Workshops 2014


I invite you to check out the following link to read about workshops I will present in 2014. Crow Timberframe Barn: Design Boot Camp I and Quilting By the Lake: Line As Language. To read Student Recommendations click HERE.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Artist's Apron Auction A Success

My contribution to the Apron Auction

Last week I posted a picture of myself in an unadorned black artists apron of the type many people wear when working in the studio.  Now you can see how I "enhanced" that time honored article of studio wear for the scholarship auction at Quilting by the Lake.

My theme was  Cinco de Mayo and the apron featured fabric with "south of the boarder" flower and geometric designs, an image of Our Lady of Guadeloupe , two crystal studded skulls, a first place blue ribbon (which I gave myself) and tiny LED flashing lights which don't show here as tiny specks of light.  Oh, I almost forgot, a large paper flower for my hair which the winning bidder also received.

There were 8 instructors during the week and each made an apron.  You can see from the above picture that there were many styles to choose from.  The sale of the 8 aprons collectively brought in over $3,000 which will go toward scholarships for next years event.  This week is the second week of QBL and there will be another auction at the close of the session.

Before the auction each class was invited to the stage to show samples of work done during the week.  My class was Line As Language. These are some of my students who made boards with samples showing the variety ways line can work in compositions.

We worked in both black and white as well as color.  The group was fun, hard working and talented.  Thank you to each of my students for choosing to be with me for the week.


Next Monday I will have another in my series of Artist Profiles and hope you will check back then.

Thank you for spending
time at
Studio 24-7!

I love hearing from you so please feel free to comment!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

My Life As an Apron Artist

What will appear on this apron?

This week I am teaching at Quilting By The Lake sponsored by The Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center.  The event is held at Onondagh Community College in Syracuse, NY.

One of the fun events is a fundraiser where artist's aprons with the QBL logo are "enhanced" by the workshop instructors and auctioned off.  The proceeds are used to provide scholarships for the summer program. The above picture was from a couple of years ago and I have removed the art that had been stitched for that year's auction.  (Thanks photoshop!)  This year's apron is much more complex and on a fun theme from south of the boarder.  Whoever acquires this baby will be the hostess with the mostest at least one day a year when they put on The apron and have some fun.  OK....if any of you heavy hitters are reading please fluff up your check books and come prepared to bid!

Last evening I presented a talk to the entire group of workshop attendees.  The talk was. "Self-Critique".  It was a pleasure sharing some of the thoughts about how artists evaluate their work.  

I'll see you next week with some images from this great event.

Thank you for stopping by
Studio 24-7.
I love hearing from and
Comments are

Monday, July 7, 2014

Oil Sticks, Oil Paint, Cold Wax, Lisa Pressman, Cullowhee Mountain Arts and Western Carolina University

Oil Sticks, Oil Paint, Cold Wax on Paper
a study - TJD

The title of this week's article is the longest I've ever used but each part of the title is important.

Yesterday Tom and I returned from a week of study with Lisa Pressman at Cullowhee Mountain Arts on the campus of Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC.  It was a great experience and each of the elements in the title played their part well to make it such a success.

Tom and I hung all of our work in our home studio so it could dry. 

I had been wanting to study with Lisa for some time.  I love her work in encaustic and in oil and cold wax but most important I had read many very strong statements in support of her as a teacher.  Since Western Carolina is less than a 2 hour drive from my home, this seemed like the perfect time to join her class.

The class, Layered Media: Finding Your Mark in Mixed Media, offered the opportunity to work in oils which I hadn't done since high school as well as oil sticks and cold wax which I had never tried.  The class got off to a fast start and never slowed down.  Everyone in the class worked with great intensity and Lisa was always there to assist as you found your way in this interesting medium.

Lisa Pressman is pictured doing a demo.

The classrooms were large, well lighted and well equipped.  Everyone had a full 4 x 8 table and wall space as well as a double decker rolling cart for supplies.  We had choices of accommodations and we met each morning as a group for breakfast.  Lunch was brought to the art building and was nicely prepared.

