Friday, April 29, 2011

Edward Williams - Job of the Week

 Edward Williams holds one of his giclée prints on canvas titled "Ellicott City Bridge."

Catonsville artist Edward Williams has successfully run his own decorative painting and mural business for over 25 years.  A graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art, Williams’ list of accomplishments includes an award for his work as “Baltimore’s Best Decorative Artist” as well as having his work appear in national publications.  A proficient fine artist, he shows his stunning canvas paintings and giclée prints in several local galleries throughout the area.  If you are in the Richmond area this weekend look for Edward Williams' exhibit at the city’s art festival Arts in the Park. Williams is also a very active member of Create in 21228, an arts group which showcases local talent from Catonsville, MD.  His original work, giclée prints and greeting cards are available for purchase through his web site Studio 33  

  "Blackwater Nature" by Edward Williams.

"Tiber River at Night" by Edward Williams

Friday, April 22, 2011

Telltale Tips - Creating Digital Files for Juried Art Shows, pt. 2

We continue our discussion here about preparing and presenting your art digitally before a jury. 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.  With just a little research it is very easy to learn how to get your images into the formats you need. There are many programs out there that will do the same job, we prefer Photoshop because it doesn’t have the gimmicky consumer type shortcuts that try to do everything for you.  Competitions are looking for specific requirements and many of the less expensive programs do not have the capabilities Photoshop offers.
Utilize the internet to help answer the many questions you have.  It is amazing what you can learn on the internet just by going to, asking a question and doing a search.  Your first question might be “How to crop an image in Photoshop”  We guarantee this search will give you a website that will answer your question and many others related to it.  Here are some Photoshop tools you will want to learn to get you started...

Ruler (to make your horizon line level)
Guides (to help use the Skew tool)
Skew (to straighten sides and make the edges square)
Crop tool (to eliminate unwanted space outside the image)
Levels (for color correction - use sparingly!)
Image Size window (to resize you file to the show requirements)
Save As window (to name the file and choose the file type required)

Before you save your files, look up how to save images with “sRGB” profile. This will help ensure that the jurors will see your colors close to what you see on your calibrated monitor.   There are a lot of factors that can effect how your colors are seen but saving with an sRGB profile is a good place to start.
The last thing to do is burn your images to a CD.   We recommend avoiding re-recordable cd’s.  Just buy standard CD-ROM disks.  Burn them once and the information on them cannot be changed, (That is a good thing).  We have many clients who are apprehensive about using their computers to save files and burn CD’s.  If you just set aside a small amount of time to learn how to do it, you will be glad you did the next time you need a file for a show in a hurry. If you don’t know how to do something, look it up on your help menu in your computer or try

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Linda Biggs - Job of the Week

Artist Linda Biggs with one of her newest paintings titled "Peace Keeper"

International Rainbow Fairy Artist Linda Biggs has to be one of Archival Arts' most prolific clients.  She regularly brings in new work to be scanned and printed.  Her fantasy imagery is always fresh and intriguing.  Linda tells us a  24" x 40" painting can take  2 - 6 weeks to complete from concept to the finished piece.  She paints with Holbein Watercolors on Fabriano 300 pound heavy weight paper.  Most of her work is 100% watercolor, without masking or any other liquids or supplies.  Once a painting is completed she brings it to us at Archival Arts where we make her fine art reproductions with certificates of authenticity.  You can finder her art on her website, Ebay, many gift shops that carry fairy art and various art festivals.  Linda’s products include original paintings, prints, note cards, small statues and more!  You can catch this artist and her magical works at the upcoming Fairy Festival at Spoutwood Farm in Pennsylvania.

One of Linda's prints that you will find for sale at the fairy festival.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

New York Art Expo 2011 Review

We spent the day at the New York Art Expo on Saturday March 26th and this year had lots of changes.
If you have never been to the Art Expo, in the past is has been a great show to see the "World" art market.  A few years back, this was a very impressive show.  Well established artists from all over the world would come to show their art and sell to international galleries looking to fill their walls with the latest and greatest trends in fine art.  It truly was a great forum to learn about how the art market works and what sells.  Unfortunately this show, as with many other art shows over recent years, seems to have been deserted by the movers and shakers in the art world and has been reduced to a sampling of local art markets from around the US and Canada with a small group of European artists.  

Since the show moved from the Jacob Javits center to Pier 94, it has lost it "glitz".  I remember being amazed at the wide range of art that had a quality that deserved the attention of national galleries and art buyers just 5 years ago.  This year, I was amazed by the lack of art that made me say Wow!  Yes, there were a few artists who fit the bill.  I am proud to say Bogdan Miscevic and George Sakkal (both clients of Archival Arts) were a sight for sore eyes.  They were truly part of a very small group of fine artists in a sea of mediocre decorative art. 

As for trends, I would say the only real trend I found this year was a surprising flood of art with high gloss, very thick acrylic resin as a final varnish.  This was used on everything including original paintings on canvas, originals on masonite, giclees on both canvas and watercolor, cheap prints mounted on Foam Cor, and many other combinations.  I was astounded a the amount of high gloss we saw!  One representative mentioned that it was a trend that has been popular recently but they have been asking the artists they represent to discontinue the use of resin.  I find it very interesting that we haven't seen this type of finish in the Maryland/DC markets.

The show wasn't a total disappointment, there was still a lot to see and learn, but it definitely did not have the high end feel it used to have.  I have a feeling the internet has had a huge impact on the world art market.  Gallery owners no longer need to go to these big expensive shows to find talent.  I guess we'll have to find our glitz somewhere else!
Collage by George Sakkal

Mixed-media by Bogden Miscevic

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Laurie Schwartz - Job of the Week

 Laurie with one of her new oil paintings titled "Toys Will Play"

 North Baltimore painter Laurie Schwartz dropped-off approximately 13 new oil paintings  here at the shop yesterday.  Her steady work during the cold winter months produced a new body of work that we will scan and proof this week. We've included two of Laurie's giclée prints below. These are reproductions of her oil paintings from previous series and can be seen on her web site as well.

 "Farmers' Market Gourds" giclée print on canvas

"Satsuma Oranges" giclée print on canvas