Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Library -- One Size Fits All

When we struggled to raise six children and provide them with music lessons, athletic activities, and a good education, I never dreamed that would mean I couldn't finish mine. But reality held a different answer. Without the library, I may never have become a writer or an artist. It was my lifeline and my access to opportunity.

That's why I was pleased when a juried competition opened up for the PanAmerican Alliance and our skilled and talented artists. I'm sharing some photos from that show with you. The winners of that competition will be announced at an awards ceremony on Dec. 3 at the library. If you’ve followed my work, perhaps you can find mine.

Being an artist is expensive. There are many choices to make and mediums to purchase: linseed oil, turpenoid, oil paints, acrylic paints, modelling and mixing mediums, watercolor paints and paper, pastels and paper, brushes and tools, canvases and panels. All of these amount to "infrastructure" for the artist and are necessary components for turning professional.

I just purchased a package of pastel color shapers. The list price was $39.99. I went around the aisles several times before I realized it was do or die. I had to have them. The results of my recent works with fuzzy unclear details were good examples. Luckily a friend gave me an online coupon for 40 percent off which made my decision easier. I paid $16.00 for the shapers, and felt good about my decision.

There are other ways to save money: artist friends who throw in the towel and want to get rid of their painting supplies, garage/yard sales, stores like 2nd wind for artists, i.e. Act 2 in Fort Myers, sometimes e-Bay, etc. And don't forget the library; a great source for learning material. Used book stores may be the answer when you want to own a book.

Many artists use house paint instead of acrylic for large canvases. Squeeze bottles used for hair color can be washed and saved for painting use when you want a straight-edged trim on a petal or stem or for fancy scroll work. Being creative isn't limited to composition and design, it's a great way to develop your own personal style and to lend a new twist on a vision or idea.

How do you save money? Please share your ideas with my readers!

Today, I'm sharing a "work-in-progress" inspired by a photograph I shared with you earlier of two sandhill cranes foraging at dusk (below). I first made a drawing, and now I'm putting in an acrylic base. I will use oil paint on the cranes and for detail and highlights. Stay tuned!

I loved this photograph because of the blue tones reflected on the crane's wings.