Oil Sticks, Oil Paint, Cold Wax on Paper
two studies - TJD

The WCU campus is beautiful and interesting.  It is set on the side of a mountain with beautiful stonework walls and lovely views of the surrounding area.  

Norma Hendricks is the director of the Cullowhee Mountain Arts program and she is working hard to bring top quality teachers to be part of the program.  Due to the small size of the group, we were able to interact with Norma and her assistant Jana as well as all the program participants.  Be sure and check out the offerings for the fall season.

I'd love to be in the studio right now painting but tomorrow I drive to Graham North Carolina to deliver work for my upcoming show Contemporary Textiles at The Alamance County Arts Council Gallery.

I'll be posting more about the show in the coming weeks.

Oil Sticks, Oil Paint, Cold Wax on Paper
two studies - TJD

Thank you for stopping by
Studio 24-7.
I love hearing from you
and appreciate your

Monday, June 16, 2014

The All Important Signature

Today I received a new book , Art & Soul: Notes on Creating by Audrey Flack which got me to thinking that I need to reinstate a page on this blog which features my list of good books for artists.  I had this page a while back but somewhere along the way it disappeared.  While flipping through the pages one title caught my eye.  It reads, Picasso As A Star.  Flack relates the story of how Picasso once signed a napkin on which there was no art, just some doodle, and his signature was therefore more important than the art.  From this act of ego, Flack attributes Picasso with the contemporary role of artist as egomaniac.  I don't argue that but Picasso had a substantial resume of ego acts to his credit.

For those who have taught in high school I feel confident they have seen "The All Important Signature".  This is the large scale sprawling signature which covers the entire lower right hand corner of a drawing or painting.  This is the signature which the student artist has seen on commercial reproductions of some famous or not so famous artists and they have practiced their "soon to be famous" signatures numerous times.  This signature becomes much more important than whatever is underneath and is in no way a good addition to the work.  Thankfully most textile artists sign their work on the back.

I can't wait to read the other tidbits of art lore contained in this little tomb and I will be working on my Reading List page to be published later.


Thanks for stopping by
Studio 24-7
I've been away and will be
away some this summer but
like Arnold S. said
"I'll be back!"

Monday, June 2, 2014

Checklist for Mounting an Exhibition

Most artists begin their careers by entering juried exhibitions but there comes a time that many of us want to step out and do group shows or solo shows that specifically feature our work.  Most often these are shows come as a result of your applying for a show or being invited by a museum/gallery or other art venue to mount an exhibition.  While many of the same things are required for these shows as with a juried show, each requirement is specific to you and your work.  

With all of that in mind I though it might be interesting to just review what is involved in having a solo or small group show.  This turns out to be a substantial list of things but may not be complete.

