Thursday, June 28, 2007

You Tube Video---ZOA Group

We have put together our first video for You Tube...okay, it's a slide show put to the music of Pink Floyd...but, I am pleased with the results.

Certainly any of the other group members could probably have put together a cooler half the time...but, I'm proud of myself for taking on the task.

Now I need to figure out how I can clean up some of the pictures off of my computer without losing them on our sites. My computer is really running slow. I'm sure I'll get it figured out:)

Monday, June 25, 2007

What works...and what doesn't...

I like this saying...I put it on a close up of one of my paintings and then listed it on the Zazzle account that I set up to offer merchandise using prints of some of my late husband's paintings. Since he wasn't able to do very many pieces, I placed a few of my works on to fill in.
They sold one of these pieces today...and while I won't make much off of the sale...the site cost me NOTHING to open....and I've made 100 times more than I've made off of our Yessy site...which cost me $59.00 a year. I have yet to receive an email from the Yessy site, much less an order.
It brings me to 'what works and what doesn't'....I have another Zazzle site, which only features a select few of my Tuscan pieces...they've sold quite a few articles of merchandise from pics of paintings that were long sold...again, the cost to me....NOTHING!
I have a free site on Art.Com....they've sold a number of prints from pics of my paintings that were already sold. And if you Google my name...I come up on Art.Com as a sponsored site. It's true that they make money from my prints... a lot more than I do...but, what have I got invested...a little time to upload a few pictures.
I'm thinking about taking the annual fee from the Yessy site....when it comes due in August...and putting it over on a premium Art.Com account so that I can list more and actually be able to offer canvas prints of my paintings. It makes so much more sense. I'm certainly getting a lot more exposure from Art.Com than I am from Yessy.
Even though I sold a few pieces on ArtbyUs....I never seemed to have enough time to paint the originals I felt I needed to list on more than one online venue. I may check that out again, now that I am taking time off of eBay...just to see if it would be worthwhile to give it a go. It will depend on whether or not they are now charging fees to list.
Anyway...I'm getting a little bored, it seems I work better under pressure and we've taken the pressure off by taking the summer I'll have to get everything else I'm doing all set up for the late summer and fall months. Hopefully they'll be really good this year!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Keeping Busy

Well, we are able to keep busy...hopefully it will pay off. I am rather 'missing' the daily 'watch' of eBay...I guess after three years, with only about three or four weeks ALL TOTAL off...not necessarily by's hard to 'change'.

But, I am determined to make this summer...the summer of change...and hard as it is necessary.

This experiment for me...was one of the last pieces I sold before we went on 'vacation'.

It is painted on a 9"x 12" canvas sheet, with acrylics and be honest...I was rather surprised that it sold...but I was very explicit in my description...even my pictures...that this was done on a canvas sheet and would have to be matted and framed....still, it sold. I think I might do quite a few of these during my 'vacation' would be a real vacation if I were actually going somewhere and not just trying to working to put more paintings in the gallery and building up a painting 'inventory' for fall.

I am soooo praying that this all pays off.....:{

Sunday, June 17, 2007

A 'working' vacation...

We're taking the summer off of eBay, so that we can have a 'working' vacation.

For one thing...eBay is really least for us...during the summer months. It seems like we spend more money to sell fewer paintings...not good for us.

So, the opportunity came along for us to do some works locally...why not...we're not making a very good living we really can't pass it up. And, we can't do, I'm sure we'll look like we're 'starting over' when we come back in the fall...but, we've got to do what we've got to do!

In the meantime, we are going to keep much as we can anyway...take a few pieces to the gallery and offer the rest of our paintings on our website.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

This is really WHO I am

Someone, whose judgment I 'think' I trust, told me recently..."you're bio is ...'BORING'." So, I reread all of the bios I have out there, all over the place...and she's bio is boring.

"Who cares if you have sold more than 750 original paintings since 2005, or if you have paintings all over the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia and South America?"

She's right AGAIN...

"Tell your collectors about YOU, what makes you think they care how many paintings you've sold, or where they are hanging? I think they'd like to know more about you...who YOU are."

I can't imagine why...but then, I've never really been one to "beat my own drum." Still...I find that I too am much more interested in the personality behind the painting, rather than the 'accomplishments'.
So...I'm rewriting my own bio, to introduce you to ME...rather than what I have done...or not done.

I am self-taught. I grew up in a very small community of 1,000 people. While we did have a public school...we didn't have art classes, girls sports, or a lot of other things most schools offer these days. I 'dabbled' in art, whenever the opportunity presented itself, but I didn't get "serious" until I was confined to bed while carrying my fourth child.

My dear husband, sensing how boring it was to just lie there and look at the same old programs on TV, bought me an art set, some canvas paper and "set me free". I came as close as I could to the paintings on the backs of Reader's Digest magazines. Every member of my family got an original painting for Christmas the following year.

Thirty years have passed and I have been painting ever since.

Now I am alone, my husband (and best friend in the whole world)passed away last year. I paint to survive. It is what keeps me going..not to mention, it is my only income. I'm not old enough for social security..and it will be a while yet!

I do have six children (five of them live close by) and nine grandchildren (again, five live close by.)

They are my sources of inspiration...truly! Most of the paintings I paint are directly inspired by them..and I include subtle references of them in most of my paintings, especially my Tuscan Landscapes.

Check out the number of trees...if you've nothing better to do.

You'll find groupings of two, three and four trees (representative of my grandchildren) in almost every Tuscan Landscape painting that I have painted...before my last grandchild was born...there was one, three and four. You can usually find, six different trees, in most of the same paintings, representative of my children.

Most of the two tree paintings I have painted are representative of the love my husband and I shared for almost thirty five years...and the titles are usually reflective of this.

It has been an extremely difficult two years. This past year, having to try to cope and adjust to life on my own, (it hasn't been pretty.)

The year before, we spent so much time at chemo and radiation centers, (cancer sucks.)

My husband spoiled me to the point that, I don't think I made a dozen pots of coffee total in the course of thirty five years. He always made the coffee and brought me a cup each and every morning when he woke me up.

His very last day at home, even though he could hardly walk on his own...he made coffee and poured me a cup before he woke me up!

I wouldn't be painting today if it weren't for my husband. Not only did he buy my first painting set...he encouraged me for thirty years to make art my just took most of those years to convince me that it was possible.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The third year....

We are into our third full year of online sales of our original art the first year, my husband (and father to several of the other members of the group) was diagnosed with cancer the month of May. Throughout the summer and fall, we had daily chemo and radiation treatments (and a couple of surgeries) to cope with (while keeping our online art business going.)
The second year, my husband passed away on Father's Day. The rest of the summer and fall...who knows what went on...most of us were so grief-stricken that we couldn't tell you what happened from one day to the next...still, we managed to keep our online art business going.
This we approach the one year anniversary of my husband's has been an emotional roller coaster...not just because of our very great loss..but, in trying to know what to expect from our online art business.
I wished I could say we were doing better than what we would sure make everything else we are dealing with, a lot easier....but, perhaps not...