The photo above is of my latest piece, "The Watcher", which I entered in our local art league's annual show. Judging has taken place and it won an Honorable Mention in the Graphics category. It is colored pencil, the only colored pencil entry in the show.
Tomorrow, I take work to the Lee-Bunch Studio Gallery, in Del Rio, Texas, to hang for the month of October. This will be my first show in a gallery and, while I am excited at the opportunity, it has given me a case of nerves.
Never did I think my work would be in a gallery, even for a short term show. Now, maybe being represented by a gallery isn't such a stretch? Only time will tell and I need to work hard so my work improves. Wish me luck!
Obviously, blog writing isn't my strong suit. This area of my site is horribly neglected. I keep reading that blogs are important for an artist, especially for marketing purposes but it is still quite difficult for me to make time for it in my day.
The summer has been quite busy as I try to complete enough work for my month as featured artist at Lee Bunch Studio Gallery in Del Rio, Texas. The show begins October 3 at Del Rio's Art Walk and continues through the month. This is the biggest step I have taken in my career as an artist and it took quite a bit of convincing before I felt ready to take it on. Only time will tell how my work will be received but I thank Pam Bunch, of Lee Bunch Studio Gallery for this exciting (and nerve-wracking!) opportunity.
The time I spend in the studio has increased gradually over time and I can see the difference it has made in my work. Over the last few years, studio time has gone from a few hours a week to several hours most every day. My confidence level is increasing, as is the fun I am having- finally allowing myself to relax and have fun, making mistakes in order to learn.
There are several new pieces that I have not yet posted on my web page, I prefer to wait until everything is unveiled at the show. The majority of the art that I will take to the show is older work that is already here, however. I work slowly so older pieces outnumber newer ones. There will be nine pieces hanging, wish it could have been more.
My next goal is to do more work en plein air and use those as a basis for studio work. It is fun to work outside, or at least it will be once the temperatures cool down some and the gnats go away!
May 5, 2014
Obviously, I have been neglecting this blog, as it has been many months since I last wrote here. In my last blog, I mentioned the upcoming Fredericksburg, Texas Die Kunstler membership show, which I was entering for the first time. The show was large and impressive, so many wonderful artists in the Fredericksburg area. I entered my colored pencil drawing, "Reflection", which didn't win anything. There are only two prized given at this show, member's choice and people's choice. The same piece won both and, unfortunately, it wasn't mine. So many good pieces, it was very hard to pick a favorite.
My latest show was the mini show in Ballinger, another open show, this one for pieces no larger than 5"x7". I entered two pieces, "Wild and Wooly" in graphite and charcoal, and "Blue Jay Buffet" done in colored pencil. Blue Jays won an honorable mention and also sold, which was so nice. It is so special when someone likes your work well enough to buy it, quite a compliment.
Our local Coleman Heritage Hall, a combination art gallery and history museum also had an open show, just this week. I entered one piece, "On Guard" a graphite/charcoal piece of a lizard guarding its nest hole. This won an honorable mention as well so I am quite excited.
There are several other shows coming up in the area, juried shows that I had wanted to enter. However, I have decided to let those pass this year as I have been asked, along with a very dear artist friend, to be featured artist in October at the Lee Bunch Gallery in Del Rio, Texas. This invitation came as quite a shock and, to make sure the pieces for that show are the best they can be, need to concentrate only on that show and leave the others for next year. I am so excited about this show and quite scared as well, feeling there is no way my work is good enough for a gallery show. This will be my first experience with something like this and I am running the gamut of emotions.
There is a lot of work to be done so off to the studio!
This past week, our local art group, The Fine Arts League of Coleman County, held their annual show, in conjunction with the town of Coleman's Fiesta de la Paloma celebration. In years past, it has been a juried show, then one for members only. This year is was an open show and we had over 71 entries from several towns and cities in our area.
The categories were by medium; watercolor, pastel, oil and graphic (charcoal/graphite/colored pencil etc).
Three places were given in each category along with a best in show. I won three ribbons in the show and would have been so very excited had not my entries all been in the graphic category, which had only a total of 5 entries! Of course, the prize money is nice but it would have been so much more of an accomplishment had there been more pieces with which to compete.
The most exciting part was selling two of the three pieces I entered! Now there is some excitement for an artist.
