The first few workshops in my new roster (image editing & working with WordPress, both for beginners) have gone sooo well this week! I’m getting great feedback on the quantity of information I’m offering, patient and effective instruction, value of the information presented for the price, and even my teaching style. It’s so rewarding to see artists move from apprehension and self-doubt to having fun using their newly acquired skills so quickly, and I’m proud of the progress last week’s participants have already made. Check out my calendar for current workshop dates and, whether you plan to DIY or need to feel more confident when dealing with your own webmaster, let me help you take control of your online presence!
By request of two of last week’s participants, I’m announcing that the Image Editing Practice Session for Beginners has been extended to include two dates each month indefinitely, on Thursdays from 10am – 12:30pm. Those who need help with their image editing skills can drop in for a practice session whenever they can, or join the two current participants for a weekly session where supervised practice will hone your skills and help commit them to memory. I will be happy to add an additional ongoing practice session where you can bring your questions, learn more, and practice your image editing skills with me there to help you on a different day/time, as I’ve heard from several artists who can’t make it on a Thursday.
Please email me or use Doodle to request a new date and/or time and I’ll add it to my calendar.
Scheduling for an additional date of the Intro to Image Editing workshop is now underway! Norm Rossignol proposed that we schedule another occurrence of this workshop on Monday, March 11 from 10am – 12:30pm. If you wanted to attend this workshop but the published date and time did not work with your schedule, please click this link to participate in the new session. Here’s more information about this workshop and a PayPal button to pre-register:
A two hour overview of essential image editing information with a half hour question and answer session. Follow along on your own computer or take notes and plan to gets some hands-on practice with me to help you in the followup work sessions. Information regarding metadata and how to embed it in your images is crucial to artists and is a prerequisite for following sessions. You should know how to do this, along with editing your image to it looks its best, before uploading and sharing images of your art online!
I’ve been quite concerned about several issues with artists and the images of their art they use online. As a web designer who feels compelled to watch the backs of artists, it is distressing to download an image from an artist’s website only to find their web designer’ copyright notice in the metadata! I know the artist has no way of finding out, and that’s got to change right now.
In these hard times it’s understandable that many artists are concerned about the cost of having their images adjusted and prepared to use online, as well as the expense involved in starting up a blog to promote their art on the internet. And the social media phenomenon has quickly proven itself to be the marketing and promotion medium of the future…of today!
Last year I taught workshops on blogging at the Ashland Art Center and image editing at the Rogue Gallery and Art Center. In January 2013 I taught a workshop on setting up a Facebook professional page for artists at the Art Presence Art Center in Jacksonville, and in February, a small workshop on image editing for artists. I was happy to receive many compliments on the volume of usable information presented, my teaching style and patience from my hosts and the participants of all these workshops. Since the experiment was a success, and to help artists master the computer skills they need to promote their art in the twenty-first century, I am now announcing my new roster of ten ongoing workshops in four categories:
For most workshops I will present a comprehensive overview of the topic, with a Q&A session afterward. For confident computer users, this may be all you need to get started. For those who would like assistance putting the skills I discuss into action, follow up workshops will provide opportunity for hands-on practice where you can ask questions about specific tasks and problems, practice techniques and accomplish the objectives introduced in the overview.
I realize the dates of these workshops don’t give a lot of advance notice. My intent is to get them rolling as soon as possible for those who need help now and repeat them at least once a month. If you see a workshop you want to attend but the schedule doesn’t work for you, you’re probably not alone. Participate my Doodle scheduling program (links following each workshop below) and we’ll work out another time with others seeking an alternate date. You can also contact me to arrange a private tutoring session.
Working With Your Art Images in Photoshop and PS Elements
Learn how to prepare the digital images of your art to look their best, protect your copyright and meet submission requirements. The skills you learn in these workshops will help you manipulate your photographs with confidence, save money, prepare your images for show and gallery submissions and transform your art images from potential copyright liabilities to online marketing assets!
Laptop, iMac or mobile device that you can use image editing software with.
Basic understanding of how to work with your computer or device.
Images of your own artwork to practice with. I recommend making a copies of several images – some in pretty good shape and others that need a lot of adjusting – and place them in a separate folder.
Introduction to Image Editing
A two hour overview of essential image editing information with a half hour question and answer session. Follow along on your own computer or take notes and plan to gets some hands-on practice with me to help you in the followup work sessions.
