Amelia Furman's Open Studio Tour

Over the weekend, Ryan and I headed down to Ridley Park in Philly to check out Amelia Furman's Open Studio Event weekend in her home. (Which by the way is a great idea, and will most definitely plan on doing next year!)  I met Amelia at the New Hope Arts festival...she won Best in Show for Fine Art, and I just had to check out her work.  Firstly, I was struck by how unique her artistic approach is...secondly, I instantly connected to her work because her process is incredibly similar to mine - with very different results, and finally, her son Ethan is almost the same age as Ryan. It's not often I meet other artists with kiddos my age.

Like with my process, she also uses a collage substrate under her paintings.  She has some great close ups and demonstration photos on her website www.ameliafurman.com.  Much of her work goes a step further with a resin coating over top of the painting.  It gives the surface a super high gloss that really brings out the layers underneath.  The thing I love the most about her work is how the reflections in the surface also add to the layers in each piece, so depending on the lighting and location, the image is in a constant state of change.

If you have a second, please check out her website or head over and "like" her facebook page.   Ryan and I purchased an original piece just for him to hang in his room.


Truck Series

Construction Truck Series

When my boys were born, I was inspired to create some art for their nurseries.  Trucks seemed to be a favorite of theirs, so I created a series of construction trucks and emergency vehicles.  They are done in similar fashion to my more serious cityscapes with newspaper adhered to the canvas underneath.  I have prints available here in my Etsy shop for children.  Here they are, finally hung in Ryan's room...


Professional Artist Magazine - Artist Spotlight

Professional Artist November 2012 Issue
I was selected by Professional Artist Magazine to be the artist spotlight for the November issue- which is now on newstands.  It is officially my very first publication - well - if you don't count an ad that was used with Paris Rooftops.  The process was really interesting - from the interview, to proofing the draft, and then seeing it in print.

I had to provide them with several images that they could choose from, and I was secretly hoping that they would go with Top of the World - one of my favorites.  I've been a subscriber for years, and always read the artist spotlight page - never in a million years thinking it would be me.  The article is below...

by Kim Hall

Teresa Haag’s architectural streetscapes are the culmination of years of study and
creative struggle, but with a result that was worth the wait. With bold lines and color, and
a strong eye for composition, Haag executes each of her works with a care and respect
for the places she’s been, both metaphorically and literally. All of the paintings are based
on locations she has physically visited, many of which of in her small steel town in

“Everyone and everything has a story. Some of my subjects are such underdogs.
For example, Top of the World is an old power plant that is slated for demolition. At one
time, it was full of life, supplying a city with energy. Now, it sits in quiet, waiting to be
torn down. I felt the need to honor that building. I like the idea of taking something that
is considered mundane and showing it in a new light.”

Up until two years ago, Haag experimented in a variety of painting techniques
and styles. What she didn’t realize was that each experiment was leading her to her true
voice, a process that just takes time.

“I look back on some of that work and catch myself cringing. But I realize now
that it was all a part of the process to get me where I am today.
“A few years ago, I decided to paint a street scene of a recent trip to San
Francisco. I had an old canvas that housed a painting that I was unhappy with. No
stranger to texture, on a whim I decided to re-use it by applying newspaper over the old
work with clear gesso. The result was a gritty textured surface. After the first few brush
strokes, I knew that I found my own unique style. It adds energy to the piece that cannot
be achieved when beginning with a blank white canvas.”

The result is a sense of depth, mystery and perhaps even history — all very
appropriate for works that tell a story of a location through the eyes of the painter. Haag
spent the last two years developing her vision and technique until she got to a point
where she was proud of what she was creating. With her husband giving her the nudge to
begin exhibiting, Haag won best of show at her local art center this past May, and has
begun showing regularly in fine arts festivals and other arts venues.

“I believe that finding your voice is the most difficult thing an artist faces. The
reason that I struggled with promoting myself and showing my work in the past is
because I wasn't proud of what I was creating. Once I discovered who I was as an artist, I
was able to focus on making good art that I could stand behind.”

Teresa Haag exhibited at the New Hope Art Festival in New Hope, Pennsylvania, in
September 2012. Her next exhibition is a solo show at the Phoenix Village Art Center
(www.phoenixvillageartcenter.org) in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania in April 2013. For
more information, visit www.teresahaag.com.


Art Festivals - The Beginner's Guide - From the Perspective of a Beginner

As I mentioned in my last post, I've decided to do a series on my blog about how to get started doing art festivals and outdoor exhibitions - as written from the perspective someone who just completed their first season of festivals.

