Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Make Time your Friend not your Enemy

"Release" 24 x 30 mixed media
(Currently I'm adding two panels on each side and turning this into a triptych.)
Get a group of people together and their number one concern is time or the lack thereof. Their problem isn’t a lack of ideas. It isn’t money, although, this is a restricting factor. What worries small business owners the most is time. Every decision that is made is concerned with time: what it’s worth, how to set priorities, where to focus it for optimal growth. Marketing alone requires enormous amounts of time, and making product requires time. Without a product, there is nothing to sell.

(Sketch on panel)
A novice once asked me for detailed information on what it cost me to do a painting. He divided it into parts: supplies, paints, canvas, tools, and time spent in the actual painting. This picayunish breakdown was designed to belittle me and other artist’s work with little regard to the years it takes to perfect a skill or the knowledge required to assimilate what one sees and interpret it on canvas.

I gave him a simple mathematical tool he could use to consider basic costs: Multiply the size of the painting (i.e. 24 x 30), add any overhead costs the artist may have incurred (leased space / gallery, a model, etc.), and add the cost of a frame. This exercise at least gives you a basis from which to judge. Add into the equation, the artist’s background and notoriety and the worth of a painting is much easier to appreciate.

To reduce a painting to a dime-store print or a knock off which has been photographed on canvas and then given a few swipes of paint is an insult. This is not a serious buyer, but a person who hopes to get something for nothing. Walk away!

"1st panel on left" Will require many layers of paint to complete.
Some people get overwhelmed when they see the big picture and understand all the work that is required to become successful. If this is you, try to slow down and take one piece at a time. A child doesn’t learn how to walk all at once. Neither does success come without a series of mini-steps and hurdles to overcome.

Focus on one thing at a time:
  • Prioritize your work list in order of importance
  • Do as much as is humanly possible in your 24 hour day
  • Don’t neglect your health or there will be no business
  • Small increments of time are better than nothing
  • Use down time for planning, organizing your thoughts, and creatively solving problems.
When your body is at rest, your mind can take over. I mentally paint even when I’m not at the canvas. Sometimes I solve problems in this way. At other times, an idea completely changes and moves in another direction. By the time I’m able to actually work at the canvas, I can move ahead quickly with confidence. Use your time wisely and it can be an asset not a liability.

"Bella Bellissiomo" 16 x 20 Acrylic on canvas
Currently on display at the SWF Coop Gallery at Coconut Point

Two other paintings are on display at this Gallery: "Hey, Coconut Man" and "With These Hands -- Hope"