Featured Artist: Nan Nevels

LinxWest.com is excited to introduce to you to our August 2012 Featured Artist – Nan Nevels from Southern Joy Artworks!

Nan is a paper clay artist, a craft she learned while living abroad in Japan.  Her style reflects her strong Southern roots, love for children and the beauty and joy she finds in every day life.

Nan’s Background

Nan’s love affair with art began when she was a toddler, as her mother’s old college textbooks, now “enhanced” with her bright Crayola drawings, will prove.  “I even remember when I got my first box of 64 Crayons with the built in sharpener…..oh the possibilities!” mused Nan when asked how she got started in art.

Nan went on to study art in both formal and informal settings; from college pottery and sculpting classes to Japanese sculpting classes at a small local community center in coastal Japan.  It was while she was in Japan that she learned to use paper clay.  “Paper clay is a great medium for relief sculptures because it is so light-weight, enjoys various types of paint, and it air dries,” says Nan.

What Inspires Her

When asked where her inspiration comes from, Nan replied “My inspiration for creating almost always comes from nature and children…two things that always show me God’s mighty hand, amazing grace, and possibilities all wrapped in color and FUN!!!  I treasure the evenings when I can sit on the beach and watch the children giggling as they run up and down the sandy shoreline; drinking in the colors of the ocean against the evening sky. For me, it’s like getting a massive hug from God!!!”

Nan hopes that her art appropriately expresses her love and thankfulness for her amazing life.  “My hope is that people who purchase my work will just walk by it from time to time and smile…even during their most difficult days.”

Where To Find Nan

Nan can be found as a Featured Seller on LinxWest.com.  Her pieces are part of the featured items rotating display on the home page and can also be found under the category “sculpture.”  You can contact Nan to place a custom order on our site or at facebook.com/southernjoyartworks.

Nan’s creations are charming and whimsical and will sure bring a smile to everyone who sees them. We are thrilled to have Nan and her amazing work of art as our August Featured Artist on LinxWest.com.  We are absolutely sure you’ll be touched by her colorful clay dolls and love them as much as we do! Stop by LinxWest.com http://linxwest.com/items/98/folk-art and grab yours now.

Benefits of Online Markets for Artists and Crafters

The road to becoming a successful artist isn’t always an easy one. Often times you must contend with traveling from market to market and gallery to gallery, unpacking and repacking your work just to get it in front of as many prospects as possible. Having to be on the go and constantly seeking out new buyers and gallery representatives doesn’t leave much time for creativity.

This is where the benefits of the online market place come in to play. Online markets give artists an avenue via which to display and present their work to a limitless number of gallery representatives, buyers and art enthusiasts from around the globe.

Finding the Right Venue

Once you’ve made the decision to sell your work online, one of the biggest hurdles to overcome is deciding what sites you want to connect with. I’m sure you’ve already thought about sites like Etsy, eBay or Craig’s List, but on these sites you’ll be one of thousands and you’ll have a hard time being discovered.

You’ll want to find a site that is dedicated to the promotion of handmade crafts and original art from emerging artists, a site that cultivates a support system via which artists can connect and share with each other. You’ll also want to ensure the site you choose has a payment system in place that is verified, easy to use and has minimal fees or charges to use its services.

Benefits of the Right Venue

The most obvious benefit of working with an online market place is the exposure it provides for you and your work. Online market places have a limitless reach as they are global and are open 24/7. You will be able to get your work in front of more people in a day than you could possibly do on your own going from market to market in a year.

With the right market place you’ll also have the added marketing support that a large, online market place can provide. Typically these sites create weekly press releases, social postings and blogs to get the word out about their site. Often times you can also contact them about becoming a featured artist or a guest blogger – both of which are great opportunities to get your name out there even more.

Another great advantage to selling online is the cost which tends to be a lot less than having to sell through galleries as they charge somewhere between 40% and 60% which leaves very little to the artist. Typically online markets allow you to set your own prices. This system ensures you’ll retain the most money from the sale of each of your pieces and that you’ll be in complete control.

The LinxWest Market Place

LinxWest.com is an online market place that is dedicated to helping emerging artists and crafters display and sells their work to buyers from all across the globe. They handle all of the marketing for the site at no cost to you and provide tools to assist you in creating the best online store possible.

The environment of LinxWest.com is one of connected community of artists where you can share ideas and connect with other like-minded artists. LinxWest.com also allows you to set your own price for your pieces and even gives you the option to sell your work at a fixed price or via an online auction.

LinxWest.com is dedicated to supporting emerging artists and artisan crafters and to providing them a venue to sell their work and expand their connections.

Getting the Bigger Picture – How to Evaluate Paintings

Our individual opinions of artworks are entirely subjective – what one person may interpret as a talentless mess of random daubings the next may view as a masterpiece – but there is a sufficient richness, diversity and abundance of art worldwide that virtually everybody should find something that appeals or ‘speaks’ to them.

