Still Life with Cat Studio is 1 year old today!

Wow.  What a surprise to see this on my page.  Since I have really only started posting routinely it seems like a much shorter time ago.  Still I’m proud and happy.image


Some great special order pieces to share

Last week I had three special orders come in for big pieces.  I love working with the bigger images.  They are all Italian photos; one from Venice, one from Verona and one from Padua.  I have been experimenting with different paper finishes so it was fun to see how the images would produce.  I know these photos don’t give them justice, but I have to say I love the paper I used!

The first one is called Slices of Nautilus, pieced together using the Layers app by Instagram.  The sidewalks in Verona are largely made of white and pink marble and all of the cathedrals have pink or rose marble floors and stairs.  The marble is sliced so that you can see the fossils embedded inside.  I printed this on metallic Luster paper by Epson.  A new find for me.  Wow do the colors pop and the image is so electric.  The finished piece is 16X20 in the frame.


The next piece is from the Grand Canal in Venice.  Many of the once elegant and colorful doors have begun to rot from the bottom up from exposure to the canal water.  This particular set of doors caught my eye for the beautiful blue and green wood set into a red brick wall.  I used Velvet Luster Paper for this one from Epson.  It has a texture to it that lends a tactile feel to the image.  With natural images and street art the Velvet paper is perfect.  The finished piece is 16X20 framed.


The last one is from Padua in Northern Italy.  This was a Palazzo Archway in the old city center off the central square.  This one is heavily edited on the Prisma app for a water color effect so it would match the customers decor.  I also used the Velvet Luster paper for this one.  It gave a canvas feel to the image so it worked alongside an actual watercolor they wanted to place with it in the same room.  It is also framed to 16X20.


All in all, I feel these projects came out great!  My customers were happy and I am looking forward to doing more special pieces!

New opportunities abound

So I guess I rejection can be handled when you have other great things happening to offset it.  Over the weekend I was notified that my entry in a photo contest  had made the short list of 15 finalists.  Of course if you follow me on any social channels you know this already- but you don’t know how really thrilled I am.  I have followed Conrad and Drew’s blog and Instagram pages for years. I want to be like them when I grow up, funny, educational and making money doing what they love- writing about wine (only I want to write about art photography)!  Anyway, I can’t compete (yet) with some of the famous photographers who are in the contest, but I am holding my own in fourth place.  I am flogging social media for more votes since I believe I have run out of friends to ask.  This is actually teaching me the importance of a bigger social media audience.  Next up I was given a spot at a large annual seafood festival in my county this summer.  It has a huge crowd every year and I’m excited that the curators LOVED my work.  So sour disappointment turns into sweet opportunity at days end.  Look for more about this festival as soon as I am confirmed I will advertise it.

PS- if you haven’t already voted for my photo of Moses, click the link above and go to his photo in the contest blog post.

I just noticed that he is sitting next to all the information we brought back from one of our Australian wine tours- I believe it was our first visit to Melbourne!  That’s priceless!


Suffering from rejection

I was so thrilled to be accepted into a second market in the area where I live.  I had to work for it, at first they said my product didn’t “fit the venue” but I persevered and convinced them to let me have a spot.  I had a good night of sales and everyone was very nice, the market manager checked on me a couple of times to see how I was doing.

So I applied for the next market and got crickets…..  I finally emailed yesterday as the date is drawing closer and was told again that I don’t fit the genre they are going for.  I’m trying to shake it off.  There are many more venues I can apply for and I’m sure there will be others that will not accept me.  There is some thought process out there that photography isn’t handmade.  I’m having a hard time with that as every shot is thought out, every edit is carefully applied, printing takes place right here in my studio and so does the matting and framing.  That all says hand made to me….


Second Market Day @riversideartsmarket

What an improvement it made to change the lay out of my booth!  What I thought was a welcoming, inviting space instead seemed to put people off.  This week I set it up so everything faced the aisle and I had a lot more shoppers, people actually looking at the work and (YAY) purchasing it!  I sold at least three times what I did last week with the other set up.  I also gave out a lot of my brochures to people interested in custom work.  All in all a good day.




I also had the added benefit of a really good dancer performing for tips across from me.  He brought lots of foot traffic to my part of the market. Riverside Arts Market.


I had to tackle the wind problem I talked about last week.  It was not a very nice day, 50 degrees, cloudy and damp.  The breeze coming off the river was brisk.  I had done a lot of research on Amazon about weight bags that you can buy to secure your tent but they were all too heavy for my needs.  It’s great though that you can learn a lot from just reading the comments.  One person talked about using ziplock bags to fill with sand and adding them to the weight bags they had bought to keep it clean and I put that idea together with another suggestion about putting bricks in socks.  I created my own version of ballast bags with sand in ziplock inside socks!  I then zip tied the socks to my easels and they were much more stable!  I can also use them to reinforce the canopy inside my tent on really windy days.


Adobe Stock approved a photo!

I have been batting around the idea of selling stock photos to one of the websites that posts them for advertisers, etc to pick them up and then pays you. I was leery at first; do I have to give up rights? Can I still use the photos?  I research several and then got an offer from Adobe Stock. If you already have Photoshop and maybe even just Lightroom you might be eligible through your Adobe account. It doesn’t pay great, but you keep your rights and can use the photo for other things. You need to have Adobe Creative Suite or Creative Cloud I think to upload to it. It pays the same as a lot of apps, is intuitive to use and fast to approve or deny.

After experimenting a bit with some photos I discovered they must be unedited and of a certain file size. I’m thinking about all the pretty flowers and lucious fruit, etc that I have on file that will not sell matted and framed at shows and thought, why not!!

Here’s my first hit!   Now let’s see if it gets bought!

What I learned my first Market Day

It takes longer to set up than it does to take down.  Price everything!  Wind is NOT my friend!  Booth design is very important to engage market goers.  Don’t drink coffee when your booth is far away from the bathrooms.
It was a beautiful day, 75* but a bit gusty. I brought weights for my tent, but not enough. My matted items on easels were everywhere. The big framed pieces stayed secure.

Traffic was good but so many people just walked past. I set up to create a little store, walk in! See what’s here!  I realized an hour in that’s not what shoppers want to do. They want to walk by and see what you have. If the go in, “they might get noticed, spoken to, trapped).

Next week I’m setting up full frontal!!  Everything out there for the public to see at a glance!

I’m sure I will do better next week.  Better placement, nice matching easels, product priced and better signage.

I’m excited to try again!