Belinda Lindhardt

Friday, December 28, 2007

Plan your wins for 2008

Following on from my post yesterday 2007 Highlights and Accomplishments, here are some of my plans for 2008.

Firstly let me start with a prelude to my 2008 plan. Up until this point in my life I have pretty much left most things to chance and have always assumed that things would come my way eventually.
I have believed that if you are a good person that good things will come your way, events of this past year personally and art wise have shown me that this is true but I really HAVE to plan my life from this point onwards. I am getting older, my family life and time is getting shorter and more complicated (as the kids get older) and I have to speak up and chase after what I want or i will be left behind!

In saying that though I also recognise that I have to careful that I do not overplan and put such high expectations on myself and my family that I / we forget to just go with the wind sometimes and HAVE FUN. The past few years I have been all about just getting through the day / week / this or that job or project and not HAVING FUN along the way and that is not healthy and no way to live.

So, my ultimate goal for 2008 and is to more proactive in life but also to ensure that I always enjoy and make time for the positive things this applys to my art as well as my personal and family life.

My ULTIMATE art goal for this year is to by the end of the year to be supporting myself and my family with my art so that I can be a stay at home artist mum. In the first quarter of the year I hope to be earning / selling enough so as to be earning some type of income. I.e. At least selling something!!! Otherwise my hubby is sending me off to get a job :(

Some of the actions I am going to take to achieve my goals are this:

- Enter Competitions and Exhibitions - basically to get myself out there!
I already have taken steps towards this and researched some local options. I am currently preparing entries and paperwork for a few local competitions which are commencing for the new year. One of my goals is to continue doing this throughout the year at every opportunity.

- Continue and improve posts on my blog
My blog is such a valuable tool, I have plans for a bit of an design update soon. I have also realised that I really do need to put a bit more effort in effective titles and regular tweaks for my blog and squidoo if i am going to utilise them effectively. I am going to schedule on the calendar a review once a month at least.

- Website
I also have plans for a website design update, as well as some backend updates hopefully soon (as soon as hubby can do it for me). I will be adding modules for tracking and consignment of artwork( it will help me keep control of things when I start getting busier). I am also going to also change my gallery etc to be a bit more inline with my original idea for the site and hopefully I will also be adding comments and integrating more selling on the pages as well as a media release area.

- Making the most of self promotion and selling opportunities
I really haven't yet pursued my local avenues much at all. Specifically - I have the form for the local art society which I will send off in the next few days, I will also in the new year upgrade my listings on another online art directory I am getting lots of traffic from my other listing on artsconnect so this i think is a valuable tool :) I will also put together some type of marketing materials / flyers in the new year. I have tried Ebay a few times but I am always scared of calculating shipping but I think I might try again with some of my smaller works and have a "shop" and/Or I will add paypal options to my website to try to sell more.

- Greeting Cards
My greeting cards were a big success in 2007, I don’t make any money off them but they are good opportunity for self promotion I am going to do some more for calendar events such as mothers day etc. So these will continue in 2008

- Classes
For both my own mental stability and for my art progression I hope to regularly attend life drawing classes in the new year. Or sometype of workshop on a regular basis. Ideally i would like a group i can join regularlly with hopefully this will eventuate throughout the year.

- Mailing List
This is something I need to start to build on and pay some attention to.

I am hoping as I start to have a bit income behind me I can afford to do things like become a member of the CPA, i hope that an australian option opens up for this at sometime in the future but responses on my squidoo and other forums indicate that there isnt a huge number of Australian CP artists.

- Directory
I am thinking of perhaps starting a local directory of artists, suppliers, galleries etc as I find it difficult to find out information in my area. Any information that I can find out is outdated and poorly managed. So this might be a project I do hopefully generating other work / income.

On the art side

Improve studio habits
I am wasting money on not storing materials properly (papers are getting creased not washing brushes properly), keeping inventory correctly and not utilising the stock I already have ( I have a lot of papers etc I should use this up first) so I will endeavor to change this habit in the new year.

For my CP work I think I can describe my style as realism, but I would like the pieces to tell more of a story and have a bit more emotion for this year and perhaps less realism. The problem I am having with the CP pieces (as well as every other CP artist in the world) is that everyone thinks they are fabulous but the time it takes to create them is way out of most people's price range and I am selling myself short. Prints are good but cost me a lot of money upfront especially if I get them shipped. Also the framing of them adds to the overall cost of the pieces so in the end I barely would cover materials, so I hope to do some more "quicker" and loser pieces in this medium this year and save the big time consuming pieces for an exhibition or a particular special piece.