Art festivals are not for sissies. It's really true.  There is a TON of work involved on the front end, especially in the beginning.  Let's break it down...

Applying to Shows
Emerging Artist Exhibits
Booth Displays and Everything that Goes with it
Payment Options
Resources - Online Communities, Managing Contacts, Blogging, Facebook, Websites

Today, I'd like to talk about Applying to Shows & Emerging Artist Exhibits...

emerging artist tent
Manayunk Art Festival 2012
I kinda fell into art festivals this summer.  I was part of a group show at my local art center and things went really well, so I started poking around for other opportunities in the community.  I happened upon a call for emerging artists on the Manayunk Art Festival facebook page.  It was their first time offering an emerging artist tent, so I applied and was accepted.  The table fee was low - just $100.  All I needed to bring was my work - everything else would be provided.  PERFECT!  For $100, I get to test the marketplace.  This is as low risk as its gonna get.  
my little space in the very back of the tent
Manayunk Art Festival 2012

Things went really well at the festival.  There was a constant stream of people walking through offering comments.  I sold my first large piece to a collector and was hooked.  When my husband saw the financials after the show ended, he was googling more shows that night.  So, that's how it all started.  

I HIGHLY ENCOURAGE YOU TO TEST THE WATERS BEFORE JUMPING IN!  Emerging Artist Exhibits are catching on - search for shows that offer them and apply.  Apply early.  Most shows have deadlines months in advance of the show.  

How do you find the art festivals?  Well, once you are showing at art festivals it is easy....it is the most talked about topic among vendors.  I have my target list already created for 2013 with application deadlines and application fees highlighted.  Not as easy for someone new to know where to apply....so here are a few resources that have been really helpful for me.

SUNSHINE ARTIST - a magazine that ranks the top 200 art festivals in the country as well as offers a wide range of useful tips and articles specifically for the art and craft festival artists.  SUBSCRIBE TO THIS, you won't be disappointed.

FESTIVAL NETWORK ONLINE - another great resource for upcoming shows and events - they offer a paid subscription, however, I find the list and manually look of the details

ART FAIR INSIDERS -  an awesome community of artists that show at festivals, has info on just about any topic you can think of

ZAPPLICATION -  a lot of festivals are now having you apply via zapplication, which is really quite easy and there is a great list of upcoming shows available on their site.  It allows you to save the postings to your favorites for future review.  

Now that you have a place to start - go do some research and figure out where you want to start.  Keep this in mind, art festivals are a lot of work.  Be sure that you plan ample time between festivals to restock inventory, do bookkeeping, and catch up on rest.  

Now it's time to figure out a tent for displaying for your work - next time.
Click here to read Part II - Tents


New Hope Art Festival

Live Demo
Bucks County Playhouse

I spent the weekend at the New Hope Art Festival in New Hope, PA.  It was the last festival that I had scheduled for the season, however, I am considering one last one in CT at the end of Oct.  My Aunt Moira stopped by and spend most of Sunday with me, and took some photos of the booth and my live painting demo of the Bucks County Playhouse.

Now that I have several festivals under my belt, I have decided to create a blog series outlining a beginners guide to art festivals.  Although I am far from an expert, I've learned a lot over my first season that I think would be  helpful for artists who want to get started showing.

 - Booth Evolution -
Changes and Improvements to our
Booth Made Throughout the Summer
We have come a long way since our first booth setup at Corn Hill in Rochester or even our little table in the Manayunk Emerging Artist tent.  Beginning tomorrow, I'll talk about the evolution of our booth over the season - and some great resources to find the items that you'll need for your own setup.  I'll also talk about websites that I have found helpful and shows that I'll apply to again, as well as new shows that I am targeting for next summer.  Finally, no guide is complete without a what not to do so, I'll share all the whoopsies that we made in the process.

I've got a few new paintings to post this week...happily, I've purchased a new point and shoot, so no more poor quality iPhone images. I picked up a Nikon Coolpix.  6x optical zoom 16 mp and fits on my tripod perfectly.  I am really happy with the picture quality and love the slim size.  It was on sale for just south of $100 at Target.

Look for my series to begin tomorrow, and I'll post regular additions over the coming month.

Quick Tip 1 - When setting up your EZ up tent that has an awning, don't forget to find the legs with the holes on the front that holds the awning in place before putting the top on!  Make it easier to remember the front of the tent by wrapping a discrete band of colored duct tape around the very bottom of the front two legs.