a portfolio of tiles I've created, read about how to develop your own unique set of note cards of my paintings, learn how I work with clients in developing custom work and find out about private lessons.

In addition, the events page has been updated with current and upcoming exhibitions and workshops. The links page now contains links! Check out some of the places exhibiting my work, organizations I've worked with and a terrific arts web site.

Don't forget to look over the StudioWorks and PrintWorks pages since new work has been added. Things are often changing at Stay tuned to Emerging Artist for web updates and new works. Tomorrow I'll be posting another Coffee Hour Drawing.

Monday, February 26, 2007


There are so many marketing opportunities available for emerging artists, it's a matter of finding them and choosing channels that work for you. Mostly through a magazine called Art Calendar and through networking I've found ways of getting my name out on the web. Artists in Sussex County, NJ are very supportive of one another and very welcoming. It's a great community to be a part of. Through joining the Sussex County Arts & Heritage Council, I've met over forty artists and have found exhibit opportunities.

Sometimes you get connected with people, and you forget how the connection was made. I've been on a mailing list for BUZZ Arts Guide for several months. It's a terrific e-newsletter and online event listing/directory for arts in Northeastern PA and Northen New Jersey; there is so much going on! I recently asked BUZZ's publisher, artist Christine Griffin, her aims for BUZZ. She said, "BUZZ is the most recent permutation of my work as an artist, my livelihood as a saleswoman, and my passion as an educator. BUZZ came from my quest to unite, coalesce, and reaffirm the talent and natural beauty of the region my friends and I call home. For me, BUZZ has been an introduction to a fascinating wealth of ever expanding experiences; new people, new ideas, new energy, all in familiar and beautiful places........."

I recently received a notification from BUZZ announcing its plans to publish a printed guide aimed at distribution to SE NYState, NEPA northwest to Scranton and southwest to Reading,
NNJ ( Sussex and Wayne), and the arts districts of urban Phila and NYC. BUZZ offered an opportunity to be listed in the print publication, their online site and have the opportunity to list special events all for $45. I am encouraged by Christine's passion and devotion to this project and see this as another way to get my name out and also have another viable link to my web site.

Go to BUZZ online to see my listing and to find out what arts are going on in the region. You can also subscribe to the e-newsletter online.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Coffee Hour Drawing

Simply scrumptious! My husband, Lee, baked up these spectacular cupcakes on Saturday when we had my sister - in - law and brother - in - law for dinner. I had intended on baking them, but spent Saturday running to galleries to pick up and deliver work. I came home and found the batter already made. It was a gorgeous batter.

I found the recipe in our cookbook the Chocolate Bar by New York City's Chocolate Bar founders Matt Lewis and Alison Nelson. It's a fabulous cookbook with all sorts of chocolate delectables. Lee baked 24 Peanut Butter Cupcakes and I made the simple Chocolate Ganache Icing. I set aside the 7 shown in the drawing to use as reference. They are still sitting in my studio waiting for a painting.

The drawing above, titled Coffee and Cupcakes, is my fourth "Coffee Hour Drawing". It is done with conté crayon on Arches paper.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

A Change of Venue

Knowing where to show your work, for how long, and when to move on are difficult decisions for an emerging artist. I had a show at Buccieri's GEMS & JEWELRY for about four months in Oak Ridge, NJ. I met the co-owner of the jewelry store, Kathy through ISBOG, a small business owner's group I'm a member of. Somehow we became friendly and she suggested I have an exhibition at their store, thinking that people who buy jewelry might also be interested in purchasing art.

We came up with a concept and work to show. I gathered drawings, prints, and paintings inspired by Italy and came up with the title, Jewels of Italy since it was an assorted body of work. An opening reception was held in October and a reporter from the Jefferson AIM, Oak Ridge's weekly paper, wrote an article on the event. The work looked spectacular in their store because of their sage green walls, a color threaded through my artwork, and their beautiful gallery lighting.

I sold a few pieces. Then it rolled into February and the work had been up for four months and I didn't see anything moving. In the meantime, a gallery in Hamburg, NJ was interested in showing my works of Italy. Judy and Carmine Prolizo of Tranquility Gallery & Frameworks met me at the Skylands Juried Show last June in Newton since they had been the donors for an award I received. Since meeting them, I had visited their gallery for some potential framing and since put them on my mailing list. To my surprise Judy phoned me in November after receiving my invitation for Buccieri's opening. They invited me to show work there. At the time nothing was available. We stayed in touch and by February I realized maybe it was time for a change.

