2018 Review - Residencies, Shows and Such

 

I’m a nerd for New Year resolutions/goals. It’s a way to clarify intentions and get motivated for the coming year. And then as always, real life happens and changes it all up. Case in point - one of my first 2019 intentions was to be better at blogging every week on time. I’m already failing miserably! Ah well, let’s get on the horse again, shall we?

But let’s back up first. Sometimes by reviewing the previous year we can get satisfaction, even though we might have fallen short of goals and dreams. It’s good to shoot high, stretch beyond what we might think possible, even if there are some shortfalls along the way. I can feel disappointed if I’m not where I want to be at the end of the year, yet when I look back there’s so much to be happy and thankful for!

So here’s my 2018 year in review:

April 2018 Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts - a month long residency in cowboy country.

Setting sun over sage brush - Saratoga, Wyoming. Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts.

Setting sun over sage brush - Saratoga, Wyoming. Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts.

I’ve been to 20 residencies so far, and this one is near the top of the list. First of all, it’s free and they feed you! But aside from that, the studios are spacious and clean and warm with radiant floor heating - which is delicious, and the accommodations are small but comfortable with a private bath. The surrounding 30,000 acre working cattle ranch is classic sweeping cowboy country - sagebrush, pine and aspen forests, with rocky outcrops for hidden bandits (back in the day). I recommend highly this residency to any artist looking for a quiet, productive retreat in a big sky landscape. Click HERE to go to Brush Creek to apply.


May 2018, I launched my first online class - all about artist residencies!

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This had long been a goal of mine - to share my experiences and knowledge about how artist residencies work and the best way to attend one. After 20 such residencies I felt I had experienced enough variety in the residency culture to teach a course about them! However, the learning curve of creating an Ecourse was like climbing nearby Long’s Peak (a 14-er!). Planning the course, supporting the content with photos and videos, and launching it on the right platform took months and months of self-educating.

By far the hardest part of the process was filming myself talking to the camera! Even though I had scripted it line by line (to make sure I didn’t ramble and get off point), I could barely get through one sentence without flubbing up. So what should have taken weeks took months of repeated takes until I finally got it right - an actress I will never be!. Finally, after much fussing and fixing, I launched the course to the public, and it has been gratifying to know that it has helped so many to find their feet with navigating the rich world of artist residencies. And with such a sharp learning curve, I’m sure my next course will take half the time!


JUNE 2018 STARTED MY MONTHLY ARTIST/TRAVELER INTERVIEW SERIES ON MY BLOG!

Janice Mason Steeves - One of the first artists I interviewed. July 2018

Janice Mason Steeves - One of the first artists I interviewed. July 2018

I make it a point to connect with other artist/travelers around the globe. I’m constantly being inspired by them, so it seemed natural to reach out and share their stories with others. It also gives me a chance to know them better by asking some of my own selfish and curious questions. Every month I interview a different artist/traveler, so I hope you will be as inspired as I am!

READ MORE ARTIST/TRAVELER INTERVIEWS HERE:


MIXED MEDIA PAINTING CLASSES:

Teaching is one way that I serve, and it’s deeply satisfying. I love seeing students light up when they catch the wave of authentic expression and gain trust in their own process - seeing the beauty in all stages of the creative journey. My classes usually are 6 weeks long, and all levels are welcome. I do lots of demos using various techniques and materials - acrylic painting, collage, photo transfer, drawing, etc, but I also love when students bring in new materials they want to explore. And mostly, I want to share the love of the creative process regardless of the medium.

Here are a few of the classes I taught in 2018.

  1. SPRING 6 WEEK CLASSES: THE GATEKEEPERS: The Gatekeepers are the internal and external voices that will stop us in our creative tracks if we let them. We learn to identify them, to understand the power of the internal critic (gatekeeper), and disarm the resistance.

  2. SUMMER WORKSHOPS: COURAGE VS. CONFIDENCE: Sometimes we feel we need to have confidence to begin our creative practice. But it’s the opposite - courage is always the beginning. Courage engages, motivates, and makes things happen. Confidence only happens after the courage of DOing.

  3. FALL 6 WEEK CLASSES: THE ALCHEMY OF THE BOG: I refer to the Bog as that internal place that has stored all of life’s experience - the good the bad and the ugly. No one escapes life’s pains, but the Bog holds these secrets in a place of stasis, ready to be transformed into fertile ground. In the class we happily made messes without judgement and found wondrous beauty along the way.

I will be teaching Spring 2019 mixed media classes in Boulder starting in late February. Click below for updated information:


SEPTEMBER 2018 - CILL RIALAIG RESIDENCY, IRELAND - A residency on the Wild Atlantic Way.

sketching the ancient stones by the cliff edge.

sketching the ancient stones by the cliff edge.

My 3rd residency at Cill Rialaig Artist Residency in southwest Ireland did not disappoint. Generally, I prefer to stay at a residency for 1 month as it gives me enough time to connect, absorb my environment and find the right response to my new world. But this one was a short 2 weeks given that I had to get back to Boulder for Open Studios and my gallery show in Santa Fe. However, I know this magical place well enough by now so as to be able to focus and drop in relatively easily. You can read more about this residency in my blog from September 2018. CLICK HERE:

Inside my studio/cottage - turf fire blazing.

Inside my studio/cottage - turf fire blazing.


SANTA FE EXHIBITION: GLOBE FINE ART - “For The Love of Trees” October 2018

Some of the paintings I sent to exhibit at Globe Fine Art.

Some of the paintings I sent to exhibit at Globe Fine Art.

I was invited to be part of this 4 person show at Globe Fine Art in Santa Fe. The tree theme was a natural for me, and I was inspired to offer them in a new way. I have hundreds of tree photos I have taken over the years, and they have made for excellent photo transfers in my paintings. It was a focused and tight body of work that I enjoyed painting unabashedly with my arboreal friends.


OCTOBER 2018 OPEN STUDIOS, BOULDER, CO

Open Studios is one of the most popular community events in Boulder and has been successfully connecting artists with art lovers and buyers for over 20 years. I have been actively participating in Open Studios since the earliest years, and it helped launch and grow my career in Boulder, Denver and other Front Range areas of Colorado. It also helped me early on gain confidence in showing and selling my work and was a springboard to being accepted into galleries, etc. I can’t thank the organizers of Open Studios enough - especially the visionary who started it all, Gary Zeff.

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This wall of Aqua paintings sold during Open Studios to a wonderful collector in Hawaii.

This wall of Aqua paintings sold during Open Studios to a wonderful collector in Hawaii.