Sunday, June 21, 2009

Artomat WIP* #1 - The Base Coat

My Artomat blocks came in the mail this week, and I've been so excited about getting started on them. I thought I'd show the blocks as they progress.

Here's step one: 50 plain wood blocks that need 2 coats of gesso before I can paint on them. The gesso gives them a smooth, bright white surface that I like for painting. It takes 2 thin coats to cover the blocks evenly.

I'm using a 6-inch wide putty knife to apply the gesso. A brush makes, well, brushstrokes in the gesso that I don't want. The putty knife keeps the surface nice and smooth.

It only took about an hour to cover all the blocks once. I'll let them dry overnight and apply a second coat.

For my prototypes, I left the sides unpainted. I'm not sure if I'll do that for the finals or if I'll paint the sides. Depends on how messy I get while painting, probably.

6/22 followup: The first coat of gesso dried so quickly that I put the second coat on last night. They look much better with a second coat. And this morning, I painted the sides of a few blocks to see how that looked. And the verdict is...the sides need to be painted. I was sloppy with gessoing the tops, so the sides are messy. They really do look cleaner with the sides painted.

* WIP = work in progress

Monday, June 15, 2009

Getting Ready For The Clothesline Show

I'm busy painting, matting, and wrapping! The annual Clothesline Art Show and Sale is this week. The photo shows my 12 entries in this year's show.

Stop by and see the show:

Thursday, Friday, Saturday

June 18, 19, 20
Noon to 5:00 each day

Hudson Middle School

77 N. Oviatt St.

Hudson, OH 44236
Get a Map

All artworks are by members of the Hudson Society of Artists. Everything is small, original, and unframed. More than 300 artworks will be available for purchase.

Stop out, support a local artist, and pick up something wonderful!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Artefino Gallery and Cafe

Met with the great folks at Artefino Gallery and Cafe yesterday. They contacted me through my Etsy shop to see if I'd be interested in showing my ACEOs at their gallery. Naturally, that sounded like a good idea to me.

It's a really vibrant gallery space with work by local artists. And, the menu is yummy -- soups, sandwiches, smoothies, coffee -- wow! Definitely worth visiting.

They're located at 1900 Superior Avenue in Cleveland,

Monday - Friday: 7 am to 6 pm
Saturday: 11 am - 3 pm

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I've Been Accepted to Art-o-mat!

Hurray! I'm so excited! The kind folks at Art-o-mat have approved my prototypes. I sent off my samples a little over a week ago, and just heard from them last night that it's a GO!

What's Art-o-Mat? It's a project where vintage cigarette vending machines have been converted to dispensing miniature artworks. They have 82 machines around the U.S.

I sent 2 prototypes: the little blue fish to the left and the yellow flower below.

The artworks must be the size of a pack of cigarettes so they fit through the machines. Mine are painted on blocks of wood.
This photo shows the thickness of the piece of wood.

The background is painted with acrylic paints, and the fish and flower are cut from my favorite origami paper.

Take a look around their web site and see if you have an Art-o-Mat machine in your neighborhood:

Next step -- get more blocks of wood and start painting!

Monday, June 01, 2009

Call for Artists: Plein Air Competition

Peninsula’s First Annual Plein Air Competition—Along the Crooked River will be held Saturday, June 20, and Sunday, June 21, 2009 to celebrate the importance of the Cuyahoga River and the beauty of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park in and around the Village of Peninsula.

Exhibit: The exhibit will run July 2 thru July 26, 2009, Thursdays -- Sundays, 11 am until 5 pm at Peninsula Art Academy.
An Artists reception will be held at PAA on Thursday evening July 2 2009, 5 to 7 pm.

Application: To be eligible, applications must be received by June 6th, 2009.
Registration fee is $35.
Include your Artist statement/bio with the entry form.

Details and prospectus at or or on-line entry form.

Judging and Prizes: The exhibit will be judged by Mary Urbas, Gallery Coordinator and Exhibition Curator at Lakeland Community College, Awards will include: Best of show: $350, Second place: $200, Third place: $100, People’s Choice and Honorable Mentions.

Eligibility: The Competition is open to artists, 18 years of age and over. Employees of the National Park and members of the Peninsula Chamber may enter but are ineligible for awards.

Format: Original two-dimensional art in any medium other than photography may be created during this event. No three-dimensional or computer generated work will qualify. Canvas/paper plus frame shall be less than or equal to 30” in any one direction.

Display Venue: Works created during the competition will be displayed at Peninsula Art Academy Gallery as space allows, during the month of July. All artwork will be for sale with 60% to the artist and 40% to the Peninsula Area Chamber of Commerce (PACC). Winning artwork will be featured on Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the Cuyahoga Valley National Park Association will also feature the winning work in newsletters and various venues.

Criteria: Artists may produce as many works as they wish during the competition but are limited to 2 pieces for submission to the Gallery showing and judging. Artwork must be created in the true Plein air style at designated locations and may not be generated from reference photos. Styles may range from realism to abstract, and must be in keeping with the impromptu style of Plein air.

Because the competition takes place in the Village of Peninsula and the National Park, PACC has had to secure permission to use specific locations where artists may set up. To download the map and see the selected competition sites, go to:

Procedure: On Saturday morning June 20 between 9 -10 am, artists must check in at Peninsula Art Academy, 1600 West Mill Street, Peninsula. Artists are encouraged to bring as many canvases/papers as they wish to create during the competition. All canvases/papers must be stamped the morning of the competition. Artists should be at their designated site from 10 am until 3 pm on Saturday, June 20, and from 11 am until 1 pm on Sunday, June 21 so the public may stroll the sites and visit the artists at work.

From 3-5 pm on Sunday, June 21, artists are to deliver up to 2 finished works they wish to enter for judging, for exhibit, and for sale to the Peninsula Art Academy. No submissions will be accepted after 5 pm. Artists are invited to enjoy wine and cheese and camaraderie during the drop off time.

Finished works must be framed, with picture hanging wire attached. For your convenience, reasonably priced framing options will be available at Peninsula Art Academy when entries are dropped off. Judging and hanging of the exhibition will take place during the week of June 21st.

The show will open July 2 in conjunction with the second week of the Boston Mills ArtFest . Artists will be notified via email as to the winning entries.

Pick Up of Art: Pick up of artwork will be on July 26 from 11 am – 5 pm; other arrangements may be made by calling 330-657-2248.

Where: Peninsula Art Academy, 1600 West Mill Street, Peninsula, Ohio 44264-171 Parking is in front of the building and behind Elements Gallery, directly across the street, and in the CVNP parking lots farther down Mill Street.

Press: Press releases will be emailed to area contacts. Include on a separate sheet any email addresses you would like us to include in our press list. Also, on a separate sheet, please list any email addresses you would like to receive an email invitation to the exhibit.

Contact: For additional information contact PAA at or 330-657-2248. Full details online at:

Peninsula Art Academy
1600 West Mill Street
PO Box 171
Peninsula Ohio 44264

Open Thursday thru Sunday 11-5 or anytime by appointment