Sunday, September 20, 2015

Upcoming Deadlines You Should Know About.

Well, I’m just gonna come right out and say what we’ve all been thinking ...

“Can you believe it’s almost October already?!”

For artists who are keyed into the Art World schedule, the fall weather also means more exhibition openings, events, and upcoming submission deadlines than you can wrap your head around.

In preparation for this busy application season I have 2 goodies for you:

1. A handful of exhibition opportunities you should know about.
(Scroll allllll the way down.)

2. A $10 discount code you can use to take $10 off How to Craft a Winning Exhibition Proposal:  FALL2015  
(Expires October 1, 2015.)

Who loves ya baby?

Big Love,

Above: That magic moment when your artwork matches your outfit.

Upcoming Deadlines

---Art Science Gallery in Austin TX is seeking submissions of artworks for a group art exhibition about critically endangered species. This exhibition seeks to highlight the alarming rate of species decline and extinction worldwide, caused directly and indirectly by human impacts, and what we can do about it. Deadline: October 1st.

---Purdue University Galleries in West Lafayette IN is currently accepting proposals for solo exhibitions. Deadline: October 1st

---The City of Auburn is seeking artists for solo and group exhibitions during its 2016 exhibition season. Artists and/or artists groups of diverse mediums are encouraged to apply. Deadline: October 7th.

---The Pearl Conard Gallery at The Ohio State University Mansfield seeks solo or group exhibition proposals. Proposals on unlimited topics and issues may include 2-D, 3-D, video, technology integrated media, installation, and performance art. There is no fee to submit a proposal.

---The HUB-Robeson Galleries at Penn State University is currently accepting exhibition proposals for its upcoming exhibition season.

Monday, August 17, 2015

What Do We Miss by Playing it "Safe"?

Yesterday I was listening to Fear of Flying by Erica Jong for the 3rd time.  It's a saucy little novel, published in 1973, that caused a fair share of controversy in it's day.

At the end of the audio book there's a really interesting interview with Jong. One thing she said really stuck with me. When the interviewer asked her about her experience of writing the book she admitted that while writing it she was terrified. She said:

"When you're terrified, embarrassed, don't wanna put it down on paper, I've found through the years, usually you're doing something good."
Jong has a good point. Often you have to go to scary places to get to the good stuff. Not every time, but sometimes. If you aren't a little teeny tiny bit scared, you might not be digging deep enough.

Food for thought:

What do we stand to miss out on by playing it "safe"?

How do you push through and keep making work that feels uncomfortable or even embarrassing?

How do you know when you're on the right track?

Big Love,

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Fess Up! Do You Suffer from "Artist Insanity"?

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again 
and expecting different results.”
- Albert Einstein

I will be the first to admit that I have suffered from insanity.

Over the course of my art career, I spent years trying the same “so-called” marketing techniques time and time again even though it was obvious I wasn’t seeing a return on my investment.

Some forms of insanity I have participated in:
  • Paying for expensive “prints” of my work, hoping I could sell them at a lower price point---even though I had no mailing list or existing collector base to even try to market them to.
  • Spending hundreds of dollars applying to and shipping artworks to random, poorly publicized and poorly attended juried exhibitions or competitions because I was panicky about not having enough lines on my resume.  
  • Investing an enormous amount of money in framing a body of work, even though I had done ZERO marketing and had no exhibitions lined up for said body of work.
  • Spending time in Linked-In groups complaining and moaning about how my art sales sucked, when I should have been out at art openings meeting new people, or taking workshops to get better at my craft.
  • Blindly sending “gallery packets” year after year to gallery directors that I had never met or to galleries I’d never even visited.
  • Paying good money for software to send out incredibly boring and poorly designed e-mail newsletters.

All of these things involved a considerable amount of time, money, and emotional energy, yet even though I knew these things weren’t getting me anywhere I still continued to do them---for years! After all---I had become quite good at them.  (Especially the complaining and moaning part.)

Have you ever suffered from “ Artist Insanity”?

What insanely bad habits are you finally ready to get rid of?

BIG Love,


Thursday, July 30, 2015

Are You Thinking BIG Enough?

I like to buy my shoes from this adorable little French boutique, but I also order shoes on-line from Zappos. 

I buy hair gel at CVS, but I also buy my fancy shampoo from a supplier in London and have it shipped by Royal Mail. 

My favorite butcher shop is just down town, but I’m also a fan of Rocky Mountain Organic Meats who will ship me gorgeous juicy organic steaks all the way from Powell, Wyoming.

All this to say: I am a global buyer. So is your next art collector.

The internet has completely democratized the way people search for and buy the things they need. Artists should be the first people taking advantage of this fact.

Sure, I’ve sold a few pieces of my artwork to people who live within driving distance of my studio, but the bulk of my sales come from people who I’ve never even met and who live 1000+ miles away.

