Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pounding Some Metal

I recently got back into one of my real loves, working with metal. I love the pounding for texture, the bending, and combining different metals. I worked with copper and brass, and I bend sterling silver wire. I use metal snips to cut the other shapes. My dremel smoothes the edges.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Bold Painting Tells a Story

I present my largest painting yet -- I think it's 3' x 3', and I've hung it right in my dining room. What do you think? I've been wanting to do one with high rise buildings, despite the fact that I live in a one-story home in a traditional neighborhood. I tell a story about people who come home from work, enter their homes, and shut the doors, never to go out again until leaving for work the next day. I thought the skyscraper-type home would make a bigger impact with the story. I love the bright colors that I've used. It's a pretty "out there" painting, but I'm proud of it. I also think it's a brave move to put it in my dining room. It goes well, though. There's nothing formal about my dining room.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Wrap Around Bracelets

I'm trying out a new way to form bracelets. I make a strand that is about 22 inches long, with all kinds of beads. I add a nice clasp. It is designed to wrap three times around your wrist. What do you think? This one is my favorite. It's very beachy with turquoise, coral, and sand colors, with some seashell beads, pearls, and gems.

I'm thinking of changing out the silver clasp to a copper clasp on this one. I think it will work better.

This last one has golds, creams, and russet, with a gold magnetic clasp. This may be easier to connect for some people.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Are You Telling it to Win?

Here's what I'm reading right now -- Tell to Win: Connect, Persuade, and Triumph with the Hidden Power of Story, by Peter Guber. You may vaguely recognize his name, thinking he might be in movies or something. You'd be partially right. He's currently Chairman and CEO of Mandalay Entertainment, which produces movies (recently, The Kids are All Right), and runs sports teams. He has a long and successful career where he has made many deals and projects. But did people come to him, and say "Hey, I want to work with you?" No, he came to them. He pitched an idea, perhaps one they never knew they needed. He was able to tell a story that told them why they needed him, what he could do for them that they weren't already doing for themselves, and how he could do it better than anyone else. This storytelling is what he calls Tell to Win.

I'm not even finished with the book yet, but I want to recommend it. Are you thinking of taking your art business to a new level? Are you realizing that you're a pretty good artist, and maybe instead of just selling your art, you could teach others about your art? That's where you need to tell a story. What can you give to others that they can't give themselves? What is it in your background that makes you the one, perfect person who can give that to them? Have you analyzed your strengths? Those are what you need to capitalize on, and tell people about.

We're always telling stories, but are we telling them effectively? What kind of title do you give your art? (Please, don't tell me you've made a piece and called it "Untitled.") How do you describe your art? Do you mention the inspiration, where you found those certain beads that make that necklace, why you used those colors? Do you describe it on your website, your blog, on flyers or in brochures? Do you attach a small tag to it with a small description? How do you describe yourself when people ask what you do? (See my last blog post that talks about your Elevator Pitch.)

I hope this post gets you thinking. I found Tell to Win at the library, so you may be able to also. Has this inspired you to ramp up and focus the stories that you tell about your business?