The next show coming up is Die Kunstler in Fredericksburg, which is a membership show. I joined this group several months ago with an eye to entering this show. I have several friends who live in Fredericksburg and are members. Since two of my three show pieces are now sold, I had better get busy and finish some more work!
Recently, I entered my colored pencil work 'Reflection', along with two charcoal pieces, in the Lake Country open art show in Graham, Texas. It was so exciting to receive the call that I won first place with 'Reflection', in the animal category. The entire show had 91 entries, approximately 20 were of animals.
Due to a family commitment, I missed the awards reception but was able to make the two-hour drive to Graham yesterday to see the show. It was wonderful and my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed it and visiting with the people in the art center.
Since I "survived" my first colored pencil piece, have begun another. Just because 'Reflections' was a success, doesn't mean this next one will be but, no matter how it turns out, I know there will be many lessons learned from the process.
The show in Graham hangs until August 25, I believe, so there is still time to go view it. Graham is a very nice town and worth a trip to see. I will be keeping my fingers crossed that at least one of my pieces will sell but having the blue ribbon has me floating on air!
My latest completed work (under the colored pencil tab) is "Reflection", a drawing of a neighbor's goat getting a drink from a trough. It is only my second attempt at colored pencil, so going was slow but I sure learned alot. I am always confused as to what to call a work in colored pencil. 'Drawing' seems more appropriate, since pencils are used but, the completed work seems more 'painting' like, at least to me. Wondering what others think, feel free to offer your opinions.
Because I love to draw, I am really enjoying colored pencils. Graphite and charcoal are wonderful but, sometimes, a little color is also nice. This doesn't mean that I won't paint, however. I also love working with a brush and paint. My watercolor technique really needs practice.
I am recently back from spending a long weekend with a dear friend in Fredericksburg, Texas. It is a town full of wonderful art galleries, where we always spend quite a bit of time. Collecting other artists' work is something I do whenever possible and a beautiful piece by Hodges Soileau , "Star Grazing" made the trip home with me. As I am running out of wall space, finding the perfect place to hang it will require some planning and rearranging! However, when all of this "work" is finished, it means I will have a new treasure to enjoy, a fun process.
Enjoying a wonderfully rainy day today, something our area has needed for some time.
This is a photo of my experiment, just completed yesterday. Well, it really isn't complete but the surface isn't allowing me to do any more to it. Ampersand puts out a product called Claybord, which I hoped would be a good base for graphite/charcoal. They list colored pencil as a medium to use so I thought any pencil might work. The surface is extremely smooth, something that really isn't very good for pencils of any sort. There really needs to be some tooth to grab the medium and allow for multiple layers. This allowed for some layering but not as much as needed and corrections were difficult. My main reason for trying this was so that I could frame without glass. The Aquabord worked well with watercolor so thought this might do for pencil. Live and learn!
The local art show I mentioned in my last blog post had its awards presentation and I was very pleased to have won a second place for "Nature's Frills" and an honorable mention for "Intensity". This is the second time "Nature's Frills" has won a second place ribbon.
There are two drawings in the studio awaiting my attention. One will be colored pencil, my first try with Stonehenge Kraft paper. The other is to be a watercolor on Aquabord. I think I will work on the colored pencil first. The Kraft paper is tinted brown so alot of planning will need to go into color choices. Another learning experie
When I arrived at the Mid-Texas Artist's Guild Miniature show in Ballinger, Texas yesterday, I had quite a nice surprise! My entry, "Curiosity" had won first place in the Advanced category! To say I was shocked, would be putting it mildly. Usually, an artist that wins a ribbon will get a phone call ahead of time but I hadn't received any calls. From that, I assumed I hadn't won anything this year. Actually, I think I prefer the surprise, it was fun!
My reference for this drawing is from a photo I took when we visited our son and his wife at their home in Hallsville, Tex. last year. Their home is near a more rural area where we walked each morning. These calves were very curious about us and followed us along the fence line.
Whenever I look at this drawing, it brings back fond memories of the visit and the morning walks.
There is another show I entered three pieces in on Friday. The judging for it is Wednesday and it opens next Friday, May 3.
Now that things are slowing down some, I need to get busy in the studio again and also in the vegetable garden! Not sure hubby will forgive me if we don't have fresh tomatoes this year.
Linda S. Wright
Retired to the country of northcentral Texas. Living my dream of daily Nature study, inspiration and art.