Art Share - New Weekly Art Webcast



LIVE Wednesdays on G+ Hangouts & available archived on YouTube. A panel of professional artists discuss hot topics such as art marketing, social media, creativity, process & the business side of art. Tune in and ask a question at


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Creative Downtime

Teal Tudor - a house I built on an island I built in Virtual World Kitely. Stop by!

Teal Tudor - a house I built on an island I built in Virtual World Kitely. Stop by!

I think a big challenge for creative people - especially those that are full time professionals is that our hobby - is our passion - is our work. So when you need a break from your work and wish to pursue a hobby for some downtime, your options are limited. It's rather difficult to take a break from painting by - well, painting. At the moment my professional time is dominated by the illustrations for The Raven - and it's a challenging project.

I find that with challenging projects I need a little more downtime than usual. I need the relief of doing something else with my hands and my eyes and my brain, a distraction that allows my brain to run the "program" of the project that's challenging me in the background. I work so much better this way. Whatever project I'm working on will swirl around in the background of my subconscious while I play videos games, do dishes or my favorite distraction, creating content for 3D virtual worlds. 

As an artist I get such a thrill out of creating 3 dimensional interactive environments entirely of my own imagining. It's an incredible experience to be able to walk your avatar thru a world you dreamt up, built from scratch, textured and painted entirely with your own hand. After 8 years I'm pretty quick at the whole process from concept to completion when it comes to creating in a Virtual Environment. (The image you see above took probably 8 hours broken up into chunks over several days.) The best part is that everything I make for virtual worlds I do eventually sell or use elements of the project in other aspects of my professional life. So while it's "fun" I don't feel guilty that I'm goofing off.  

And it's just really fun! For me, creating in virtual worlds is like coloring, or playing with blocks or clay. It's just pure creative enjoyment - no pressure. Figuring out how to build a house I've got in my head is like solving a fascinating puzzle. And then once that part is finished, I get to "paint" the whole thing with textures and accessorize it with trees and plant life.

I used to create and sell quite a lot of this "goofing off" content in Second Life. I've recently moved from Second Life to Kitely however and I'm enjoying all the freedom I have in that environment. The house in the photo above is on an island I own in Kitely called Brythony Market. It's open to the public so you can go and check out the house yourself if you wish

My plan is that over time I'll have quite a lot of houses and content available for sale on there. All the happy result of some creative downtime.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on creative downtime, do you have something specific you do when you need to unwind?

Be Careful What You Wish For . . .

Over a year ago I made a wish. I wished to live in a newer house that required less maintenance (our current house is 250 years old), in a warmer climate with a lower cost of living. I wished for a studio with a door on it. I wished for my husband to have employment that was lower stress and afforded him more free time. I wished that my own art career would continue on the upwards trajectory with more of my income contributing to the household income - with the eventual hope that my income would become the primary source and my husband could enjoy even more free time. As the saying goes be careful what you wish for.

Two months ago my husband was laid off. Within a month he had a new job, we'll be moving to Texas to accommodate this new position. This means we'll be buying a new house, moving to a warmer climate with a lower cost of living and my husband will be working some from an office in Texas and some from home. Meanwhile my art career has surged, and I've more work on my plate, more licensing gigs, commissions, projects and inspiration then I know what to do with. All this is wonderful. But it's rather stressful too.

The mere thought of moving across the country with 2 dogs and 2 cats and a huge house full of crap is just so very exhausting mentally. I have a dozen artwork commitments all due in a month. I have a little girl about to go into middle school. I have to sell one house and buy another. I have to get rid of some of this crap. I hope my new studio has a door. I really NEED a DOOR.

But when I start to feel overwhelmed I remind myself that I asked for all of this. Did I think I would just wake up one day in a new state with a new home? Am I so spoiled that I have the nerve to complain and feel overwhelmed about life changes that are ultimately good? NONE of this is insurmountable. Dealing with the aftermath of a Tsunmai is what qualifies as insurmountable. I'm happy and healthy, so is my family, and we have to move to Texas this summer. This is, in the grand scheme of life's challenges, an easy one. So I'll shut up about it already. And share some new art with you. ;)
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SkwerlArt Tweetstakes

Alrighty Folks! Let's have us a Skwerlgrrl Art Sweepstakes on Twitter!

Here's the rules:

1. Read Skwerlgrrl tweets to see some song lyrics posted.

2. RT or reply @skwerlgrrl with the hashtag #SkwerlArt - in your reply include either more song lyrics from the song I posted - or the Title of the song.

3. Tomorrow Morning (May 1st) I'll choose a winner from the CORRECT entries. I will choose ONE winner RANDOMLY.

4. Only enter once - don't keep retweeting the same thing a bunch of times. It won't improve your chances and it pisses the Twitter people off.


The prize is a $12.00 gift certificate to my online shop. This is the same price as a signed print. So you can use the Gift Certificate to get a free signed print and only pay shipping to where-ever you are in the world. Or you can use the Gift Certificate to offset a larger purchase.

I have links on my site to other sites that sell merchandise I license - like shirts and figurines. The gift certificate DOES NOT apply to those items. It only applies to items I sell. The items I sell directly are prints, necklaces, and lockets only.



If you like my art and aren't already following me - please do!

Consider signing up for my mailing list! You get a discount code to my shop when you sign up (cannot be combined with other offers)

This little shindig is Twitter only. I'll consider running other sweepstakes on other networks at other times. Let just stick to this for now!

Post any questions in the comments and thanks for participating!