Monday, December 28, 2009

Back in the Saddle, so to speak

Whew. Love the holidays/hate the holidays.

So much work, effort and time for a couple of days. We had a wonderful Christmas here and I am blessed with amazing children, grandchildren and sons-in-law. Really amazing.

Preparing for the holidays feels like a long underwater swim.On December
26th I rise to the surface and gulp big breaths of fresh air. Not that there's time to float and gaze at the sky. The Atlanta Gift Show opens too too soon and I am painting like a house on fire. (I love that cliche...)

Getting ready for market is far more involved than Christmas. There's the booth design, the new art to create, the catalog to update, the samples produced, order forms found, price lists created, blah blah blah.....

Anyway, the work is finally flowing. There's a theme and a look that I like. Finally. This season has been a struggle. I've spent so much of 2009 building a better structure for the business that there hasn't been much time for painting and creative time. Getting the flow back took more time than usual.

And I may be a bit slower than I used to be now that Miss Violet has taken up residence in the studio. She likes to sit on my lap and purr while I paint. Life doesn't get much better than that. The beautiful dog in my favorite imaginary chair is a preview of the new art for 2010. It's the image I like the best so far.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Loving the Open House

My very first Kathleen Taylor Studio Open House was a wonderful holiday experience. Not because we made so much money and sold so much art. Because we had two days of sharing and learning and laughing. My friend, Sandy Erickson Wright, loaded up her SUV with gorgeous cow and pear and Sandy art. My new friend, Bailey Jack,packed her mini-van with her amazing whimsical art and drove to my house from Cartersville, GA. Not close to my house, I'm just sayin'.

Once all the art was hung and arranged we had an irresistible holiday art show. Friends, family, kids, local artists and strangers came and bought and chatted. I loved every minute.

The very best part was spending hours with my artist friends. We talked nonstop for 2 days. Sharing techniques, challenges, issues and hardships. Laughed and connected. We agreed that no matter how difficult it is to make a living as an artist, we felt blessed to be able to do so. The best part of what I do is the human connection. The folks who tear up when they see "All Dogs Go to Heaven" because they just lost a beloved pet. The retailers who relate stories to me about customers who were touched by my painting. It is an unexpected bonus to the gift of being able to paint every day. Lucky me.

I am posting the line drawing I did for my new website that will never see the light of day due to tiling and templates and number of pixels.... I liked it so I am sharing. Happy Holidays!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Holiday Open House!!

Art makes the perfect gift. And we have something....for everyone on your list.

See for yourself. Click here to see our ever-expanding line of prints on sale now. (Website under construction...MUCH more to come!)

Local ATL fans! Come and join us for our first Holiday Open House. Food. Drinks. And ART. Come and see my original art and retail line of wall art and notecards.

Free Kathleen Taylor stationery to any Facebook fans that come! Click here to become a fan of Kathleen Taylor Studio today. (Just in time for a freebie!)

Sandy Erickson Wright and Bailey Jack will also be sharing their beautiful art.

More details...

When: Saturday and Sunday --December, 5 & 6 from 10 am to 4 pm.

In addition to our Open House you can also visit the Clay Fetish Pottery Holiday Show and Sale. They're just up the road and their pottery is wonderful.

Where: 15825 Westbrook Rd Alpharetta GA 30004. Call for info 678 339 0960

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Making Art

By this time every year most of our orders are shipped.The studio and warehouse slow down. January looms large and it's time to start creating new art for the 2010 markets. I keep notes, ideas and scribbles in one place so all my potential ideas are at hand when I'm ready to start. Then I try to sit down with a relaxed and open mind and start sketching. This year has been so busy - growing and building the business - that my paints and my mind got kind of dried up. My first attempt at "creative expression" resulted in this drawing. You just have to keep at it, tough it out, make bad art until the good stuff starts to flow. I'm happy to report that I'm painting without blocks on my head now.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Little Bit O' Kitties

Occasionally a cat has appeared in my paintings. Sometimes they just work into the composition and sometimes I've been pressured into painting them. My "True Love" image of a besotted dog owner with a happy dog standing on her chest inspired
"True Love Kitty". I acknowledge that cat owners are just as ardent as dog owners.

So here's what I've painted so far. I promise there will be many more felines next year. Violet deserves a place in the menagerie of my painted animals.

Here Kitty Kitty

This post is for my art collectors who have repeatedly asked why I don't paint cats. The answer has always been that I don't have cats. All that is about to change.

Welcome, Violet the Porch Kitty.

Some background here: My sweet cozy home is a 100+ year old cottage out in the country on a gravel road surrounded by horse farms.Charming - yes. Built well - absolutely not.

Horse farms have barns, barns have mice and (shudder) rats. When it gets cold in Georgia guess where the mice like to go? The cozy cottage next door that has the heat on. I have heard them in the walls, unfortunately seen them race across the hardwood floors and found their droppings everywhere. I'm on a first name basis with the exterminator. I even have big black anti-mice boxes under the house. And I still get mice with the first frost.

Enter a feral cat who wandered into my yard. I had an Oprah-esque Aha! moment and ran into the house for some milk and tuna. I propped open the shed door, laid down an old quilt, bought a cat food dish and some catnip toys, just in case the food and bed weren't enough. I'm half Italian and we tend to be generous hostesses.

Fast forward a couple of months. My new best friend is Violet. I'm not sure she's female but she's so sweet I can't imagine she's a male.(Yeah. I know that sounds sooo "I Am Woman Hear Me Roar"...) Anyway, she has graduated to living under the old iron bed on my front porch. She has a comfy nest there and dines on the vintage farm table so I can make sure she eats. It's now November and I hear nothing in the walls and haven't found one tiny mouse dropping!! Some things are best done the old fashioned way.

Plus I have a new friend who purrs and meows when she sees me. On sunny days I'll sit on the porch with her til she rubs up against my leg and we talk. It's a lovely thing.Look for the Cat Art here.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Down the Rabbit Hole

I know for sure that I'm an artist kind of person because only one side of my brain actually works. It's the side with the creativity. The side that can add/subtract and think in a linear way has a "vacancy" sign on the door. It's always been that way and I've adjusted. (Was especially happy when calculators were invented.)

My family (the ones who have fully functioning right and left brains...) has pushed, prodded and threatened me to take advantage of all the free internet/social media exposure right there at my fingertips. I had no clue where to start so I didn't start at all.

Fortunately I have a talented kid who majored in communications and wrote/directed TV commercials before she became a Mommy. She generously offered to twit and blog and etsy and facebook my work all over the Worldwide Web. She is an amazing force of nature and doubled my FB fans in less than a week. I feel like Alice falling down the rabbit hole. I do what I'm asked and have no idea where I am in cyberspace.Things get curiouser and curiouser. And more exciting every day. I am loving this adventure, especially sharing it with my social media dynamo.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Free Art!

Check out our Facebook

Show us where you keep your "Kathleen Taylor" art in your house! We love to see where it is, how it looks, what is around it, why you put it there, etc. Post a pic on our Facebook Fan Page, by this Friday, and the best display wins a free print.

Any print! Wow! Click here for your choices.

Fan us today!

Thursday, November 5, 2009


More updates, and pictures, and videos, and tons of art...COMING SOON!