For my paintings I need to cement my style a bit more, its emerging with my recent pieces but i need to develop it a little further. I am really getting into the thick paint with a contrast of smoother backgrounds. I am really enjoying the contemporary and abstract pieces I have been doing and from talking with other artists this is more what people are interested in buying anyway. I am hoping that this might be where I generate some income in 2008.
In saying all of that though, I really need to do more of them. I need to have a lot more works available.

Make sketching a daily habit
This is going to be a tough one for me as two small kids makes for busy days but I am going to make a big effort to do this as I know it has a great deal of value and merit.

Illustration - IF
I really do enjoy illustration, my design background helps me with "client" related issues, but i do actually enjoy being given a brief. I think if I can sketch everyday this will improve my confidence and ability and hopefully I can generate a bit more work / style with this avenue. At the least it allows for totally freedom and a bit of fun.

So yes there is a lot there !!! And I can hear you saying these are all well and good intentions but will it happen? YES ! It HAS to.... or at least most of them will .... going back to what I started with at the beginning of this post I realise that I can no longer afford to leave my life to chance and this year I am going to be more organised all round.
To MAKE SURE I bought the 2008 Scribbletalk calendar and shortly I will be scheduling things on the calendar on a weekly and monthly basis to remind me to do these things. It will be displayed on my pantry door so I have to look at it everyday this is hopefully going to be my kick in the bum when lazy Belinda ventures back into my life and she will come back at some point i know she will but she can only hang around for a little while then she has to move out!!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

2007 Highlights and Accomplishments

This year is finally coming to an end, i gotta tell you I am really looking forward to a fresh new start for next year! Bring it on!
I have already re-organised and de-cluttered the office, taken down old bits of paper etc on my cork board, I am dying to get onto all those Christmas decorations and get them down and I have sat down worked out some goals for 2008. Woot!
But before I move onto those I am taking inspiration from the ArtBizBlog and acknowledging just what I did achieve this year in 2007.

Ok, I admit it, I was pretty lazy in my goal for 2007, it was pretty much just to make art a regular part of my life and one specific goal was to make my artwork "simpler" i.e. not as cumbersome and detailed. These broad goals I did achieve (yay to me) and here are some other accomplishments I completed during the year.

  • Progressed to using different mediums and techniques (moved to oils for painting and neocolours for cp artworks making the whole process quicker)
  • Progressed to honing in on my own "style" probably this was already established with my CP works but for my paintings I think now I am grounding my style and techniques
  • Got myself "out there" I entered my first exhibition and exhibited at markets. I printed off multiple greeting cards which I sold. I also was featured in FMP - ann Kullberg's magazine for CP artists for my "Pear" artwork. Contacted other magazines for articles which I am working on now hopefully to feature in the new year.
  • Took every opportunity to go to art galleries and exhibitions where it fitted in with other commitments, talked to other artists and spent some time there.
  • Took an ALL day life drawing workshop, which i loved
  • Sketched (not as much as I would have liked but more often than I did previously)
  • Got my website up and running
  • Regularly posted on my blog
  • Created with some other artists friends the Fine Art Friends which is private blog of artists who are there to support each other in their art.
It's funny as I started to write this list I thought, I haven't done that much and couldn't think of anything but as I thought back all these things started popping into my head, I actually didn't do too badly this year at all.

As for my goals for next year, they will come tomorrow! :)

More Bubbles - Coloured Pencil on Drafting film

Another update on the Bubbles pic, please excuse the bits of electric eraser which i forgot to wipe off when i took the photograph (i cant believe i didn't see that). My drafting film is actually starting to look a bit crinkled, and having just bought a new supply of drafting film the other day i realized that what i am working on for this pic isn't the same quality. :( So i am not too happy i am on too short a deadline to turn back now so i just have to make do with what i have, this piece is for my personal collection and exhibition anyway so it should be ok.
I still haven't made up my mind on the background i think i might just leave that off for a bit and make my decision later.

Meanwhile, i thought i would share with you the latest art attempts of my two little monkeys. Santa bought them some bath crayons for christmas which seems to make bath time actually a bit more messy but oh so much fun. Checkout the fabulous drawings they have come up with! My oldest boy's drawing is of a whale while my youngest was just happy to draw and say "Taada!" when he was finished.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Allan's Tree

"allan's tree" By Belinda Lindhardt,
oils on gallery wrapped canvas 91.4cm X 91.4cm, 36" X 36"

Well, Christmas in our house if officially over and done with, mind you we still have a fridge full of food to show for it. I didn't go all out this year over Christmas and i didn't obsess about it like i have the other years and it was great. I felt like i hadn't prepared much and felt bad about not sending so many Christmas cards etc but at the same time i gave myself the small luxury of not having to worry about it all which was a relief.

Nows its over and done with and presents are delivered i can now show you the present i made for my brother. He moved to a new apartment this year and needed something for his walls :)

So here is his Christmas present i think he liked it ;)

I am also going to put this one in for IF seeing as the topic for this week is "Horizon" i figured it would be very appropriate.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

More bubbles

Here is another bubbles update. So now i am in a bit of a dilemma, i was experimenting with making some of the bubbles quite dark and vibrant but obviously this means that the background has to be dark at least... so i am in a bit of a dilemma as i was hoping not to put a background in... with no background these bubbles looked like marbles ...

so its either background or make the bubbles lighter ... hmmmmmm

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Bubbles Update

Here is another update for my bubbles. :) Its coming along we have had a flea infestation in my house (yay us) so i have been preoccupied with spraying and wot not in order to get rid of them. at the moment they are winning :(

anywho i really need to get cracking on this *crack the whip*

Friday, December 14, 2007

Bubbles Update

I am managing to get a bit more done on this one today. I have really forced myself to do it to be honest :) I am really feeling blurgh ... and just not that creative.. but isnt what this whole art business thing is all about .. pushing through it even when you dont feel like it !!! :)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Bubbles Take 2

"Bubbles" WIP - By Belinda Lindhardt CP on drafting film A3 42X29.7cm

So here i am again,

I think i mentioned in a previous post that my bubbles pic had hit the trash can :)
The main reason for this was the skin texture i just couldn't get a smooth clean feel to it i think the main reason for that was the black stonehenge, i think if i didn't have to have as many layers to get the colour i wanted it would have been right. (so next time try a different coloured paper)
Anyway, so here i go again, and here is my second attempt of this one this time on drafting film. Its going much better so far i haven't done any colour on the back so once i do that i think i will get it really to pop... i just want to cover all of the area first before i start on that :) Again i dont think i will do the background but on the i am not confident on how it will look if i leave it. I have an idea for covering most of the area, i will just have to see how that pans out.

Anyway, this pic has a deadline so as you can see i am churning through it and i have to finish this it in the next few weeks - why well i would tell you but its top secret ! :)

Fields Finished

"Summer Fields" by Belinda Lindhardt - Oils on gallery wrapped canvas 60.5 X 30.5 cm

These fields i think are now finished :)

I really really like how these ones turned out ... it looks great on my wall .. even tho they are not hanging evenly :)... its bright and cheery. I was going to add a kite on there but i think i will just leave them as they are ... :) I really like this style as well .. this is something that has evolved for me and i really enjoy it :) hopefully i can get a better pic to you soon. These will be for sale from my website not sure how i would ship them though so i think it will just be local sales for now.

More stuff to come :) I have been working on a present today for someone so i cant post anything on that just yet it in case they see ... :) ... but will post more from that soon :)

Friday, December 07, 2007

Fields Update Wip

I finally managed to get some art in today :) woot !

So i worked against myself on this one and got it to this :) I always like to do a contrast between elements with both smooth flowing textures and rough / very tactile areas. This hardly ever happens for me tho as it seems i work against myself. But once i progress through it .. it just seems to evolve and i forced myself to do it this time :)

Still not finished as yet .. i cant quite get the colours etc right as its still very wet and i had to crop it a fair bit as they dont hang straight on my wall .. better pic to follow i promise :)

Thursday, December 06, 2007

EDM 15 - Draw a tree or trees, leaves or branches

Every day Matters - 15 - Draw a tree or trees, leaves or branches

I have been a member of the Everday Matters group for sometime now, its been on my list of "i gotta do that", but keeps getting postponed and i just keep lurking. I have been super busy and haven't had much time lately for the actual drawing or painting of anything as things keep getting in the way and i have been concentrating on the business side of things, but i know that i really have to keep at it as i start to lose my eye, so i have been spending at least 10-15mins everyday sketching something mainly its been the boys and they never sit still so the sketches just look like weird aliens. I am putting it on my list as something i have to do just like brushing my teeth or taking a shower and i have been doing it for a few days this week and can see the benefits already. I have to keep telling myself the key is just to use that part of your brain don't worry about what it is your sketching or the outcome. The everyday matters group is a group that helps you to do that if you get stuck, their list of items to sketch is so long and i get inspired by reading it.