Two weeks ago, I took the work from Buccieri's up to Tranquility. Tranquility is now representing my work through May 11th. It's a beautiful space filled with a variety of artwork, home decor, and frame mouldings. It was a difficult decision to remove the work, but in speaking with Buccieri's co-owner, Matt, he agreed with me that merchandise (jewelry or art) shouldn't sit too long and get stale. He affirmed my decision to move to a new space and reach out to new clientele.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Coffee Hour Drawing

Yesterday I created my third "Coffee Hour Drawing" this week. I had anticipated making 4, but due to the snowstorm this week and a few other prior commitments, I completed 3. I am still intrigued with Red Velvet cake. This is another representation of the rich and naughty dessert.

As I was finishing it, the little nub of white that remained of my Portfolio Series Oil Pastels disappeared and so I was unable to tone down the shadows in the icing as I would have liked. Crayola does not make a white pastel that is sold individually, so I may have to switch to another medium or white a white pastel that works well with the Crayola white. Any white medium used by an artist goes so quickly because it is used with all colors to create an endless range of tints.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Red Velvet

Yesterday being Valentine's Day I was struck with everything red discussed in the media in honor of the annual celebration of love. And after all of these years of celebrating Valentine's Day who knew there was so much new material to read or hear about. On Tuesday, NPR's Susan Stamberg did a story called The Color Red: A History in Textiles on Morning Edition about the exhibit Red at the Textile Museum in Washington D.C. She talked about the little rare bug found in Mexican cacti, the cochineal, used for making red dye and Louis XIV's contribution to fashion of wearing of scarlet heals.

Then to my further pleasure yesterday, I went online to the New York Times only to see an article on the resurgence of a popular Southern sin, the Red Velvet Cake. Cupid and my chocolate desires hit me and I was so overwhelmed by this decadent site that I used one of the photos from the article as reference for my "Coffee Hour Drawing". What fun!

This drawing was completed on Arches paper with water-soluble oil pastels. These are a really pliable medium, made by Crayola and non-toxic, I discovered these in college while interning at the Crayola Factory in Easton, PA. I haven't used them since art school; they offer very rich colors and can be manipulated fairly easily with water and brush.

It's hard to know what will sell and to spend your entire day as an emerging artist making only what will sell. So far I'm enjoying the exercise of the "Coffee Hour Drawing". I don't know if these will be appealing to people to buy, if they are, let me know. I'm looking forward to the next drawing.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Coffee Hour Drawings

I've written in previous posts about the challenge of finding time to actually make artwork. As crazy as that sounds, it's true. But since last week and this week, I had a session with Donna Price, career coach and owner of Compass Rose Consulting. She helped me to realize that not only do I have the time, I'm just allowing my marketing side to take over. I love drinking coffee in the morning and until today, I used to go directly to my computer to sip my coffee, check email, surf the web and gradually transition into the day.

Today, the computer remained off until 10:30am. I plugged my mother-in-law's percolator into the studio, brewed coffee and stayed in the studio for 2 1/2 hours. I began something I hope to continue that I did during an art school drawing class, and also included in my lesson plans when I taught art. It's the idea of a daily drawing, which I will call "Coffee Hour Drawings". They might just be drawing exercises, ideas for future pieces or finished drawings. I've included an image of the first one here. It's related to the the series of gelato paintings I've been working on. The drawing, Tre Gelati, is watersoluble graphite on a 7 1/2" x 10" piece of Arches paper.

After completing the hour drawing, I started the third painting of the Napoletano series of gelato, fragola (strawberry). It's amazing how much I accomplished merely because I scheduled my day. Thank you Donna for helping me implement a realistic schedule!

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

The Dance

Attending an opening reception of an art exhibit as an artist is much like a dance. You really have to be there and follow the lead of the crowd. As an artist I view an opening as an opportunity to meet potential clients, other artists, see family and friends, and to be a saleswoman. But, how do you sell your own work when you're in someone else's gallery and there are over 400 artists there?

It's tricky and I certainly don't know the answer yet. But, what I'm learning to do is dance around the room, finding different spots to observe people viewing my work and finding an opportunity to strike up conversation with them. It's difficult because on one hand you don't want to appear intrusive, but on the other hand you want them to know the artist is here which is why galleries have receptions.

The opening of Small Works at NYU on Saturday was jam-packed with both artists and patrons of the arts. There must have been over 500 people in attendance over the four-hour span and my work was in a small, front room. We were like sardines in that little room. Fortunately, my work was on the end of a wall, next to a corner, so for a period of time I stood next to my painting to try to casually interact with viewers. Most people are pretty responsive and I'm realizing I have to be more forward about letting them know I'm the artist. Small Works was a lively opening showcasing fabulous work, none would I have excluded from this stupendous show. I'm really proud to have been included. Go to my previous blog entries for information about the show if you didn't get to the opening.