Copyright April M Rimpo

Visit April's website www.amrart.org
Copyright April M Rimpo All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Color Experiment Reveals Exciting Color Combinations

  

It is generally recommended that artists be consistent in their work. One of the variables included in the evaluation of consistency is color scheme.  I have used a fairly consistent color scheme for some time, a triad that I can use to produce a pretty wide range of colors. Some samples are shown above and at right.
  
Woman with a Wrapped Hat
Making Tortillas
Every now and then I have used my normal palette of colors with one additional color to produce a painting that has a different twist.  In "Woman with a Wrapped Hat" I added a spring green color in the background plus I shifted the color in the woman's face to be more integrated with her hat and scarf.  Similarly, I added a muted green color in the background of "Making Tortillas" and shifted the color in her skin to integrate more with her clothing. 


As you can see the subject matter, theme, and style of these paintings are consistent with my other paintings, but they are still unique. I've noticed these have been accepted into a wider number of exhibits and received more awards than many of my other paintings.  I also find these paintings a bit more fascinating to look at. 



As a result I decided to test out some new color schemes to see if some might be good additions to my portfolio adding interesting color twists. I started by painting a color saturation chart so I could see the range of values I could achieve with each paint color. The chart is shown at left. To be able to better see the value of each color I took a photo of the chart, desaturated the photo, and used the black and white version to determine the value of each square. With that information I can tell approximately how light and dark a color scheme can achieve and whether the range will support the dark and light range (value pattern) I want for a painting.


For example, the darkest warm colors on the left of the chart are the red in the 6th row and the purple in the last row. The darkest of the cool colors in the second column are the 4th, 6th, and 7th blues. Similarly you can see which colors can't get darker than medium dark. If using paints that are all light to medium dark, then combinations of these will not be darker than medium dark. The exception is when black is added in a monochromatic color scheme.



Next I selected 9 color schemes and painted the same pairs in each scheme. These are shown below. Some have a test color swatch created for the color scheme inset with the painting. By creating a test color swatch I can see which color combinations were darkest and lightest making color placement choices easier. 

Monochromatic Yellow
Monochromatic Blue
Quin Red/Green Gold Complement
Muted Turq/Quin Red Complement
Yellow/Violet Complement 
Split Complementary-
Analogous Yellow to Crimson

with Cerulean Blue
Secondary Triad

Tertiary Triad
Split Complement-Reds/Cerulean

I think having these color scheme samples will prove beneficial when doing future paintings. This exercise also gave me practice painting an object in a non-conventional color which I think results in more exciting paintings. You might find this type of exercise interesting to explore if you are looking to make some changes in your artwork.

Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.
#HoCoArt
#aprilmrimpoart
#dcart

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

"The Bakery" Work in Progress #3

The shelves are filling up and a third person
arrives in "The Bakery"
More details of "The Bakery" by April M Rimpo
Seven days into The Bakery and the details seem to be coming faster and faster. I find when I am working on areas like the shelves on the left side of the room that getting the nuances of the shapes is mesmerizing. I guess the left side of my brain kicks in and I don't even think about what the items are until I'm nearly done then suddenly the actual items become obvious. 

Boxes for take out orders. Coffee/espresso machines, cuts, plates. In the second image you can see reflections of the bread in the metal sides of the bakery equipment.

I'm anxious to finish up the painting and do the final reveal.

Prior posts on this painting:


Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution, but all other uses are prohibited.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

"The Bakery" Work in Progress #2

Three days of work on The Bakery
by April M Rimpo
The image at right shows my progress at the end of the third painting session. You can see one finished loaf of bread in the bakery, in the lower left of the painting. I can assure you that these bakers have been busy and much more bread is yet to come. 

The woman is essentially complete but the male baker is far from finished. The frame of the storefront window is starting to come to life, but there are many details left.

I like the warmth of the painting, but do believe I'll want to pull some of the cool violet in the back of the store toward the front to keep the painting from getting too monotonous. 

You might wonder what the rectangle in from of the man is. That is the beginning of some glare on the window pane.  I'm not sure I like the location of the glare and  I may eliminate it as I progress on the painting.


Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution, but all other uses are prohibited.