In this workshop you will have the opportunity to work with your own images with my assistance. We’ll begin with helpful practices for handling your image files and embedding copyright, contact and website information and other metadata to your images. We’ll also go over various file types and when to choose them and how to use layers to add a visible copyright notice to your images, resizing your images and choosing different resolutions. Once you’ve mastered these skills you will be able to email, post and share images of your art online with confidence that wherever they roam, your copyright and contact information will travel with them, and people can use this to contact you and talk about purchasing your work or request permission to use it.
This workshop will focus on more advanced techniques you’ll need to prepare your images for submission to festivals, shows and galleries. We’ll talk about the different specifications you have encountered and learn how to prepare the photos of your art appropriately, as well as making adjustments to the color, lighting and focus to accurately present your art to show jurors and gallery owners. We will practice more advanced ways to use layers and how to finalize your image files for different uses.
Learn how to create an online journal of your art activities from scratch using WordPress! From installing WordPress on your website’s host server or at WordPress.com to creating posts and managing your WordPress installation, you can learn to use blogging help you promote your work online, build your following, increase search engine rankings and drive traffic to your website. It’s a fun and creative endeavor in itself!
Laptop, iMac or mobile device you can use to work online (sorry, a smartphone will not be sufficient!)
Basic understanding of how to work with your computer and internet browser.
Completion of Image Editing Workshops or prior knowledge of how to embed metadata into your images to protect your copyright and enhance search engine optimization.
Introduction to Blogging, for Artists with existing WordPress sites
Do you have a website designed with WordPress but aren’t sure how to use it? This workshop is for you! We’ll log in to our blogs, explore the “back end” or administrative section and the post editing window. Learn how to use the word processing functions WordPress provides, upload and insert images into your posts, manage updates, what your plugins do, others I recommend and how to take care of them, and more. You’ll leave with an illustrated post and money-saving skills to begin maintaining your blog on your own.
This immersive workshop is designed for confident computer users who are ready to begin blogging now. We will install WordPress on your host server or at WordPress.com, set it up and learn to create an illustrated post. We’ll also go over maintenance tasks, how to customize your blog with plugins and themes, and more. At the end of the day you will have a working blog with at least one completed post and the skills to begin managing your blog as well as publishing with it!
Please have the materials you need to create with – text, images, and a banner image – set aside in their own folder on your computer for easy access during the workshop. For lunch, we can munch together at my studio or in town, arrangements TBD based on participants’ preferences.
This workshop will give an opportunity for beginning WordPress users to ask questions and get hands-on help with the answers, bring problems you’ve encountered for resolution and continue practicing the skills you need to progress to an intermediate level of blogging.
This workshop will provide those who are comfortable blogging with WordPress with an opportunity to bring their questions and get hands-on help for answers, troubleshoot problems they’ve encountered and gain more advanced skills. Topics can include blog maintenance, adding plugins for advanced functionality, working with photo galleries, customizing posts with basic html, attracting the attention of search engines and increasing traffic.
Learn how establish your social media presence, integrate social sharing into your website and put your social networks to work building your audience, driving traffic to your website and increasing your search engine ranking!
Laptop, iMac or mobile device you can use to work online (sorry, a smartphone will not be sufficient!)
Basic understanding of how to work with your computer
Completion of Image Editing Workshops or existing knowledge of how to embed metadata into your images to protect your copyright and enhance search engine optimization.
Set Up Your Facebook Professional Page
Facebook should be the main component of your social network, and this workshop will be devoted to creating and setting up your professional page on Facebook. The time is coming when Facebook will REQUIRE business and professional posting to be done separately from personal posts – don’t wait ‘til the last minute! Get your artist page set up and start building a following for your art business while keeping your personal page private.
Integrating Social Networks with Your Blog or Website
Your website or blog should be the centerpiece of your online presence, and visitors should be able to follow you on their favorite social network and share your content with their friends with ease. We will explore the various social media networks and their usefulness, decide which ones to use and set them up, then integrate them with your main blog or website using one of three options: Networked Blogs Facebook application, WordPress’ JetPack plugin modules, or AddThis.com’s sharing plugin.
Do you want to learn one or more of the above skillsets, but find yourself hesitating because you don’t know how to work your computer or software well enough? Don’t let that stop you! Join my basic computer skills workshop and I will help you get up to speed with the skills you need to progress and learn more! Topics include: computer terminology, working with email, basics of using software programs, working with files, and much more.
Learn how to use your computer from a teacher who has the patience to work with you until you’re confident working on your own! I’m always happy to arrange private tutoring sessions if my workshop schedule doesn’t fit in with your own.
