If you want to buy or sell art online Saatchi has one of the biggest names there are. Saatchi is a big name in the art world, and you can visit their 70,000 sq.ft. gallery on Kings Road in London.
You can choose to display and or sell your work on their website too. It seems to be a great way to get noticed.
Artists from more than 100 countries sell their work at Saatchi Art Online. The site gets over 12 millions views a month.
One of the most impressive things is they organize and take on the responsibility of shipping items to your customers. The artist is responsible for paying for the shipping materials, but the buyer covers the shipping cost. Saatchi will send a shipping package, and you include the artwork and a certificate of authenticity.
That is intriguing because I spend so much time in different places. As long as I have a person who can receive the shipping package and send it out, it can get delivered.
I've struggled with how to get the artwork shipped. That problem has been hovering around in the back of my mind for quite a while.
I plan on building a Saatchi Art Online profile. I'll let you know when I get it together. Who knows, one of you may be one of the first to buy an original Attenborough at Saatchi Art Online!
The painting I included today was a result of a bit of experimentation. I felt stuck so I started dabbing paint on a canvas and then started making a few connections. I think turned out to be an interesting pattern. Sometimes you need to experiment.
Being young is all about experimentation, but sometimes, when you're young, you do stupid things. Lots of those things are fun, or you probably wouldn't do them.
Stupid thing, I loved to jump off the roof on my house when I was a teenager. I loved the feeling of falling, and I liked that fact that my body didn't break when I landed. I'm glad I didn't live in a two story house. That could have been a problem.
With the ice hockey, football, baseball, and the whole Marine Corps frivolity I participated in when I was younger it's incredible I'm still in one piece.
I used to love to run until my body became a collection of aches and pains to teach a lesson. This sixty-year-old corpus is much more delicate than it was at sixteen. Probably a result of the running and jumping and other silly things.
When I stopped running, pounds started piling on. The more I weighed, the more all my parts began creaking and cracking. The more it hurts, the less I walked.
I had to turn it around somehow, and I started to ride a stationary bike. That allowed me to build muscles in my legs without the pounding that happens when you walk or run.
It doesn't bother me so much to walk anymore, and I am grateful for that. I suppose my knees have declared a moratorium on the pain.
A couple of weeks ago we were in the Derbyshire Dales. There are plenty of footpaths and hiking trails there. I was feeling a bit froggy, and I jumped from one rock to another.
You'd think it wouldn't be a big deal. I certainly didn't. It wasn't a big jump. Frogs jump further. I think I've even jumped farther if somebody sneaked up behind me.
It was about a two-foot drop. When I landed, I felt a jolt of lightning from my ankles through my knees up into my back and straight through to the base of my skull.
Landing from a jump of about two feet as a 240-pound creaky sucker is different than it was from my former spry 175-pound self.
I kept a stern face on and promised that it didn't hurt at all. God forbid I should admit I did something stupid. I knew the ache would go away in a little bit anyway, and it did.
The stuff that you do when you're young catches up with you when you pile on a few years. I have to live with the aches and pains caused by a misspent youth. And, I guess I'm not over making stupid choices quite yet.
More on the decisions we make at a later date. For now, I will look before I leap next time and give my old, frail body time to catch up.
Until next week, I wish you peace.
There are a lot of artists who teach online, and I love artists who teach online. I think the artist I bring to you today is one of the best.
Anna Mason is one of those artists I watch paint all day. Her ability to create realistic paintings using watercolors amazes me.
In most of her videos on YouTube, she will walk you through how to paint realistically with watercolors. Sure, she sells online classes, and other tutorials, but her free videos are insightful to watch as well.
Anna is a self-taught artist that lives and works in England. She says she teaches you to paint watercolors with WOW. Well, I believe her.
On her website, she provides a video that explains how she teaches and there are plenty of examples on YouTube for you to look at as well.
Anna has a presence all over the internet and I would encourage you to see her artwork and watch her videos. I hope you find them as entertaining and informative as I do.
I ran across Daily Paintworks the other day, maybe about two weeks ago. I'm surprised I didn't see it earlier. It is a very well organized site and easy to navigate.
It's a great place to find new original art. I spent hours looking over the content of the site for a couple of reasons.
First, I just like looking at art. Secondly, this site provides the ability for artists to create fully functioning websites using their technology.
