Saturday, February 7

Around The World In 30 Days with Rischa Heape - Mount Dora Art Festival

If you're a regular reader of this site or any of my social media sites you know about my 30 Paintings in 30 Days challenge in January. 

And you probably already know that I was offered an exhibit at Painting Outside the Lines Gallery in Mount Dora during the Art Festival and Art Stroll. That exhibit has now been set up and I've already made sales. Yay! I'm so happy!

But before an exhibit a lot of work has to be done behind the scenes.

I believe people think of an artist as someone who is free spirited, someone who spends their time covered in paint, twirling around in their studios with a paint brush in their hands and flowers in their hair with not a worry in the world except maybe World Peace.

Well, I suppose that could be true for some. For most of us, though, the bulk of our time is not spent painting and contemplating the meaning of life. There is a lot that goes into being an artist that non artists might not know about. And why would they? They have their own jobs! This show, for example, had many factors to consider before the exhibit was set up. And I have to be honest, I enjoyed every part of it. Not just the painting. But I'm an odd duck. Some artists don't enjoy the organizing and non artsy things.

Speaking of those non artsy things, here's how it went down for me. And this isn't the right way for everyone, so don't think of this as a tutorial. Think of it as a view into my life the last couple of weeks since the painting fun ended.

First I had to scan the images into my computer. For the larger paintings I photograph them outside. If it's raining or too bright I have to wait for the right time to do that. But for these small paintings I was able to scan them, which is a lot simpler. After scanning I do any cropping, editing, resizing, and save multiple places. I have a Prints folder where I save the full sized image as a .tif for use when I want to make a print to sell. Then a full sized  .jpg image is saved to a JPG Prints folder for use on sites like FineArtAmerica. Then I also resize to a smaller .jpg and add my watermark for uploading to social media and my website. After I have scanned and done all of that I can take my paintings outside to seal. I used a Krylon Gallery spray sealer for these small paintings. Sometimes I follow that with a paint on seal that is either matte, gloss, or a combination.

Waiting on the sealer to dry. Don't breathe too heavy!

Once the sealer is dry, which takes about 24 hours, I can then flip them over and measure for the coated wire hangers. I measure, add hardware, then add the wire. That is extremely hard on hands, by the way. Especially when you have to do it 30 times. Thankfully I didn't need to do this with about 4 of the paintings since they were on panels. So not quite 30.

Then all of the paintings, that have already been numbered, get names added, priced, signed, etc...

Oh, but wait! There are a few problems that always pop up! This go around I had an issue with the oil paintings drying in time for the show. I can't very well flip a painting on its face to add hanging hardware, or in the case of the panels sticky hangers, if it isn't dry! Oh no! What to do? Stick it on the heater or bake it in the oven. And since I'm not brave enough to cook my oil paintings I opted for putting it on the heater for 24 hours. Good thing it was slightly chilly! That's a rare blessing in Florida.

That painting never did dry. I added the hangers very carefully at the last possible minute. Luckily it was already sold, so no one will be taking home or touching a wet painting.

While I'm waiting on paintings to dry and waiting on my 50 greeting cards to arrive I created some prints. Those also need a little while to dry. So while THOSE are drying I went ahead and prepared the sleeves for the prints and greeting cards. Yep, all 50 of them! I also created some special 2 for 1 smaller prints of the fishing lures since those were popular and I knew one was already sold. Once the prints were dry I put them in the sleeves with my card and a little thank you note that I punched from scrapbook paper and stamped with a "created by" stamp and signed. I didn't do that with the greeting cards. My hands were still tired from the wire hangers, so punching out, stamping, and signing 50 tiny thank you notes wasn't an option this time. I did it for the prints. That was enough for me this time. The greeting cards did finally arrive yesterday, which was the day after I took the paintings and all to the gallery. So Joel was nice enough to run the greeting cards and more bags to the gallery for me.

The bags are from Hobby Lobby. I stamp my information on the front and add a postcard and business card inside for when a painting, greeting card, or print sells.

And let's not forget creating and printing an inventory and prices list for the gallery and one for yourself.