I have affiliate relationships with both Adobe and Corel, which I initiated simply to make a few bucks if anyone who would like to attend a workshop wants to purchase the image editing software they need. Most are inexpensive, but there are premium selections here too. Some are for downloadable versions of the software, some are in the box; follow the links to the company website to order them in the version you prefer.
Three years of promoting the arts community of southern Oregon through the Southern Oregon Artists Resource and of Jacksonville as a board member of Art Presence and curator of the art exhibits at GoodBean Coffee have shown me that the arts bring more benefits to our communities than many realize. I’d like to share what I’ve learned about how art affects our community and hope this will rekindle an appreciation that becomes a deeper commitment to supporting the arts in Jacksonville.
The arts have been made and practiced as long as there have been humans. They are key to children’s cognitive and physiological development, and the expressions of abstract thinking, sequencing, and eye-hand coordination needed to make art prepare young minds for mastery in reading, language and mathematics. Integrating the arts into core subjects helps students achieve better understanding, learn faster and retain information longer. Creative problem-solving and collaborative skills gained through training in the arts give kids the edge they need to succeed in the new knowledge-based economy and participate in the rise of the creative class. A new emphasis on the arts in education reflects the fact that creativity has become a valued asset to employers in many industries.
Art also has proven value in healing, and we are fortunate to have some incredibly effective nonprofits putting art to work on behalf of the most vulnerable in the Rogue Valley. From children recovering from abuse and kids battling cancer to adults with cognitive challenges or contending with degenerative diseases, art therapy is providing relief from symptoms, positive self-esteem, better communication, recovery from physical and emotional trauma and open doors of opportunity. All these contribute to a healthier community.
Results from the Arts & Economic Prosperity IV™ study in June 2012 showed that economic activity generated by the arts results in $135.2 billion in total economic activity to the nation’s economy and supports 4.1 million full-time jobs. After reading the study’s results, the U.S. Conference of Mayors urged mayors across the country to invest in nonprofit arts organizations as a catalyst to generate economic impact, stimulate business development, attract tourists and area residents to community activities, and improve the overall quality of life in America’s cities.
Additional 2011 and 2012 studies have so firmly established the contribution of the arts to the economy that government at every level has implemented programs for investments in the arts in education and nonprofit art centers, as well as entrepreneurial support for individual artists.
In Jacksonville we know cultural tourism is essential to our local economy, but it turns out that arts and cultural tourism is the fastest growing segment in the entire industry. Half of all Americans take at least one trip per year, of which 80% seek cultural or heritage opportunities; 15.4 million overseas cultural heritage travelers came to the U.S. in 2010, outpacing the average growth of all overseas arrivals to the United States. It’s so important to the national tourism industry that new commitments to support cultural tourism have been put into place at every level of government.
Communities which embrace the arts enjoy higher property values, which are more likely to remain stable during economic recessions. Jacksonville has benefitted greatly in property values and new residents with higher average incomes in the past twenty years. When residents would rather stay than move away those property values can be sustained. Though we’ve taken a hit with everyone else, we weren’t hit as hard as many other communities and have bounced back with greater resilience than most. Southern Oregon is one of the top three regions where people moving out of state choose to relocate, and Jacksonville is one of the most desirable spots in the region. The evidence I’ve seen makes me think we have the Britt to thank for much of the gentrification we’ve enjoyed, but to sustain this we need to remain mindful of two things:
• As a city becomes more prosperous in terms of property values, artists are less likely to afford living and working there, and
• Arts & culture need active and ongoing cultivation to sustain property values, retain high net worth individuals and families, and give visitors a satisfying arts experience.
Art Presence was founded by artist Anne Brooke four years ago. Partnering with local businesses to provide venues for artists to exhibit and sell their work and attract visitors with a variety of outstanding events and displays, the group has helped bring revenue to our business community, supported local talent and is making strides toward contributing to art education, in schools and through the Art Presence Art Center in Jacksonville. With Arlis Duncan’s help, Anne achieved nonprofit status for the organization under the umbrella of the Arts Council of Southern Oregon, which in turn made the Art Presence Art Center’s new home in the former Children’s Museum possible. Soon after celebrating this accomplishment, our situation there became tenuous and finances strained. Some are concerned about the organization’s ability to survive 2013.
I’ve spoken with transplanted residents who love our gallery. They love Jacksonville, yet many left major arts & cultural centers to make a new life here and miss this vital part of their former lives. Their support shows that in its short existence the Art Center has already improved the quality of life for many of our Jacksonville neighbors and has the potential to do much more.
