Saturday, April 30, 2011

Travis Ivey

Travis was at the University of Wyoming for the first couple years I was there. We were in Student Art League together and I am certainly thankful that I was given the opportunity to get to know him and see his work.  He came to the Student Art League opening at the Works of Wyoming gallery this past Friday and we were able to catch up a bit.   It was encouraging that he was there to support the group as an alumni.

Travis may be one of the most talented painters that the University of Wyoming and Student Art League have produced.  But don’t take my word for it, check out his website (and Bio).

Travis Ivey
STOP (Jeffrey City, WY)

Oil on Linen
24x36 inches
2008

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

13 Tools for Productive Procrastination

Productive Procrastination




Alright, we all know that being a working artist is a real job.  With it comes all the responsibilities of any other job AND the responsibilities of owning your own business.  As creative people we all need time to relax our busy minds.  Some, maybe all, of us need time to process or generate ideas.  I am using the term procrastination in the sense that it is not producing work that can be sold (not because it isn't or cant be productive).

The relaxation process, in this post the procrastination processes, can help us to be more creative and productive in the long run.  The business of art is not just about creating work (though creating work is the most important part and should be done when you have the most energy).  You often times need to learn how to keep a database, how to enhance your SEO, or how to market for a show.  Once you  learn you must also do.

Keep reading for 13 ways that I step back from my work, process, relax, and be productive at the same time.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Thank you From East Asia

The photographs are from my friend's previous trips to Asia.

I just finished this card for a friend going on a church trip to East Asia. The cards will go out to his friends and family who supported him though both prayer and monetary donations. He will be in Asia for six weeks this summer.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

SAL at WOW Opening

Me with my Native American Social Justice Poster Series (L) Diabetes (C) Unemployment (R) Incarceration

The Student Art League Show opening was successful.
There were many strong pieces and talented artists in the show.
It will be up through this Thursday so be sure to check it out!

Below are some of my ink and wash drawings.
I have been getting back into using ink and plan to do more ink and wash,
as well as water color over the summer.
(Summer Art Goals)
The show will be at WOW until April 29th so be sure to check it out!

UW Landscape
Java Buddha
Fetus

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Summer Goals

My summer art goals.
1. Complete work for my African American Black Beauty/Social Justice/Culture show. I would like to have some extra work and then narrow it down from there. Here is what I would like to create (I am not sure what will go in the show yet and these are just ideas )
   a. 5 – 10 poster designs
   b. A black hair care line
   c. Some (5 - 10, see below) ink and wash drawings or water color paintings – for a challenge. I am not sure that they will be included in the show.
   d. A t-shirt stencil or some type of graffiti art (maybe ink and wash)
   e. C and d can be used in a poster design and will still count.
   f. zines

2. Along with having all the work for the show, create promotional materials and press releases given out to the community on time. I know little about this, so it will be a learning process.
   a. I would like to find a checklist of some sort and
   b. actually use it.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Grace is Queer Poster Series

This poster series is based on the topic of the lack of grace in the church. To learn more check out my Grace is Queer website I created, visit my religion blog, or visit my art and design website.  Click the image to see more about the concept behind the specific poster.








Saturday, April 16, 2011

Productive Playtime and Profitable Passions

Over Spring Break I went to the Golden Key National Honour Society Regional Summit (This is the official terminology). One of he sessions that I attended focused on how you can do the things that you love doing and build your resume at the same time. My list from the workshop included things like arts/crafts, snowboarding, hiking/camping/backpacking, rock wall, riding my bike, working with people, blogging/journaling, yoga, and networking. Many of these interests could translate into leading art lessons with kids, graphic design projects, photography projects or volunteer work and community service.

I would now like to use the chart we were given to see where some of my more random projects (which I have posted in this blog) could fit into my grand scheme of being a an artist (photographer, illustrator, and/or graphic designer).

Click below to see my final chart and to read more about being a scanner (or to learn what the term refers to).

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

SAL at WOW

Poster Design by Spencer Duncan
The next show up at the Works of Wyoming Art Gallery will be the Student Art League show (SAL at WOW).   There should be some great work up.