You don't have to be a member to buy art there. When you buy a painting, it is directly between you and the artist. I like that.
Daily Paintworks is a small family run business.
I'm sure I'll be doing a bit more digging around this site to see how it can align with what I want to do.
I drew a lotus flower this week. I love pointillism. The whole process is so methodical and meditative. It helped me take my mind off the fact it was time to pack our trash.
In the Marines, whenever you move from one place to another, you'd be given the order to "Pack Your Trash." We'd scurry all our belongings into one spot and stuff it into our sea bag (duffle bag to you Army guys).
Packing up and leaving one place for another is one of my least favorite activities. Marines call it the "Sea Bag Drag."
It represents the end of something grand and gets me feeling a bit low. Maybe that's why this edition is a bit late. Especially since this summer, in England, has been one of the best summers ever.
Our travels have taken us to friends in Cornwall, London, Wensleydale, Whitstable, Derbyshire, Flore, Doncaster, Chorleywood, Welwyn, Newmarket, Oxted, and, of course, St. Evenage.
We've walked lots of miles, drank new cocktails (corpse reviver is a must try - check out the recipe here), and had tons of smiles We've visited castles, fields, hills, dales, moors, and farms. We got to dog sit and lounge around a bit.
Though I have kept up drawing and painting a bit this summer, there has been so much going on I found it difficult to ferret away enough time. It's been a jam-packed summer. I need to make art a bit more of a priority. Time is one of those finite things we have in life, and you don't know how much of it you're going to get.
Priorities are a tricky thing. I keep having to remind myself if you line up your preferences and priorities with your passions, you're more likely to be a happy camper. So I guess I've got some alignment to make. Gradually, baby steps I guess.
It is drudgery to close up shop here, but we do have fabulous times to look forward to as well. We'll be heading to Dayton Ohio on Tuesday. I love catching up with friends and family when I get into town.
Then, a couple of short weeks later we'll be able to catch up with dad in Surprise, AZ. (I love the name of that town) Dad's going to be 90 at the end of October. Surprise!
If you see us passing overhead in one of those big silver transatlantic pterodactyls, give us a wave, we'll be waving back.
I'll be coming to you from the USA next week.
Until then, I wish you peace.
If you like color, if you want bright colors, you're going to love this weeks' artist. Her website is saved in my browser favorites and has been for quite a while. I go back and look at her painting a lot. They please me.
Linzi Lynn is a self-taught artist who lives and works in Los Angeles. Linzi studied theater when she was young, and she says, "both visual art and theater are forms of creative expression, inspiration, and entertainment." They are the different sides of the same coin.
Linzi is a self-taught artist who lives and works in Los Angeles. She studied theater when she was young, and she says, "both visual art and theater are forms of creative expression, inspiration, and entertainment." They are the different sides of the same coin.
I tend to agree with that. We all need ways to express ourselves in this life. Finding a way that suits you can be a very rewarding discovery. I'm not much of a connoisseur when it comes to theater, but I do know I like how she throws down an expressionistic painting.
She shows her work in galleries in and around Los Angeles. I admire how she creates exciting and colorful paintings.
She sells her artwork online at venues such as Saatchi Art Online, iCanvas, Fine Arts America, and Redbubble.
You can also see her art on her Website and her Facebook page.
Put away the silverware!
Lock the dog in the closet!
Douse the party flames!
Kill the fatted calf!
Roll up the sidewalks!
Stop the fun IMMEDIATELY!
Labor Day is coming!
The last hurrah of the summer. The final gasp of heat, sun, and relaxation.
Hold it - are we school kids? Don't we work all year long? Weren't we working this summer anyway?
Some of the arcane traditions that go along with Labor Day make it a weird holiday. I once lived at an apartment where they closed the pool every year on Labor Day. It didn't matter if it was fifty degrees or a hundred degrees, the cover went on, and the summer was over. I hate when that happens. As Andrea says, "Lid's down. Lost the Key."
Or - you can't wear white shoes after Labor Day. I love this video from the film "Serial Mom" - I hope you enjoy it as well. "You can't wear white shoes after labor day."
To me, Labor Day is the time when you put away childish things and focus on the real work of living as if living isn't working anyway. As for me, I want to bring back those ..."lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer. You'll wish that summer could always be here."