There just aren’t enough local art buyers in my neck of the woods to keep me supplied in paints, brushes, and fancy British shampoo. 

It’s great to think local, but for your art business to be a success you need to think globally.

Are you thinking big enough? 

Are your self-imposed limitations holding you back?

Are you focusing on sales from your local gallery or recent exhibition while neglecting the Facebook friends, Twitter followers, or people on your mailing list that are just a mouse click away?

It’s time to redraw your boundaries.

It’s time to think BIG.

Big Love,

Friday, July 24, 2015

What Activities in Your Life Deserve to be Given the CHOP?

One of the questions I get asked most often is “You have so many things going on and you're always on the go! How do you manage to get everything done?”

The answer: I don’t.

The truth is that I have no magic recipe for packing more hours into the day. I have just as many work and family obligations as the next gal.

The main reason I’m able to be so productive, work on so many fun projects, and take so many exciting trips is because I've learned to say “No!”

Every errand, so-called obligation, or activity that has no significantly positive, long-term impact on my life has been banished. I simply give them the “CHOP”.
“I’m having a boring dinner party Friday, can you come?”
Thanks! But Nope.

“Can you donate an artwork to our annual fundraiser….?” 
 Uhm, Hell No.

“Hey, we’re gonna make popcorn and watch Fast & Furious 8 on my new jumbo flat screen TV. Wanna come over?” 
Yes. Definitely! Leaving the house now.

See? Priorities.

Chop, Chop, and CHOP!

I don’t have any spare time. All of my time is accounted for and filled with high-value and high-reward experiences that truly increase the quality of my life.

Learning to say “no” easily and often, will not only allow you to make advances in your art career, but will ultimately improve the over-all quality of your life.

A few questions to contemplate:

What low-value activity can you completely eliminate from your schedule?

What everyday activities in your life deserve to be given the CHOP?

What do you have a hard time saying "No" to? 

What can you start saying “No” to TODAY?

BIG Love,

Friday, July 10, 2015

Exhibition Opportunities for Artists: July 2015 Edition.

July 1st marked the half way point of 2015. That means 2 things:

1.  This year is flying by! 

2. The deadlines for next year's opportunities are coming up NOW!

It's already time to think ahead to 2016.  Are you ready to apply?

Check it out:

The Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods in Riverwoods IL is accepting Exhibition Proposals for 6 to 8 week solo or group shows exploring the intersection of art, science and nature.

The Herron Galleries at the Herron School of Art and Design in Indianapolis IN is currently accepting Exhibition Proposals for its upcoming exhibition season.

The Lubeznik Center for the Arts in Michigan City, IN reviews submissions for solo and group exhibitions quarterly. Artists will be notified within one month of review.

The Laboratory Gallery in Spokane Washington offers a residency open to interactive artists who wish to spend 1-3 months working on  ‘interactive art’  that directly responds to the viewer.  The laboratory is currently accepting applications for winter residencies, of up to 3 months, between November 2015 and February 2016.  Deadline July 15.

Viewpoint Photographic Art Center in Sacremento is currently accepting Exhibition Proposals of cohesive body of work for both solo and group exhibitions for 2016. Deadline: August 7.

Big Love,

Friday, July 3, 2015

The Artists' Declaration of Independence.

“In order to change the world,
you have to get your head together first.”

– Jimi Hendrix

I claim independence from negative thoughts and self-criticism and the need to compare myself to others instead of focusing on how to be the best at what I do.

I claim independence from the judgments of others.  I will not be diminished by those who seek to make me feel small or limit my ability to truly shine.

I claim independence from the unyielding desire for the approval of others at a cost to my personal well-being and sense of purpose.

I claim independence from the fear and doubt that keeps me from creating my most beautiful and most powerful work.

I claim independence from a life of struggle and difficulty.  Instead, I choose optimism, success, and possibility.

Get FREE, baby!

BIG Free Love,

p.s  Print this out and tape it to your bathroom mirror.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Are Your Fears Robbing You of the Art Career You Deserve?

At the end of 2006 I took a break from painting. 
The break wasn’t really by choice.  

I didn’t have a studio space and I was getting really frustrated with painting in the corner of my tiny dining room.  So instead of painting, I started working on some small collages. 

 Signed and numbered Archival Pigment Print. 
9 x 12 inches.  Edition of 15.

One day, out of boredom, I started taking photos of the images and photographs I was working on. In a matter of hours I’d created over 200 images. At the end of the day, I filed the images away on my computer and didn’t think much about them again until I heard about the En Foco New Works PhotographyAward.

At the time, I didn’t really think of myself as a photographer, so I didn’t feel very confident about applying. After all, painting had always been my primary medium. 

In my mind I made up a million excuses for why I shouldn't bother sending my work in for this opportunity:  

"What business do I have entering a competition at this stage in my career?" 

