Judging – a privilege to be asked

This afternoon I took part in what turned out to be a small exercise, the joint judging entries for the Purbeck Art Weeks 2019 sketching competition. There were entries from both adults and children.

A remit had been to represent the PAW event. One adult design took in a number of activities within the event including the refreshments served in several venues as well as the arts and music. Another adult travelled to many of the venues where he sat and sketched quick pieces, before moving on to the next. I am aware of this as he visited my studio amongst others.

Corfe Castle was a firm favourite among several of the children’s entries.

My fellow judge was Fran Quinlan and we were assisted by Ali Burnett who is the administrator for PAW. The range of prizes from Daler were very encouraging and I hope that the prize winners enjoy using their new art materials. Also all 200 sketchbooks with instrument set sold out during PAW as well.

In the title I refer to this as a privilege as I see myself as being in my third year as an artist, therefor being asked on the basis of my own drawing was an honour. Thanks PAW.

How long have you ….?

AndyKnillArt, as regular readers will know started as a going concern in late January 2017. Before then I had drawn pieces but never actually tried to sell any of my art. When my Open Studio is available to the public in Purbeck Art Weeks for 16 days visitors can see the snow range of my portfolio. Often the comment is made that I have been prolific in the work produced.

One of the items friends said I should consider from the start of seeking sales was to produce greeting cards. I chose early on to go with a product that was professional quality and in appearance and selected to use he services of Art2Card in Upwey, Dorset who were recommended by several other PAW artists.

As I reduce original prices of art I ask myself if the piece might have a wider appeal than a one off piece for sale. If I think this is the case I will consider whether to have giclée prints made (again a long term quality product) and cards printed. The minimum order I can have is 36 cards and when I started this was often the size of orders or updates. Now in my third year I find myself ordering stock in 50s, 100 or even 200 of particular designs that sell well. This identifying of patterns does take time to establish especially if like me you only sell your cards personally and maybe one outlet likeI do how with thePurbeck Artisan Yard in Wareham.

The list below is the range of cards I have now developed – most remain on sale and some have been very successful very quickly.

Commissions for houses

I have recently completed my first commission of a home for a client to gift for Father’s Day. It was well received. I have posted about this on Facebook and will share that here. I greatly enjoyed this piece of work and want to offer my services for anyone else who might be interested.

Use my contact form if you think this would be of interest to you.

Thanks

Andy

Enjoying other people’s art

Since I started the idea of selling my art at the end of January 2017 I have been exposed to more examples of art as I meet many other artists in Purbeck and across Dorset, plus other artists using Instagram and Facebook globally. I enjoy this. There will be pieces I admire but not have space for or the finances to buy.

I have been lucky to buy pieces over a number of years, now I increasingly buy work from local artists whose work I admire and who often have become friends too.

The last two larger piece that I have bought are sculptural rather than paintings.

At Christmas while I took part in Artisans on the Beach 2018 my hut was next to Alan’s and this splendid piece showing a range of his glass fish was exhibited daily outside his hut. As the event was successful for me I was able to buy it and I look at it everyday as it catches the light in so many ways and expresses movement.

During Purbeck Art Weeks 2019 I left my studio for two visits after normal opening hours. At Moira Purver’s we bought a small deer piece for my mother in law. At Angelika Seik’s my heart fell in love with a piece that expressed how Anne and I often relax with a book and a mug of tea. This is my largest purchase to date and I was able to sell some of my art too as a part exchange towards the price of the piece.

What do you enjoy art wise readers?

Next steps post PAW

A week where energy was in short supply on Monday. Thursday I was on duty at Purbeck Artisan Yard and had a few friends who dropped in to have a go with the pens.

The main art event of the week has been completing the commission I received in PAW. The image has been approved and it should be collected tomorrow all framed and ready to go with d-rings and non stretch cord ready to hang.

I have also been working on that old favourite stocktaking and moving stock from one place to another. The artisan yard bay now has the card carousel as I do not need it for an event until December. So updating of my stock records, identifying which card stock need replacing. Also it got me to update my financial records. 2018/19 was clearly an improvement on 2017/18.

I have several ideas bubbling for new pictures to work on inc. a new card series to start, some more yacht racing inspired pieces based on the feedback to “Racing” in the studio during PAW. Also further care investigations on original art clothing as work on my first clothing commission.

Just to show artists also look at other people’s work too, we bought an original moo selfie reserved with Lucy Tidbury before PAW, our favourite, a highland moo and Corfe Castle. Also after visiting Angelika Seik’s studio I am buying a statue (there’s a first) of “Reading and Drinking Tea” as it speaks volumes to Anne and I.

PAW 2019…and over

Yes, I missed day 16 as a blog post but to be honest by the end of the afternoon and collecting in my Street direction signs from Corfe Castle up to the village and track I was just exhausted.

