My Life in Paper and Piles

I somehow always find myself in a situation of coming and going. I have for a long while. My room and workspace is in a constant state of disarray, with the somewhat hopeful thought it will be alright: this constant back and forth is only temporary. The result of this is my life is made up of all of these piles. Piles of due dates, piles of laundry, piles of receipts, piles of jewelry (I’m not so good at maintaining organization with these little pieces at all – does not at all mean I don’t want more) piles of unwatched dvr television episodes and not nearly the last of the piles, but most notably — piles of paper.FullSizeRenderIf you know me at all, these piles make me incredibly cranky. For this reason, I am very glad to have recently had the time to organize some of these many piles. (Few things make me happier than organization)

My pile of paper. Recently, I felt I had been drawing much less and stalling out. Then I came across this. This mountain that when everything is put together contains 19 sketchbooks of varying sizes and about 1000 sheets (I didn’t actually count the sheets I’m making an educated guestimate based off of the reams I’ve gone thru) of paper. Admittedly, not all of them contain the greatest of pencil scratches or the most dutifully steady ink lines. But they all have something.

I didn’t spend time scrutinizing every piece, I don’t ever have that much free time, but I did take a moment to breeze through some of them. Doing so allowed me to see that this enemy pile I’ve been glancing at with a scowl for the last few weeks, is my life.  Yep, that’s right. My life laid out in paper: filled with memories, accomplishments, a random bill or receipt here or there, time, beauty, and sometimes terrible moments I would rather crumple up and throw out, but I don’t.  A lot of what I am is in that pile and I’ve been letting it sit there, neglected and mostly hated.

Now, not all the piles in my life are of such importance, but they probably do deserve a bit more positive attention than I have been giving them. This is going to be part of the plan going into 2015 — more attention to and maintenance of me and my piles.

SamSketches: A 2015 Calendar

Now Available

It was last year around this time, that I came up with a Christmas gift idea for my older sister, Sylvia.  After a fun filled evening (as usual) with her in which we joked about how horrible she is with remembering dates, I decided to create for her a personalized calendar to supply her with many of the important dates she would need to remember.  I also filled each month with my art, which she has always been a supporter (and perhaps slightly bias fan) of.

It wasn’t until I started showing a few people the gift, that I realized there were others who would appreciate the opportunity to have a calendar as well.  I had a few more printed and debuted the 2014 calendar at some of the fairs and festivals I was glad to be a part of earlier this year.

I was not prepared for it to be one of the items I sold out of so quickly.

This time I decided I would be better prepared :)

And I am happy to say that 2014 has continued to be a year full of surprises, as the 2015 calendar is not yet off the presses and my preorders have already piled up.

I look forward to the first shipment arriving and sending off these little beauties to their new homes!

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With all that said anyone interested in a calendar it is available in my store, you may click the appropriate above link or visit here — also feel free to email me info@samsketches.com, text me if you have the number, Facebook me, or stop me in person when you see me.

Hung Up.

2014 continues to be the year of new experiences and checkpoints reached.  I am going to be sad in a few months when it comes to a close, but excited for all the possibilities that 2015 will have in store for me.

 

VarnishingMost recently, I sent out an application via email with some jpegs attached and waited for a response to gain acceptance into what would be my first venture into hanging my art up on a wall (that was not my own) and have it proudly displayed for stranger upon stranger to view.  If selected, my work would hang for just over a month, my name, photo, and bio, displayed alongside it for these strangers to learn a little bit more about me.   After a period of time had passed, I began thinking I didn’t make the cut. Especially once I learned that only 10 – 15 artists were being selected for this exhibit. Perhaps it was self doubt, or me just being plain o’l antsy, but I decided it wasn’t happening and that was alright (as an artist you get used to silent rejection on basically a daily basis).
Well, to my surprise an email response came the next day. The first sentence made me feel like I was being set up for a gracious let down, “Thank you for your recent submission…” the expected thank you for submitting your work statement — and then bam — “I am delighted to inform you that your work has been chosen to become part of this exhibition.”  !!!! Yes.

 

Frames were then quickly ordered, and very cost effectively acquired via Jerrysartarama.com .  I tracked/stalked their delivery via online tracking (I love technology sometimes, I really truly do). The day they arrived I opened the giant box and began to frame my own paintings for the very first time in my life.  This was a wondrous and beautiful endeavor, never before had I seen my work in such a polished and finished state.  If you paint and have never framed a work of your own, I implore you — go out and do it. Framing

 

Then this past Thursday, I rode out to Garden City’s Roosevelt Field Mall to where the exhibit is set to take place — the Bloomingdale’s Furniture Gallery. There among other artists I was led through the different rooms (this place is a giant maze if you haven’t been there before) and given a few options on rooms to hang my work, as well as to hang it as I chose.  Once  I had made a selection — above a bed — I was given nails, hooks, and told I was free to hang.

 

Left there alone, I thought, “Does that mean I can just climb on the bed?”
::looks around, shrugs, removes shoes, climbs on bed, starts hammering::

 

Half an hour later they were up. Thank goodness I happened to be carrying a hammer in my purse and had decent matching socks on my feet!