Friday, February 19, 2016

"A Day in the Capital" 18" X 24" fluid acrylic

A Day in the Capital © April M Rimpo
A Day in the Capital
Fluid Acrylic
18" X 24" gallery wrapped and varnished
$1035


Sometimes my city scapes reflect the surroundings of the city in warm and cool neutral tones.  Morning in NYC is an example of that.  Other times I am more interested in patterns of the city and the mood of the day so the colors reflect my mood.  You can see that in Fresh Fruit to Go.  In A Day in the Capital, the painting is really about the people roaming the mall, venturing into museums, and visiting the Capitol Building.  

It was a beautiful day in DC, there were a lot of visitors, so I decided to start with "happy" colors in the sky, which are repeated in the visitors' clothing. I think the contrast between the colorful backdrop and the neutral tones of the United States Capitol Building lends majesty and strength to the building.

Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2015 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

#HoCoArt
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#washingtondc
#dcart

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

"The Bakery" work in progress-Day1

When I paint I nearly always photograph my progress after each painting session. Depending on what else I am doing each day I may paint one or two sessions in a day. I find looking at the images on my computer allows me to separate myself and be more objective in my review of what I have done and what I might need to do next.  

This blog post is the beginning of The Bakery. Nothing shown here is complete but I wanted to start with the distant wall since it will be the cool foil to what will eventually be a very warm painting. This image is so early in the painting process that determining any redirection isn't really needed at this stage.

I hope you enjoy my travel to the final painting as I share my progress in a series of blog posts. I won't post every step, but several so you get a feel for how a painting develops.


Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution, but all other uses are prohibited.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

City 10" X 10" mixed media

City by April M Rimpo
These paintings are titled "Country" and "City". My inspiration for the "City" painting came during a Touchstone Gallery reception.  I stepped outside during the reception and took some photographs of DC at night. Since I was planning a tree scene for "Country" I thought my image of one of the trees in front of the gallery lit by a street light would be a nice companion.  There were bicycles parked by the tree and those, of course, had to be included. In fact they were the reason I had taken the photograph.  This led to my decision to add a bicycle to the "Country" painting.   


City
Mixed Media
10" X 10"
$195

Original mixed media on canvas



Country by April M Rimpo - SOLD
Both of these paintings were started on canvas and on rice paper. The rice paper was used to create textures in the foliage. It was attached to the canvas and then I add more paint to the rice paper surface allowing the underpainting on the canvas shine through.  








HoCoArt #ShopSmall #SmallBizSat

Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2015 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution, but all other uses are prohibited.

Friday, February 12, 2016

10 Tips for using Social Media to Market Your Art or an Art Event


Here are ten ideas to help you get more people aware of your art and art events.  You'll want to start five or six weeks before an event to gradually entice people to attend, just be careful not to over do it. 

If you are promoting an event, be sure you post or Tweet about other things so your audience won't get over-saturated and not want to attend. You must mix it up by sharing items by other artists that you admire, share Calls for Artists, share anything art related that is not yours that you think others might be interested in.  

Well that might have been the first tip, but let's get started and consider that a bonus that applies to everything that follows.

1) Leverage your blog if you write one
Create blog posts about your art and post about some of the art you will include in an upcoming exhibit or in an open house. The text could cover any of these topics and your readers will be fascinated.

  • Your inspiration, the story behind the artwork
  • The creative process you used
  • Step-by-step pictures of the creation
  • What you learned while creating a piece
  • Mention if the piece is in an exhibit and received an award
And if this is part of marketing an event be sure to mention the event and where it will be located in the post.  Be sure to share your posts to other social media: Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest.  This creates link backs and makes your blog more visible in internet searches. 

If you write a newsletter about your art, include a link in your post to the site where people can signup to join your mailing list.

2) Define some hashtags related to your art event
Most social media can use hashtags (e.g., #figurativeart) to help locate posts on that subject. If there are standard hashtags that you know apply to your exhibit, use those.  For example, the area where the exhibit is located or where you live and create art may have some standard hashtags in use, such as #HoCoArt and #dcart.  Ask the venue where you are exhibiting if they have specific hashtags they use. For example, Touchstone Gallery in Washington, DC uses #touchstonedc. Maybe you want a special hashtag for your exhibit, but if you do make sure it's cleaver so people pick up on it and know to search on it.

Try to avoid using too many hashtags in the same post. Twitter is loaded with hashtags, but the standard recommendation is to use up to three hashtags in a single Twitter post.  You can go back later with a comment and add a few more, but don't overdo it.  I'd suggest only one hashtag in a Facebook post. Another warning is to avoid using hashtags in Pinterest; that community is not a big fan.


