Home Is Where The Art Is

If you are an artist, a lover of art then I hope that I can inspire you to do what you love.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Have A Very Merry One!

This will probably be my last blog of 2013. That said I am going to take a minute to talk about the best  and memorable bits of 2013.

This year has had its ups and down as people struggle with the recession but the good thing to come out of it is that people are still visiting the gallery and enjoying the exhibitions that they see. That is still a bonus.

I think I have had the opportunity to work with some of the best artists the South West has to offer and that in turn has meant that I have met even more great artists. This has helped to fill the gallery in 2014. I would like to thank all the people who have exhibited with me this year. It means a lot to me that you chose my gallery to show your work at.

There have been some sad losses this year from our local art scene, Stan Smith sadly passed away. I am hoping that in 2015 I will be able to put on a show of his work. I have mentioned before that he was a real fan of the gallery and supported me by coming to most exhibitions. He will be sadly missed.

We also lost Sir Anthony Caro, he was and should continue to be an inspiration to all of us. He was still a very active artist and never stopped and let his age deter him any way. He and Sheila were other kind supporters of the gallery. I was lucky enough to show both of them this year.

There are others who battling health issues and I hope that they make full recoveries and can back on producing art.

I have been quite moved by the genuine goodwill that has been extended to me this festive season. I apologise now for not sending cards to everyone but as you can imagine I now know so many people because of the gallery I would not know where to start.
I have instead pledged to give money to charity in lieu of cards. I also have given a donation of pet food to Margaret Green Animal Sanctuary. I was asking Shirley about Food Banks locally and apparently you can drop food off at the Salvation Army which be given to people locally in Swanage and Wareham. Take a minute to think about if you can help out in any way.

It's a good time of year to do something selfless.

I hope that whatever you do, you have a great Festive Season! See you at the gallery in the New Year!

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Wishing You All A Really Fantastic Christmas and 2014!

I am sorry to have neglected my blog so completely but the truth it has been so quite on the gallery front that I don't want to have seasonal themed rants about my inability to get properly excited about Christmas.

There is still plenty of time to pop in an see the Purbeck Journal Exhibition. There really are some great things to see.

My Christmas card this year is a visual calendar of what is going to be on exhibit next year. It does follow a chronological order.

A last reminder that it isn't too late to buy a gift voucher for workshops in the New Year. You can get them online from the studio website as well.

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Ups and Downs!

Josh Hollingshead - Orthodox

I set myself a challenge today that I very nearly failed. I know that it is possible to work well under pressure and then there are the obstacles put in your way by other people/cars who are unaware that you are trying to break your own personal best. I made it! I am not going to do that again in a hurry.

It has been an emotional day of definite highs and lows. I have agreed to things that I maybe shouldn't have. I've written difficult emails that I was uncertain about sending. I've needed the moral support of Shirley sat next to me prompting me to be forceful.

Literally straight after that I made a sale, of one of my own pieces. Which was a great result and unexpected. I have to say it was just the thing I needed to happen, you need these encouraging events to help you see the wood for the trees.

I am so Sharon Two Hats that sometimes I lose sight of my own personal creative goals. I have to make sure my business is functioning well but I also must take time to keep producing my own work. My own show was the best selling show of the year. I must be doing something right in that department.

Really good feedback about the current exhibition, I think that the impact of Josh Hollingsheads' pieces are quite the talking piece. The 3D equivalent are Andrew Thomas' sculptures. Polar opposites in terms of just about everything but they both get people talking.

If you haven't seen it then please do try and see it before Christmas I promise that you won't be disappointed.

I have written three blogs that are still in draft format, that should give you some idea of how busy I have been.

Just a reminder that I do have gift vouchers for sale should you want to get someone the gift of learning something new in 2014. You know where to find me.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Busy Gallery = Happy Sharon

Thursday is a teaching day so as ever I am going to have to keep it brief. I am pleased to say that the gallery has been nicely busy today. Of course it isn't without irony. The one day I have to teach is the day that everybody comes in to see the exhibition.
Oh well, I really am not complaining.

I remember when my blog used to spell check me. Apparently it is not quite so keen these days.
Yesterday, I spoke about the importance of good framing well I haven't got time for a missive today.

What I will say is that there are some really good artists books available for sale at the gallery. They are all signed and they would make someone a fantastic present.
I also want to remind you that next year I will be selling a selection of books published by various artist/authors.

I have got a busy time ahead as I get ready for the big refurb whilst I'm closed. The sad thing is that most of what I will do will go unnoticed as it is largely behind the scenes and the walls are always white. But after January they will never be as smooth again until next January.

I have to obviously plug this current exhibition again. It is full of local artists producing works that are of a really high standard. Do pop in and see it.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Putting You In The Picture (Frame)

Andrew Thomas - 'Rehanna' featured in the Purbeck Journal Exhibition

Whilst I wait for my latest experiment to dry I might as well put my time to good use. Over the last year I have tried to give artists helpful hints about a whole manner of things. I think I have been mostly coming at it from a gallery owners point of view to help artists avoid the pitfalls.