 

For more information on the show you can Visit Bloomingdale’s Event Page Here

 

 

2014 BLOOMINGDALE’S AND LONG ISLAND ARTS ALLIANCE ART EXHIBIT
September 10, 2014 – October 26, 2014

Hanging ArtBloomingdale’s, Long Island Arts Alliance and the Long Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce are pleased to present a collaborative art exhibition during September’s National Hispanic Heritage Month, a prelude to the celebration of Arts Alive LI – October Arts Month!

Latin Americans come from over 20 countries and have a wide array of customs and rich and varied histories. That’s why celebrating Latino culture is a bit like eating tapas: you get to try a little sampling of everything. This exhibit is designed to celebrate Long Island’s rich Hispanic artistic heritage by presenting a sampling of works by artists of Hispanic descent specializing in several different artistic styles.

 

Aspiring [Featured] Artist.

Over the weekend I was introduced to someone as an aspiring artist. And while I did smile and nod, say hello, the whole nine yards – I inwardly cringed. See, I am quite a literal person when it comes to that word.

as·pire  (-spr)

intr.v. as·piredas·pir·ingas·pires

1. To have a great ambition or ultimate goal; desire strongly:

 

Over the long span – or short span depending on your own personal age – of years that encompass my life, I have admittedly previously been afraid of being given the title of “artist.” This mainly out of my thought that I had not yet earned to have that word placed before my name. But I feel that over the last couple years I have earned the title. And more over, I have been coming to enjoy the title, as well as welcome it as a description of who I am as a person.

 

So over the weekend, I inwardly cringed.

 

I do not believe that I am any longer someone who is “desiring strongly” to be an artist, or has an ambition to be one because I am one. I do not believe any ill will was meant in my introduction. Quite the contrary, my introducer (not a real word, but go with it) was very excited to have met me minutes before and was very warm in her words.

 

Later on I discussed this with someone. With their help, I came to the conclusion that the phrase was based mainly to mean someone who is an artist and is now hoping to make something more of that point, i.e. money, large body of work, a certain range of renown for their actions. Which, in my case entirely fits. With that in mind, I can inwardly cringe less. Even if that is not what the phrase means, it’s what I am sticking with. ;)

 

With this in mind, another word lately has being put before that “artist” title I have placed in front of my given name; featured. Now this word, I am much more comfortable with. No inward cringe, just an outward smile.

 

fea•tured (ˈfi tʃərd) 

adj.

1. made a feature or highlight; given prominence.

 

For this word, I have no qualms. All I have are two links, to pages where I am just that, featured  —
(more to be added as the year continues)

 

#SamSketches: a coloring book

Most of the digital work I do is used for, well, digital media and it is not often that I get to see what the art looks like on paper.  It is even rarer that I get the opportunity to see an abundant amount of it all printed together, side-by-side.  And so last night, when I arrived home to find the package of my first printed copy of my coloring book I could not get it open fast enough.  I had been nervous that it wouldn’t work out the way I wanted.  You know, you set things up, lay them out in a computer program and sometimes the result is not what you imagined in your mind the outcome would be.  WELL, thankfully this was not the case.  The outcome is exactly what I hoped for, in fact it may even be better.  From cover, to end, from the quality of the print of the line, to the weight of the paper — everything I could want and more.

Can you tell I’m excited?  I plan to debut them for sale at the Art by the Falls on May 17th.  But, you know, you could just ask me about ’em anytime you see me OR email me at info@samsketches.com to get a copy.  The choice is yours!

What’s inside?  Oh, well I am glad you asked!

70 illustrations by yours truly.  More specifically:

  • The entire first two chapters of my graphic novel/comic On Being Smee.
  • A selection of illustrations from my book, This Box.
  • A selection of illustrations from my in progress Lil Red Riding Hood Series.
  • A selection of illustrations from my next eBook Illustrated and  Alliterated: An Alphabet Book
  • 26 uncategorized illustrations

All of this means you will be able to see and color a hot air balloon, beaches, the night sky, boys, girls, oceans, crabs, frogs, plants, cows, dogs, teddy bears, tortoises, tiny turtles, bees, autumn leaves, snowflakes, fireflies, an octopus, piranhas, birds, sloths, a unicorn, zebras, chipmunks, an owl, forests, houses, and a tic-tac-toe playing dodo bird. (Yes, I really did just leaf through all of the pages to accurately list that for you – you’re welcome)

Current Project. #WIP

As usual, as soon as one project is finished I have another one (or two) lined up. This one actually has been a little bit of a current addiction that has distracted me from my painting obligations… oops. BUT progress is progress and as long as everything is done by their due dates, no one will be the wiser? Right? Right.

So here they are a couple of samples from my next children’s eBook that will be available on the most platforms I’ve ever released to:

Kindle, Kobo, Nook, iBookstore.

O P  Y and Z

 

 

 

 

 

Peace. Love. Cookies.

Capture

It’s that time of year again! Yes, that’s right — forget the actual holidays, my new card is out and going into the mail once the snow and ice allow me to get to the post office.  This limited edition print includes warm holiday greetings from yours truly and my fancy schmancy signature inside, with a cute little note if you’ve been good this year!