Here's a trick if you write a blog: you can add hashtags in the blog post but make the font the same color as your background so that are not visible to the eye, but are still picked up if someone searches on them.  
3) Start posting in Facebook/Google+ 5 to 6 weeks before an event  
The material for these posts could be a simple as sharing what you write in your blog.  If you don't have a blog, share images of your artwork on Facebook and say something briefly about them.  If your art is in a new gallery, mention the gallery and include the address. Mention if the art shown in the image will be in an exhibit, at your open house, was just delivered to a gallery, or received an award.  Be sure to mention where and when the art will be.  Not too many words, and you might want to include "Copyright year your-name All rights reserved."


4) Create a Facebook event 
Holding an open house?, have an upcoming art reception?, or participating in an artist talk event?  Then create a Facebook event and invite people who live near it.  Periodically add images to the event or update status about the event, so it will circulate and more people will become aware of it.  Share your event to art groups.  In my area there are groups like "DC Area Art" and "Baltimore-Washington Artist Collective" where you can share your event. Find these types of groups in your area.

5) Leverage all the artists in a Group Show
Create a Facebook group with all the artists in the exhibit. Ask them to share the group with their friends on Facebook so they can join the group and become informed. As each of you adds status updates to the group you can create a buzz about the exhibit.  The posts can then be shared to your Facebook page or to other art groups to help create interest in your show.

Just like creating events for your own event, group events can also be created and all the artists can share these more broadly.


It's not all about Facebook.  You can also set up a shared board in Pinterest where each artist in the Group show can add samples of the art that will be in the exhibit.  As always, if the art is located on your own website or in a blog post you wrote, then Pin it from those sites so those who see it in Pinterest will be able to click back to your sites.  If you're pinning from a blog post with the story behind the art, then mention that in your pin description.

6) Engage with Other Relevant Sites
Follow art group pages and artists pages, then like and share their content. They will generally do the same as for you.  This spreads the word and becomes a win-win for everyone involved. The more active you are, the more you will be noticed.  

7) Share sample art on Twitter 
Be sure to share the image of the art with a 140 character or short description. Something as simple as "New #acrylic #painting by @YourUserName" is all you need.

8) Advertise your art event on Twitter

If you are holding an event, start tweeting about the event  1 to 2 weeks before.  For example, you can share information about your art reception about a week before then retweet the event with a little more detail or a new image a couple times per day up through the day of the event.  
Twitter is an "instantaneous" environment where tweets have a life of a few seconds. Now if you use some popular hashtags (e.g., #dcart, #HoCoArt, #mdart) people can search and find your posts, but in reality that don't survive terribly long.  People on Twitter don't frown on seeing the same event multiple times, because they likely didn't see it before.  

And it is worth repeating, you should be tweeting on other topic or retweeting other tweets so your marketing tweets occur 1 out of every 10 tweets that you share.

9) Use Instagram to drive traffic to your online sites or to advertise events
Instagram may  be helpful in driving readers to your blog posts, to a website, or to an online store.  Instagram is image based, so have good quality images and link them back to somewhere people can read more.  This can be helpful for promoting sales or for promoting events.   


10) Don't forget art production

Of course don't forget to balance your time on Social Media with creating your art.  It's easy to get carried away, so set a time limit (e.g., 20 - 30 minutes) and enforce it.  Do what you can in the time allowed, then get off.  If you don't get too distracted by all those cute puppy and cat videos, or your favorite panda bear, then social media can help you grow your art business, while you still have time to create that art you feel compelled to do.
Thanks to Smithsonian Panda Cam

There are other Social Media channels such as Flickr, Tumblr, Stumbleupon not covered here, so learn what is unique about each social media channel and see whether it applies to you.  



Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

#HoCoArt
#aprilmrimpoart


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

"Antiguan Drummer" 24" X 24" Fluid Acrylic


Antiguan Drummer by April M Rimpo

Antiguan Drummer
 Fluid Acrylic
24" X 24" on varnished, gallery-wrapped watercolor paper

 NOW AVAILABLE
  FOR PURCHASE  

I traveled to Guatemala for a workshop several years ago and our group was treated to music at our welcoming party. Music was a full family affair with a father and two of his sons providing the entertainment. Antiguan Drummer features the youngest son who was nearly hidden behind his drums and tortoise shell cymbals proudly playing his maracas. 