I covered Artists Statements, Portfolio Structure, Presentation, Framing, How to Approach a Gallery. I am pleased to report that they all received great feedback and were in fact useful.

I have a few more to bring up today just to get them off my chest really.

Presentation, just because you are an artist/photographer this doesn't automatically mean that you know the best way to display/exhibit your work. There is a ton of free advice out there. Use it! Get second opinions maybe even third opinions. Don't be fooled into thinking that you should adopt one style and stick to it forever.

A uniform approach can be achieved purely by selecting the same colour frames. But mounting seems to be an issue that throws a curve ball. Window mounts with several colours? No, do not do it! A colour that is anything other than neutral. Don't do it! It's all about the work not the mount. There are a plethora of neutral tones in most imaages. If you are mounting a body of work look for the one that ties all the images together.

People want work that will sit comfortably in their lounge or hall. A white window mount can very effectively draw the viewer in.

A really important tip is ensure your framer strings your work correctly. I have had several works at the gallery so loosely strung that the string is visible at the top of the frame when the image is hung. Or strung upside down. This really won't do. Get them to wrap your work when you have checked it out not before. Once you have paid and left the shop there is very little you can do about any mistakes.

If money is an issue and you can't afford to have work framed, do your homework look for the best that you can afford. This won't necessarily be found in the first shop that you visit.

Ok that's all I have to say, but if anyone wanted some advice about framing I am more than happy to provide it. Especially if you are planning to show with me.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Purbeck Journal Exhibition Is Now On! Come and Take A Look!

Forgive me readers it has been a few days since my last blogfession. It has been a whirl of activity and I am just catching up with myself. I am not going to into details but suffice to say that it has all worked out ok in the end.
Josh Hollingshead - Forest Fire
I can sit back now and breathe a sigh of relief as this is officially my last show of the year. No more hanging, fretting at PVs. I can just chill out and enjoy the run up to Christmas.
I have got plenty of work that I can be getting on with behind the scenes. There always is there is no such thing as a ay where I have nothing to do.

So let me tell you about this exhibition. I am showing Josh Hollingshead's new painting 'Forest Fire'. It is the first time that it has been seen in public. You should definitely come and take a look.
I have included a picture but the actual image is taller than me so you need to see it in the flesh. I have 6 stunning sculptures by Andrew Thomas, and some beautiful ceramics by Ian Harris and Eliza Simpson.

I have signed books by local authors, and even jam. There really is a great mix of stuff on show. Some perfect ideas for affordable Christmas presents, as well as some really good art on show, some of it is slightly less affordable. Depends how full your pockets are really. If lint was legal tender then I am very wealthy.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

I Ask Myself The Same Thing Daily!

This is a screen shot from my phone of an email that I actually received. I wish I knew the answer but the truth is we are in a recession and as much as people love the work exhibited they need to keep hold of their cash.

Another truth, is that Joe Wheatley whoever the hell he is doesn't have an answer either. Why pose the question Joe.? His solution to my struggle is that I should purchase computer equipment from his company.
How wrong can a person be? As I do not in fact need any computer equipment surely that means that I would be spending money I don't have on something I don't need. I might be wrong but I think that this might in fact have the reverse effect and make my struggle worse. 

He could ease my struggle by coming to the gallery and purchasing a job lot of art from me, thus making his life more colourful and my bank account less colourful and get back to the monochromatic tones that I have only the dimmest of memories of.

Ho Hum!

On a much more positive note, the Purbeck Journal Exhibition is up and I have to say I am really pleased with it. There were a few hairy moments. I think if you get work framed for an exhibition you should pay the framer until it is hung in the gallery/exhibition. If I didn't have Chris at Sansom over the road, goodness only knows how I would survive hanging exhibitions.

Strung too loose, not strung at all, strung too high, strung upside down, cheap string that stays as taught as a rubber band. I am not joking, I wish I was. It all adds to my already greying hair.

If you fancy a look at this show and a nice warming glass of mulled wine and a mince pie then join us on Saturday evening at 6.00. I hope to see you there!

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Out With The Old And In With The New!

One ends and now without a pause in between I have to get prepared for the next one. I have got rather a lot of work to do as there are over 100 holes to fill, sand and paint before I can get started on the hang. I do like to make things easy for myself.

I have to say that I will pleased to be closed for a while over the festive season that is. It does get a bit hectic when you are doing everything.

I hope that you have been taking full advantage of all the arts and crafts events that have been happening locally. There have been at least two every weekend. 

I will have lots of interesting stuff for you to see at the weekend, also there will be mince pies and mulled wine. 

I have just realised that there was supposed to be some deliveries today but they don't seem to have materialised yet.

I hope that they turn up soon as I don't want to hang around for too long this evening.