I'm sure I'm leaving a lot of the process out, but once all the little things have come together you get your stuff together, including extra cards and information, and head to the gallery to set up.

At the gallery Joel, Bev, and I put together the panels and started hanging. I love how it all turned out! And I can relax! Today is actually the first day I have relaxed this year! Yesterday would have been the first day, but we cleaned the wall in the master bedroom to get it ready for painting. The bedroom is actually very large and has heavy furniture, so that was a big job. Anyway, today is a day off. Tomorrow will be another long work day as I'll be manning the gallery with the help of another staff member and Joel while Bev sells at the VIP entrance. It will be fun, but it will also be a long day on my feet.

So this has been a small peek into what goes into an exhibit. I've left a few little things off, but not much. You can probably figure that I numbered the paintings as I went along with the day by day painting. And you can also figure that I went back and looked at each painting at the end of January to fix up the sides and add any little details I forgot. I actually realized that I forgot a shadow on the first fishing lure painting. Do you see what I'm talking about? Thank goodness I noticed it before I started scanning and sealing, right?


I hope to see some of you tomorrow! Come by and say hi! I won't make you buy anything. I promise. But it would be very cool if you did, too, of course.

Saturday, January 31

Save The Bees and 30in30 Collage

Save the Bees - 4x4x2" Acrylic on Gallery Canvas

I told you yesterday it would be simple. But I like how it turned out. Even though it's so little and it's kind of a speed painting, it's among my favorites for January. And really, we do need to put efforts into saving the bees. Saving the bees is saving us! show small size


And, like everyone else doing the 30 in 30 January Challenge, I've made a collage for my project.

I'm happy I accomplished my goal of completing a painting every single day in January. I'm also a little sad it's over. It will be nice, though, to stop and take a breath. Oh wait....I have to finish scanning, sealing, putting wire hangers on, pricing, and taking them to the gallery to hang. Yikes! I wish being an artist was only about painting. How nice that would be! Haha!

Thanks for all of the encouragement and sweet comments during this project everyone! You guys kept me going on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and in the comments of this blog.

Happy weekend,

Friday, January 30

30 in 30 - Day 30 - Crimson Tide

Today is the last official day of the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge. I can't believe I made it all 30 days! I finished a painting every day! I do plan to continue painting daily. I may not finish a painting every single day, but it will be a daily thing. I can't exactly finish a huge painting in one day most days. I have lots of other things to do other than nurture my creative soul. But, this has gotten me into the daily habit. I will be taking weekends off, more than likely. Also, I know it's supposed to be a 30 day challenge and I know tomorrow is a weekend day, but I can't do every day in January except one. I just can't! Call me a perfectionist. Call me OCD. But I can't do it. So, even if it's the most simple, non recognizable painting ever created. There will be a painting finished tomorrow to round out January 2015!

So without further ado, here's the final painting of the challenge. It's called "Crimson Tide" as an ode to my husband. He's been patient with me about these days where we have no time and I still have to paint to keep up with the 30 in 30. He ran to get take out more this month than usual and he helped around the house. He's an Alabama "Crimson Tide" fan. And that's an understatement. The red color I used is called Napthol Crimson and the tide part is obvious. The color was, too, but just in case... Oh yeah, I said without further ado and then I ado'd all over the place. Sorry 'bout that! Here's the painting.

5x7x1.5" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas

Side View

All of the paintings shown during the 30 in 30 challenge will be featured during the Mount Dora Art Festival (Feb7-8) through the 2nd Friday Art Stroll (Feb-13 6-8PM) at Painting Outside the Lines Gallery. The gallery is located on the main drag there in downtown Mount Dora beside One Flight Up Cafe. You'll have to go up the stairs to get to it, but it's worth the huffing and puffing. I promise. Plus, while you're there you can have a smoothie or coffee from the cafe, powder your nose somewhere other than a porta-let, and enjoy the nice atmosphere.

I'll be back tomorrow. Stop in and see what I have cookin'!


Thursday, January 29

Day 29 - Shasta

Day 29 of 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Shasta

5x7x1.5" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas

Side View

I wish I had one of these cute little campers. Wouldn't it be fun to roam around in?

