Tag Archives: creativity

I, Me, Mine

Channeling a little George Harrison, there…….

It seems to me that I talk about myself and my art a lot here.  I guess that’s normal, after all, it is my blog and it is supposed to be artsy.  Also, these are the subjects I know best,

The portrait above is me, a few years back.  I’m not really into doing self portraits.  Why would I want to do that, when there are so many more interesting and beautiful subjects to be drawn?

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Another topic I know a lot about is retail. I’ve worked in it for so many years, and it’s changed in stores since the internet became the competition.

It used to be enough to ask a customer if she needed help, and leave her alone if she just wanted to look.  Now it’s all about “asking  open ended questions”, to get the customer to talk about herself, giving the impression of sincere interest.  In the meantime, you are listening with the motive of finding out about her, to find something to sell to her. You step in like a vulture when you’ve got it.  Seems pretty dishonest to me.

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On the other hand, a friend of mine asked about making conversations with strangers to make a friend.  Again, the solution is to get that person to talk about herself.  If you can listen with sincere interest, you’ll make a friend.

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So, I’ve managed to not talk about myself a little.

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And some subjects aren’t subjects at all. Just a note, the drawing in this post are pretty random.

So, I don’t do many portraits, self or otherwise.  I find getting a likeness difficult, even if I do the tried and true.

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Roxanne Baldwin’s Artsy Store

Small Stuff for Sale

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Starting All Over, Again, Again

Can You Draw a Bicycle?

I thought this article was pretty amusing.  Of course, drawing from imagination is a challenge.  Most of my life I’ve used photos or life as reference, but now I start out on a new quest (self-indulgence is great).  I’m drawing from imagination.  Pertinent to this is drawing a bicycle from memory.  Here’s mine.  Of course I did cheat, and put a figure in front of it, hiding a big part of it.

So, as to the title…I realize big life changes bring on big changes in artwork.  When I moved to New York City, my work changed from when I lived in Connecticut before.  It took a while to settle in.

Art from Connecticut first time:

 

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Another one from my Connecticut years about 10 years later.

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And getting into the 90’s

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Then with tremendous ado, we moved to New York City. Manhattan particularly.  I tried to work as if I was still back in my home town of Stamford, CT. but the subject matter had changed.  Finally, I made it work:

PREWAR

DISCO

And then, with a little less ado, we moved to Sunnyside in Queens.  I remember trying, trying, trying to draw the bridge outside my window that connected Queens to Brooklyn, or the other way around, depending on whether you were a Mets fan.  The picture turned out dark and horrible, and I destroyed it immediately. I gave up art, totally and forever, or so I thought.  Then after a long break which took me on a journey into learning and practising Reiki, of all things.

So, then once again, it began to flow.  I started up again, with drawing more appropriate to Queens.

VIEW FROM LONG ISLAND CITY, BY ROXANNE

GUARDIANS, BY ROXANNE BALDWIN

So, for many reasons, I decided to move back to Connecticut, dragging my boyfriend kicking and screaming. Of course, I tried to draw the state as if I were still living in Queens.

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I avoided drawing people in NYC, because there were so many of them, and they were downright annoying.  So, I’ve come back, and am, touching, very lightly, the subject of human beings again (as opposed to just cats).

The featured image is one of the first..so, let it rock and let it roll!

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Roxanne Baldwin’s Artsy Store, 

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Looking at the Bigger Picture

The picture above started with a small sketch.

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As you can see, the lines are messier, and the detail unclear.  That’s what the problem with working small is.

So partially, it’s my lack of physical stability that’s making me work so small.  Also, having the long, tired out, idea that small pictures would sell better, and damn…..presto, I would be making a living as an artist.  I have sold a couple, but mostly greeting cards below a reasonable wage to make them.

So, the quandary is: Do I try once again to tie myself in pretzels to find something that sells?  Or do I stay the path and do my the work I enjoy doing and people seem to like, even when they’re not buyers?

I can’t put the love and details into something as small as a 5×7.  Here are some examples.

This:

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Became this:

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This:

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Became this:

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True, there have been a couple of small ones that sold on EBay:

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So, the question is, do I sell out or do I keep authentic?  Since no one seems to be buying when I try to sell out….

I do have the ability to sit and brace my hand at larger than 5×7, and and get into those tasty details I love so much.