Communities that fail to support the arts suffer from its neglect. If we would continue improving quality of life for residents, increasing property values, building an attractive destination for our visitors and increasing revenue for our businesses, we must do more to support the arts in Jacksonville. We must make sure that our city seeks out and obtains its share of available funding for the arts in education, nonprofit art centers and cultural tourism, and makes a commitment to do whatever necessary to support artists and cottage industries as a key strategy for sustaining Jacksonville’s economy. The numbers are in: a healthy and sustainable local economy needs a thriving art center. Art Presence has proven its commitment to our city’s prosperity and stands willing to contribute everything the arts have to offer toward that end. We urge our Mayor to answer the call of the US Conference of Mayors to invest in Art Presence, our own nonprofit arts organization, as a catalyst to generate economic impact, stimulate business development, attract tourists and area residents to community activities, and to improve the overall quality of life in our city.
Art matters to everyone in Jacksonville, and we ask our neighbors to take action in whatever way you can:
• Visit the gallery and attend opening receptions and artist demonstrations. If you can’t buy art, leave your contact information in our guest book. Proving local support is crucial to obtaining grants and donations.
Go to art-presence.org: comment on posts, make suggestions, subscribe to new posts & our newsletter, and view our committees to find an area where you can contribute and who to contact. Share our content with your social networks.
Contact us if you’re a grant writer who’d like to help us acquire funding. We will often be required to match grant funds with locally obtained funds, so…
Donate to the Arts Council of Southern Oregon with “Art Presence Art Center” in the memo line. Contact Arlis Duncan or go to artscouncilso.org for more information.
Write a letter to the Jacksonville Review’s editor, the Mayor and/or City Council and tell them why the arts in our community are important to you and your family.
I simply could not be more humbled, honored and grateful for the kind and thoughtful letters of recommendation that artists and clients have written to recommend me for the Small Business Administration’s Small Business Champion of the Year Award. With six letters, I believe I’m ready to complete the forms and send everything in to the SBA’s Portland office. BUT, I don’t want to get ahead of anyone who might want to add their voice, so if you were planning on writing a letter for me and just haven’t had time yet (or if this is the first you’ve heard of it and you want to jump in, too), please let me know and I’ll be more than happy to wait for you.
Wow! Hannah West Design, parent company of the Southern Oregon Artists Resource, was nominated for the SBA Small Business Champion and Home-Based Business of the Year and they have accepted our nomination! YOU can help us win this prestigious honor! Just write a letter telling the SBA how SOAR has helped your business or has otherwise positively impacted the community and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll include it in the info package we send them. They tell us that the sooner they receive everything, the better able they will be to review it by decision time, so if you could take a little time at your earliest convenience to write something nice for us, we’d be very grateful! To help you with the details of your letter, here are the elements that Champions will be judged on (for my beloved artists and art-related businesses/organizations, just translate “small business” into “artists and art-related businesses” to understand what they’re looking for and tell them something about your experience with me as a web designer/workshop instructor/champion of your art business through SOAR):
· Volunteer efforts beyond business/professional responsibilities to advance small business interests within the community, state and/or nation
· Demonstrated efforts to improve conditions in the small business community as a whole, not solely for individual personal advancement; Volunteer efforts to provide professional services to the small business community in a legal, legislative, managerial or financial capacity
· Demonstrated accomplishments in advising small business groups of opportunities within the overall business community
· Other accomplishments demonstrating the nominee’s merit as an effective advocate for small business interests.
I would like to thank my connections at LinkedIn for the thoughtful and positive endorsements they have written for me! Thanks to my wonderful clients for their confidence in me and my work, and those I have worked with in the past in many types of creative endeavors – you are all such good friends!! I appreciate you so much and thank you for your very kind words!!
I love working for artists! Like anyone else, I get tired working at my computer for so many hours each day, but the beauty of their work makes it a pleasure from which I never tire. Elaine’s watercolors are a prime example ~ I felt so refreshed after completing her new website! Please visit it, not just to examine my work in putting together this WordPress site using Elegant Themes’ “Envisioned” theme., but to enjoy the galleries of her incredible watercolors. Maybe you’ll like them as much as I do and will contact her to make a purchase.Elaine also teaches visual art journaling ~ if you’re into journaling, you should visit her blog to see how her watercolor illustrations make her memories come to life in the pages!
Here’s a look at the top part of Elaine’s Home Page. You can see the entire page in my Portfolio, but I really do encourage you to visit her site and see it live.
DISCLOSURE: This is not a review site, but I do have affiliate relationships with companies whose products and services I and my clients use. If you make a purchase within a few days of using one of my links, I will receive a small commission for the sale. If you have any questions and want to learn more, please contact me through my Facebook page or send me a message using my contact form