Creating life as a work of Art

When considering the creative business and how to succeed, at the end of the day it all comes down to this…Thanks to film maker and futurist Jason Silva for the inspiring insight I needed today!


raw talent without a common sense recipe only goes so far

Sure, it’s great to have raw talent to ensure success, but what really drives success in any arena in life is professionalism. This idea is what profoundly hit me as being of utmost importance, as Annika Bennett presented a talk to our class. When talking about professional practice specifically in the art dealer world, Annika pointed out what the ‘do’s and don’ts are. I’ll summarise, focussing on the positive actions I can take to make it on my own when approaching an art gallery with my work.

clipart_cooking_40sHere’s a common sense recipe:

  1. Grab one reasonable sized sauce pan full of carefully chosen research of who’s who, and keep it topped up during the entire duration of the practice
  2. Before proceeding any further, simply write a succinct email with a PDF of professional images, and deliver into one of the who’s who in the bowl. Avoid adding too many words that may upset the flavour of the dish – putting everyone off before they really get a chance to taste it
  3. Put a link to your website aside for one’s viewing pleasure should they enjoy the way your email ingredients go down
  4. Gently let the pan simmer for four or five days, and follow up with how the ingredients are blending. Maintain a positive attitude, even if they separated and curdled unpleasantly. This may be prevented by ensuring that your preparation was well considered
  5. If the ingredients have blended, and beginning to work together well then attempt to add yourself to the pan promptly and professionally – this will only taste good of your flavour and style of presenting is different to any other that the who’s who has come across before
  6. Be prepared to leave the pan if its not working and graciously start again from step one (it’s always effective to get more than one opinion), otherwise listen carefully to how the who’s who may support your career and guide you into doing whats best
  7. The recipe may fall flat if at any time, you fail to be authentic and true to yourself – it’s important that any aspect of your practice is not compromised by the other
  8. Remember to cook more than you need, and be prepared to give some away if it means that more people get to taste your work
  9. One must continue to cook and simmer frequently, keeping the brew fresh and alive with creativity and imagination
  10. Trust that people will enjoy your efforts and appreciate your authenticity and uniqueness

If you have any other suggestions for what to add to the pan, or any adjustments that you would make to the how to: please feel free to comment. I’ll let you know how it goes when the time comes for me to approach a dealership gallery with my work.


branding: simply put

Author of Brand Simple, Allan Adamson suggests some top simple tips for branding.

Firstly, lets simply summarise:

  • A brand is an image, feeling, service or possibly a product that stands for something in peoples minds.
  • Branding invokes emotion in the customer/audience and their choices or actions.
  • Successful brands are simple, compelling, and different from the status quo.
  • Branding is signalling to an audience your associations with them, the need to connect on an emotional level, rather than a rational level.
  • a brand is relevant to my audience and stands for something different.

and secondly lets run the process of identifying my brand:

  •  portray to my audience that I am different and my art is unique amongst the masses of other artists out there all trying to sell their work.
  •  boil down my ideas that will drive and amalgamate everything associated with my brand
  • know and understand my audience, my competitors and the niche market and figure out how I can make my point of difference known
  • what can I do better or differently from my competitors? be vocal about it, so they know why they would spend energy with my site and services rather than someone else.
  • what do I want to be known for? what do I not want to be known for. A reputation isn’t necessarily always a positive one.
  • my difference needs to be simple and relevant, an obvious truth that hasn’t been highlighted before
  • what will my audience experience or interact with through my brand?
  • tagline to capture the essence of my brand – this is the ‘brand driver’
  • bring my brand to life!


building an online presence – Jacob Cass

Jacob Cass is ‘a prolific graphic designer in New York talks about how building a personal brand and effective use of social media got him out of some interesting obstacles in life’.

Watching this video taught me 10 ideas about how to build a personal foundation via a website, blog and social networks.

  1. Define my brand: what are my goals, who are my audience, and what portrays my visual identity?
  2. Creating a website – elements to include are: a homepage that is consistently updated, with several options to connect via social media platforms. A portfolio page to include thumbnails of work and case studies (behind the scenes and research of work).
  3. About page with photo and bio.
  4. testimonials page with photograph of person writing about me with a link to their website.
  5. Blog: be passionate about my topic
  6. Utilise the social networks and communicate across the platforms
  7. be genuine
  8. provide value by sharing links and my knowledge. Be seen as a leader in my field.
  9. Create and tribe and culture
  10. build mutually beneficial relationships and help others.




link and quote retrieved from

I invent more of me everyday

We can spend our lives letting the world tell us who we are. Sane or insane. Saints or sex addicts. Heroes or victims. Letting history tell us how good or bad we are. Letting our past decide our future. Or we can decide for ourselves. And maybe it’s our job to invent something better – Chuck Palahniuk, Choke 

Just get to work he says…

All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of work itself…If you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction.” Chuck Close

I am really struggling with getting back into the study year and just getting work done as Chuck Close advises. In the first few weeks, I learnt how to create Photopolymer Etching film, for printmaking. This was something I felt I could really sink my teeth into, and was all ready to expose my prepared film, only for the process to be stopped by a broken vacuum on the exposure unit. Since then, my focus has gone off on other tangents and hasn’t landed into any particular interest for the brief ahead of me. In the process I have procrastinated getting work done – remembering that work is what makes stuff happen in the first place. At least this thinking time had enabled me to consolidate my view, and my voice as an artist. I am contemplating extending my skills on one or two of the forms of media below.  Obviously, I need to refine my thoughts. It’s fine for me to utilise all of these media for projects in the future, but I will need to decide which of them will best express my concept and outcome for this semester.

Photo Montage with Photoshop, Printmaking in particular Photopolymer Etching, Illustration using paint or pencil, Fibre Art, Clay, or Soft Sculpture. I think its safe to say at this point, that I will be a mixed media artist. I feel like a fledging sitting on the precipice about to embark upon my first flight – excited and really hesitant. Wish me luck!





Chris Jordon’s film

In addition to my previous post ‘Speaking of Sustainability’ In his short film A message from Gyre, Chris Jordon tells a visual story that is profoundly disturbing and heartbreaking. To acknowledge the truth of humankind’s neglect of our planet is difficult to stomach. I refuse to turn a blind eye and allow the creatures of our Earth to suffer from our inability to clean up after ourselves.