Why should that be a celebration? Why should we say hurrah to the cessation of fun - to give up the light?
Do not go gentle into that good night, ...; Rage, rage against the dying of the light - Dylan Thomas.
If you want to affect the world, please change the arbitrary rules by which we live - whatever they are.
There is a constant debate in this house concerning the number of official holidays existing in England and the United States. This discussion ends here. Yes, I lost.
The scores are in and it looks like England drew the short straw.
United States England
It got me thinking that it might be good take a look at holidays in both countries. You can choose your own or take them all. It's up to you. Well - not really - it's kind of up to your boss, isn't it? Retired people have all those days off. Wouldn't that be a hoot!
In the United States, with a couple of exceptions, U.S. national holidays target things we want to remember. They happen about once a month. Mostly, they're a result of horrible things we want to remember so they never happen again.
In England, workers have days off that commemorate religious events during the year. Mostly, they surround Church of England religious events. They're called "Bank Holidays" here. Here's a recap list for this year:
England and United States
Monday, 1 January
New Year's Day
This is arguably the best time to invade any country as most everybody has a hangover or creaks out of bed up late or both. It should be called "Potential Country Invasion Day" or "Potential War Day." You can treat it as a day of optimism and hope or you can just say good riddance to the year that was.
Monday, January 15
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Very cool guy. I'm glad Martin has his own day. He deserves his day, but it also reminds us how horrible we used to be to one another. It's an excellent time to remember how far we've come and how far we have to go in how we treat each other.
Monday, February 19
I thought this had been changed to Presidents Day because Abe gave up his birthday to Martin, and, of course, Martin deserves his day. We celebrate George Washington who led the troops in the Revolutionary War and Abraham Lincoln who led the Civil War. Okay -perhaps some good came out of those conflicts. I suppose we celebrate the fact that we don't want to fight those wars again. George and Abe are heavy hitters in history, and I reckon they deserve the day.
Friday, 30 March
Isn't every Friday good? Well, except for Friday the 13th maybe - It should just be called Friday and we should do it every week. Cheers to the four day work week! Hip, Hip, Hooray! Drinks all around.
Monday, 2 April
We don't do Easter in the United States - it might offend somebody so if you can't please everybody - please nobody. There is a separation of church and state in the United States, but it doesn't stop the president from hosting an Easter Egg hunt or saying God Bless America. In England, the Queen is head of the church and what she says goes. Its just a name and well isn't Easter on a Sunday anyway. Don't we always get Sunday off? This one isn't about war, but it's about this guy who was horribly beaten, stuck on a cross, then, came back to life. Oh my - it would be nice to have Easter Monday off in the States, but well we already have ten holidays.
Monday, 7 May
Early May Bank Holiday
I like this - no reason - just cause it's early May - I think that pesky pagan May Pole has something to do with it. It does have something to do with May Day which is really the 1st of May. May Day was originally oriented around pagan practices, and there's usually singing, dancing, cake and much merriment to be had. I suppose there's tea, scones, and whiskey as well. Oh well - I guess "needs must."
United States - Monday, May 28
Memorial Day - Yup - remembering people who died in a war, the families the wars ripped apart, the broken and battered human remnants of war. This, we should not forget.
England - Monday, 28 May
Spring bank holiday - Yay! Spring
United States - Wednesday, July 4
Independence Day - Yup - Fill your cup with stars and stripes we get to remember the war. Actually, July 4th was when the Declaration of Independence was signed. What ensued from that document was a war. We remember that bold step that lunged us toward independence. This is the declaration that launched a nation. I got some folks to celebrate the 4th of July in England once, but I guess they just thought it was a good time to get rid of those pesky colonials. Me, I'm just happy we all get along again. Except for that language thing. We have differing thoughts about that one. "Two nations divided by a common language."
Monday, 27 August
Summer Bank Holiday
No labor today cause it is summer outside. Well - summer started on 21 June (in the US at least, in England it starts on May 1). Okay, we'll call it End of Summer Bank Holiday. But summer doesn't officially end until September 21st. I guess it's just time to close the pools and start putting all those white shoes away.
Monday, September 3
Remembering the labor conflict - social conflict - not a war - but - well people were angry with each other. President Cleveland sent in troops to quash a demonstration where a couple of people got killed. That action made folks angry. Because people got killed and it was an election year Grover Cleveland declared there would be a Labor Day. He lost the election anyway - Good going, Grover.