"What if my work isn't a good fit for the organization?"

"What if my work doesn’t measure up to the work being submitted by the other artists?"

Sound familiar?

In the end I decided to take a chance and submit my work. That one decision changed everything...

Dancing for joy as I accept my En Foco New Works Award of $1000 at the Opening Event at
Taller Boricua Gallery in New York City.

A few months later I was standing in a New York City gallery being awarded an En Foco New Works Photography Award. Not only did becoming an En Foco Fellow help me find the motivation and courage to complete what would become the (Re)calling and (Re)telling series, it was an opportunity for guidance and exposure that truly helped push my entire art career forward.

In the years since receiving the En Foco New Works Award, the (Re)calling and (Re)telling series has been exhibited in numerous international galleries, museums, and art fairs and went on to become one of my most popular and most recognizable bodies of work.  At the end of 2013 the series was acquired for the permanent collection of The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Moral of the story:  
If you want to get your work out into the world, 
you have to take chances.

Sending out your work for exhibition opportunities is an important and absolutely necessary career step for artists. Not only does it build your artist resume, but it also builds confidence and good professional work habits. 

Are you ready to take some chances?

Don't let your fear rob you of an opportunity that might change your life forever.

Wayne Gretzky was right:  
"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." 

Big Love,

p.s. A few more resources for you:

Need help crafting a polished, professional Exhibition Proposal for your work?  

Wanna research more Artist Residency opportunities?  
Go here:

Looking for more Open Calls?  Go here:

Friday, June 19, 2015

After five years, ART-FIX is calling it quits! What This Means for You and What You Should do Next.

If you're not signed up to the ART-FIX mailing list, you likely missed this important announcement....

After five years, I’ve finally decided to call it quits.

December 2015 will be the end of

No more blog posts.  

No more classes or workshops.

...And no more 1-on-1 Consulting Sessions.

I’ve had an amazing time working with all of you, but I have big things on the horizon for my “day job”. (You know, the one where I’m a full-time artist.)

What This Means For You:

Up until August 15th you can still sign up to work with me:

▪  Your  1-on-1 session with me is only $350.

▪  You’ll also get 2 months of unlimited e-mail feedback at no extra charge.

You can use your time with me to work on whatever you want.

 ▪  If you need a 6 month action plan, we’ll hammer one out.

▪  If you need help with your website and newsletters, we’ll do that.

▪  If you need advice on submitting your work for exhibitions, we’ll work on that. 

▪  If you need a swift kick in the pants….Darlin’, I’m the person to give it to you!

What You Need to Do Next:

To lock in your 1-on-1 session before the August 15th cut off, you have two options:

1. You can go to this page and reserve your 1-on-1 session instantly.
Once you pay, you’ll fill out the intake questionnaire, and I’ll get you scheduled ASAP.

2. If you need to arrange a payment plan, you can send me an email and say, “I’d like to reserve my 1-on-1 session and place my $150 deposit.” or something like that, and then I’ll e-mail you back and set that up.

Either way, Easy as pie.

Big EASY Love,

Me and a Banksy I stumbled upon last month in New Orleans while on my way to the French Quarter. This #artlife is full of beautiful surprises!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

$45 Application Fee? No Thanks! NO FEE Exhibition Opportunities for Artists. June 2015 Edition.

Define/Refine/Edify: BFA Graphic Design Exhibition at
The Rutgers University Paul Robeson Galleries. April 9-23, 2015.

The Dubuque Area Arts Collective is seeking unexpected and sophisticated uses of recycled and found materials for its upcoming exhibition “EARTH”. Works should focus on topics related to environmental issues and/or consist of salvaged or found objects.  Deadline July 5th.

Rutgers University Paul Robeson Galleries are seeking artwork dealing w/ critters such as mice, rats, bed bugs, ticks, cockroaches, other uninvited guests in homes, for an exhibition titled “The Undesirables”.  Deadline August 31st.

Five Points Gallery in Torrington CT is currently accepting submissions for possible inclusion in upcoming gallery exhibitions.

The Berkeley Art Center is currently accepting Exhibition Proposals from individual artists or artist groups for general consideration or for specific projects that take the form of gallery–based exhibitions, public programs, and events. Projects may exist as a one-time occurrence or may be ongoing.

The Buffalo Arts Studio accepts on-going submissions from local, national, and international artists for inclusion in both solo and group exhibitions for its 2016/2017 exhibition season.

Hockaday Museum of Art in Kalispell MT is currently accepting Proposal-based submissions by individuals, groups and curators.

Big Love,

p.s.  More than a few of these are "Proposal Based" open calls.  That means in order for your application to even be considered, you'll have to write a proposal. 

But DON'T FREAK OUT!   If you need help creating a well-written, professional exhibition proposal, keep calm and get help here: