Main Street Artists Gallery & Studio - Fine artists working, inspiring and supporting one another
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On Being an Artist


Main Street Artists /Rochester Art Club and the Boys and Girls Club of Rochester Team Up!

Rochester Artists Support Boys & Girls Club with Two March Events
A student exhibit and fundraiser are taking place at the Hungerford
 
Rochester Art Club and the Main Street Artists Gallery & Studio are joining forces in March to benefit art programs at Boys & Girls Clubs of Rochester(BGCR).
RAC will host a month-long exhibit of 30 pieces by 10 members of BGCR. In conjunction with this show, members of Main Street Artists will be donating proceeds from sales of selected original artwork, prints and cards to BGCR. Both events will kick off at March First Friday, 6-9 p.m. March 4, in the RAC and MSA studios on the fourth floor of the Hungerford Building, 1115 E. Main St.
The studios also will be open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 12, and at other times throughout March by appointment (call 585-233-5645).
“For those of us fortunate enough to call ourselves ‘artists,’ the importance of giving back seems quite obvious to me” says Suzi Zefting-Kuhn, founder of the Main Street Artists Gallery & Studio and president of the Rochester Art Club. “After the tragic shooting outside the Boys & Girls Club on Genesee Street last August, one of our MSA members urged us to find a way to help. We met with Sarah Hwang, director of the art program at BGCR.”
“In December, Main Street Artists members donated more than $200 to purchase art supplies for their newly expanded art area, the start of what we intend to be an ongoing connection with the Club,” says Zefting-Kuhn. “In addition, we came up with the idea of an exhibit for some of BGCR’s most advanced artists. Rochester Art Club leaders were quick to embrace that project.
“We feel strongly that art is a healthy outlet for everyone, and especially for youngsters who are subjected to poverty and violence. We hope to help provide a positive experience and recognition of their talent and dedication.”
The exhibit at the RAC studio will qualify the participants to enter the National Fine Arts Exhibit of Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Rochester Picture Framing, 2094 E. Main St. – a Rochester business celebrating its 50th year anniversary – is donating all framing for the young artists’ work.
            The mission of Boys & Girls Clubs of Rochester is to inspire and enable young people of all backgrounds to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. The organization provides youth development programs that enable young people to acquire the skills and qualities needed to become responsible citizens and leaders. The Club operates afterschool programming designed to produce positive youth outcomes in five areas: 1) Leadership & Character Development 2) Education & Career Development 3) Health & Life Skills 4) The Arts and 5)Sports, Fitness & Recreation.
Empowered with these positive developmental experiences and opportunities, Boys & Girls Clubs members have continually demonstrated their ability to overcome negative, failure-oriented environments and move toward fulfilling their dreams.
Since its inception, the Boys & Girls Club Movement has provided mentoring and leadership specifically designed to change the lives of youth who face daily challenges such as poverty, broken homes, crime, unemployment, prejudice and difficulties in school.

Rochester Art Club, founded in 1877, is the second oldest active art club in the country. The Main Street Artists Gallery & Studio includes 18 Rochester area painters working in a variety of media. For more information, visit www.mainstreetartistsgallery.com.

