Monday, March 30, 2015

Artdog Quote of the Week: Too Short

This is the hallmark of a creative life.

IMAGE: Many thanks to Word Porn's Facebook Page, for this image.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Accepted! Nine-Part Herbal goes to South Carolina

If you're in the vicinity of Hartsville, SC between April 2 and May 29, please stop by the Black Creek Arts Council's gallery. My Nine-Part Herbal Fantasy-Light Cycle has been accepted into their annual juried exhibition.
Here's a photo of the Black Creek Arts Council's exterior.

I've never been to Hartsville or the Arts Council Gallery in person, but the photos I've been able to find online show a historic building with a beautiful, spacious gallery.
This image shows an opening event in the Gallery.
The Arts Council's building is located at 116 W. College Avenue in Hartsville. The Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, April 9, 2015.
My artwork Nine-Part Herbal Fantasy-Light Cycle is going to South Carolina.
I deeply appreciate the efforts of the Black Creek Arts Council's organizers, and the outstanding good taste of Juror Frank McCauley! If you are in South Carolina during April and May, I hope you'll see the show!

IMAGES: Many thanks to the Black Creek Arts Council, for their logo and the interior gallery image. I am grateful to the Artisans of the South Carolina Cotton Trail for the exterior image of the Arts Council's building. Nine-Part Herbal Fantasy-Light Cycle is my own original artwork, but you may use it online if you do not alter the image, attribute it to me, and provide a link back to this blog.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Artdog Quote of the Week: Writers

I suspect we could say this of actors, too.

IMAGE: Many thanks for this image, to that inexhaustible fount of resources, Word Porn's Facebook Page!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Artdog Quote of the Week: Miracles

I choose the latter option. Makes everything better!

IMAGE: Many, many thanks to the Word Readers Facebook page, for this image with the quote.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Artdog Photo of Interest: Super Powers

This week's Photo of Interest honors K-9 Veterans Day, officially observed on March 15. Our K-9 veterans no longer are treated completely like equipment, but let's all remember today that we owe them our grateful thanks!

We also should remember that people literally would not be where we are today if it hadn't been for our teaming up with dogs in prehistory. They enabled us to hunt better, herd better, and do many other things better. Dogs continue to make our lives better, still today.

So give your best friend a walk and a hug, and show your gratitude by doing something to support animal welfare--especially the welfare of our canine veterans.

IMAGE: Many thanks to the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics Facebook Page, for this image.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Gavin Aung Than and Kevin Smith: Encourage an Artist

Gavin Aung Than is a cartoonist whose work is inspirational on several levels. His Zen Pencils website and Facebook page are rewarding to follow.

Last fall, he published a post that summarizes many of the things I believe and try to promote on this blog. It's called, "Encourage an Artist," and it's based on the words of Kevin Smith.

Here it is:

I hope you'll do your best to encourage--not only young artists, but all of us, in our creative journeys. 

CREDIT WHERE IT'S DUE: Many thanks to Kevin Smith for the good words, and to Gavin Aung Than for creating memorable images to go with them. Many thanks also to my son Tyrell Gephardt, and his Tumblr Ty's Shufflings, for calling my attention to it.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Bonus Photo: In Honor of Daylight Savings Time, which resumes today.

For Morning in the Bowl of Night
Has flung the Stone that puts the Stars to Flight:

And Lo!
The Hunter of the East
Has caught the Sultan's Turret in a Noose of Light.
--Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat
Translated and adapted by Edward Fitzgerald 

IMAGE: Many, many thanks to Toxa Abramov, who took this gorgeous photo of the Blue Mosque (Istanbul, Turkey) at sunrise in 2010, and posted it on her Flickr Photostream.
ALSO: Many thanks to my father, Dr. E. G. Sherrell, for quoting this verse as our wake-up call throughout much of my childhood. Love you, Dad!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Photo of Interest: Sled Dog Marathon

In honor of the start of the Iditarod sled race today, a tip of the wool beanie to some amazing canine athletes and their humans:

IMAGE: Many thanks to the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics Facebook page! You know I love you guys!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

How Artists Act as Urban Pioneers

In August 2012, I wrote a series of posts about the value of artists in our communities. The one that seemed to interest the most people was the one that I've updated and re-posted below. I hope you enjoy it.

Jim Leedy is still at work in the Crossroads Arts District of
Kansas City. He is the subject of a film about his life.
The Kansas City Star published a profile on a “first” pioneer of the Crossroads, Jim Leedy, who also was the focus of a documentary film, Leedy, that chronicles his work in both the art world and in the Kansas City arts community. 

Leedy is a former Kansas City Art Institute professor, and co-founder of the Leedy-Voulkos Arts Center. The Star article gives a more in-depth look at the work Leedy and his cohorts did, to create a nurturing place for new artists, and eventually bring economic renewal to what had once been a seedy warehouse district.

As in Detroit and other places badly impacted by the Great Recession, arts are providing an avenue for economic revitalization. Many states have begun to catch on. Even Kansas—where the infamous Governor Sam Brownback proudly demolished our Kansas Arts Commission, despite a bipartisan rebuke from the Legislature—has quietly instituted a new Creative Arts Industries Commission that replicates some of the Arts Commission’s previous role.

This crumbling warehouse in Utica, NY is the kind of place
where beginning artists might find cheap studio space.
The classic sequence goes like this: a low-rent district of dilapidated properties attracts artists, who go there at an early stage in their careers, in search of affordable studio space. 

Good places to look are warehouse districts that have fallen into disrepair, or down-at-the-heels business districts, where rents are low and nobody is too picky about a mess (art-making is generally not a drip-free, dust-free enterprise!).

This "Heidelberg Project" house offers an eye-popping
example of "visually interesting things in shared spaces."
Once they’ve established their studios, they collaborate, do visually interesting things with their shared spaces, and start putting on shows. People are attracted to this visually stimulating, offbeat creativity. They start coming frequently to see the art.

Other businesses notice that people are beginning to come to this area repeatedly, in ever-greater numbers. They develop a presence of their own, in this place “where it’s happening.” Business all over the area picks up.

Soon developers are offering “loft space” for urban-chic living, and the area becomes trendy. Gentrification is quick to follow, at which point the rents go too high for some of the artists, while others’ galleries are becoming more upscale, in tune with the neighborhood.

The ambiance of a successful arts district includes eateries
such as Benton Harbor, MI's Phoenix Cafe.
Now the original area is booming, still enjoying the “artsy afterglow” for several decades. Savvy businesses perpetuate the character of the neighborhood with sidewalk cafes, boutiques, and other interesting attractions, such as pocket parks, smaller, specialty museums, etc.

Meanwhile many artists have moved, looking for a low-rent district of dilapidated properties, where they can find affordable studio space . . . and the cycle begins again. 

Please note this post originally appeared August 30, 2012, on my old Artdog Observations blog.

PHOTO CREDITS: The Jim Leedy photo is by Rich Sugg of the Kansas City Star. The photo of the warehouse in Utica, NY is from the Utica Observer-DispatchThe Ghost of Detroit Blog contributed the photo of the "Heidelberg Project" house in its blog post of the same name(couldn't find the photographer's name). The photo of the Phoenix Cafe in the Arts District of Benton Harbor, MI came's slideshow on the area.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Artdog Quote of the Week

This time I'm balancing a couple of thoughts that at first seem to contradict each other. However, as both a teacher and a writer, I believe both to be true. Do you see the common thread that explains why?

I knew you'd figure it out!

IMAGES: Many thanks to Freedom With Writing, for the Bradbury quote. The Trenfor is from our old friend Word Porn. What would I do without you?