Total Art Soul - for artists

" An artist cannot fail; it is a success to be one "
Charles Horton Cooley

exposed

Posted by: gringrimaceandsqueak

gringrimaceandsqueak

In case our last blog post hasn't got every jeweller/hat maker on here frantically papering polystyrene heads, we though we'd share a bit of news :)



We recently found a bit of time to promote our UK website and wanted to get the maximum exposure for the minimum time so we can spend as much time as possible beading things. We did another search for alternative fashion magazines and sent a couple of e-mails off with our new product shots attached, offering our little black number shown above as a competition prize. 
Much to our astonishment and great delight, the lovely Leona at Alt Fashion magazine jumped at it and we've just posted the mask today. In addition to the giveaway, she is writing a review which we'll share as soon as we can. We'd had some success before with this sort of thing but never to such a great response, our shop views are also up across the board and still growing.



We've also just found ourselves some fantastic new packaging from MidPac - black, satiny boxes with a magnetic closure just in time for our grand showing :) We'd tried out various alternatives but nothing seemed quite right, or if it was we couldn't find the size we needed. Naturally, we are more excited about the boxes that what goes in them - what is it with creative types and stationary? Anyway, it has once again shown us that it's always worth putting in the extra time to get everything just right. When you've got that sorted, the rest just kind of comes together ;)

More soon,
Karen and Rich


Turning heads

Posted by: gringrimaceandsqueak

gringrimaceandsqueak

For a while now we've know we needed to get more modelled shots of our products but what with one thing and another, doing a live shoot has been put off. We decided to find an alternative that didn't mean doing hair and makeup every time we created something new, would look good and enable us to list straight away.

The solution came via a friend on Etsy who showed us their mannequin head which they had bought cheaply and decorated. A bit of research turned up a selection for about five pounds apiece, male and female, so we ordered one of each.



As you can see, it was obviously polystyrene, had seams showing and generally not very glam. So, we used a homemade paste of flour, water and sugar to glue strips of white tissue, gradually building up the layers until we had a light texture we liked and had covered any unsightly bits. To protect it further we then painted it with acrylic in a creamy colour which toughened it further and made it wipe clean (essential when taking photos in the kitchen!)

Our original product shots looked like this- very nice and everything but a bit hard to tell how it would look on.






Now, they look like this- not only do they now show how the mask fits but by happy accident, the creamy colour of the heads has solved the white balance issues we were having, where the background sheet, which is white, would come up yellow or blue depending on the light source.




So, for all those jewellers/hat knitters out there who don't have anyone they can bribe to model for them, happy pasting and painting :) Karen and Rich


Juggling

Posted by: gringrimaceandsqueak

Tagged in: Untagged 

gringrimaceandsqueak

Last year went something like this....
1) Open Etsy shop. 2) Figure out what to do with Etsy shop. 3) Be impressed with self.
4) Open and then close various other stores after realising they are all, basically, Etsy.
5) Do exclusive range for very nice business person to go on sale soon
6) Sign contract for artwork to go on sale soon
7) Whilst waiting for the people in 6 & 7 to get organised, decide to open own website

So far, so good...one by one we were ticking off the things on our business plan, achieving our goals and making sure we only took on one new thing at a time.


It's now only late Feb and so far, this year has gone something like this....

1) Design and build new website in a week. Be unbearably smug.

2) Decide shopping cart wasn't good enough, sign up to new one (more on that in next post) and rebuild the whole thing again. Be more smug and start ad campaign.

3) Still waiting for people from last year, so contact local gallery. Gallery says yes they'd like some stuff for spring. Plan new work. Grin lots.

4) Offer to do basic website and product photos for artwork people from last year because they are too busy. They say yes - money comes in, paying for frames for gallery work, all good. Should be up and running by March.

5) Get message from exclusive range lady to say that's going live in March too, as it happens, with its own ad campaign. Look a bit anxious.

6) Get message from gallery to say they want to meet up and pick some work in a week or so.... that'd be March, then.


So far, today has gone something like this....
1) Drink too much coffee
2) Wonder where to start
3) Hide behind sofa :)


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