This year, my studio has changed quite a bit. I have been able to get some used flat files, cleaning them up and painting them for all of my linocut vinyl and papers to be stored properly, avoiding damage.
My tools have improved – I have a solid selection of professional watercolor paints and papers. My linocut tools are amazing! The Ternes-Burton register pins are a major help. I found a used Seal Masterpiece 360 Mechanical Press at the local flea market and am using it for pressing linocut prints in addition to hand burnishing with a wooden spoon.
I had photo-cards printed this year using photos I took while in the field on our local beaches. I’ve also started designing book covers since last summer for local artists as well as creating logos and taking portraiture photos for use on the book covers. It’s fun to create a lot of art, even better to create professional art that will sell in a gallery or at shows. But its often not enough to cover the cost of replacing the materials used for the art pieces. The graphic art work should offset these costs just fine.
This year’s studio tour will give me a good sense of the last bits of what I need to take care of to cross over to the professional artist world. The business idea has been in the works since 2016 with many trial and error moments to get things into place. We’ll see how it goes…
Sometime in 2011-12 when we were living in Bradenton, I painted an incredible design on a rainbarrel for our yard using acrylics. The roof in the back yard was without gutters and left that lovely path for the rain to just run off at a corner. During storm season, the heavy stream was causing a huge hole right outside the screened porch door and left splashed mud all over the screen. It was time to do something about it since the property manager and homeowner would not. So the rainbarrel was born.
A few years after relocating to St. Petersburg, I was itching to get involved with more arts-related groups and events. I picked up the watercolors again in 2015 and the semi-serious hobby started up. I finished a few more watercolor paintings but didn’t get to know the folks at the Artist Enclave until the summer of 2016. I learned about their studio tours and was interested but completely inexperienced at preparing for any kind of show outside of my art studies at Pacific Lutheran University. While somewhat similar, a gallery showing on campus was a planned event for each semester and students were guided the entire term on how to get prepared and stay involved throughout the process. Preparing for my own tour was a daunting task at the time but I decided to take Nike’s advice and JUST DO IT! I registered for the December 2016 tour.
My studio was freshly painted and the flooring was put in by December and I dug up a lot of my works from college and prepared to display my recent watercolors and low-grade supplies. I had very minimal equipment but I wanted to get my feet wet and see how things would go.
I met so many wonderful people that December! It was a very good decision to take part in the tour and to meet the other artists in the Enclave. I didn’t have anything ready to sell. I didn’t have a means to take payments and just barely put together a business card for my “hobby” so I’d at least have some way to be identified as an artist. But I did it and it set forth enough momentum to get to today. There are so many people to thank for their support and guidance. If you haven’t been by our Enclave’s site, please do check it out! Artist Enclave Historic Kenwood
The website will be undergoing some much needed updates in mid-2018. Please watch for them and read about our amazing artists!
As those of you who visited the studio during the December 2016 Tour learned, the studio was new and still in the process of being set up. Urban Artist Florida studio is going to be offering more this year to check out so please stay tuned for more information.