One more day of the challenge!

See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 28

Day 28 - Name TBD

Day 28 - (Name suggestions?)

6x6x2" Acrylic on Canvas

For the life of me I couldn't get the photo to match the painting in my studio. So I took the painting into the living room and hung it on the wall to get a more accurate look at it with the camera. The colors are more accurate here...

I think it's the daylight bulbs mixed with all of the whitish colors of the painting. It blew the colors out. So anyway, that's day 28. Does anyone have a good name suggestion for me?

Tuesday, January 27

Day 27 - Adrenalin

Day 27 of 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Adrenalin

6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

Side View

I felt I might be slipping into a rut with all of the flower paintings, so I stepped back out of that comfort zone and went totally abstract. Don't get me wrong; I love the flowers. I just don't want to get too comfortable in flower town. Ruts can become boring. I love how this one turned out. It has many layers and a little bit of texture. I'll do another tomorrow.

See ya on Hump Day!

Monday, January 26

Day 26 - Abstract Poppies

Day 26 - Abstract Poppies - 6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

I really didn't feel like painting today. I'm exhausted from the sleep study last night and my sinuses are having issues. When I have issues with sinuses I start having panic attacks because I can't breathe. So, I like the painting and at the same time, I'm glad I'm done with it so I can go to bed.

Goodnight and happy Monday,

Sunday, January 25

Day 25 - Abstract Daisies

Day 25 - Abstract Daisies - 6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

This is my abstract version of the beautiful daisies Joel brought me on Friday. Below is the reference photo. I basically just used the reference photo to get inspired. Obviously this isn't very similar to the real flowers. I love how they turned out.

Reference photo

Side View

Thanks for stopping by!

PS. Wish  me luck with my sleep study tonight!

Saturday, January 24

Day 24 - Abstract Roses

Day 24 of 30 Paintings in 30 Days - Abstract Roses

6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

Side View

Hipstamatic shot of the finished painting on my messy worktable.

I really enjoyed painting this one. Which is the complete opposite of yesterday's experience. I've come to learn that if I'm not in a good place when I sit down to paint that I will struggle with painting. I don't have to be a perky, smiling fool, but I can't be having a really tough day and sit down with a million things on my mind and produce a masterpiece. Not that this is a masterpiece, but it was a success because it was fun to paint and I like the end result. Win, win. This is one of my favorites.

Happy Saturday!

Thursday, January 22

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 22 - Folk Art Rose

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 22 - Folk Art Rose

6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

Side View

...and one more.

It's a folk art rose. Not much else to say today. I like the painting. I had fun painting it. I have a lot to do this week and I've still got a lot on my mind. But I'm proud that I've gone 22 days in a row doing a painting from start to finish. I don't know if I will continue to complete a painting every single day after this project, but I will continue painting daily. Completing one every day puts a lot of pressure on a person. At first I thought they had to be perfect. Now I'm leaning more toward having fun and completing the task. I can do big impressive works after the project. This has gotten me into a daily schedule, though. I needed that. 


Wednesday, January 21

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 21 - Minimalist Gardener

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 21 - Minimalist Gardener 

6x6x2" Acrylic on Back Stapled Canvas

I'm very much enjoying the whimsy paintings. I enjoy doing them and I like the end result. I'm also loving more white space. My mind has been cluttered lately. There's no reason my paintings should be. The white space has a calming effect on me. I've been trying to simplify my home and life, as well. Sometimes you just need room to breath, am I right? This is one of those times for me.

Wishing you minimal mind clutter,

Tuesday, January 20

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 20 - Blowing Kisses

30 Paintings in 30 Days - Day 20 - Blowing Kisses

5x5x2" Acrylic on Gallery Wrapped Canvas

Side View

A small grouping of the daily paintings with the day 20 painting.

My headache is sticking around today, but that's ok. I still had fun painting this whimsy painting. I asked Joel for help naming it and he suggested, "blowing kisses".  It seemed appropriate.

Thanks for stopping by! Happy Tuesday!