  • Research - Before you apply for a show you will want to find out as much as you can about the size of the spaces available for showing.  Does the venue offer any financial support to the artists for travel, shipping or other expenses involved with the show.  You will want to know what type of advertising the venue provides.  Does the artist receive invitations to send or does the gallery send from a list provided by the artist?  Will the gallery want a postal mailing address list or an email address list or both?  Does the gallery allow the artist to do any promotion on their own or do they require that they approve any notices you might send?  Does the venue do a reception?  Will you be asked to do a gallery talk?  Will you be expected to install the show or do they install the show or at least have someone there to assist you in this important phase of mounting an exhibition?  Is the work insured while on display?  Does the work have to be for sale?  Does the venue charge a commission on sales and if so what is the commission percentage?  If you sale work during the show when will you be paid?
  • Apply - Applying for a show involves securing the information for what a specific venue requires for a show.  While much of the information will be the same for each venue they may require the use of specific forms.  You will need to write a letter for what you want to propose, send images of your work as requested by the venue along with a list of sizes and mediums of the work you want to exhibit or the type of work you want to exhibit and indicate if there are any special requirements for installation of your work.  
  • Accepting An Invitation -  When you receive an invitation to show the next thing to solidify is the date.  Often times the venue will suggest a specific date but usually there is some flexibility. Many galleries will include a general calendar in the application forms which allows the artist to begin the process indicating times that they can exhibit.  Once you have agreed on a date the gallery should send a contract with all requirements listed for you and what and when they will perform their duties.  This will include when promotion materials including biography, resume, photographs and artist statement.  There will be a date when the work should be delivered and when it should be picked up after the show.  The date for the reception or opening will be listed and any other activities you may have agreed to participate in during the run of the show.  
  • When Will The Contract Arrive - There is no set date that venues send the contracts out.  Some will get them to you immediately and others prefer to wait much closer to the date of the show.  If you are not comfortable with their timeline you will want to contact the person in charge and discuss this point as there is no agreement until the contract is signed by both parties. An email outlining an agreement is not a contract.  I know this from experience.
  • Prepare for Show - You will want to begin preparation for your show well in advance.  Venues will sometimes suggest a number as to how many pieces required for a show as well as send you a layout of the space in which you will be showing.  Some galleries prefer very sparse installations while other may want as much work as can be reasonably installed with the thinking they want to offer their viewers a wealth of pieces to enjoy.  If you are not sure you will want to discuss this with the venue.  If you are making new work for the show you will want to have a timeline for yourself so that the work can be prepared and ready when the time comes.  I often take a few more pieces than I think will actually be installed to allow for choices when the work is installed.  Some galleries and museums will request specific work so you must plan to have that work available.  Pack the work for delivery.  Deliver the work and review the inventory list with the gallery.  You will want to have them sign this inventory and keep a copy yourself.  If there is anything about the work you want to point out this is the time to do it.  This could be anything that might be of concern to them later or to you. (example:  my work requires hanging sleeves and rods.  I always show people how to unpack and store the wrappings, insert the rod and a quick description of how to hang my work and repack my pieces.  Everyone ends up much happier.)
  • Promoting the show - I've already mentioned the issue of mailings but there are other ways you will want to promote your show.  You will want to put it on your blog and website if you have these.  You will want to post notices on social sites such as Facebook, twitter, linked-in and others.  If you do a newsletter you will want to send an invitation to subscribers.  I haven't seen too many people do paid promotion in targeted magazines but I have seen a few people do this.  FiberArt magazine, Surface Design Journal or SAQA Journal would be examples of magazines for textile artists.
  • Reception - Show up for your reception ready to welcome your guests, answer questions, meet new people and enjoy your evening.  If you are doing a Gallery Talk I recommend you prepare for this with notes so that you remember to share with your guests the things about your work that you feel are most important.  Be prepared to answer questions.
  • After the Opening - You will want to return to the show if possible to take photographs of the installation or perhaps some video.  Your friends and admirers who can't attend the show will greatly appreciate this documentation.  Post pictures and videos for others to enjoy.
  • Closing the Show - Arrive on the appointed day to pickup your work.  You may have agreed to  uninstall the show or you may just be collecting the work.  Review the inventory with the person in charge to make sure you have all of your work.  Asked if there was any coverage in local newspapers or magazines.  If so you will want to have copies of this material.  If you sold something be sure and requests the name and contact information for your new collector.  If you are taking the show down yourself leave the space in good order.  
  • Follow Up - Once you have your work at home you may want to review your work especially if you did not repack or uninstall the show.  This allows you to make sure the work is stored in the best possible condition and ready for another day.  Write the gallery and thank them for the opportunity to exhibit your work.  I personally think a hand written note is the way to go but any thank you will be appreciated.
And some people think artists are lazy.  If they only realized what goes into creating wonderful shows for them to enjoy.


Thank you for spending time
at Studio 24-7.
My show: Textile Constructions 2014
continues at the
Upstairs Artspace until June 20th.

I'll be posting information about my next show
very soon.