Thursday, September 17, 2009

Promoting Other Artists & Small Businesses

I have decided I am going to begin to feature other artists on my blog. I have been featured in several blogs and now I think it's time to give back. I have said before that I would buy from independent sellers any day over large chains. Since the economy has shut down many medium to small businesses, the concept of "helping the little guy" is even more important. We need to support our local businesses and people who work for themselves. This Esty seller BlakesWork creates heat resistant sleeves for coffee cups. I try to carry my plastic cup in my car, but most of the time, getting coffee is a last minute decision, based on where I am at. So if I am not in my car, then I don't have my own cup. So when I have to get the cup & sleeve from the coffee shop, I feel really bad. I always make sure to recycle the plastic top & sleeve . . but I still feel bad for having used the disposable cup & sleeve. I think this heat sleeve is a great idea and very elegant as well.

So I have networked with several great people who are trying to help themselves and others get ahead in this economy. Some of those contacts have come through meeting people or from a referral. The Backyard Boutique Party Network is one of them. This is a group of Independent Business Women in the L.A. area who network to promote their businesses. I have recently found other networking sites on newsletters. One of those being The Handmade Movement. They are a collaboration of Etsy sellers who try to promote new sellers or those that don't have any or very few sales. Twice a week they pick two of those sellers to feature and all members can buy something from those 2 stores, thus giving the seller more than a 1st sale . . . they are bom=barded with sales. Now, I would LOVE that surprise for my stores! Wouldn't you?

I think this is a great idea . . better than the sample boxes that I participated in before. Another person has just started a concept of shop, swap & blog. You feature someone else's business in your website or blog. Her blog is called Structured Chaos. The concept of her idea is to send a sample of your work to another participant seller and in return, you get a sample back from them. Then you write about their product on your website or in your blog. I think that's a great concept for gaining exposure and building your network. I will participate in some of these and let you know how it goes.

Monday, September 14, 2009

New Facebook Fan Page & Twitter Page

I just created a Facebook fan page for my website, to further promote my art & photography. I also created a Twitter account to further promote my work. The Facebook fan page automatically posts to the Twitter page, so that makes it much easier. I hope to gain a new fan base from the Twitter page.

I am gearing up for an art show at the California Beer Festival, on September 26th in Ventura, CA. I have a whole new wine/beer/liquor category to add to my image collection. I already had a good collection of wine photos, but only 3 beer photos & no liquor photos. This photo is one of the beer photos. It was taken at the Cantillon Brewery in Brussels, Belgium. This is bottler that was used many many years ago. They still keep it in their showroom.

Monday, September 7, 2009

A New Camera

So we went to Cabo last week and saw the hurricane 1st hand, which was pretty exciting. But this is the 1st time where I really wish I had another camera with me. Like I said, I love my camera. It is a great camera, but there were so many shots I just couldn't get with all the surfers and boogie boarders on the 3 break waves. I guess I was less regretful of having another camera because they closed the town early, so I only had shots from the day before the real "weather" started. I also have to consider that there was so much wind and water in the air, that I guess any camera would have not done very well. I had to hide my camera in a towel in between shots, and like I said, that was the day before it got really bad.

I think about being in the right place at the right time, in terms of catching great wave, surfer shots, and I've been in the right place at the right time . . twice now! The 1st was in Oahu in Dec. 2004 when the waves were record breaking. We didn't make it to the North Shore, so I didn't see what I was missing, but heard about it. Now, being in a hurricane area in Cabo, I have a few decent shots, but none that wow. There was no real damage to the town, so I have no good shots of the aftermath either. But I had thought I'd get at least enough great shots to add to my collection at art shows . . . but no such luck. So a new camera is coming sooner, rather than later, because I need to offer surf/surfer shots at my art shows.

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