Be sure to check it out April 15 - 29.  The opening will be on April 15 from 6 - 8.  There will be a live performance as well as free food!

I am telling what work of mine will be in the show...you have to go to find out.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Ed Sherline: Philosopher by Day…

Photograph from Ed Sherline's website
Photographer by Night

It is always great to find new artists and work. It is also fascinating when you find out that the people you know from school, church, or work are talented artists. I ran into one of these people today. My academic advisor for my Humanities and Fine Arts major asked about some of my internships. I told him that I am currently working for the Wyoming Women’s Business Center and volunteering for the Works of Wyoming gallery. He then mentioned that he was also a photographer. Dr. Sherline is like many people who practice art but humbly do not consider themselves working artists simply because art is not a major source of income. I understand and agree that being a working artist is a full-time job but I also think that many of the “hobby artists” out there deserve more credit than they give themselves. To see more of this philosophers (Head of the Philosophy Department at the University of Wyoming) photography, visit his website.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Incarceration

I did a project that focused on the Indian Reservations in the United States. These areas seem to get ignored but several of the reservations have living conditions comparable to the ghettos in Haiti. Those who live on PR do live on $1 - $2 per day. It is clear that there are many problems on the reservations and it is difficult to come up with a solution.


What do you think of when you see this poster?  Do you Agree with the message you see?  Does it fit the ideas that our country was built on?

What experience do you have, that you can relate to this?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Unemployment

Pine ridge has an unemployment rate of 85% or higher.  Any place with an unemployment rate at 9% is considered  extremely impoverished. 

The average income on the reservation is between $5,000 and $7,000 per year per household.

The average household has between 8 and 16 people living in a small house (often less than 5 rooms total, including living room).  That is at most less $2.4/day and the low end is 85 cents/day. 

View my website for the whole project and more information about Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spirits


Did you know that there are towns in the United States with the one purpose of selling alcohol to, and killing Native Americans. White Clay Nebraska is one of these towns.  The population is around 14 people and they sell $4 million worth of beer a year to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.  The town has nothing but liquor shops. 

There are many racist and ignorant stereotypes that surround the Native American population in the town that I grew up in (Rapid City, South Dakota).  The term "Lazy drunk Indian" is a phrase that you hear on a daily basis.  It is important to remember that the term is applied to any homeless or drunk person regardless of their race.  A story about the racism back home. 

I am not really sure what can be done about the alcohol problems and the race problems associated with both.  My response was to create this poster to help make the point and raise awareness about Alcoholism and towns like White Clay Nebraska.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

First Americans

This poster looks at the irony of who was here first and who is getting the shaft on their education. Do I blame the system? Yes, to a point…  It is clear that schools can do things to help everyone graduate at more consistent rates, yet these actions are not being taken in many areas.

Statistics show that students who participate in Native American enrichment programs graduate at much higher rates than those who do now.  Some schools offer these programs but there are also school out there who do not care about these students and the poverty that surrounds them.

An example of this is the Superintendent from the school district that I grew up in.  He would refer to the school on the poor side of town as his "poor little school" and rumor has it that he also said "poor little Indian school."  I never heard the second one, but this can help us all understand that schools are not equal and there are people who have the power to do something about it, but don't.

In addition to the schools there are many problems that surround the Indian reservations and other populations with high drop out rates.

There are factors like being seen as a traitor and getting beat up by your family and friends for going to school (and more-so for going to college), there is the problem of gang involvement.  Being born into a gang is common on the Rosebud and Pine Ridge Indian Reservations, in South Dakota.  (I am sure that there are others but these are two of the top three worst counties in the US and I am the most familiar with them.)  When you are born into a gang that is truly all you have.  When you get out you loose your family and your friends, end up half dead in a hospital, and are left with nothing.  Situations like this do not help the schools or the learning environment. 

I am not here to tell individual schools what to do to increase graduation rates and student interest, I am here to raise awareness about the fact that something needs to be done in many areas of United States.