March 24, 2008

Painting New York in Chicago

Yes, I have a day job and sometimes it's an all day job because I travel out of town about two weeks a month. At first this drove me crazy, because I felt like I was missing out on my "real" life. After a long day at a show, sitting in a hotel bed watching TV just left me even more drained than if I had ran a mile. So, I started bringing along my sketch book and travel watercolors on these trips. Even if I just copy pictures from magazines, I sleep better and don't feel so disconnected from my "other" life, my art life. So I brought along a photo I had taken in New York City near Central Park last fall a gorgeous turn of the century townhouse. (I want to live there.) I LOVE painting beautiful old architecture. I hoped to finish the picture while in Chicago - I mean I was going to be there for 5 days for Pete's sake. But just when you make plans, there are always interesting surprise. First, the weather proved to be much warmer than usual so I took a walk around the city, ate at some good restaurants, met some fun people and saw a green river - dyed for St. Patrick's Day, oh yeah, and I worked a little. The Saturday before I returned home I participated in a Women Entrepreneur's conference. Very encouraging. (yes I hope to take the leap myself soon) I was so excited to meet my favorite blogger Heather Bailey. What a swell gal. And then drove the very long boring trip back to Saint Louis. My weekend was almost ruined by the high cost of gas, but I overcame.
So finally, got the watercolor finished. Maybe I'll paint Chicago when I go to New York next month.

March 21, 2008

Forty - 40 - Four, Zero

... not a number I really have looked forward to. But here it is. And my dearest friend flew in from sunny California to cold, wet, flooding St. Louis to ease the blow. How can a person, even a person who is rounding the "adult" corner be blue with friends like that. Thanks Samantha!!!! I love you!

UGHHHHHH and Crack

This is the part of being a watercolor artist I despise... FRAMING!!!!

First rule of thumb never ever never start anything at 10:30 at night. The only thing a person should start is the microwave to pop popcorn. That's it. But in true Amy fashion, I am up late the night before because I need to deliver my paintings tomorrow so they can be hung for my very first show here in St. Louis. (which I will write about later) . My hope is that you will learn from me because clearly I'm not learning from my mistakes.

1. Cutting mats for the painting requires exactness, patience and relatively good math skills. I have just spent hours working on a watercolor, and so it's my tendency to hurry through this process. There's a saying in carpentry, sewing and mat cutting that goes like this "measure twice, cut once". No, not here, not with me, my saying is "measure once, cut, swear, throw the mat across the room do it again." And the crazy part is that I've done this so many times you would think I would have learned my lesson...
2. Be gentle glass breaks. I broke two pieces of glass. Can't throw that across the room because I have neighbors that I would wake and a cat that could get hurt by flying glass.
3. Work on a clean surface and not carpet. I finally get one painting in frame without breaking the glass only to discover the worlds biggest piece of lint stuck between glass and painting.
4. Give up. There's always tomorrow and good light. I should have stopped when I broke the first piece of glass.

My dream is not necessarily to be a multi-millionaire or have a mansion, but to have someone who frames all my work. I'll give my watercolors to Freddy to frame and I won't have to worry about it (I like the name Freddy - you know, Freddy the Framer) So with that dream I'm going to call it a night and measure twice tomorrow. Really, I will....


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