Monday, October 26, 2009

Holy Cow! I Made the Top Ten!

Friday was a big day for me as an artist.

Back in September, I dutifully filled out entry forms, wrote an Artist's CV, burned CDs and submitted two of my watercolour paintings to the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair's artist showcase. Since that day I have been anxiously waiting the results (to say the least), to which I hoped would come in the form of an acceptance of one of 40 paintings featured in the art showcase. I must admit I was prepared for rejection, as this is show is open to all Ontario residents, and it was only my second time entering an art show.

Well, Friday morning it came. The news couldn't have been better.

There it was in my email's inbox staring me in the face.

The subject line read: RAWF Showcase Acceptance. I swear my hands were shaking as I clicked the link to open the email. I was so excited I could hardly believe my eyes.  I called everyone I could think of.

I think I was on the phone with my Dad when I started reading him the email, when I realized in my exuberance, that I had skimmed over the most important message in the whole thing: Since you are on this mailing you have been accepted to the top ten in the 2009 RAWF Fine Art Showcase. I could hardly get the words out to my Dad on the phone. I was like a giddy little school girl...

In retrospect, it kind of played out like this:  
" have been accepted to the top ten..."


Top Ten?!
**Blinks eyes**

I did it!!
**Heart Rate Skyrockets**
**Permasmile :)**  

For those who are not familiar with the Royal, it is the world’s largest indoor agricultural and international equestrian competition, and draws more than 300,000 visitors to Toronto annually to see thousands of unique entries from elite Canadian and International breeders, growers and exhibitors, over 4,500 large and small animals, shows and activities.

For an emerging artist like myself, that kind of publicity and exposure is hard to achieve.

Granted not all visitors will stop by the art show, but a good percentage are bound to, and my painting will be there featured among the top ten! The show is getting higher exposure and better floor space this year, thanks to a grant from the Canadian Government.

I can't wait to go to the Awards ceremony, not because I want to win a prize, but because I want to be in the company of some really outstanding visual artists, to appreciate their work and maybe learn a thing or two from them.

If you happen to be attending the Royal this year, be sure to stop by the Direct Energy Centre, Hall C, Exhibition Place, Toronto. The show runs from November 6 through 15, 2009.

To readers of my earlier blog post about finding inspiration, rest assured:  I found it. Truly the beginning of good great things to come.

This is the painting that was accepted, titled "Curious Cow".

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Isn't she lovely? - She's the Purr-fect Puss!

I'm happy to say that I've finally completed the painting I started after Thanksgiving, and I couldn't be happier with the results.  Just as I'd hoped, painting one of my favourite things has revived the creativity that was buried under the layers of emotional pain I was feeling after the loss of my Mom.

Although I intended to post some "Work in Progess" shots, I never managed to, because this painting just seemed to come together so quickly.  I think I posted one on my Facebook page, but short of that my intentions were good, really.  Next time, I promise!!

Just as I hoped, working on this painting has inspired me to paint again, I've decided to focus on animal portraits for the time being. My love for animals paired with my love for painting should hopefully combine for positive results.

I would also like to express my gratitude to Katie, the talented photographer and owner of the beautiful kitty in my painting, for allowing me to use "Pickles" as the subject matter. Katie, I can't tell you how much your beautiful kitty helped inspire my creativity!

I am hoping to start my next painting before the weekend, I've started gathering some pictures of Yellow Labs for reference as I sketch out my next subject.  This time around I will post some work in progess shots.

Until next time, here is Pickles for you to enjoy!

"Purr-fectly Content"
Watercolour on Arches 140lb Cold Press
11" x 15"

Friday, October 9, 2009

Hope to Find Some Inspiration

So today marks the beginning of the first Holiday weekend since my Mom passed away.

I won't lie, this week has been very emotional for me, and I'm sure this is only the beginning. I have been uninspired to do anything creative since I got back from the art show. I haven't even unpacked my painting supplies.

Last night I started sketching out my new painting, a close up of beautiful fluffy cat, which I hope will be the start of good things to come. Cats are one of my favourite animals and always make me feel better, so perhaps a wise choice of subject this time around, given the circumstances. 

I'm intending on posting some 'work in progess' shots along the way, to show how I'm making out with it.

Until then, happy Thanksgiving to my Canadian friends and family, and especially to Mom, we will miss you.