I never updated this post on my 100 paintings in 100 days challenge, and it is way past time.
Sometimes you have to move the energy. You have to make an unreasonable gesture just for the sake of breaking out of a pattern. Living life with the intention of being a self-employed fine artist comes with challenges. That is obvious to everyone, artists and non-artists alike. It takes great energy and great effort. Those things are required in any creative endeavor. The Narathon (or Century Watercolor Extravaganza) is an example of that. It was not easy, but it was necessary because you can never allow yourself to stagnate. You always have to find a way past the limits, within and without.
I made a little money, yes. All of the paintings sold. But I can tell you, selling paintings for from $1 to $100 is not a get-rich-quick scheme. Bottom line, it was wonderful that all the paintings sold; not because of the monies made, but because of the exchange of energy, the opportunity to engage with many people and feel the enjoyment and enthusiasm that friends and collectors shared with me. That nurturing sustenance was the greatest reward and made the effort well worth it. And, truthfully, that was the point, moving the energy. Life energy moves between people. You can’t hole up in your studio and expect for people to come find you.
The thing is, you can never quit. I have to keep moving the energy, and it is a continuous, creative confrontation. Painting is a creative pursuit, but, in reality, no more so than all of life when it is lived fully and with intention. And so it is, to grow my “brand” or “business” or whatever you want to call how I am presenting myself to the world and to you. I can’t say that promoting myself is what I would choose to do. It’s a hassle, and it is hard work. Nevertheless, it is necessary, and it is not good to struggle against what is necessary. It is best to cooperate with it.
At its core I guess I would have to say that it is important for me to be honest with myself and with others, and that I be willing to play the game. I also recognize that “the game” must be played with joy and love. No matter what, those things have to be in place. So, I am always looking for ways to play, to engage my friends and others who have voiced an interest in my work. And I am, of course, always looking for ways to extend my reach. After all, at the end of the day I have to make a living. I know you know what I am talking about.
If you would like to see the hundred watercolors (actually there were two or three colored pencil drawings and a couple sumi ink paintings tossed in for variety) you can follow this link, or if you would like to see the paintings with the poems that accompanied each you can click here.
Announcing the Century Watercolor Extravaganza! The faster you go, the cheaper it gets. So, don’t hesitate, click away and buy.
If you want to take a moment to find out what you are buying I will explain the “Century Watercolor Extravaganza” or “100 in 100”. For one hundred days I will complete a watercolor painting or a colored pencil drawing. Upon completion I will post an image of the artwork on my website, one painting or drawing every day. Each painting will be made available for purchase the morning after it is completed. The first painting will be offered for $1.00, the second for $2.00, and so on, the last will be priced at $100.00. Now you see why it’s the “Century Watercolor Extravaganza”.
I didn’t originate this concept. Jolie Guillebeau is a creative and enterprising artist who originally conjured 100 in 100. It’s a way of shaking the tree. Of course, we are trying to reach more collectors, but there is the added benefit of putting the demand on myself to do a painting every day. It’s kind of like speed chess. It’s a different and challenging way to approach my work. I am eager to see where these hundred paintings will take me.
Anyone else up for some fun? If so, get on the list. The Extravaganza begins June 16. I will send you the link for the daily painting as soon as it is uploaded. Of course, I encourage you to share the links with everyone you have ever known. No, wait a minute...maybe not everyone. You be the judge.