Last night i attempted to sketch my cute little swirly pots which actually have these really wonderful little plants in them with motttely leaves. The pots were a disaster but i decided to take the leaves further and had a wonderful little time with it. I used dots for the majority of the leaves and switched to lines for the last leaf i actually really like the lined leaf i think it has more character. I found this really small 005 pen, i love it .. have to get me some more of those :)

So here is my first entry for the EDM group and one of many more sketches of the day :)

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

ScribbleTalk 2008 Calendar

For those of you who dont know of it ScribbleTalk is a online community forum primarily for those artists who are using coloured pencils. I have been a member since it began and gotten to know alot of the members over the years even tho we are all a world apart. Some of the members' work are those to which i can attribute my initial first love of coloured pencils and all the artists there are my constant ongoing support and inspiration.

Last year my work featured in the Scribbletalk 2007 calendar which was by submission, but this year they decided to take it another level and got members to vote on submitted work as to which artworks made it onto this year's calendar. I am very pleased to announce that my Horse's Eye has been chosen to appear on the month of May.
I feel very honored that my piece was voted to be amongst such a fabulous group of artworks and I have to say that i have thoroughly enjoyed my 2007 calendar it has been wonderful to look at everyday, so i am definately purchasing this one for myself this year.

If you would like a calendar for yourself can buy your scribbletalk 2008 calendar from cafepress here.
My only gripe is that i cant buy one for all my family and friends, believe me i would if i could.

Working Update - Small Fields

Things have been busy around here, we have had work and family staying and Christmas preparations and events etc all sorts of things going on. I keep trying to hide away and hope that Christmas passes us by but i know thats not going to happen. I am excited about it all , but we just have so much stuff going on its hard to concentrate on something that is still a few weeks away when i have so much to do now. Oh well never mind i guess what ever happens happens i am going to try to have Christmas with at less stress and worry as possible and just try to have simple things without all the concern and worry. The boys are the most important thing and as long as they get to open a present or two and have their parents around them i think that is all that really matters.

On the art side i have lots of business to take care of, i have these fields paintings (the above is just a miniature small one) plus my tree painting, plus a portrait plus i have some promotional things going on which i am excited about but i wont post about those until its more solid and i actually do the work for it. Slot all of this in with other design work and Christmas an somedays it feels like a bit much.

I have noted of late i spend alot of my time playing catchup just to keep up with all the things i have to do, and my list keeps growing and growing once one thing is done another has taken its place so i feel like i never achieve anything. I have also noted that as i have so many things going on i rarely give myself the fun time with the family and the boys and that is what life is all about it cant be all work and chores (tho it often is with young children). So i have decided next year my weeks are going to be split up so that i ensure that i have a few fun activities and specials times for them during the week which are just as if not more important than all the other stuff. I am also going to do that for the family as well so that we have some special fun times where we don't have chores or work to do and just enjoy life a bit more. Anyway like i said we will get there in the end its just something i have been thinking of lately i really have to pay more attention to.

On Friday i had the chance to have a quick swing by visit of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney. I got to have a brief look at the current exhibition there which is of the artist Shahzia Skiander. The work i did see was amazing. I cant see any of the smaller pieces which i saw on any websites but i saw some fabulous miniature works and some works with such detail i could have been there for hours (i only got there close to closing time). Anyway if your a sydney sider i definately reccommend popping in there for a visit its well worth it :)

Oh and just so you know i wrecked my bubble pic :( i couldnt get the skin tones smooth and bright enough for my liking so as a consequence i have to start again. I tried a few experiments on pastelboard but i think that for this type of work i really want it all to be smooth. So i am going to try it again with the smoothest surface i know, Drafting film !! Let see how i go :) the only problem will be that then i have to put a background on it which i was trying to avoid .... hmmmmmm