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Monthly Archives: February 2011
My Tweet Story:
How I Got Two Friends Featured In Southwest Art Magazine
Last year I joined Twitter after learning more about it during an art marketing workshop put on by The Art Engine. The basic strategy I was given was to follow those that you want to follow you.
So I joined and started following Southwest Art Magazine and it’s Associate Editor Courtney Carpenter because my art has a bit of a Southwest feel to it. A few weeks after I signed up I saw a tweet by SouthwestArt that said: We’re looking for figurative artists….any ideas? So, I replied: @SouthwestArt check out www.juliesnyder.com and www.kellyreemtsen.com both wonderful in different ways.
A few days later she sent me a message asking: @AthenaMantle Hey, do you have any idea where Kelly lives? Her work is so different and fun! Thanks for your suggestions! So I replied: @SouthwestArt Kelly lives in Los Angeles. and started thinking…this could really lead to something! I sent my friend Kelly (who’s not on Twitter) an email saying: Hey, if you get a call from Southwest Art Magazine asking for an interview or something you have me to thank!! A week or so later I saw a post by Julie that said: I’m stoked! Just got interviewed by Southwest Art – January issue. Thanks @SouthwestArt Now, I got to thinking….did I do that? I didn’t know Julie that well at this point so I tweeted Courtney and made sure to include Julie:@courtney_swa @ArtyJulieSnyder Courney, did you pick Julie for the mag because of the recommendation I sent you on the figure artists? and she said:@AthenaMantle Yes I did!! I actually am including Kelly too—I just haven’t gotten ahold of her yet. We’ve been playing phone tag! Now, I knew that I had just gotten my two friends into a national art magazine, wow…I was just beside myself!
Now you tell me that Twitter is a waste of time! I think not! Here is a scan of Kelly’s feature in the magazine that was published in the January issue. Julie’s is coming out in March. I have to say I felt pretty good about my good deeds!
My Turn, Making Twitter Work For Me
Keeping a keen eye on my tweet thread, I saw a post looking for artists to feature in a gallery with only a phone number listed. I called, set up a meeting and landed myself a solo show. Not too shabby for a few weeks on Twitter!
Anyone else have any Twitter stories? Follow me @AthenaMantle…tweet you later!
An Extra-Ordinary Street
The Lake Avenue street median in Pasadena has been catching my attention ever since they landscaped it with some really unusual curly agave and a large variety of other agave and succulents. I secretly scheme in my mind ways to go steal pups from the plants in the middle of the night. It’s become a joke between my husband and I because every time we drive down that street I point them out as if he had never seen them before. He turned it around on me and started pointing them out to me, “Hey, did you see THOSE?” he’d say. It gave me a good chuckle. The truth is I could sit on that street and stare at the plants for days and be perfectly happy. I find something new to admire each time I pass by, they are just mesmerizing!
I had my camera with me one day and took some photos. For some reason I didn’t paint them right away as you might expect. Maybe I had too much built up in my mind about what great agave paintings they would make or maybe I just hadn’t formulated how the heck I was going to pull it off. Who knows my motivations…certainly not me! I didn’t photograph my favorite curly agave because the late afternoon light was blocked by the office buildings. Oh darn, I’ll just have to go back and look at them some more. But these beauties caught my eye so I snapped a few shots. I started the drawings for these weeks ago and today I went for it with the paint! I am doing a diptych (or a series of two) so I painted them simultaneously.
Here are some in progress photos…
I’d love to know what you think.
This past weekend I took a painting workshop with Frank Serrano, an Artist Member of the California Art Club, to learn urban plein air painting. I have been primarily working from photographs in my recent work, figure drawing is all I’ve really done working from life. I’ve painted outside a few times but never with any instruction. This was a great experience! Here are some photos of what I did on Saturday…
The pictures on the left show my reference and on the right are the paintings I did. Frank demonstrated before each new subject and explained his process. After the demo we were let loose to find our spots and whip out the paint. You can see in the first photo that I have 2 artists painting a different view sitting right in the middle of my painting. Thank goodness he told us we could leave stuff out!
In the early part of the day the light changed so much that you really had to nail down where your light and shadows were going to be so you didn’t keep changing things. By the time we left the first location it was 1pm and time for lunch. We moved to our next location in a more industrial section of Burbank. Frank really knows some interesting spots. I have to say I preferred the gritty industrial section of Burbank to the horse alley we started with. I love the little field studies I did that day, I didn’t have a chance to finish them as we ran out of light but I did learn a lot that day.
The main lessons I came away with were…
- Stay loose – don’t worry so much about the small stuff.
- Pick you focus and gray the other areas down.
- I’m the artist…if the picture is better with something left out or changed, do it!
If you can think of anything I missed or have any feedback, leave a comment I’d love to know what you think.
After just one day I knew I would have a different approach to photographs so I’m testing out my new skills…stay tuned!