Saturday, April 23, 2011

Blast From the Past!

I decided that it was time for a major clean out on my computer (I have all my listing photos saved from the last 3 years -woah!) While I was sorting through hundreds of photos, deciding which of my favs to keep, I ran across several pieces from my first year of Illustrated Ink. Basically, when I just started out on eBay and was trying to find my groove. Before I even had a blog! I never realized how much my style has developed and changed in over 3 years, but I guess I've painted almost everyday in that amount of time and my skills have naturally improved. It was reassuring to realize, because I feel that I'm always striving for achievement of creating the vision in my mind. I definitely get frustrated less often than I used to by my painting skills not living up to what I want. I swear, when I started it would take me an entire day (oh yes, I mean from noon until midnight) to paint a piece that now only takes me 3 hours. I think I averaged about $3 per hour, oh my!

Really though, when you are doing what you love, it's a thrill just to know that people want your work. I remember getting that first bid on eBay and I was sooo excited! :) My Mom and I freaked out calling each other, it was really fun! I still get a warm fuzzy feeling everytime my work is purchased, and feel so grateful and honored. That will never change. :)

Setting up at my very first show at the Pecan St. Festival in 2008! I was nervous, excited, and wanting to hide under a table!

Things I have learned about taking photos:

Lighting is key (I think most people know this, but I really struggled with my listing photos when I started). Natural light is best, and for me that's between 9 - 11 in the morning when the sun streams into the front of my house. After you find your ideal spot with a good backdrop near a window, decide when the light is best.

Too dark!! I thought that a black box on black fabric in a dark setting would be ideal - really?!

Too light! The black on the box is completely washed out as is the side of the piece (the bird is a deep purple, and it looks light lavender).

Having a decent camera (I now have a Canon Powershot A1100, and I love it) and a steady hand is also important, no one likes blurry photos. Um, also I was so in love with this tattoo fabric, but I can now see that it completely took away from my art. Just too busy. Avoid patterns and other distractions in your photos:

I don't think I could squeeze another pattern in here if I tried...

Believe me, I'm still learning everyday, but I'm happy to see that I've picked up a few things!


Pili said...

Ooooh! I've loved seeing some of your previous works!

I have to agree, as much as I love the black tattoo fabric myself, it really wasn't the best background to your artwork!

rox said...

Leila is it not so good to be able to look back and see what we've learned ! lol I know what you mean about the time / money issue I felt the same about my beadwork & sewing ! but once you have that groove look out ☺ although I still wish I could get paid for walking in the woods , praying & fidning sticks ;-)
lol my ds21 and I were just talking about blast from the past and I told him yes that movie is one of my favs .I'm just corny I guess ☺
I love your work then & now Leila
lov rox

Linda in New Mexico said...

Looking at your art always makes me happy. You are so good at what you do.

Lulubiz said...

To thine own self be true ? I WANT ONE OF THESE ! lol

Sorry I have not been more present the last months... Things have been hectics... to say the least. ;)


Hoot-n-Andy LLC said...

Reading (and seeing!) your artistic journey is, to say the least, very inspiring! Especially for someone who is still trying to find their niche to make a living doing art, it is amazing to see someone who's work I admire at their humble beginnings :) You deserve every bit of your success, Leila, and I hope to someday be just as successful! Much love!

Michelle said...

Beautiful sentiment!
Thanks for sharing the tips and the older art work, it's all gorgeous!

Kim-Anh Nguyen said...

killer work as always!!!

Marie said...

I absolutely love your artwork, especially the recent return of your 'sugar' skull tea light candle holder. Your style is beautiful and it inspires me!

Shayla said...

Gosh. You are so damn amazing. Your work is so alluring and I just can't look away. I enjoy stalking your blog.

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