Monday, September 28, 2009

Art Marketing Action: Resist the urge to be The Fixer

I am swamped with my own projects/classes right now, and having difficulties finding time to do anything but the bare minimum for my classes, work and life in general. But again, I couldn't resist sharing these wonderful Art Marketing Action tips from the Art Biz Coach.

This one calls out to me as loudly because I admit - I am "The Fixer."

Art projects, Writing, Resumes, Blogs, Motivation, and everything in between; I will try to help. I don't even need to be asked, I WANT to help. But if the person is not ready, all it does is make me stretch my time thin and the person's life/art/whatever I am trying to "fix" stays exactly the same as it was before. So I am going to try my best to Resist the urge to be "The Fixer."

Art Marketing Action: Resist the urge to be The Fixer

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Check out this article and let me know what you think. I promise not to try to "fix" you.

I hope to have my life balanced a little more evenly soon. Then I can get some real blog posts and in progress pictures up.

Until then, Happy Art-making! ~ Jaime Lyerly

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Encaustic Sculpture & Art Marketing Action: Get your art out of the studio

3-D encaustic sculpture, detail view, © 2009 Jaime Lyerly
To see more of these encaustic sculptures, click on the link.

As I face another busy day today of work, classes, art and family, I have to share this article from the Art Biz Coach that, again, reminds me to get those pieces collecting dust out of the house.

As for putting this action tip into practice, I am working on it! I just submitted to the Women Made Gallery last week for a encaustic show in November. I also am going to submit to the Conrad Wilde Gallery for their 12 X 12 inch painting show (deadline is October 1, 2009). Locally, I am working on getting a space in one of the galleries at SDSU with two fantastic and innovative artists, Debra London and Julie Kitterman, for at least a few days. We are submitting a proposal, images and a group artist statement, which will go through a committee to decide if we are gallery-worthy. Wish me luck!

The image above is for a particular set of 3-D encaustic sculptures that I would love to get out into the public eye. Unfortunately, the fact that they should be viewed in a darkened room with a strong spot light where you can see the cast shadows limits where they can be viewed. If I can get the group show that we are proposing, then they will be shown there because we will be curating the show ourselves. Other than that, I would need a solo show - which is not yet going to happen. So, these will have to collect dust for a little while longer. How about your art?

Here is the article that you need to read:

Art Marketing Action: Get your art out of the studio

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Your Turn:
How about you? Any shows that you are applying for or places that you are arranging to show your art? Anything unconventional counts too - coffee shops, doctor's offices or friends' houses. I would love to hear it and celebrate your successes!

Happy Art-making! ~ Jaime Lyerly

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Creative Person’s Hierarchy of Needs by Cynthia Morris

I believe in synchronicities. Whatever you need to hear or think about will come just when it needs to happen. I have been stressing over how unbalanced my life is this semester. For those who don't know, I am a full-time undergraduate student at San Diego State University, studying art. Granted, it is stressful every semester, but this semester is already killing me and it is only two weeks in! It is hard being a mom, a student and working to make a living. But add being an artist to that mix and you have no time at all!

I have been feeling out of sorts and I know it is because my exercise and creative habits are being neglected. Intellectually, I know this. Yet I cannot seem to make myself do all that needs to be done. I admit that I have been choosing playing video games and watching movies over making art. I have only been working on art for my college classes, instead of doing my own work in encaustics. However, I am confident that all those ideas I have in my sketchbooks and projects that I have started will come into realization. I just need to reassess how what I am doing meets my creative needs.

Along comes this blog post by Creativity Coach and Travel Blogger Cynthia Morris. If you are not in the know about her blog Journey Juju and her free e-zine Original Impulses, it is time to be informed! I wrote about her wonderful e-book "Creative Toolkit for the Traveler" in this post about my preparation for my Japan and China tour.

So here is the blog post from Cynthia Morris called "The Creative Person's Hierarchy of Needs" Enjoy!

Perhaps you’ve heard of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. In a nutshell, as humans, our basic needs are: Physiological, Safety, Love/Belonging, Esteem and Self-Actualization. To read more, go here. To hear about the creative person’s needs, read on.

