January 12th, 2011
In an effort to build more vibrant blog, I signed up for a class called Blog Triage with Cynthia Morris and Alyson Stanfield. My first assignment is to describe the people I want to visit and read my blog. My first impulse is to say I want everyone to read it, but do I? It really is a giant question, and one that I have wrestled with for several years (who is my audience). I realize that to reach an audience it would certainly help to know who they are, and maybe where they are.
I guess I need to say what it is I do that requires an audience. First is art-or at least my vision of art. I have been told that to call myself an artist might be a bit snobby, as beauty is in the eye of the beholder sort of thinking. But, I do create and my goal and motto is to capture a moment in time with a brush and the colors of nature. I paint with oils, acrylics, watercolors, and pastels. I do impressionistic to realistic paintings of things I find in nature…flowers, landscapes, creatures, and still life set ups. I paint them on canvas, on paper, and even on walls (though I must admit I have not found the walls as enjoyable as the other surfaces.) I also paint (in acrylics) a traditional style of folk art on functional sufaces. Items that can literally hold photos, mementos, etc that capture a moment in time. I do boxes for weddings, funerals, births, anniversaries, and any special occasion you can think of. I even have a box that will hold a wedding dress! (It comes with a stand that makes it a very unique side table. No one would guesss that inside is a very special momento of a wedding day!) So I hope to reach the audience that is looking for a special one of a kind gift. Letting that person inside of my world helps them know how special a gift of my creations can be. Bloging invites the reader inside the writers world. It makes a gift even more personal (especially when the art is actually personalized as I can do).
I also love to design items for which I write up instructions, package them and market them as lessons. That leads to teaching. My family, friends, (and students) say I am a natural teacher. I can’t help but teach. It is who I am. So whether I have a traditional classroom setting, and I am up in front of a group of students, or in a one on one setting, or in an informal group, class, gathering, I am always teaching and reaching to meet the individual needs of people who are in my presence. It is so much a part of me I don’t even realize I am doing it. (I come from a family of teachers, have a B.S. and a Master’s in Education fields, and have taught in both public and private schools.) I strongly believe that everyone can learn, and it is up to the teacher to find the modality which best suits the student to learn.
At this time in my life, my children are grown, grandchildren are blessing me, my husband of 34 (almost) years is retiring, I now just want to paint, paint, paint. AND I would love to be able to earn a steady income from my art! As we hope to travel some, and take advantage of the freedom from set hours, I plan to take my art with me, painting, photographing and perhaps teaching on the way. I want to spend time out west with my husband, and I would love to teach a class out there while he hunts, fishes, and scouts. I want to photograph the mountains, the streams, the big skies. I want to see it all!
So, my blog can be my travel companion as well. I hope to reach others who want to learn to paint, those who want to hear about my travels and the beautiful sites we hope to see. As I create my art I want to share photos of the places as well as the steps to creating the art, and of course pictures of finished pieces. I imagine my audience could be young adults to seniors. Moderate income to upper level incomes. Actually more important than the age or income would be the things the readers enjoy. My readers would enjoy art, nature, peaceful environments, some might be interested in history, preservation of our beautiful world, and others might just like to see or hear about the special frog I encountered in Lebanon, TN (he graces the top of this blog!).
I love words, so I look for readers who enjoy a get away. I teach so I hope to reach other artists who want to learn, and as a student or a teacher I am always learning so I know I will do a lot of learning and growing. I imagine that young or old the blog readers will be obviously comfortable with my blog style of prose, and I hope they will write back with comments and questions. I want and need this communication to feed me as an artist, to help me grow to new heights. Having an audience seems to demand a higher sense of perfection.
Who am I writing for? YOU, the artist comparing and sharing news, the art collector and appreciater looking for new work, the student wanting to learn new techniques and get new ideas, the naturalist enjoying the beautiful of the earth and its inhabitants,the historian who wants to learn more about the techniques of traditional styles of folk art, or the fine art techniques, the friend who wants to keep in touch, the company who seeks that unique item for their cherished employees or clients, the parent who needs a gift for the best teacher, the person who wants a bit of bliss in their home or office (a painting that will take your mind on a mini mind staycation), the family celebrating the newest addition to their family (baby or four legged friends),and those remembering and/honoring the life or accomplishment of someone special to them with a gift of a Moments In Time box.