Saturday, March 29, 2008

Mail Art Call

Well since I've been sending emails all over the planet asking folks to post this call for mail art on their blogs and to send to other artists, figured I might as well post to mine as well!

Artists from around the world are invited to send mail art* on the theme Global Warming: A Hot Time in the Old Town! Pieces should be no larger than 8” x 10” (inches) and received by May 15th.

All work received will be exhibited from May 24th to June 22nd. A reception will be held on June 14th for Sacramento’s 2nd Saturday festivities, during which many galleries hold concurrent art receptions.

Please mail your submissions to:

Asylum Gallery c/o Ann Tracy

170 Southgate Rd

Sacramento CA 95815 USA

Email entries will also be accepted. Please, no bigger than 2 MB in a .PDF, or .jpg format. Please email to:

Asylum Gallery is an artist-run space that is dedicated to showing the best of contemporary art by regional artists and to giving back to the community.

The gallery will donate 30% of sales proceeds to the Women’s Wisdom Project, a nonprofit program of the Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services. All contributing artists will receive electronic documentation for this show.

Women's Wisdom Project is an art program for adult women who want to broaden their creative lives. Women's Wisdom is a free, drop-in program that includes art classes taught by professional artists. Women's Wisdom Project provides a free, hot lunch, a supportive staff, counseling, referrals and a unique opportunity for socialization. WWP accepts women from all backgrounds and walks of life.

The women use the healing power of art to recover and create stable, productive lives for themselves and their children. The women range in age from their 20's to their 70's, and the average age of a Wisdom artist is in her 40's. No art background is required to participate in the program. By using the creative process in a warm, supportive environment, WWP teaches women that they have the potential to shape their own lives. Expressing themselves in paintings, sketches, sculpture, writing and poetry rekindles their spirit and sense of self-worth. The goal of Women's Wisdom Project is to allow women to express themselves through art and regain the emotional strength to re-enter society, rejoin their families, go back to school, or join the working world.

*Not sure what mail art is? Check out this link:

Big Bad Software Company Wants Your Work

You might have heard about the new free Photoshop express on-line program. I did and was going to recommend it to my friend Riki who lost photo editing software on an old computer. But I'm very glad that I procrastinated because this morning I get this from my digital art yahoo group:

1) Check out Adobe Photshop Express beta! ( ) You get 2gb's free hosting space for all your photos! Keep in mind that appears that Adobe has reserved the right to use every photo you post. Take a look at the following taken from the contract from the link given to you here "8. Use of Your Content. a. Adobe does not claim ownership of Your Content. However, with respect to Your Content that you submit or make available for inclusion on publicly accessible areas of the Services, you grant Adobe a worldwide, royalty-free, nonexclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, and fully sublicensable license to use, distribute, derive revenue or other remuneration from, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, publicly perform and publicly display such Content (in whole or in part) and to incorporate such Content into other Materials or works in any format or medium now known or later developed."

How greedy are these bastards? They are a huge mega-corporation, like the Wal Mart of the digital imaging world. This is just another look at how corporate America treats artists... and today being SWAN Day and all (see post from 2 weeks ago or go here

I'm also pissed that Adobe isn't providing any more support for Pagemaker - the best digital typesetting program ever developed IMHO. Maybe I'm just getting old and crotchety! But I really don't like InDesign. if you're going to paste text in somewhere, why do you have to draw some dorky box to put it in? Why make things harder? The world is a hard enough place as it is!

But on a VERY bright note, The Ellis Hotel in Atlanta is coming through for me! After calling once and emailing once and then calling a second time, I asked to talk to the General Manager. Tom is a very pleasant fellow and said he'd follow up my request to see if my brush dryer had been found, but that it might not be until Monday when he next contacted me. Fine by me, I said. Well around 3 pm here in Sacto, he called and told me that he would mail it out Monday. When I offered to send him a check for the postage, he told me not to bother, they'd pay for it!

Now that is a company that understands customer service! I will forever be gratful to the Ellis Hotel and the next time that you need a place in downtown Atlanta, I can't recommend a better place! Tell them Ann Tracy sent you. And here is a new piece of work based on photographs I shot in Atlanta and made in Painter. It's called "Atlanta Abstract: After the Tornado".

