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Goals Revisited

2018 has been a busy year, so far, for me.
            I started out January with a marketing workshop through my friend Susan Carmen Duffy at Create Art 4 Good. I set goals and went on my merry way. I started painting and attending workshops.
            Then came June and Susan sent me a reminder of my goals in anticipation of our upcoming Marketing Mondaymeeting. I have been attending these meetings regularly in an effort to better promote my art. I was pleasantly surprised that I had accomplished 2½ of my 5 goals. The last two involve doing something I should have done last year. I have a tendency to just paint and ignore the business part of my art. This has caused me to have a surplus of product and no online presence for sales.
            The following are my 2018 goals:
·      Paint more Norris’.
ü  As I mentioned above, I have been painting!
·      Research places to get my art visible outside of Rochester.
ü  I have been looking into shows outside of Rochester and galleries in areas where I like to paint. I’ve entered a couple of competitions and made a painting donation to the Provincetown (MA) Art Association and Museum.
·      Get my website running and consistently posting.
ü  My website is up and running. I’ve been posting regularly on my Facebook page but I have not been writing my blog on my website. I have not added any of my new paintings to my page galleries since November. This goal has only been half reached.
·      Sell online.
·      Get my DBA and tax number.
Now I need to accomplish the last two. I can’t sell online without a tax number and I can’t get a DBA without deciding on the name I want to have…forever.
This is why, while, even though I don’t like to think about the business part of being a creative, I continue to take classes, read articles and attend Marketing Monday meetings. These friends are the ones who keep me honest and gently push me in the direction I need to be headed in.
Along that vein, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that:
·      My Facebook page is Christine D Norris
·      My Instagram page is o2paint 
·      My website is www.christinednorrispaints.com
~ Christine Norris



 

Main Street Artists Biennial Art Exhibition

The 17 members of Rochester’s Main Street Artists group will present its biennial exhibit at Patricia O’Keefe Ross Art Gallery in the Joseph S. Skalny Welcome Center, St. John Fisher College, 3690 East Ave. Pittsford. 
            The show runs from June 4 to July 6 with an artists’ reception  6-8 p.m. Friday, June 8. Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to noon Friday. It is free and open to the public.  
            The showwill include more than 50 paintings in a variety of styles and media. Paricipants are Diane Bellenger, Linda Cala, Kathleen Dewitt-Hess, Margot Fass, Sue Hegan Henry, Kathy Lindsley, Jacqueline Lippa, Gabriele Lodder, Daniel Mack Sr., Cris Metcalf, Eleanor Milborrow, Andrea Nadel, Christine D. Norris, Jane Patrick, Susan Schiffhauer, Lisa Zaccour, and Suzi Zefting-Kuhn.
            The Main Street Artists group was founded in January 2010 by Suzi Zefting-Kuhn and now has 17 members who share gallery and work space in the Hungerford Building in downtown Rochester. Studio 458 has become a popular stop during monthly First Friday and Second Saturday events. The St. John Fisher exhibit provides an additional opportunity for people to learn about this dynamic group.
               “Our members enjoy sharing our art with each other and the public,” says Zefting-Kuhn. “Visitors often comment on the creative atmosphere we have all worked so hard to create and, to me, that is the best compliment.”
            For more information, visit www.mainstreetartistsgallery.com or call 585-233-5645.

Artistic Sensitivity: A Double Edged Sword

 
  
 

Come see what’s up with MSA!
 
You can visit the studio and members during the First Friday (6-9 p.m. April 6 ) and Second Saturday (10 a.m.-3 p.m. April 14) open studio events. You can also stop in at other times – members are at work almost every day! Call 585-233-5645 to make sure someone is “home.”
 
Meanwhile, please check out our website (www.mainstreetartistsgallery.com) and be sure to LIKE us on Facebook! 
 
NEWS ITEMS!
 
Save the date!
MSA AT SJF

The Main Street Artists will once again present an exhibit at the Patricia O'Keefe Ross Art Gallery in the Joseph S. Skalny Welcome Center at St. John Fisher College. The show is open weekdays June 4-July 6; a reception takes place 6-7:30 p.m. June 8. 
 
 We artists are a sensitive bunch. Sensitivity serves us well in creating and expressing our art, but there is a flip side. When we display our art to the public, whether at shows or on social media, we become vulnerable to all types of criticism or worse, ambivalence. It can be difficult to receive negative feedback or silence without feeling slighted. When the source of these comments is close friends, family members, or other artists, we may feel especially hurt and insulted.
 
  So what’s an artist to do? Can we expose our artistic expressions and remain unphased by the negative reaction of others? Though this can be a challenge, I have found a few ways to help keep hurt feelings in check and build self-esteem.
 
