Saturday, January 20, 2018

Behind the Scenes....Setting up for a Small Exhibition

So, a few weeks ago, I got a last-minute opportunity to display my work in a new venue. I had originally planned to exhibit there in a few months, but the chance arose to hang earlier and I had work in my studio that had just come back from another venue so I said "Why not?" (I am trying my best to be flexible these days!)

I hadn't seen the actual space yet and just had rough dimensions to work with. To improvise a layout, I took some painters tape and a tape measure and marked the approximate size of each wall on my studio floor. Then I moved some paintings around, trying to figure out what worked best together and fit within the spaces.

I was definitely nervous about how it was all going to work out since I really had no idea what the actual location looked like. I packed up my chosen paintings, crossed my fingers and went to set things up.

I arrived with my work and my hanging caddy (a bag with some basic tools, extra hanging wire and "just in case" items like duct tape and paper clips) to find a lovely little niche with a new hanging system all ready to go. I've hung my work in a lot of different places - you never know what you are going to find - so this definitely was a pleasure. The Haverhill Arts Association president Ann Jones was there to help me and together we got everything hung rather efficiently.

In the end, I think it fit the small space rather nicely:

There was even a nice bit of publicity in the local media - thanks WHAV!

If you are local to Massachusetts and are interested in checking it out, my little exhibition is at the UMass Lowell Innovation Hub at Harbor Place in downtown Haverhill until the end of February.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Happy New Year - and Gratitude

Time Traveler, acrylic painting by Debbie Shirley

How do you start off the  New Year? Do you make resolutions for what you plan to do or change this year? Do you look back to see what you accomplished or didn't get done?

I tend to do a little of both: I usually spend time over the holidays looking back over the year and also making plans (mostly business related) for the upcoming 12 months. This year the holidays were a little more hectic than usual with a lot of family things going on, so I never really felt I had the time to sit back and think. But one thing did really stick out in my mind - both for last year and moving forward - which is despite all the things that can temporarily get me down, I do have a lot of reasons to be grateful.

I've been thinking a lot about gratitude as this new year kicks off. I have so much to be thankful for! I am so thankful that I was able to travel home to see my family for Thanksgiving. With three very busy kids and a husband who often travels for work, I don't get to make the trip back to the Midwest nearly often enough. It was wonderful to spend the holiday with my parents, siblings and their families.

I am also so grateful for my collectors. Thanks to them, I get to do the work that I love to do every day.  Without people buying/supporting my work, I wouldn't be able to continue painting - so a huge "thank you" to you all!

As another busy holiday season is now in the books, I am also thankful for all the small businesses who have supported me by allowing me to show and sell work in their stores. These are the kind of businesses that I like to shop in myself - the small, independently owned shops, each with their own personalities and unique offerings. If you are local to Massachusetts,  I hope you will check out the following places where my work is available:
(And if you aren't local, I hope you will find some small independently owned businesses near you to shop!)
West Village Provisions, Boxford, MA
Positive Images Gallery, Haverhill, MA
North Shore Makers Mart, Topsfield, MA
Newbuyport Art Association, Newburyport, MA
Zenobia, Ipswich, MA
Pop Gallery, Gloucester, MA

I am looking forward to what 2018 will bring - lots of new work, new shows, new experiences to share - I hope you will continue to travel along with me. You can always follow me on Facebook or Instagram for more frequent updates. Or contact me if you have any comments or questions - or ideas for paintings that you would like to see. In the meanwhile - thank you and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Brown's - Small Painting of Brown's Lobster Pound Local Art

Brown's (Seabrook, NH)
6x6", acrylic on panel $95

Small Works Frenzy Madness!!
First dibs for you guys, my loyal followers, before these little paintings head off to shows/shops. See something you like? Please DM me or write "interested" in the comments below.

Monday, November 13, 2017

RT. 1 Mini Golf - Small Sign Painting Neon

Rt. 1 Mini Golf (Saugus, MA)
7x5", acrylic on panel $95

Small Works Frenzy Madness!!
First dibs for you guys, my loyal followers, before these little paintings head off to shows/shops. See something you like? Please DM me or write "interested" in the comments below.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Happy's Fried Dough - Small Sign Painting from Salisbury Beach

Happy's Fried Dough (Salisbury Beach, MA)
6x6", acrylic on panel $95

(Just because this sign always makes me smile ;-)

Small Works Frenzy Madness!!
First dibs for you guys, my loyal followers, before these little paintings head off to shows/shops. See something you like? Please DM me or write "interested" in the comments below.

Keep up-to-date - follow me on FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM!!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Cabot Cinema - Small Neon Sign Painting

Cabot Cinema (Beverly, MA)
6x6", acrylic on panel $95

Small Works Frenzy Madness!!
First dibs for you guys, my loyal followers, before these little paintings head off to shows/shops. See something you like? Please DM me or write "interested" in the comments below.

Keep up-to-date - follow me on FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM!!

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Small Painting Frenzy! And Special News for Followers....

Fern's Motel (Saugus, MA)
5 x 7 inches, acrylic on panel

Okay gang, today starts the small painting frenzy madness!

From now until Christmas, I will MOSTLY be working on small pieces – perfect for gift giving.
Between my upcoming small works exhibits, gallery and retail outlets and shows I am in, I need to paint A LOT of these special mini paintings! Most are 6x6 or 5x7 and sell for $95, though some may be a little larger/more $$.

As a special bonus for my loyal followers,  I am going to give you guys first dibs as they come off the easel. See something you like? Please DM me or write “interested" in the comments below the particular piece. But act quickly - these little guys tend to fly out the door really fast!

Keep up-to-date - follow me on FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM!!