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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.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

First Sales - Don't Rush In

In my early twenties I took lessons from an artist in my hometown, who was a wonderful teacher. He could work in many media and held classes with a dozen students in a session, each working independently on whatever medium they desired. You could listen to his instruction on these other media and learn about those as you worked in your medium of choice.  

What he didn't teach was anything about the business of art. He did commissioned portraits and had a successful business, but he focused on technique in his classes.  He made us aware of exhibitions and suggested we participate.
Pigeon Keeper
(My interpretation of an old
black & white family photo)

I listened to that advice and did just that. I included one of my first colored pencil drawings in the exhibit. At the reception I was approached by a man who worked for a well know colored pencil manufacturer. He told me he'd like to purchase my drawing to include in an ad for their pencils. Since I was still very new to art and pieces took me a month to create, I told him I didn't want to sell my piece.  You may gasp that I opted to miss out on this opportunity, but here is the rest of the story.

My teacher had a storage room full of National Geographic magazines and had us use those for our source material for our drawings and paintings. We were all working on representational work that pretty much copied these images as we learned our trade.  My drawing was from an image in one of those magazines. It is a beautiful scene of an old woman in her rocking chair. Learning to create the wrinkles in her skin and making them look realistic was fascinating and fulfilling. Many people have complimented me on this drawing. But if I had sold this drawing to that man and he had used it in an ad, the photographer of that image (and possibly National Geographic) could have sued me for copyright infringement.  I knew nothing about copyright at the time, but when I did learn about it many years after the fact, I realized how very lucky I was to have turned down this sale. 

Morning in NYC by April M Rimpo
(inspired by my photo taken
 from the Empire State Building)
I still own this drawing and proudly display it in my home along with several other pieces I created under this artist's tutelage.  I love them and they bring back great memories of my beginning steps in the art world and of a teacher who taught me so very much. Sorry, you'll have to visit my home to see these.

Now I create all of my artwork from my own photographs, unless I am reinterpreting an old family photo which my family agreed I could use, or doing a commission for someone. Even with my own photographs I manipulate and combine images to create my designs.  Some are more literal than others, but the soul of my paintings are inspired by things that delighted me and made me need to share them with you.  

Have you ever had an experience like this? I'd love to hear about it, whether art related or not. 

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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.

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I look forward to hearing from you. - April

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