Encaustic Demo Love

Two of my favorite things to do are to paint and to teach. Ever since I can remember I always wanted to be a teacher. As I grew older I realized that it’s a profession that doesn’t really embrace financial stability. So I decided to go to art school – financial stability? Art? What craziness!!! Well, I believe I can do both and have stability in my life and be happy. I love art and I love to teach! The best thing for me would be to combine the two together. I have yet to become financially stable doing the two but I have to tell you, I am so glad that I am trying. I have a full time job in the art industry which is great for motivation, inspiration and pays the bills. What I am working on now is the ability to transition this life into one of teaching, doing art and fully supporting myself and my family.

I will be offering classes soon in my studio – but until I do, here are some fun pictures of artists and their art from a hands on demo at Flax Art Materials in San Francisco, CA. The first image is a piece I created a 3 from my students. Feel free to check out my website – Etsy site and share with all those you think would be interested in learning more about Encaustic!

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RavensNestArt

http://www.theravensnestart.com/

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Mini Encaustic Demo and Hands on Fun

A few short weeks ago I participated in a very large outdoor art demonstration and hands on event in Santa Rosa, California. I prepped over 100 4″x4″ cradled wooded Art Alternative Panels for the event. I wanted to make it easier for the attendees to be able to get their waxy hands wet – so to speak. I was hoping this would enable more people to play with hot wax.

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I set up my table and with the help & samples from R&F Handmade Paints I was able to demo and teach a wide range of students that day.

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They ranged from sweet little enthusiastic youngsters,  beginners along with some amazing intermediate encaustic artists. It was such a fun day. I even had my table set up next to lovely flowers buzzing with bees.

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Here are some pictures of artists and their art from the day.

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By the end of my day, I was ready for an ice cream sandwich – thanks 3 Twins!

AND a BIG Thanks goes out to R&F Handmade Paints for making this awesome day possible. Your paint is the best!

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Encaustic Shellac Burn

WOW! I sure do love encaustic painting! I had the best day in my studio today. I was playing around with shellac burn; wet and dry but I think my favorite is the wet technique.

I was working on a project for a dear friend who is moving away. I have been thinking about this painting for over a week. I knew what she liked, but was worried about her husband, she told me he likes things to look very modern. I created a painting that I thought they would both like with colors  I know they both love. Then I added my own touch to the piece.

I started with watercolors, added encaustic medium, then dry pastels, more medium, amber shellac – and voila!

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Check out the FIRE!

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What defines Sucess?

I participated in an art show this past Thursday and only sold one painting but received a commission for another painting. At first I was feeling a bit blue that I only sold 1 painting but I had to step back and think, what defines success for me? I was successful in selling a painting, I was successful in getting a commission for another painting. I was successful in meeting some really great people that evening and I was successful in meeting people who live in Marin and know gallery owners. I really want to get my art into galleries in the north bay. Marin, San Rafael, Healdsburg, Sausalito and places like that. I think I accomplished that. I have to remember that every time I get myself out there and people see my art it is SUCCESS.

I believe in my art, I believe that my art is really good and that I can make a success in my field. I just have to keep getting out there and meeting people and having little success stories and selling my art.

Here are some of the images from my show.

My next show will be on the 18th of July. It will be at the community center in Point Richmond California from 5-8:00pm.

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Please join me at an Art Walk Thursday 6/20

I will be participating in the Art of Point Richmond Art Walk, Thursday June 20th. It will be from 5-8pm and bound to be a lot of fun. There will be loads of other artists along with a farmer’s market filled with delicious fruits and vegetables.

I will be showcasing some new encaustic paintings……

Here is a sneak peak!

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The Crafter’s Workshop & Encaustic Painting Demo Success

How many of you have either wanted to or have demoed art materials before?

I love demoing/teaching about art supplies and all the different ways one can use them. There is nothing like showing and sharing what you know and seeing that light in someone’s eyes when they realize all the possibilities. Believe me when I tell you – what we can accomplish with art is endless and there is always something new to learn and explore.

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I have done a lot of demos and sometimes I have just “winged” it and sometimes I have planned it down to the very last detail. I want to talk to today about planning, what strategies I use when preparing to share my knowledge and teach fun projects or just basic techniques. Today I want to share with you how I plan and execute a successful demo using Encaustic Paint, Mixed Media supplies and my favorite thing – The Crafter’s Workshop Stencils.

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There are a few things to take into consideration when planning a demo; who will be there, what could I possibly need, what can go wrong, what can go right, how can I be sure to have everything I need for what I want to demo and last but not least – where will I be during this demo.