So, one last try at getting small:

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Soon to come to a larger picture near you.

And this from last week.

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Bricks

A little background info….

I’ve been away for a while, in case you haven’t noticed. I needed some time to reflect, think about where I’ve been, where I’m going and most importantly, where I am.

And it all comes down to bricks…well, sort of.

When I first really got going working in colored pencil, I lived in Greenwich, CT. Somehow, and for what reason I can’t figure out, I became drawn to drawing (Ha) buildings with bricks. I sweated tears over each individual rectangle, making sure it was perfect.

Then I landed quite happily but totally unexpectedly in Manhattan. Again, loads and loads of bricks to be drawn! I still was sweating over each and every single detail.

 

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So, then due to circumstances which are beyond explaining.  I landed in Queens, a little community called Sunnyside.  And much to my delight, I found bricks!  By now, I was taking those little rectangles in stride.

GUARDIANS, BY ROXANNE BALDWIN

Then after 20 years of ups and downs and all arounds in NYC, I ended up back in Connecticut in a small city called Danbury.  It’s as a large of a city as I want to deal with for a while.

And whaddya think I found there?  My first picture there, bricks.

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And bricks and cats.

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After this much needed break, guess what I start with?

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And a familiar door.  Yes, I know it’s October, I started this pic in May.

An Idea that Didn’t Make the Cut

Or if you’d rather..an idea that crashed and burned.

It was to be entitled, “One Person’s Trash”.

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I saw it sitting, discarded, by the side of the road.  I found it to be cute and interesting. Obviously, someone”s daughter outgrew it.  So far, so good.

But then I started thinking about that little girl, and myself as a little girl.  Also, all the other little girls who fantasized themselves to be princesses, and ended up sadly having to accept that real life is full of disappointments.

I’m sure that goes for little boys, too, and their fantasies.

So, the idea got to be kind of sad…and not what I had intended to portray.

So, back to a theme that gives me sublime joy, the various textures and colors of summer trees.  Like this picture, from long ago:

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Everything is on hold for the time being…had to order paper.  It is promised to be here by August 19, so stay tuned.

I Wanted to Sell Out!

But no one was buying. (Warning: Bad art displayed, here)

I always wanted to make a living with my art.  At first, I wanted to design posters.  I assumed that if a subject appealed to me, then it would appeal to other people.  However, I think most artists create with that in mind.

I’ve been given many suggestions by well-meaning people for making money with my art.  Design tatoos?  Most of the work suggested would really make me hate doing artwork. (Note: if you like tatoos, I don’t see anything wrong with it, they’re just not me).

So off I went on a journey to make money with my art.  My first try was portraiture, which I’m still willing to do.  It’s just hard to find enough clients with so much competition.

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I should mention the woman in this portrait was 110 years old at the time.

Then I had a great idea of doing very small pictures that I could do quickly, and sell for cheap.  Limited success there.  Here’s one that actually sold:

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Then the whole ACEO (Art cards editions and originals).  These are cards that are

2/12 inches by 3 1/2.  Many people collect them, and some artists are very successful with this.  A popular theme is cats.  I thought, I like cats!,and did my best.

I was a little bored with the subject matter, and could not compete with the ones who really could do cats very well.  Here is my sad try:

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Also, landmarks on ACEO’s seem to work.  However, I didn’t have the patience to do good drawing of NYC.

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So,now I’m back where I started from….doing pictures I like, and hoping to earn money from them on hold.  But not given up, as I learn more about marketing.

Hopefully, my meandering career will be of some help to young creative people out there.  Some will tell you “art is a product”, but in my experience, how you feel about what you’re doing affects the quality of the product you’re producing…..and bad products don’t sell.

Okay, back to work!

Help Wanted: An Inventor

For sometime, I’ve been looking for the perfect art supply.  It can take images in my mind, project them directly from my eyes, and develop the picture on the paper, with absolutely no handiwork from me.  If you can come up with it, I guarantee you’ll make a fortune.

But since that doesn’t exist at the moment, I drag my way doing hand drawing.

On this piece, I’m going to be taking it slow.  Remember, I’m throwing out the rules on this one.  Remember what happened last time I took a risk?  Right, disaster.

So, easy does it.  Or maybe I’m just a glutton for punishment.

Anyway, here’s the beginning of “Construction”.  I’m starting with a detail and working outwards:

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