Creative people, those who are making things – books, businesses, design, art – have additional needs. Recognizing these needs and making sure they are met are essential to applied creativity.

When we don’t acknowledge our needs, we’re allowing life to dictate our experience. Knowing your needs and being willing to take action to make sure they are met will make the already challenging work of creating much easier.

In more than ten years of coaching and almost twice that time creating things myself, I’ve identified at least ten needs creative people have. But unlike Maslow, I don’t prioritize them. Each person will have their own hierarchy for these needs and will also have their own needs to add. Here they are:

1. Need for creative space, as Virginia Woolf called a ‘room of one’s own’. Depending on what you’re creating, you may not need as big a space as you think you do. Write or draw out your ideal space and then assess how you have elements of that in place now.

2. Need for creative peers. When you’re on the leading edge of creativity, you need other creative people who understand the risks you’re taking and who encourage them. We need creative peers to talk, share, get insights and ideas and to encourage us. Commit to connecting with people who ‘get’ you more often. This is one of the most common reasons people hire me, because I ‘get’ them and what they are trying to do.

3. Need for creative fuel. In her book The Artist’s Way Julia Cameron calls this need ‘filling the well’. I get so inspired when I am out in the world seeing what other people are doing. A favorite source of inspiration for me is museum shops. The Tate Modern shop blew me away and gave me an idea for my work that I love. You can get inspiration from books, magazines, blogs art galleries, and other well filling activities. Wherever you get it, get it often. (This is where you’d list coffee!)

4. Need for imaginative space. This is different than physical space. It’s the time we need for noodling, doodling, wandering, and gathering thoughts. While it appears to be the antithesis of productivity, it’s actually vital to a productive creative cycle. Don’t pack every moment full of activity.

5. Need for the body to be expressed. We’re out in the ethers most of the time, us artists. We need to remember to take good care of our bodies by walking, dancing, practicing yoga, playing tennis, or whatever moves you regularly. I get so many of my ideas when I am exercising. Get moving on your terms, but get moving.

6. Need for your creative edge. Solving problems, pushing boundaries, developing something new is at the heart of the creative process. Rather than despair about how difficult it is to write a really good article, embrace the challenge of your craft. While you’re at it, embrace the challenge of your creative industry. For instance, publishing a book traditionally seems nearly impossible these days. Take that challenge on by either figuring out the publishing game or self-publishing. Relish the creative edge – you need it.

7. Need for ample amounts of faith and belief. When we’re making something from nothing, we need to be able to rely on faith and belief in ourselves and our work. Without this we can operate from despair and give up before our work is complete. Tap into your belief that you are on the right track, and do it often.

8. Need to have our work responded to. Whether it’s ego or a deep desire to share your creative work, most of us need for our work to be seen and received by others. This will vary for each person, some wanting just close friends to see our work, others wanting a wider audience. Just be sure to get feedback from the right people at the right time.

9. Need for certainty. Ironically, one of the needs for artists is the ability to live in uncertainty. Traveling the creative path can make you feel lost most of the time. That’s why certainty in other areas of life: home, relationships, income, can help you have a sense of being held while you soar. Have some rootedness so you can be ‘out there’ as much as you need to.

10. Need for time. This seems to be the need that people struggle with the most. If you never get any time alone to work on your art, your life will be filled with other people’s ideas and thoughts. Make choices that allow time for your art. The laundry, your e-mail, your garden will all be there an hour later, after you have spent time with your art.

Again, I did not prioritize these. While I believe we all share these needs, everyone will have their own sense of the needs’ hierarchy. On my blog, tell me which needs have priority over the others, and add a need you have that I haven’t mentioned. To go further, make a list of your needs and assess how well those needs are being met right now. Brainstorm one thing you could do to work toward having those needs met, and then do it. This article is part of my year-long series of top ten lists to celebrate ten years in business at Original Impulse. Stay tuned until the end of the year when I bring all the articles together in one place for your creative enhancement.

Copyright 2009 Cynthia Morris. Cynthia coaches creative people to confidence and completion and inspires life as a creative adventure. Visit to get an infusion of inspiration for your art, writing and life.

