Saturday, November 8, 2014

THE BIG TOP (and other stuff)


So what's new with the box (Visual Arts)?
That's a good question since I haven't been posting as regularly as I would like to because there's been a lot of things that have been taking place both in my personal life and professional life.
Since I have shifted to doing commissions and secular individual pieces of art  for group and solo shows, the question that might be asked "what's next?"

Easy answer, self promotion.

And that is not a shameless thing either mind you.

So that means here in the 21 Century that you got to use the technology and tools set before you and swallow YOUR fear of putting work out there and put your foot down and make the statement that best reflects you. In my case it's selling the work everywhere I can.
Taking a page (nearly literally) out of Adam Watson's play book for selling his comics ( I have been adapting what he does and with the insistence of my beautiful girlfriend Beth (also a great artist in her own right at, to get the work out there because at least it's out there for people to see.
SO in that regard I have three on line store fronts show casing and selling the work. It takes a lot of time out of the day to interlink these sites. Of course this kind of work does take away from the actual creation of new and interesting work but it a balancing act always has been always will be.
So check out these three sites for art prints and gilcees.
And of course I still have my comics that I have worked on.  At comixpress and
As of this writing I have found that comixpress is a thing of the past!  The Citadel - the very first comic I every printed up is no longer around.  Who knew?  I sure the hell didn't. But that's okay, older work always gets overlooked. You will find that Black Box will also have a imprint from Dan Barton and his BIG ASS SWORD comic.  Dan and I had been working on Pandora's Garage 1 through 5 for a few years and he he has focused on working his comics while I have began working and focusing on the prints and secular pieces. He had asked me if I would have any problem with this? No I said because it doesn't directly effect the work I'm doing currently.

As with the last couple years past I have been part of this cool group show I have tried to put in 10 New pieces every year. Now have I sold every single one of them, no, but that's the goal.
 But the work I put in last year I wasn't really putting forth my best effort for the work. I just tried to put in 10 pieces.
I know that there are times when you are under a deadline and you have to crank crap just to meet it.
Well what I came away from that show "Well what did you learn about rushing stuff?"
You can't fool the Observer.  If you are not into your work people will see it.  The opposite is also true. "Down with the Weirdness" was like that and that one sold!
You can take a look at these few BIG shows and see the difference in the art as it progressed over the years.

Now true sometimes there is the unexplainable of why a piece of art connects with a customer and  that you can't fathom why even though you still know it's a good piece.

Alchemy is the only thing I can think of that explains this.

Anyway, I have been working my ass off to make these new pieces the best images possible. I think that this effort shows a real confidence and mastery of the medium of scratchboard. Check it out some of these images and you'll see what I am talking about. Pretty cool I think.

So how do you sell work and not sell your soul for the fast buck?
The answer (in my opinion) is you can't .
I know a lot of my friends who will not agree with me on this but I bet there isn't a moment when you collect money on a piece of work that you think to yourself “Dude,that was such a good piece of work and ya sold it like a baby on the black market! What the fuck is wrong with you?!”
There will always be a bit of your integrity that gets lost in the process. It feels to me like that when I am selling a new piece of work especially like the commission work that I finished on for N.W.I.P.A. It is one of the hardest things to come to grips with. I think that a lot of really good people just never want to throw themselves into that arena. And I get it, I really, really do. It's not fun looking outside of your comfort zone and sipping on a flavorful latte at a local coffee shop and working on a great illustration and realize that when you look up that's your work on a poster of something that been up for over a month! 
There is a difference in the way I am producing these works however and it goes to a conversation that I had with another artist at the bar as I was picking up a special batch of beer that was being released by Firestone Brewing.
I had asked simply if he had sold anymore images or paintings in his time since he had a show just before mine when it up earlier this year at N.W.I.P.A. here in Portland.
He had said no because that wasn't what he was at for selling work for. And then he went on further to say (to paraphrase) that he has been in that arena before hiking up his metaphorical jean skirt down on the street to just to make a buck.
But now he was just doing his paintings for himself.
And I understood where he was coming from on that. I had said that I had been switching gears from doing my illustrative comic work to doing the secular pieces in both group and solo shows around PDX. He had said that he wasn't actively looking for places to show case his work even though he could do it. But he did add that he could see how I could branch the gap by doing the illustation commission work and still manage to turn out good work for solo shows.
He complemented me on my work (which was cool to hear from another artist). He was being sincere in his response to me and had no other vested interest in what I was doing. There wasn't a sense of someone blowing smoke up my ass.
So again, there is a balancing act going on here and I will do my best not to fall off that trapeze as it get hosted higher and higher as time goes on under the Big Top!

And that is about it for the kid here but onto the physical artwork to complete for the BIG 500.
ALSO please check out the website

No comments:

Post a Comment