Beyond the initial aesthetic impact of a painting there may be subtleties and subtexts that only become apparent upon closer inspection, evaluation and reflection. Looking at a painting in such a way can hugely enhance our enjoyment and appreciation of it, helping us to understand something of the thought processes and feelings of the artist and what they are trying to convey. Whilst art connoisseurs may spend a lifetime examining every nuance and brush stroke of a painting in fine detail, a consideration of the following five basic questions can make evaluating paintings just as rewarding for beginners.

What is the subject of the painting?
This isn’t necessarily as straightforward as it sounds. When you begin evaluating paintings, all kinds of questions may spring to mind, the answers to which will help you to understand and enjoy the painting. Is it a depiction of a cityscape? Which city? And when? Why was the artist there? Why did he choose this particular scene?

Similar lines of questioning can be applied to portraits – who is the sitter? Why are they being painted? Are they important? – and to still-life paintings, which may reveal a story or meaning that isn’t immediately obvious.

How has the painting been composed?
The way in which a painting has been laid out – composed – is significant to understanding the motive and skill of the artist. An expertly composed picture will subtly lead the viewer’s eye around the painting via techiniques such as contrasting areas of light and shade, and the careful deployment of horizons and vanishing points. Consider how the way in which a painting has been composed affects the mood of the scene; how would the same painting work if the elements depicted had been composed differently?

Is the artist’s use of colour significant?
Colours have a strong subconscious link with human emotions, a fact that artists exploit to elicit different feelings and moods with their paintings. Not only can colours be used to stimulate emotions, they can evoke character, mood and a sense of visual depth in a painting. The use of colour in abstract art is particularly important; it may be the greatest visual clue to as to the artist’s intentions for the painting.

Whether a conventional or abstract painting, consider whether the overall use of colour suggests warmth (reds, oranges, yellows), coolness (blues, greens) or solemnity (darker browns, greys, black and white), and whether the colours have been balanced to suggest calm and harmony or to suggest unrest or turmoil.

What is the artist’s particular style or technique?
Has the artist captured the finest of detail to create an almost photographically realistic reproduction of a scene? Or have they used broader strokes which don’t resolve themselves into a discernible image unless viewed from a distance? What is the artist’s preferred medium – oil, watercolour, acrylic, pastel? Do they have a single style or more than one?

An artist’s particular style and use of materials can often tell us just as much about a picture as the subject and the composition – try to consider whether the artist’s choice of material and execution of the painting was intentional and if so what these choices add to the painting.

How does the painting make me feel?
Your reaction to a particular piece of art is perhaps the most important aspect of its evaluation. Successful art will provoke some kind of response, feeling or emotion in the viewer, be it positive or negative. The key to evaluating and enjoying a painting is to acknowledge how it makes you feel, why it makes you feel the way you do about it and how the artist has managed to evoke this feeling.

If you dislike a painting, don’t summarily dismiss it but explore the reasons why you dislike it; has the artist intentionally combined subject, composition, colour and style in such a way as to deliberately provoke negative feelings or dislike in the viewer? In art, anything is possible…

Guest blog provided by: The Enid Hutt Gallery sells artwork by contemporary artists such as Mackenzie Thorpe

There’s a lot going on at LinxWest this month!

Welcome to the New LinxWest Blog

LinxWest is proud to announce the launch of our new blog!  Our goal is to create a community of emerging and established fine art and crafts artists that can share creative ideas, offer suggestions, and lessons learned from personal experiences.  And what better way to do that than to invite you to become a guest blogger for us?

If you’re an emerging artist or handmade crafter and are interested in becoming a guest blogger for LinxWest, please let contact us with your name, email and blog topic.  We’d love to have you!

Social Movements

We, at LinxWest, understand how important it is to build a large social network to spread the word about your artwork.  Our network allows us to bring more buyers to the market place to see your one-of-a-kind creations.  Here are the various places you can now find us in the social atmosphere:

LinxWest Brings the Market Place to You
At LinxWest, we bring artists and buyers together via a global, online market place that is always open. Inside our market place you’ll find artists from all walks of life, specializing in a variety of genres and mediums including photographers, sculptors, painters, jewelry makers, illustrators, quilters and more.

Sellers: Create Your OwnArtGallery
Looking for a way to reach more potential buyers for your art? Then become a seller on LinxWest.com today! Let buyers from around the world discover your creative talents and purchase your unique arts and crafts goods and services.

Connect with buyers instantly online rather than wasting your valuable creative time going to local craft fairs and festivals or from gallery to gallery. Selling online with LinxWest will give you back your time so you can spend it on what you like to do best – exploring your creativity! Don’t pack, unpack, travel, or wait all day long for buyers. Become a seller on LinxWest and work from the comfort of your own home or studio while your art work sells online.

When you sell on LinxWest.com you not only connect with buyers, but you can create a portfolio of your work, visible to collectors, galleries, museums, universities, and guilds allowing you to build your reach and get recognized.