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Atlanta Debris

Good to be back home after a lovely visit with my "Sista in Savannah". Yes, I have to put on that southern accent when I talk about her or any excuse really. Needed to learn it when I played Truvy in Steel Magnolias at Garbeau's Dinner Theatre about a million years ago. My "Sista" and I also decided to drive up to Atlanta to visit my good friends Beth & Brian and that I'd fly out of Atlanta instead of Savannah and she'd drive home.
  • Beth had told me that downtown was still a bit of a mess because of the tornado that ripped through downtown the week prior. It was the first tornado that had ever hit that city of tall buildings with glass windows, beginning to get the picture? We had booked rooms at the Westin at Peachtree Plaza right downtown, mostly because I had enough "points" to get a free room. So I called the Westin and was told that everything was fine! Beth told us we might be more comfortable at another small hotel that was new and had gotten great reviews. But did we listen to her? Course not, I was after that free room.
When we got there it was rather like a mini-Beirut with streets blocked, police everywhere, glass crunching underfoot and buildings with great gaping holes where glass had once been. When we finally wind around the detours to drive up to the hotel everyone is very nice, but there's this incessant sound - ah yes, jackhammers. We decide to give it a try and check-in. I'm on a high floor and can still hear glass cracking and the jackhammers, while Sista is on a lower floor and begins to see hunks of glass crack against her windows. Then when she called to get a different room, she was told there was no guarantee that they could give her a room where the window would not fall out!!! Here you see guys working on Easter Sunday repairing damage.
  • Needless to say we moved to the Ellis Hotel, a lovely new place in downtown only 2 blocks away from the Westin and kitty-corner from the Ritz. Folks there were very nice, beds were comfortable, James the bartender was a hoot and a good time was had by all. However, I left my brush-dryer there and still have not heard from the hotel on whether they found it and will send it back to me.
Now back to the running a gallery and making art! If you're in the area, do check out Bill Obernesser's black and white photography show Sat and Sun from noon to 4 pm at Asylum Gallery. We're behind the gray fence at 25th & R Streets in Midtown Sacramento. This is just one of the pieces in the show. And check out Sacramento Magazine's March issue to find another example of his wonderful work.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Black Orchid Monday

It seems that I'm in capable (at least for now) to blog twice a week which was my intention when I finally got back to it. I admit that I really didn't know what to blog about and I sat around the whole day waiting for that damn Muse in her red high heel shoes to come ... but she never showed. Why a black orchid Monday? Because I finally downloaded the photos I took in San Diego last month! Some of them were from an orchid show at Balboa Park.
  • My dearest hubby said that his dad wanted to help support me as an artist - GO SWAN DAY! But much of my work is a little too abstract and conceptual for an 89-year old man who has no background and not much interest in the arts.
Then I thought of the flower photos! The original photo with a bit of vignetting around it is to the right.
This version of it was manipulated in Painter making it look more like a watercolor.
  • Here is the final in which I combined two of the above.
Now comes time for the ironic twist, ready? We both looked at it and realized that it doesn't have enough contrast in the colors and in the background. Hubby's dad is nearly blind from macular degeneration! I'm working on another large scale photo for my father-in-law.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Ah, technology!

The thrill of what can be done, the despair of something being wrong and having to find workarounds but then the satisfaction of completion - all this in just a weekend! Finally have the video of my solo show finished and you can find it at this link: This is the 3rd attempt at putting this video together. For the first two, sent it out to friends for feedback and damn if they weren't right about some of their comments. So thanks Cherie, Tawnie and JK for helping me make it a very, very nice little video. And thanks Randy Thurman, a fellow Webist, for your original music that was perfect. Here's Randy's photo and a bit of background about him:

Randy Thurman is an artist, musician, composer, poet, writer, etc. living and working in rural south east Tennessee. Randy's art has exhibited at Monkdogz Urban Art, Gallery 181, Jay Etkins Gallery, Bare Brush, and Randy's music has traveled throughout the US and abroad in London, Belgium, and Australia. "There are two kinds of people in the world, and I am neither." --RT

  • Good to know there are other artists out there who use more than just one medium for their messages. I was beginning to feel like the Lone Ranger, only I don't know how to ride a horse.
You might also notice a new logo to the right - the Society of Midnight Wanderers. I was invited to join this special group of bloggers by J.D. Beaudoin, whose blog is called The Uneasy Supplicant which you can find under likeable links. Thanks JD, it's a wonderful complement!