Saturday, February 27, 2010

Yay, an Honorable Mention!

A couple of days ago I received my "December Bay" photo back from the Gillette Nature Association winter photo contest I had submitted it to.  I didn't think it had received anything, but when I opened the envelope, there was an honorable mention ribbon inside, and velcro on the back of the piece from where it had been displayed for a month in the visitor center!  That was pretty cool!  The contest had been advertised statewide, including on the website, which was where I saw it.

They also sent a flyer for their next photo contest, which is deeply intriguing, (fungus and lichens... a perfect subject for microscope work!)  However, my husband is moving us to a new state soon, so I don't know if I'll be able to enter.

Here's the honorably mentioned photo:

Monday, February 15, 2010

On Barren Trees

I wish other artists would stop with the nothing-but-barren-tree-branches-in-winter photos. Every artist (myself included) has barren-branch pics; yet these artists think they're so innovative/deep with their shots that ANYBODY can get. OMG people. Keep your branch pics to yourself. Everybody has them. Anybody (including the most inexperienced photographer) can take one that looks good, and they're just plain too easy. If you're a professional photographer, don't offer a product that can be easily duplicated by somebody picking up a camera for the first time. Find a more creative way to express the mood you want to invoke. Isn't that what artists are paid for?


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

New Home on the Net

Zatista finally approved my work last week, (it took about two weeks to go through their review process,) so my work has a new home on the web! I've only put the 5x7's (matted and framed to 8x10) up, and two 8x10's matted & framed to 11x14, but the important thing is that the art is out there.

Check it out:

I like Zatista a lot better than I liked GoZabo. There are no fibercrafts, the site is professional without being pretentious, and the search functions are really good. Plus, it's all original, limited edition art, so you're not competing with prints from dead masters.

Here's hoping for a long and profitable future there.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I'm re-naming the cat "Stewie"

A funny thing happened to me yesterday while photographing snowflakes. I was out on the back porch, and the cat was inside the house meowing to come out with me. I ignored him and continued with my work until my fingers got too cold to work correctly, at which point I usually go inside. When I went to go back in, the deadbolt was locked. The cat had actually trapped me out on the back porch in the freezing cold!

Our chest freezer is by the back door, and Marley (our cat) likes to lay on it. We knew he could reach the deadbolt because we've watched him paw at it before. He knows it makes a fun clicking noise, and he knows the humans use the shiny things to open the door. He's never really shown any interest in it when we're outside, though; usually he's on the floor meowing to come out.

Yesterday, he must have put two and two together and tried to let himself out by switching the deadbolt over. If we lived in a house, there wouldn't have been a problem. However, we live in a second-floor apartment. There was no way for me to get down from the deck. I didn't have a phone, keys, gloves, or a hat; just my coat, boots, and laptop. I started banging on the door to try to wake my husband, who was sleeping at the time, but he didn't hear me because our room is pretty far from the back door.

Luckily I had a wi-fi connection out there, so I actually put a "HELP I'M TRAPPED!" message on facebook asking somebody to call the leasing office. About 20 minutes later, maintenance was there to open the door. The whole thing was really funny, once I warmed up. Who actually gets locked out of their house by their CAT?

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The art of Waiting

Waiting seems to be the name of the game right now: waiting for new snow to fall, waiting for a few contests to be judged, waiting for a new website to approve my work so that I can start selling again.

I'm hoping my new store on the web will be on Zatista. It seems to be a really solid site with an emphasis on quality work, and the commission they take is really low. (They only take 18%, as opposed to 40% at museum shows and 50% at the gallery.) Zatista is definitely more professional than GoZabo was, so naturally their approval process is lengthier; but I can't see a reason why they wouldn't approve me. The four images I submitted to them have sold relatively well here.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Web Homeless


I just found out that Gozabo, the site where I sold my photos online, has gone down, with absolutely no warning to the artists. I'm not sure if it's forever, or how long it's been down, but it appears that I now need to shop for a new web presence. Boffo.

Ah well. Fresh start, fresh opportunities.

Contest entry for Gardening Gone Wild

One of my hobbies is gardening, so when I saw a photo contest on Gardening Gone Wild with the theme of Winter's Beauty, I knew I had to submit an entry, and I knew which shot it had to be.

This shot was taken with the field microscope in one of the vegetable boxes on the deck, and I was really happy with the fact that I got the snowflake in the process of melting, but managed to capture it before the detail of the heart of the snowflake had melted away. I thought it worked well for the garden blog contest, because not only does it show snow, but also magnified soil, and I think they play well together.

Snow is my "KHAAAAANNNN!!!"

Snow is proving itself to be the bane of my existence. I must've been really lucky last year. Here it is, almost February, and many of my best shots from this year are just mediocre. The snow has been the same old thing, and my equipment is really frustrating me. The digital field microscope only captures 3 megapixels; my phone takes higher-res pictures. Granted, the field of vision is a lot smaller on the microscope, so you don't need as many megapixels, but the frustrations are still there. Also, the depth is challenging. Many potentially awesome shots are marred by a blurry patch from something being a millimeter closer to the camera (or further away) in the shot, and because the imperfection is tiny and made of ice, I can't move it out of the way. (The radiant heat would melt the flake I'm trying to capture, even with gloves or the use of a tool.)

A friend and fellow artist suggested that I enter some contests to get my morale back, and I've taken her advice by entering a landscape shot I got while walking the dog along the bay at my parents' place in a couple of competitions. The next post is actually going to be a contest entry for one of the photomicrographs, so if that post seems out of place with the tone of the rest of the blog, that's why.

Other than that, things are relatively slow in my little art world, with the exception of receiving an email from Dennos with an application for their small works show in May attached. I'm excited to try out some new shots and see how they sell. I'm hoping to do better this year than last year, and last year I sold five.