Monday, October 8
Remembering an adventurer. An Italian guy who conned three ships and a bucket of doubloons from the King and Queen of Spain. Ferdinand and Isabella had a big DIY project in Granada since they acquired a massive palace from the folks who built it. To renovate, they needed more gold and silver to kick people out of the castle and put some polish on the fixer-upper - War & Slaughter.
Monday, November 12
This is remembering those who fight the wars. I, personally, like to reflect on what these people do. They step into harm's way, so we don't have to.
Thursday, November 22
Remembering that wonderful time when the Pilgrims (displaced people from England) celebrated their good fortune with their benefactors (the native folk). This lead eventually to the carnage of the displacement of the people who showed up in North America first.
England and United States
Tuesday, December 25
Remembering someone who was born in a stable. The king, at the time, promptly decided that all children in Bethlehem under one year old had to die. Carnage ensued. An angel warned this intrepid young traveler. He escaped to Egypt, thereby surviving to die on a cross under Pontius Pilot. Then there was the Inquisition, the crusades and, well, mainly - war, genocide, and a little baby. Ahhh.
Wednesday, 26 December
Not a US holiday because, in the U.S., we don't use boxes. We're just those radical upstarts. Most people in the U.S. take this day off anyway. "In England, it was a custom for tradesmen to collect "Christmas boxes" of money or presents on the first weekday after Christmas as thanks for good service throughout the year." It seems like all business stops from the week before Christmas through New Year's day. Most people are in a bit of a food coma on this day and probably couldn't work if they wanted to. Nevertheless, I love Boxing Day because it's a really, really cool name for a day.
We should celebrate our labors, and we should take time off, and we should remember the horrible things that happened in history, so we just don't do them again.
Until next week, I wish you peace.
I brought all my painting gear with me. All I really had time for was to draw a couple of sketches in the Derbyshire Dales. The sketch to the left I did while contemplating the Dales with a nice cold beverage in the garden. Just over the fence - peace, and tranquility.
You see, last week we got to spend some time walking with friends the Dales. That involved transporting both ourselves and some of our belongings from point A (Stevenage in Hertfordshire) to point B (Ashbourne in Derbyshire). We packed up the car and were off to our little getaway in the country. We thought it would take about two and a half hours to drive the 125 miles, give or take the inevitable wrong turn or two.
Our trip started out as planned, but quickly turned into alternate routes, map gazing, and some arguing with the SatNav about directions and the quickest route.
Where is this silly machine taking me this way?
Was that a left turn or a right turn? (your side/my side)
What the hell do they mean - "slight left turn"?
Get off the curb!!
Was that close or what?
Who the hell built these roads?
Why did we choose to drive during rush hour?
Hold it, it's not rush hour!
Why are we on the M1 to begin with?
Shouldn't we have taken the A1?
It would have been faster, wouldn't it?
Geez, I can't wait to get out of this car and have a beer.
At one point we were playing dueling directions (android vs apple) - who will get us there faster? Was it the American Apple GoogleMaps (American accent) or the English Android GoogleMaps (English accent). I think the real honest to goodness paper map won the day.
Five hours later, with no remaining nerves or whits, we arrived at our destination. It was a trial.
The road and I have, of late, had a trying relationship. I suppose it's not the roads as much as the situations they create. Some of it has to do with road works, potholes, and roads so narrow you'd have trouble passing one starved boney horse past another going in the other direction. There are pull-offs, lay byes, and unsigned passages but my real grievance is with the people.
Sure, I have the occasional brain fart and do the wrong thing. Honestly, I think some people on the road make it a point to make life difficult for others toing and froing on the same patch of public earth.
I have some pet peeves about drivers and other idiots. This situation was just one of those that brought flashbacks and not the cool colors and shapes of the 60s and 70s. They are much more unnerving.
Because I was thinking about it, I thought I would bring up some suggestions for these caustic concrete cretins that make my life so difficult on what was supposed to be a long and relaxing drive.
Just a little rant (Don't worry - all suggestions attempt to maintain a PG rating).
Oh yeah, one last thing - don't read your emails/texts at 70 miles an hour. You deserve what happens to you but others don't so put the phone away!
Thank you - Until next week, I wish you peace. I'll try to grab a bit too.
I was pleased to visit Buxton this week. Buxton was the site of a Roman Spa way back when the Romans roamed this Green And Pleasant Land. Buxton has a hot spring that produces more than a million liters of mineral water at 27 degrees C (80.6 F) every day. That's lots of warm water.
The waters there are supposed to have restorative qualities. My old bones could use some restorative. Nevertheless, it is a pretty town with a lot of attractions.
We enjoyed stopping at the Pavillion and Gardens next to the Opera House. The Gallery in the Gardenshouses the work of 40 local artists. I love local artists.
One artist that stood out for me on this visit was David Hoodith. David moved to the Peak District in 1995 and currently lives in New Mills. He's a self-taught artist who paints the dramatic Peak District landscapes and cityscapes. His loose style is pleasing and invites you in and holds you.
Art starts a conversation. Sometimes the conversation goes well and sometimes it goes the other way.
The conversation might start like this.
"Wow, that's incredible."
Sometimes like this.
"What kind of monstrosity is that?!?!?!?!"
Sometimes it could be, "You know, I was in Rockport, have you ever been there?"
Sometimes - "Was a dog sick on that canvas?"
"I was in Macy's and I needed something to go over my couch so I got this. I think it's pretty cool"
Every piece of art has a story. Every work of art in your home has a story attached to it. The story is usually personal.
A piece of art tells others who we are.
It could be where you got it. It could be that butterflies mean something to you. It could be the artist was a friend or the colors are beautiful. It could mean any number of things.
My art story this week includes a trip to the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.
The rooms were crowded. There was some unintended jostling going on. I'm not good around crowds. I can get uncomfortable and irritable when I'm closed in with a bunch of people, but I didn't blow a gasket or run out screaming and whining like a child. This time.
It was interesting to listen to the comments from people on the floor. Some of the work was interesting and some of the work was fabulous Some of the work was just not worth the time it took to make it.
There seems to be no end to the opinions people hold and many times they're happy to share those opinions with a complete stranger.
"I'd never have that in my house."
"That's the most horrid thing, why would they select that?"
"Where did they get the idea for that?"
"I can't believe someone bought that?"
"Really, that sold for ₤22,000! I can't believe it."
No one will like everything and I have my opinions as well.
There were some large works that looked like they should be hanging in a soulless atrium, selected by a committee, and approved by the board. They were well executed but looked like they lacked any investment or inspiration from the artist. Some were creepy and some were downright horrible.
Some were just funny. This year, there was a skinny pink panther laced through some strange structure. It was huge - over six feet long. I really didn't get it, but I can appreciate it nonetheless. It made me smile and I liked it. I could hear the theme song playing in the background.
Some were smaller and more intimate portraits. A couple caught my eye. They were about 8" x 10" and though they were hung amongst a hundred other paintings stood out to me.
They were titled MOH 8 AND MOH9. These were obviously, at least obvious to me, portraits of United States Marine recipients of the Medal of Honor (MOH) recipients. The MOH is the highest decoration possible within the ranks of the military service in the United States. The paintings gave me pause to think and reflect on them and their sacrifice. A few goosebumps were involved too.
Executing something well is important to me. Some of the entries were incredibly detailed and intricate like this marvelous forest scene made entirely of wire.
Some of the artists in the show displayed no effort and looked like they were just slapped down, trampled, twisted up, run through a trash compactor, and then hung. Their effort and investment were minimal/dismal.
I don't like criticizing an artists work because maybe I just don't get it. It could be someone else will. Perhaps I think if I criticize someone else's work it leaves mine work up for criticism as well.
I do enjoy going to these shows even though I know I won't like a lot of the stuff there. To me, it is an explosion of creativity and different opinions. It helps me see new possibilities.
I'll be back to see the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Go see some art. Visit a gallery. Start a conversation. Lord knows we could use a bit more conversation today.
So, without mentioning Tracy Emin's horrible contributions, I will leave it all alone. But... someone will always find her interesting for some reason or other. Ack!
The painting I've included today, at the top of this section, was submitted by me to the show a few years ago but was not selected. I like it. It's hanging in my house. It has its own story. :-) I'll keep trying.
Until next week, I wish you peace.