So I thought this post could be about summarising what PAW 2019 has been for me;

a) I no longer have a problem admitting that I am now an artist. This seems an obvious thing to some but just 28 months ago this was a new direction for me totally.

b) I have greatly enjoyed the interaction / chat with visitors, although numbers have far surpassed anything I could have expected based on my 2017 and 2018 experiences.

c) The direction I have taken in being open about my own mental health and starting to keep sketchbooks have helped me to encourage others to engage in some “Art for Fun” and this is definitely a direction I want to continue with. I thank Simon Wells for his facebook posts and comments on this. I have had enquires about working with some adult groups and we will see what become of this.

d) Drawing on my clothes is fun and I aim to continue with this. The next step is to investigate the longer term care of said garments and see if there is a way to make this another item that I can offer to future customers.

e) I have taken on a commission doing something that I enjoy, we will see what the final feedback is, but maybe I am now in a better place to seek more of this type of work sometimes.

f) My art is fun for me and continues to be an important therapy. I must not let myself be distracted by creating a “career” as I do not need a direction that consumes time when I could be out and about, especially with Anne.

g) Living and working at Hillview gives me a great advantage as an Open studio as the walkers and curious take a chance to see part of the property they have walked past in some cases for many years. I just need to enjoy the experience of living here which in the evenings of PAW have involved watching the bird life and exploits of the local hares and roe deer.

h) Finally, that the local art community are a great one to be part of and an opportunity to learn and share with that I can enjoy for many years to come.

If you have read my daily posts, thank you.

Anything you would like more / less of – just use the Contact form to let me know.

Thanks

Andy

PAW 2019 day fifteen

2 ………

Well, penultimate day and the weather is sunny, just the 40+ mph winds put a slight dampener on the day. I got to sit outside most of the day except when showing visitors around. One dog today who was a return visitor – nervous but accepted their dog treat.

Sales wise a good day with one mounted and one framed print plus cards. A return contact re possible Art for a dementia home and two visitors today with interest about overalls and possibly using Art for fun in a mindfulness group setting. We will see where these leads may go to in the future.

Simon my Swanage pal came up briefly and drew another pic.

Also made some more progress with current commission piece too.

This evening I caught up with my stock records having done a check of home stocks of cards this morning. Over the 15 days so far, between Rollington Barn (13), Purbeck Artisan Yard (29) and the Open studio – I have sold 295 greetings cards in PAW 2019, this is almost treble what I sold last year. A stunning success.

My sales records are now the equivalent of 2017 and 2018 added together and 50% up on 2018. Visitor numbers are now at 416 after 250 in 2017 and 276 in 2018.

So, Sunday, the forecast is good for a warm, dry and less windy day and after that there will be some rest and trips out from the homestead this week as well as stock taking at the Artisan Yard.

Thanks for following my daily posts.

Andy

PAW 2019 Day Fourteen

3…..

Yes a mixed day today with heavy rain to start the day – I used this time in the studio to start work on a commission piece. Later the rain eased and the first of today’s visitors came. Several local friends visited today and all 11 came from Purbeck. The best aspect of the day was the chance to chat quite extensively with people that we know and for some who know me from my boat job, seeing my art work for the first time.

We also saw 4 dogs who all enjoyed a treat. The weather brightened army in the afternoon so I was able to act as dog entertainer for a bit. Later the rain returned. Not a big day for sales but as I said yesterday I have surpassed all previous records and visitor numbers and sales are both up by almost 50% on last year.

As PAW draws to an end of 2019 I start looking forwards to what aspects of my work or subjects / topics to work on next. Ideas include more yacht racing pieces; start “Santa Over Dorset” series; complete commissions I have; make arrangements to do a wider variety of “Art for fun” activities; complete the care aspect of my original drawn on clothing so I can look at possible pieces that I might produce for sale… one fellow artist the other day said that the difficulty as deciding what to do next – as you can see, I have the what aspect, it is more the when or in what order to organise.

PAW 2019 Day thirteen

A bright and breezy day today. I sat outside for most of it except for guiding visitors around the gallery and studio. Drawing for me today was adding two sleeve designs on opposite sides of one sleeve of the Art for a fun overall. I was pleased with the effect.

My next clothing task is adding drawings of tools and possibly quotes from a local crafter who works with wood. She dropped her apron off today for me to start work on it.

The client who reserved the rowing picture, shared yesterday, came today and we arranged for me to frame it and I dropped it off to them locally after the studio closed.

Twenty one visitors today bought more cards and I have now sold over 230 this year in the thirteen days so far. Tomorrow a new batch of two designs are due to arrive just before my stock runs out.

My commission client dropped their deposit by today and tomorrow I shall be based in the studio getting on with their piece over the next few days.

PAW19 has been a record breaking event for me where I have exceeded visitor numbers and sales from my last two PAWs. I may actually have set a new sales record for any event I have taken part in.

So let us see what the next three days bring.

PAW 2019 day twelve

A mixed day with warm sun at points and others very cool and breezy. A busier day with visitors both in the morning, afternoon and some friends after hours. A chance to chat in several cases over a nice mug of tea or coffee. Sales were lower today.

So, what have I completed and / or been selling these last 12 days?

I have sold 210 cards in 12 days which is over 100 more than last year. The good thing is that I have sold copies of all my cards on offer, some cards have sold more obviously including the new Santa Over Purbeck cards for 2019 which I have never shared images of:

Santa over Studland

and

Santa over Kimmeridge

As the set of seasonal cards extends to 6 now they fit my deal of a set for £10.

I have also had to contact my printer as two very popular cards during PAW this year have almost run out of stock and new copies are due on Friday for:

PAW studio in the snow

and Looking up at a wintery sky

Yesterday I also completed my piece showing one of the ladies crews from Swanage Sea Rowing Club out training below Durlston Castle.

So, again more constructive time. I am about to start a commission that I received after a visit to the studio in the first week of PAW. I am also planning which order to do some other new pieces, what to draw is not an issue, which order to do them in is more of a challenge.

I look forward to welcoming more visitors over the next four days and to see how the event finishes in terms of visitor numbers, work sold and art cards drawn.

Thanks for reading

Andy