Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Happy Holidays! What is coming up on the blog

Merry Christmas Everyone! What is coming up in 2015

No blog post this Friday Dec. 26 or Jan. 2. Taking some time off to cook, have fun with the family and maybe paint a bit :-)

• I have another giveaway! Watch for it in January - This is so much fun for me! YAY! I dig free stuff :-)

• Join me in listening to the Thriving Artists Summit - It is FREE and I caught several speakers last year and really enjoyed it http://thrivingartistsummit.com/iloveart

• Photos showing some steps in a new collection of mine - based on visits, you all seem to like these posts :-)

• More artist spotlights already scheduled since this has been very popular!

• I will be rounding up a couple of patterns to giveaway in 2015 too :-)

If you want to be the first to hear about giveaways, be sure to sign up for my newsletter! (BIG purple square on the top right-hand side of this page with the cute ladybug :-) Do you have something you would like to giveaway? Please contact me and let's have some fun! anntroe@cox.net

THANK YOU! This blog doesn't happen without all of you! I really appreciate all the visits, comments, social shares, followers, suggestions - Let's make this a great 2015!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Artist Spotlight - Anna Ramsay

Hope you enjoy Anna's patterns and colors as much as I do!

Tell us a bit about yourself: Did you go to school for art? Are you self taught?
I have been running my own business, designing and illustrating since 2007. I recently started building my licensing portfolio and hope to work with more companies in the paper,  home decor and fabric industries.

I initially went to art school to become a painter but after being there a year my practical nature steered me to new paths where I eventually discovered and studied graphic design. Once working in the field I was introduced to illustration and started drawing again. Pattern and colour are two things that have always tugged at my heart. I love bright and bold but I also love intricate and interesting.

Do you work in just one medium? Several?
My background gives the ability to combine traditional and digital techniques. I love to experiment with new mediums and bounce back and forth between them. The medium I use most is ink, as it vectorizes well, and I spent some time this last year working on a series in guache paint called 'Back Yard Birding'.

What inspires you / where do you get inspiration from?
My interests in nature, gardening, history and craft tend to inspire my work the most, along with people watching and books - I listen to a lot of audio books while I work.

What are you working on now?
I am very excited to be collaborating with my husband on a line of ceramics that we will be launching in the new year. He designs and creates the forms and I create and apply the surface designs. The work can be found at www.ramsayceramics.ca

Are you an early riser? or night owl?

It depends on the projects I am working on! But I am mostly up with the sun.

What is your favorite food?
Anything we grew in our garden!

You can find Anna:

THANK YOU for stopping by my blog!
Do you want to be spotlighted? Send me an email: anntroe@cox.net
Make my day and follow this blog :-D

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Thriving Artist Summit

Click on image to view larger.

Hi Everyone - quick post in case you didn't see this FREE summit for growing your art business. Here is the link and you can check out the speakers: http://thrivingartistsummit.com/iloveart
I caught some of the speakers last year and really enjoyed it. I signed up so see what it is all about this year :-) Le me know if you do an we can compare notes.
Thanks for stopping by the blog!

Friday, December 12, 2014

When is it Best to be Yourself?

A peak into what has been coming my way lately

Happy Friday Creative Peeps! I have found myself saying lately to my (adult) kids and a couple of artists I chat with, "just be yourself".

Don't think that just cuz I am writing about this I have 'being myself' mastered. I certainly worried about it when I was younger! (I am 51 this Saturday - YAY!). — Thoughts like: Will they like me, will they like what I created... You know what, maybe not, but that is Okay! Here is why I think being yourself is the BEST way to go:

• Who you are is going to eventually leak out anyway. You want to be yourself so that you can team up with people/clients/etc. that are a good fit for you! If you are not yourself, the odds go way up of the relationship/business deal/etc. not working out.

• Dang, it is just easier to be yourself! - I think you get trying to be someone or something your not takes a WHOLE lot more energy.

• If you like who you are (and the art you create). So will plenty of other people! You just can't be the only person on the planet who likes the things you do.

Now, I am NOT saying to be inflexible. If you are creating art to sell (in a gallery, on a product...). The person selling/buying the art knows what they want (and what is selling for them). As the relationship builds - they will be open to your ideas. Give it time and let trust develop. Put yourself in their shoes. You both want to make money off of your art :-)

Question: do you like this "Ask Ann Landers" kind of post? I like being reminded of things now an then, especially when I am worried/over thinking things.

Now go be your creative fabulous self!

Looking forward to all your comments! Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Artist Spotlight - Joy Hall

Be sure to click on Joy's images to see them larger - there are wonderful subtle textures!

Tell us a bit about yourself: Did you go to school for art? Are you self taught?
First of all, I want to thank Ann for inviting me to do this interview.

Like so many others, my first love was art. A coloring book and crayons were never far from my hands. Even though I had this early love for art, I can’t say that art loved me. At least not art teachers. So, by college, I shifted my focus and received a B.S. in Business. Upon graduation, I landed a job with Xerox Corporation. No longer having to worry about a career path, I slowly allowed art to come back into my life. I found myself volunteering for various art related projects. I was returning to my first love.

It wasn’t until marriage and a cross-country move that I got the opportunity to go to art school. I enrolled at the Art Institute of Atlanta, and totally loved it! I knew I was where I should be. I began to freelance in graphic design. Somewhere along the way, I began to study the art in calendars and on greeting cards and decided this was for me.

At that time, it was very hard to get into art licensing. The Artist’s Market book was about the only way to find contacts. I would make copies of my art, pack them up and send to the different companies listed in the book. And then wait….. and wait…. and wait. And sometimes, never hear back.

Little by little, the art licensing world started to open up and so did the internet. I think my first contract was with Ceaco for puzzles followed by scrapbooking, quilting fabrics, greeting cards, calendars, tableware, garden flags and all sorts of fun things.

What inspires you / where do you get inspiration from?
Nature, movies, interesting color palettes, fashion…..

Do you work in just one medium? Several?
Even though I was traditionally trained, I have worked digitally for the past 8 years. However, I’m beginning to return to watercolor after taking a botanical illustration/watercolor class at Longwood Gardens. Now I can have the best of both worlds!

What are you working on now?
At this time I have several projects on the table including new art creation. The Atlanta International Gift show happens in January and my agents need fresh art to share with the manufacturers that have showrooms.

In between projects, I LOVE to work on my blog. I think you can learn so much more about someone on their blog than you can on a Facebook page (which I also have). It’s like visiting someone’s home, instead of a quick greeting on the street.

Anything else you want to tell everyone?
If you have dreams of licensing your art, you need to develop a thick skin. Be ready to make changes to your art that you don’t necessarily agree with. The manufacturer knows their customer and has learned that your chosen shade of red won’t sell.

Also, take advantage of information available online today. Blogs such as this one are such a gift to the aspiring licensing artist.

Are you an early riser? or night owl?
Definitely an early riser. My creative brain is fresh and at it’s best before daylight.

What is your favorite food?
I don’t think I have a favorite food, but I do have a favorite drink…. coffee!! I’m not sure if it’s the taste as much as it is the ritual. To me it says “morning… the start of a day filled with opportunity!”

I seldom use a coffee maker, but prefer hand crafted coffee using either a French Press or a poor-over (Chemex) style system.

You can find Joy / see more of her art:



THANK YOU for stopping by my blog!
Do you want to be spotlighted? Send me an email: anntroe@cox.net
Make my day and follow this blog :-D
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