Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Telltale Tips - Creating Digital Files for Juried Art Shows, pt. 1

Probably right now your email in-box is overflowing with announcements from art show jury systems with names like Zapplication, Juried Art Services, Entrythingy and others. Digital files are now the preferred way for art competitions to present your work to the jury. In the long run this streamlined method makes it easier for all parties. Unfortunately, many artists don’t understand the technical language used in the requirements for the shows. The best advice we can offer is, if you don’t understand the digital media specs, but want to be involved in the process, have a professional photograph your art first and provide you with a TIff file. Then invest in Photoshop Elements, (about $70) so you can begin learning about resizing and manipulating digital images. Once you feel comfortable with handling the image files, you will probably know if you want to photograph your art on your own. When choosing a professional, make sure you have someone who does copy work or is familiar with photographing two-dimensional work. We have seen many images created by professional photographers that are substandard quality. Shooting flat images is different than photographing portrait or landscape subjects. If you do decide to photograph on your own, give yourself a month or two to get the right equipment, learn how to use the equipment and experiment with camera settings, lighting etc. We could write a book on this subject so we'll leave it at that!
If you are going to save your own files the first thing you need to do is make sure your monitor is calibrated. If you own a Mac computer there is a built in calibrator under Monitors in System Preferences that should give you pretty good results. There is also a fairly inexpensive device called a Spyder that will calibrate a mac or a pc monitor. These units usually come with software that walks you through the process of calibrating, which is really very simple.
Once you have your monitor calibrated, investing in Adobe Photoshop Elements will give you the ability to edit and convert it into any format you need for shows, cards, ads, prints and websites. In part two we will discuss Photoshop Elements and how to use it to prepare and enhance your art images.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Brenda Kidera - Job of the Week

Brenda Kidera Of Kidera Fine Art with one of her amazing watercolors.

Award-winning painter Brenda Kidera  is a long time client of Archival Arts. She is seen here with one of her bright water-color paintings as she stops by for her order of giclĂ©e prints. Brenda tells us that in 1983 she began a graphic design career with the creation of Kidera Design Associates. Since then she has combined her graphic and fine art skills to produce advertising, design and illustration work for a multitude of clients in various walks of life. Currently she is a full time painter and fine art instructor, teaching classes and workshops at her Howard County studio as well as for other arts organizations. Over the years Brenda's distinctive work has appeared in a wealth of fine art shows and publications. Many Archival Arts customers know her through her work which hangs in the waiting area of our shop. The artist's love of nature is often apparent in her work as included here below.  
"Bottlebrush Buckeye" by Brenda Kidera

"Little Green Heron" by Brenda Kidera

Friday, March 11, 2011

Sam Mirkin - Job of the Week

Hello From Archival Arts,
We hope you like the new blog page.
Come back often to see what's going on and who's having prints made.

Today Sam Mirkin of BodyModInk.com stopped in to pick up a piece of art from an artist he is representing at a show in Hampden soon.  Sam owns a new tattoo shop in Westview Mall in Annapolis called Body Mod and he also owns Harm City Gallery in Towson.  Stop by and see his shop in Annapolis, one of the coolest tattoo shops I have seen.  They are always busy and have celebrity artists on hand from time to time. Archival arts printed a slew of stretched canvases to fill their walls when they opened.  Good luck Sam!