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Last weekend I was asked to give a 45 minute lecture on encaustic painting and then demo for the rest of the day. I thought about what I would bring, what I would need for a successful demo and lecture. I think I may have brought too much, but I felt better to be over prepared than underprepared.  One of my favorite things to use in encaustic painting are The Crafter’s Workshop Stencils. They are so versatile and easy to use, easy to clean up and they are great for demoing from beginners all the way to  professionals. There is nothing like using a stencil and seeing such immediate and awesome results with stencils.

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Ok, so I thought about what I needed to bring – Next I needed to think about who was going to be attending the lecture and the demo. I asked the manager/owner of the store who he thought would be attending and he said all new encaustic students will be attending the lecture and he wasn’t sure about the demo. It is always best to teach to the lowest common denominator. I talked about the basics; how to set up your studio and safety. Next, I talked about all the fun things one gets to use in the studio. There is so many fun things one can use in a studio such as heated pallets, colored bees wax, professional and found tools,  blow torches and practically anything else you can think of.

After my lecture I went out into the store to demo for the rest of the day. It was great fun! I was able to work on a bunch of different projects all at one time. I talked about the projects along with teaching all types of techniques. It was like a bunch of mini classes all during the day. I was prepared for all types of questions and there were some really good ones. It’s so exciting to watch people learn and understand what you teaching. It was great fun!

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The last thing I wanted to do to prepare for this demo was to make a list of all the different things people could do with encaustics. I made a list of all the different projects and brought more than enough material for each project along with extra substrates incase something got messed up. I have found that it is important to go with the flow and not worry too much, it seems there will always be something you weren’t prepared for. That day it was electricity. The extension chord didn’t work – no big deal – just finish setting up while it got fixed. I sometimes forget that people attending are flexible and will wait.

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I was prepared for all types of questions and there were some really good ones. It’s so exciting to watch people learn and understand what you teaching. I guess the most important thing to remember about demoing: HAVE FUN!

Here is a picture of me having fun!

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Selling on Esty & Goodsmiths

I have been wanting to get a website together but feel very overwhelmed by the whole prospect. I am very smart when it comes to many things but haven’t put a website together before. I think I can do it but feel scared so in the meantime I have put all my art on Esty and Goodsmiths on line stores.

I have done pretty ok during the first year, selling a few things here and there but not great. I was beginning to wonder if it was really worth all the trouble. This past year I participated in 6 different shows and sold quite a bit of my art and was beginning to think about putting my own website together and taking my stuff off of Etsy and Goodsmiths. Lately my paintings, handmade books, journals, photo albums and address book sales are taking off. I have sold quite a few things on Etsy – including selling to a woman who lives in Spain. I think it’s pretty cool to send my paintings overseas.

I keep thinking I want to get my own website together but I wonder how much exposure I will get by promoting my site myself. I know that I have the potential to have a much larger audience on Etsy (not so much Goodsmiths because it’s not as well known) than from my own website but eventually I will get over my fears, sit down and act on what I have wanted for awhile. I know that there are many sites out there to help me with my website, I just have to find the right one.

I will let you all know when I have a website and will link it to this blog. I just want to share with you the painting I have sold this past week that will be heading out to Spain on Tuesday.

Je t'aime Paris

I am turning 50!

Well….here’s the thing. I am turning 50 and I am not sure how to feel about things. On one hand I am totally freaking out and on the other I think I am still pretty hot and don’t look at all 50 years old.

Most days I feel ok but last night I received an AARP application in the mail and totally lost it. I was bawling like a baby —– see I can’t be 50 if I am crying like a baby, right?

I have been trying to think about what I wanted to do to celebrate the fact that I am turning the big 5-0 and couldn’t come up with anything. I somehow suspect that if I didn’t come up with anything it would all go away. Well, it’s January and only 13 more days until “B-day” and I think I might be coming to terms with it. I say “might” because I still feel a hissy fit coming on, but I have finally found something to do for my birthday that I am excited about.

I spent an hour or so with an old boss/friend of mine yesterday and we were catching up. I had brought my dog to meet him and we were just chatting about this and that. I told him I was turning 50 and freaking out a bit. He said that I should just have a big party and I asked him if I could host it at his house (it’s beautiful) and he said, “of course”. It was settled, I was going to have a big birthday bash as this amazing house in San Francisco and I am now getting excited. I started planning what I was going to serve and things I was going to do and I started feeling happy about my birthday.

I love having parties, spending time fixing up the house, preparing food for everyone, making sure there is something for everyone and buying all the alcohol and non-alcohol so everyone has what they love. I just love putting on a good party! I love talking to people and spending time with my friends.

I came home after spending the time with my friend and put together and evite and sent it out. I am already getting people rsvp-ing and it seems like everyone will be able to make it. I am still freaking out a bit about this birthday but I think I will be ok. I think I will make it through and once I get to the other side of 50 I’ll be just fine.

This is a picture from my encaustic painting show from 2 weeks ago.

Raven at the Gallery