A Lesson Learned

A Lesson Learned
 
Everyone has heard the carpenter saying “measure twice, cut once.” I believe that the same analogy applies to artists when they begin a new painting. Not necessarily cutting but certainly measuring. Getting the perspective and the drawing correct is certainly one of the most important steps.
Without following these all-important steps, everything is off right from the beginning.
I recently learned that the hard way with an oil painting of Reno, a beautiful rescued Greyhound.  The painting was a gift for two special people. I started early enough and had plenty of time to finish it. So why did I rush? Was it the excitement of tackling a new subject matter for me?
Perhaps I should start by offering a definition of perspective: it is the technique used to represent a three-dimensional world (what we see) on a two-dimensional surface (a piece of paper or canvas) in a way that looks realistic and accurate, as we see it in its natural state.  And then of course there is the accuracy of your drawing. 
Have you ever gotten into the beginning steps of your painting and realized that something was off? Maybe the eyes were too far apart or the entire head was just wrong, leaving you looking at your painting in total frustration. Now you realized that you made a big mistake and going back to fix your drawing is going to be a massive hassle. Why were the eyes so far apart? Why was his head longer than I envisioned? His head is tilted a lot more in the reference photo than on the canvas. Oh my –was I off that much? OK – let’s fix it. Get out a straightedge and start making vertical and horizontal lines on your reference photo and then apply them to your painting on the easel. Why didn’t I do this in the first place.
So how does one go about measuring correctly? The idea is to compare two distances on the subject matter (often a horizontal distance, such as the eyes) to find a relationship between the two and apply that same relationship to the drawing. My studio muse always tells me (in capital letters) to measure extensively at first until it becomes a natural part of the process. And as your accuracy improves with practice, you’ll see how helpful measuring can be .
I have always been more comfortable painting landscapes in either oil or pastel, but once in a while I like to challenge myself by painting something out of my comfort zone. With that challenge in front of me I am inspired to greater heights and  better artwork. I am proud of the work that I have completed thus far with several paintings shown and juried into numerous exhibitions receiving Merit and Juror’s awards accordingly.
I invite you to visit the Main Street Artists Studio and Gallery at the Hungerford Building (www.mainstreetartistsgallery.com) to view my work and the artwork of my fellow talented artists. The friends that I have made in this studio, and the endless support that I receive from my associates, inspire me to continue creating great art.
˗ Gabriele Lodder

 

Last Saturday for holiday shopping!

Saturday, December 19th  10am-4pm is your last chance to finish up your holiday shopping here at the Hungerford , 1115 E. Main St. Rochester NY 14609. We are in Studio 452-458. The elevator will be manned for your convenience inside Door #2. Handicap ramp available as well. 

Consider an original piece of art that will only increase in value!  Smaller budget? We have many different note cards, art tiles and archival prints of our work as well. 

We look forward to seeing you!  See what we are currently working on as well! Commissions are welcomed by many in the group. 


January's Blog post

“It Ain’t Easy!”
 
Have you ever seen someone walk through a studio on a First Friday with a glazed expression without really looking at what is there?  Or heard, “That’s ugly!”  Or “My dog could paint better than that!”   
People who are that judgmental usually are insecure about themselves and don’t find much fun in anything. nvite them to take up the making of art of any form to improve their sense of self-esteem and relationship to their world. 
Yes, there are false advertising claims that lead one to believe that visual arts are simple: paint-by-numbers books, adult coloring books, drawing, sculpting and painting  (in every medium) made easy. There are even books on these subjects for “Dummies” (a term, unfortunately, too many of us use in our opinionated fashion about ourselves and others.) 
Those books may have some merit, but few people actually have the discipline or motivation to actually work through them. There are too many barriers to creativity in all of the arts, let alone in life as a whole. Here, with an apology to all English majors, is my unabashed attempt at a poem.
 
Biologically, creativity has been bred,
Psychologically, it has been shed,
Socially, it has been shred,
And
Spiritually, it has been bled
Out of us.
 
In all human dimensions, we are carefully taught to be the opposite of creative, and through that process, develop a sense of self-loathing. In her classic book, The Artist’s Way, A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity, Julia Cameron has written 12 chapters, each designed to be a weeklong practice designed to undo the damage done to our souls. 
She invites us to recover our sense of: Safety, Identity, Power, Integrity, Possibility, Abundance, Connection, Strength, Compassion, Self-Protection, Autonomy, and Faith. In reality, this process takes a lifetime, or perhaps many lifetimes.
On our “About Us” page on the website for Main Street Artists, www.mainstreetartistsgallery.com/About-Us.html, founder Suzi Zefting Kuhn writes,  “We are a group of like-minded fine artists, many award-winning, who love to paint together, support one another, and inspire.” 
Someone once said that trying to get a group of artists to do anything is like herding cats. Somehow Suzi has the gift for creating the environment where we each can develop not only our artistic skills, but also actually the traits that took a whole book for Ms. Cameron to write about.
 

--- Margot Fass

(Image is of the collage painting Margot is currently working on that represents the work of all the Main Street Artists)

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