In March this painting is part of my work on display in the FIGURE 8 PLUS 1 Exhibit at Touchstone Gallery.  My goal in my work is to show everyday activities - a way of life - with subject from Guatemala and within the United States. In each case something grabbed my attention and made me feel I had to tell the story through my art. 

Other paintings inspired by my trip to Guatemala can be seen by clicking on the titles:

 
Woman with a Wrapped Hat
Basket Maker





Wash Day by April M Rimpo
The Dugouts by April M Rimpo

Prints are available for many of my paintings. If you don't see the one that delights you in my Print Store, contact April to request availability.


Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

#HoCoArt
#aprilmrimpoart
#Guatemala
#figure8

Sunday, February 7, 2016

A Possible Advantage of having Paintings for Sale in Canvas Racks

Sometime you find you have collectors that love the art but just can't get past the framing. It is impossible to predict what someone might like since the options that would look good with the artwork are countless and are very personal choices. 

To avoid driving yourself crazy as an artist, it is often best to select a single presentation approach and use it for all of your artwork. I traditionally used a single brushed silver frame for all of

my watercolor paintings framed under glazing. As I started to do more acrylic paintings I found I could produce gallery wrapped pieces, where the image goes around the edge and no framing is used at all.  I also felt some of my acrylic paintings just looked great in the same brushed silver frame used with my watercolors, but in this case with no glass. As you see I violate the one presentation run that I mentioned above, but most of my newest painting are gallery wrapped.


As I produced more acrylic paintings I thought I would poll my newsletter readers, which includes collectors, friends, family, and others interested in my art who have not yet made a purchase. I had just had a solo exhibit which included all options I just described: watercolor under glass; gallery wrapped acrylics, and acrylic varnished and framed without glass.  In the poll I asked whether the reader had a preference.  

The result of my poll?  The vote was split evenly for each type: 33% framed under glass, 33% gallery wrapped, and 33% varnished and framed without glass.  Many of the reasons provided for their preference were the same, but they were defending a different answer.  This convinced me to use my best judgement and deal with collector choices as they occur.  After all, if a different frame is desired (wood, a different color metal) we can work that out together or the buyer can buy the painting unframed and obtain their own framing.

This brings us back to offering some paintings in a canvas rack. You've seen canvas racks in galleries with a variety of paintings and prints for sale. Generally racks contain flat work, matted or unmatted in a clear sleeve. This allows your collector to purchase that perfect painting without worrying about whether they like the frame and the stress of negotiating for a change in the presentation.

In the upcoming exhibit FIGURE 8 PLUS 1 at Touchstone Gallery, the artists will have some of their artwork in canvas racks. Below is an assortment of paintings that I plan to have in the racks.
 

Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

#HoCoArt
#aprilmrimpoart
#figure8

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

"Venus & Mars", 20"X16" acrylic on canvas

Venus & Mars by April M Rimpo
The motivation for Venus & Mars was initially the shadows cast on and by my fellow travelers. As the painting progressed the painting became more about the difference in clothing between the men and women.  The women wore multiple layers of clothes since they knew they were in for a full day spanning from the cool morning temperatures to and through the heat of mid-day.  The men were dressed lightly with just a light jacket on one and only a short-sleeved shirt on the other.

The next thing that struck me was how the women's clothes were more colorful while the men wore fairly neutral colors.  The brightest color on the men being the jeans that one wore. The image made me think about the differences and the old phrase for comparing women and men came to mind, thus the title Venus & Mars. This actually took me a bit by surprise since I was never one who dwelled on the differences in men and women. Since I worked predominantly with men for most of my life I had always been more aware of our similarities. My artist's eye is now noticing more of the external differences and helping me celebrate them in my artwork.
 Venus & Mars
Acrylic on Canvas
20" X 16"
$775, includes shipping within the United States


Interested in learning more about April's art inspirations, tips about her painting process, or art business tidbits? Want to know when her art is in exhibits? Consider joining her friends and collectors by signing up for her twice-monthly email.

Copyright April M Rimpo 2016 All Rights Reserved. You may share my work with attribution and a link to this source site, but all other uses are prohibited.

#HoCoArt
#aprilmrimpoart

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