Monday, April 17, 2017

When the Ribbon is Bigger than the Artwork

I've reached a point this spring that I realize that some of these art shows I am able to participate in have actually become a distraction to what it is that I really need to be focusing on.  What is it about the month of April?  It appears to be the most popular month to host an art show and I must have 5 or more possible venues that I could paint special entries for.  The themed ones are even more distracting when you are trying to find a niche that your art fits into.  Right now I have 3 days that I could paint a piece that fits the theme of "Zeal".  That is not going to happen.  The Lake Las Vegas Gallery summer show whose deadline is coming up soon is themed "Casting Shadows".  There is a show for artists over 50 called "Celebrating Life" and a Western themed show that the Elks Club puts on every May that I really enjoy.

2nd & 3rd Best of Class
Frankly, it is quite stressful to keep up with it all.  Add that to the fact that I have 29 pieces tied up in a solo library show until May 30th and you can see as an artist you have to paint consistently to keep up with the demand.  These shows are great if you have time and you can win.  They are excellent additions on your art resume but I'm not so sure they are that helpful if you are strapped for time.  One of the hardest challenges I face as an artist is to stay focused on my goals. (Like painting more COWBELLS!)

Directors Choice 
One show I do enter every year and that is most likely a waste of my time and resources is to enter the art show portion of our county fair.  You have to consider that there is a 55 mile drive one way out to Logandale, Nevada that has to be be done two times.  Not to mention the day I actually attend the fair.The Clark County Fair and Rodeo has been for many years a family tradition.  We drive out with our camper for the day and enjoy visiting and seeing the exhibits.  The grandchildren love riding all the carnival rides.   I really look forward to when attending the fair as a family. Having my own artwork exhibited is like a cherry on top.  They do give out nice ribbons and the judges give you a little critique on each piece.  Beside there has been some really nice art displayed in past years.  Besides, my "Down Country Road" collection that I have been painting on for the past year and half is a perfect fit for that venue.

This year I was a bit disappointed because there just didn't seem to be very many adult entries.  That was a bit embarrassing because while my art I feel was very well done there just wasn't enough competition and I wound up winning most of the ribbons.-2nd best of class, 3rd best of class, directors choice, 5 judges choice ribbons, 5 blue ribbons.  It was a bit crazy but my grandson was really impressed!

The response I received from the public and from the volunteers for the show was very encouraging.  I think I have found my niche at this time as an artist because these pieces seem to bring a smile to many faces.

The fair can serve as a little trial run because several of these pieces will be soon entered into the Helldorado Days Public Art Show and Auction and I'm certain that the competition will prove to be a bit more challenging.  To win a ribbon at the Helldorado Art Show is something all together different.  I'm hoping also that I can also enjoy a sale or two!


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