Drying times may vary

Finally ready to seal and varnish the Liberty Bank Building collage portraits! It takes about a week or two for varnish to cure, weather permitting. And that’s the thing…

  The view from my studio this week

The view from my studio this week

Winter dampness is beginning to settle in around here. That means the curing process slows down, which might delay when I can get them framed… which means they’d still be waiting in my studio that much longer. Gaaah.

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If I warm the collages gently with my heat gun periodically, hopefully I can compensate for the increased humidity. Cross your fingers for me.

On asking artists to speak at your event

I know we haven’t even gotten to Halloween yet, but I’ve been thinking about January and February 2019. It reminded me of a hilarious comment I heard during an art event:

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This person receives tons of last-minute requests to speak at this Black History Month event, or make a presentation at that Martin Luther King Jr. Day gathering. In one sentence, the person made several points:

  • I am available for (paid) speaking engagements all year round, not just in January or February

  • Please don’t wait until a week or two before your event to invite me to speak

  • I am perfectly capable of speaking about topics other than being a person of African descent

I’m not nearly as well known as that person I quoted, but I was invited to speak at five events during January and February 2018. I accepted four of those invitations.

  Me speaking at North Seattle College, with artists Gabrielle Nomura Gainor, Elisheba Johnson & Tariqa Waters

Me speaking at North Seattle College, with artists Gabrielle Nomura Gainor, Elisheba Johnson & Tariqa Waters

Know why I turned down the fifth event? Because the organizer waited until mid-February to ask, and was hoping to compensate me in “exposure” to potential art collectors. Maybe I would’ve said yes anyway… but I was a little busy with events related to my museum show, and curating a group art exhibit.

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So here’s your take-away, if you’re going to invite an artist to speak at your event: Ask early, and offer tangible compensation for their time. Even gas money or social media love is better than “exposure.” And yes, now would be a good time to book me for MLK Day or Black History Month 2019.

Serious inquiries only

Today I learned firsthand what it’s like when a stranger slides into your DMs on Instagram. I invite you to… “enjoy” the following exchange:

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Aaaaand here it comes: the moment when it’s clear this person is creepy for a living.

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“Fastly”… LOL. Pretty sure this is not a serious inquiry from a dedicated art collector. Well, it’s not the first art scam I’ve encountered, and it probably won’t be the last.

Posted on October 12, 2018 and filed under business of art.

In training for an Art Marathon

Getting down to the wire this weekend, as I prep for my first (art) marathon.

Friends of mine have participated before in this fundraiser for the Center on Contemporary Art (CoCA Seattle), but they have lots more experience creating work in front of a live audience. Me, on the other hand… I’m usually holed up in the studio muttering to myself as I work. So it’s a bit of a personal challenge. I’m honored to be working alongside 19 other artists, including painters Braden Duncan and Jazz Brown as well as kinetic sculptor Casey Curran.

But wait — there’s more! You’re invited to stop by and watch the paint fly on September 20th. This way, you get a special preview of the brand-new artworks to be auctioned off at the gala on September 22nd.

I’ve sketched out ideas, but details always change in the process — come see!

Next step for my "Evolution"

When a Good Thing happens in my life, sometimes I like to hug it close for a day or two before I share it. That's why I took a day to savor this news: one of my collages is going to live in a Seattle city art collection!

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"Waterfront Evolution" was purchased for the Seattle Public Utilities Collection, through a program of the city's Office of Arts & Culture. The collage joins a collection that includes work by emerging and established artists like Mary Ann Peters, Kara Walker, Barbara Earl Thomas and Dale Chihuly.

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Artworks in this collection are portable so they can rotate throughout municipal buildings. So there's a good chance you'll see my giraffes in a waiting room, or while you're paying a bill, or in a meeting room. Not sure yet where the collage will go first, but I figure there must be a calendar or tracking system that'll tell me. And that bit of info I'll share right away!