Your Turn:
Are your actions supporting your own creative needs? Do you recognize when something is off? More importantly, how to you take the steps to correct this? I would love to hear what you think!
Happy Art-making! ~ Jaime Lyerly

Monday, September 14, 2009

Art Marketing Action: Believe - from Art Biz Coach

If self-doubt about your art (and therefore yourself as an artist) plagues you frequently, check out this week's Art Marketing Action from Art Biz Coach Alyson Stanfield.

Art Marketing Action: Believe

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I would love to know what you think about this article. Leave a comment here to share with us all.

Happy Art-making! ~ Jaime Lyerly

P.S. More in progress photos to come of my current projects for the college classes I am taking. One is a full sized male head in red clay and the other is carved wood. They are not anywhere close to being done, but it is fun to show you what has been happening the last two weeks in my own art world.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Embedding String in Beeswax Video

"Stories -1," Encaustic, beeswax, string and collage on 12 x 12 x 1.5 in panel
© 2009 Jaime Lyerly

I am working on making my own tutorial videos on sculptural encaustic painting. However, I do not want to repeat what is already out there. So rather than fill up YouTube with stuff that already exists, I have been searching to find out what is already on there in the way of encaustic painting and sculpture. I have been amazed by some of the videos I have found and need to share them here with you. Once I know where the information gap is in encaustic, I will eventually fill it with my own videos. But until then, here is a gem from my diligent research!

This video is from Patricia Baldwin Seggebruch, author of Encaustic Workshop: Artistic Techniques for Working in Wax. Her book is a great way to get step by step directions on how to start in encaustic. My favorite parts of her book are the sections called "Lay it on" and "Break the Rules." "Lay it on" is about collage and embedding, and "Break the Rules" is about using other mediums than you would not expect with to be compatible with encaustic (such as watercolor and shellac burns).

The video below is about embedding fibers into encaustic. This is one of my favorite things to do in encaustic. If you have been checking out my blog, you see that I don't often "just paint" in encaustic (you can see my "just painting" in encaustics here). I usually collage, embedded, texturize and sculpt my encaustic and beeswax. String and fibers are amazing to work with and if you haven't tried to add them to your encaustic beeswax paintings, now is the time!

After watching the video, you can check out my own work that is related. Here is a link to a blog post that I did of Mixed Media Encaustic Sculptural Paintings a few months ago. These were obviously done way before I found this video, but the general idea of creating depth through embedding of string is the same. I love this particular variegated, maroonish-red fiber so much that I used it to create my free-hanging 3-D encaustic sculptures. I hope these inspire you to add some fiber to your own work. Enjoy!

Happy Art-making! ~ Jaime Lyerly

Thursday, September 3, 2009

San Diego Women's Drum Circle this Saturday!

I thought it was time to share my new monthly activities with the readers of my blog. Every first Saturday for the past 4 months, I have joined in a safe and healing space of the San Diego Women's Drum Circle. The group has such great energy and is drumming is the best way to start off a new month. Come sing, dance, drum or just sit and soak in the healing energy!

Here is the information from the San Diego Women's Drum Circle website:

Join Us at our next Drum Circle

We Women Drummers of San Diego gather on the 1st Saturday of each month; sharing and exchanging our rhythmic energy.

Elisa will be holding her DRUM class one hour prior to the circle from 5:30-6:30 pm. Cost is $8. Elisa is an incredible instructor. She will take you on a journey, introducing technique and sharing her knowledge of the history of rhythms. Drums are available to borrow or purchase. Call Elisa for more information: 619 417-6272.

When: Always the FIRST Saturday of each month.

Where: Universal Spirit Center in Hillcrest - 3858 Front St., S.D. 92103 - corner of Front & University (Masonic Lodge Building).

Time: 7:00 - 9:00 PM

Donation: $7.00

More Information: Vicki: 619 563-4771 or

Drums For Sale: from Mali, Guinea, and Ivory Coast Africa. Contact Vicki 619 563-4771 or

I hope you can join me this week, and come and make some noise. Your muse will be happy to have you give her extra energy. I usually come home buzzing for about a week, and creating for another week after. Since classes just started for me, and it is has be STRESSFUL, I need this time for myself to unwind and get a great start to a new month.

Happy drumming and Art making! ~ Jaime Lyerly