     1. Take specific actions to improve your confidence and pride in all you have accomplished. Draw or paint on a frequent basis. Attend classes to improve your skills. We are fortunate that the Rochester art community is a rich resource for art education in all media. Consider submitting your work for exhibition. There is joy in knowing that people are looking at your work, even if no sale takes place. Although your art won’t please everyone, that is OK. The most important person you need to impress is you.
  2. Accept that there could be myriad reasons why friends, peers, or family don’t acknowledge your work. Perhaps they are struggling with their own work, or are facing personal health and family challenges. Chances are the reason has nothing to do with you or their perception of your work

3. Join an art group in your community. You will meet fellow artists who appreciate your work and offer constructive criticism. Group artists are very supportive of each other, and often suggest new techniques for improvement and opportunities to exhibit. Significantly, fellow artists know firsthand what it’s like to put their art on display and can help you overcome self-doubt and insecurity

Gaining self-confidence and overcoming insecurity takes time, but it can be achieved. Be patient with yourself and others and generous with the folks who support you and your goals. You will come to recognize and appreciate your unique talents without fear of being judged by others

-Andrea Nadel


The Therapy of Painting a Deceased Loved One


I have the luxury of being a painter, and I specialize in portraiture. I have painted portraits for others of their deceased loved ones where there is no emotional attachment for me. What is it like to paint your own deceased loved one?
 
I recently completed an oil portrait of my dad, who passed way in September of 2017. I spent sixty-four of my dad’s eighty three years either with him or knowing he was only a phone call away. I have lost grandparents before but this was the first time losing a parent. He was not the parent I thought I would lose first.  And it was hard. To this day I still find it hard to believe he is gone.
 
My impetus to paint my dad’s portrait was as a gift for my brother. I had done a colored pencil of my dad many years ago and that has gone to my sister.  Perhaps it was easier to begin the process of this painting because it was a gift, not solely for me.
 
I chose the photo we used for my dad’s obituary as my reference. It was a fairly recent image of him and we all liked it. I selected my surface, gathered my paints and brushes and got to work.
 
Rather than doing a preliminary sketch I decided to just draw with my paintbrush directly onto the canvas. His face was so familiar to me after all. I must admit the likeness came fairly easily.
 
Interesting things happened.  Was his face always this ruddy? My dad lived in the Atlanta area and played tennis year round practically, whether it be cold or blazing hot. His skin had been subjected to much sunshine. I can’t say the same for mine living in Rochester. As I painted I saw resemblances and shared family features with my siblings, my paternal grandparents, and myself. The process was becoming a history lesson of sorts. It was a study in genealogy.  It was constant discovery.  Each day of painting was a joy rather than grief. It really was cathartic.
 
As I painted I began to ‘talk’ with my dad (in my head of course, although if I was alone in the studio I am not so sure that I didn’t talk out loud sometimes without knowing it). I relived memories, conversations my dad and I had had over the years, and of course as with all of us, had some regrets.  It was quite an experience.
 
I enjoyed the process so much that I now intend to paint my Grams (my maternal grandmother with whom I was extremely close) and maybe even my late first husband, Doug.  I have painted Doug as part of paintings for each of my children but never as a sole portrait. This one will be really hard but after this past experience might be well worth it.
 
I know there are many others who have painted portraits of their deceased loved ones in the past, and are in the process of doing so now but I wanted to share my experience.  My studio mates of the Main Street Artists were very encouraging as they always are. I am truly grateful to be surrounded by wonderfully supportive friends. Thank you all!q
 
For commission inquiries please contact me at [email protected]


Building on Failure

Building on failure
 
In 1993, when I took my first watercolor painting class at the Memorial Art Gallery, we all wondered how long it would take to get good at this. The teacher, local artist Wendy Gwirtzman, told us our discard pile might be way over our heads before we felt satisfied with our work.
            In other words, maybe never.
            I’ve persevered, had some successes, won some prizes. But lately I’ve been in a terrible slump, painting almost every day but feeling like I have no idea what I’m doing, making rookie mistakes, covering pristine watercolor paper with mud. On the plus side: The discard pile keeps getting taller.
            If you wonder what I’m talking about, take a look at What’s Wrong with this Picture?, which accompanies this post. I’ve struggled with this thing for several months, no kidding, and at this point I believe any future it has lies in the recycling bin. If you have any helpful comments, please send them along. (I’m open to cutting and saving bits and pieces – always a possibility with watercolor.)
            I decided revisiting past projects might be a way to jump start my creative battery. First I dug through my “works in progress” drawer and immediately moved a bunch of these to that growing discard pile. I realized that some projects have been sitting around for more than two decades. I’ve long forgotten the inspiration.
            I moved a couple to the top of the “possible” pile; one is currently in the active category. I’m hopeful; perhaps I now have the skills to complete it.
            Finally I opened a dusty portfolio of paintings that I had once considered complete but had never framed. One in particular seemed, well, pretty nice. It’s a watercolor on rice paper, a technique we experimented with in one of Wendy’s classes years ago. The rice paper is glued onto heavy (300 pound) watercolor paper and the picture is painted on top. Fine detail is not possible, but you can get a pleasant misty, dreamy affect. I did a little more work on it, and the result is One Pine Day, which accompanies this post. It’s now attractively matted, framed and hanging at the Main Street Artists gallery/studio.
            My spouse likes it, and several friends had kind comments, which made me feel better. I am not ready to throw away my paints and brushes! Ever the optimist, I’m sure my next attempt will be better, maybe even sort of good. In any case, I remind myself, for me the joy of painting is the process, not necessarily the result.
            Stay tuned . . .

– Kathy Lindsley














Snow Cone, watercolor










One Pine Day,  watercolor





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Goals Revisited
Main Street Artists Biennial Art Exhibition
Artistic Sensitivity: A Double Edged Sword
The Therapy of Painting a Deceased Loved One
Building on Failure

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