Last year I had a lot of plans for a variety of different products. This year I’m streamlining a lot. 2020’s new products plan is an effort to reduce costs and effort and increase sales and income. My next post after this one will be more details about my artist’s business plan.
New Products in 2019
Right now I’m working on the first bald eagle. The going is pretty slow on it because I’m allowing my anxieties over the Middle Eastern situation to affect my ability to paint. But today I began working on it again with an intention to allow the art to displace the anxiety. I do feel a lot better when I paint. I just have to have faith that Rob will be alright. And there’s nothing my worrying will do to help anything anyway.
Once the eagle is finished, I’ll do a series of twisted tree monochromes with rock specimen samples mounted on the frames. I’d sold all of those in the last show, and I need to make some more of them. These are small and less expensive than the full sized paintings. A perfect entry point for new collectors wanting originals at prices easier to afford.
With our handy-dandy professional printer, I can supply more outlets with prints. The traditional paper prints seem to sell better than the mounted prints, so that’s where I’ll focus most of my effort on this product.
Exhibits allow me to get the artwork out into the world for exposure, and I don’t have to travel. Eventually I’d love to be able to make the openings of the shows where my art is hanging, though. Right now it’s just not affordable. So far my art has been shown in three states, and next month will add a fourth one. The goshawks are traveling to California!
Shows require me to load up all of my setup, haul and set up and then tear down and haul home, then unload it all. This is the best way to encounter new buyers for originals, but the shows dedicated to art are competitive to get into and it’s expensive to pay jury fees. Not only that, we have few local shows which means I’d have to travel and also pay for hotel costs. So this year I’ll choose which shows I want to enter more carefully, and attempt to enter fewer.
There are only two I’d really like to do: Brookside in Kansas City, MO and Art on the Creeks right here in northwest Arkansas.
Much closer to home, there are the art walks in some of the nearby cities. Downtown Rogers Art on the Bricks is one I think I’ll try to participate in all year long. It’s every 2nd Thursday, downtown in Rogers Arkansas. This only requires a partial setup and isn’t nearly as exhausting as doing a full ‘show’.
Some Paleo Paints
Since I started making the paint in June of 2018, I’ve experimented a lot. And I’ve learned a lot. The same goes for the paintings using handmade watercolors.
As I’ve never painted with anything except these paints I make, I have little to draw on from experience compared with store-bought versions. And since I never officially learned ‘how to paint’ from someone else who knows how to paint, I’m just feeling my way around. Some of the YouTube videos I’ve watched have given me ideas to try, but I think my paints behave differently than store-bought paints. They’re more like gouaches than watercolors because of the opacity.
However, in my work-play, I’ve come up with a few more techniques for using and making the paint. And I’ve found some better ways to package the paints and make them easier or more fun to use.
I first started the goal of plastic reduction last year. That’s still my plan. The usual thing nowadays used to hold paint are little plastic pans. I’ve gone through literally hundreds of pans since I started making paint. When it’s paint for myself, I wash and reuse them. As I’m developing new products for the upcoming year, I’d prefer to use less plastic.
Originally, artists used whatever was handy to their region. Those who lived near bodies of water typically used seashells. If they purchased paint, it came in seashells, I’d assume. However most of the artists of old made their own paint (or had an apprentice to do it for them).
While I don’t have seashells handy, I do have another way. Nature abounds with all sorts of ‘holders’. In leiu of plastic pans, I’ve been using silicone tiny ice cube trays to pour in the wet paint. When they’re dry, they pop out as little cubes or balls. Then I’ll mount those onto driftwood or other natural things. Like hickory nut husks.
Where to Find Wild Ozark?
Look for me on the 2nd Thursdays of the month at the Rogers Downtown Art on the Bricks. It’s a monthly art walk. I am not sure yet exactly where I’ll be set up, but hopefully some of the businesses down there want to host me. I need to get busy and start networking to find a host. You can find out when and where I’ll be by checking my calendar here.
My online shop is only here at Wild Ozark now and it’s open all the time! I’ve quit with the Etsy efforts and don’t feel like spreading myself too thin on other platforms. So all of my shopping outlets online are right here.