Monday, March 9

Getting Your Art Day Started

Today’s Image

How do you start your art day? I want to share some of the ways I start my art day and keep myself informed. Today's Image is a sample photo I think captures a morning mood.

If you’re like me, you may have art on your mind or at least keep it running in the back of your mind. I'm always alert to seeing, hearing, reading, or viewing--in the real world or online--information about art.
I’m on several email lists of artist groups in my area. These are ad hoc groups of artists, both professional and non-professional, who meet in regular monthly meetings and/or simply via email. This is a great way to keep in touch, as much or as little as you like, with what’s happening art-wise in your community. Every day I receive at least one email, and usually more, from these groups with news or other art information. The emails can be about most anything art related, such as a charity art auction, an upcoming gallery opening, an art festival, art supplies for sale, or a successful local artist.

I have also signed up to receive emails from several art museums, art centers, art collections, and art galleries in my area, such as the Art League, Museum of Fine Art, Contemporary Art Museum, School of Art, and several local art centers and art galleries. For example, at The Lawndale Art Center here I receive a monthly update of upcoming exhibits. I suggest you sign up to receive emails from groups and art centers in your area, too. It's a great way to keep informed of new exhibits, openings, and other events coming to your area.
My point is that I usually check my email early in the day, and reading these emails gets me started thinking about art and what I want to accomplish that day or that week.

And since I’m already online reading emails, I also check my blog (this one) to see how many are finding their way to it and if there are any comments. I also may check a few online art sites, which I have tagged as favorites, to find out what may be happening elsewhere in the art world. I’m not endorsing any sites, but, for example, there’s Art Slant and Artinfo (and many, many others I’m sure) with news and information on the latest art events.

Another way that may be interesting to keep up with art and artists is with Twitter, for which I only recently signed up. Without going into too much detail, Twitter is way for you to follow other twitterers or for other twitterers to follow you. You send “tweets,” which are basically instant messages of 140 characters or less. What I want to do is keep up with other artists, although there may be other followers as well. I’ll let you know how it's going.

After I read my emails, visit some of my favorite art sites, and maybe even send a “tweet, ” I’m all revved up to begin or continue with whatever painting I’m working on that day. It gets my juices flowing, and I’m in a creative state of mind to do my best work.

So, that is how I start my art day, and I hope this provides encouragement to you. As Henri Matisse said, “creativity takes courage.”


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