Friday, November 6, 2009

Drowning in schoolwork and entering art shows.

Hello everyone! I've missed blogging so much but school and work have taken up the majority of time I have. The rest, I try to give to friends and family but that's pretty limited. Sorry guys!

This has been the most exciting semester so far which is one reason I haven't been nearly as worried about my art or business. Timing is everything. Right now I am getting my education and that is enough.

One class I ended up in, service marketing, has turned out to be one of the best classes I could ever have taken to be in the art business. I have all kinds of crazy ideas running through my head. Not so much, ' How can I promote?' or what crazy scheme can I come up with now but thinking about "how I can meet the needs and wants of customers and still make a profit". And how can I do that as an artist?

Basically, what kind of art do people want? Do they want prints? Do they want large or small? What colors do they like?

This is the quandry I find myself in a lot because I love the subject of business. I am majoring in finance and doing really well in those classes. And yet I love to paint. I love fashion. I love all of these things that are actually big businesses and creative at the same time.

So...as an experiment, I have entered one of the largest shows in my area. It's a longshot. People from all over the country apply for this show.

So there is a scary and wonderful part to this: the jury process is open to the public. They project the pictures of the entrants onto a huge screen and the jury openly discusses them. Hopefully I will be there when they discuss my art (and put it on the short list!). I want to hear what they say about my art and I want to hear what they say about the others. I want to know what makes them choose one artist over another. They may say some things that don't feel great but that's okay. I want to know.

That's whats up with me for right now. I'll keep you posted on the jury process experience.

Liz

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Camping by the Beach




Friday, August 28, 2009

Life. School.

Class has started for the fall and as usual, I feel overwhelmed. I want to do so many things and I really need to focus on school. But I don't want to! Not all the time anyway.

It's my senior year...the only year of my college career that will actually be completely in a year. Go me!

So, by now I have learned that most professors don't even use the book in their class. It's completely pointless to go to the bookstore and pay full price for the text unless they assign problems out of the text to turn in for grades. Most of mine don't so I bought my books online. I used www.amazon.com and www.half.com to find books this year. I know there are others but these are the ones I use the most. I also buy older versions of the text if I can because it is way cheaper. WAY cheaper.

I also have an app on my phone that I like for a to do list. It's easy to update online or on the iPhone if you have it. It's at www.toodledo.com. I do think the name is kind of cheesy but I like having a place to keep track of my lists.

As for all the art, I will still be making it but not cranking it out like I wish I could. My next project is selling prints of some paintings that I have done recently. I think it's a good business decision and something I have wanted to do for a while.

I'm also taking a class in service marketing so I'm sure I will be sharing my findings from there.

Hope everyone is doing well!

Click here for available original paintings.




Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Is Vacation Really Over?!?

image of cosmo at valencia hotel




























I have been out of town for the last couple of weeks,, give or take a couple days. With school starting next week, I will be around a lot more. I had a lot of fun, of course, and as soon as I edit the pictures, I will definitely share.

Hope everyone is doing well. Talk to you soon!

:: Liz ::

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Back From New Mexico


Hello! Just came home from a road trip through New Mexico. We visited Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Carlsbad and some other small towns you've probably never heard of. I had a good time but I'm happy to be home for now.

In three days I head south towards San Antonio, Austin and Corpus Christi. When I come back, there will be one week before school starts. Damn!

I only had a few hours in Santa Fe and loved it. For some reason, I thought it was bigger but it's actually pretty small. The concentration of artists far outweighs anything we have here, however.
Driving through Canyon Road was such a tease for me. So many galleries and so little time. I will definitely be planning a trip back there. Talk to you soon! Liz

Monday, July 27, 2009

Chelsea FC vs Club America at the Cowboys Stadium


My first visit to the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas happened to be a soccer match between Chelsea FC and Club America. It turned out to be a championship game in this tournament, which made it all the more fun and exciting.

We showed up early because Ben wanted to see the teams warm up. We also wanted to watch the Inter Milan vs AC Milan match on the big screen. Later, the huge screen really distracted me from watching the game on the field. It's so freakin big!


The rain started when everyone was leaving. There's not much you can do when you have a bit of a walk ahead of you. At least it cools everything off. We needed that!

I've never associated country music or Jerry Jones with soccer but anything can happen in the Cowboys Stadium. Garth Brooks did the coin toss and Jerry Jones handed out the trophy. I thought this was quite hilarious.

The stadium features a retractable roof but we didn't get to see it open. I think the rain might have had something to do with that.

This is me being all excited, taking pictures of myself in Ben's convertible. The rain had yet to begin.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Paintings by Lizardo Art: Gray Areas::Gray Area Heart

image of gray white painting heart lizardo artGray Areas by Lizardo Art

For my newest paintings, available for sale here, I used white enamel for my hearts and then used one of my favorite techniques to add texture. These paintings are small, 8" x 10" and there are three in this series so far.

image of gray white painting heart lizardo art
Gray Area Heart by Lizardo Art

For some reason, graffiti fascinates me. Especially in places where nothing is done to control it and everything you see has some kind of tag. The idea of tagging, covering it up, tagging it again and that continuing cycle inspired the aesthetic behind these works.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Some Questions Never Get Asked::New Abstract Painting By Lizardo Art

image of grey brown copper abstract painting by lizardo artAbstract Painting by Lizardo Art

The texture in my painting ::Some Questions Never Get Asked:: brings the grays and dark browns to life. A copper drip finishes the artwork, adding interest and dimension. The work measures 8 x 10 x 7/8"

With this work, I intend to explore the idea that some questions are better off
un-asked. Sometimes the answer will be more hurtful than helpful, therefore it is more kind to just leave it alone.

Lately I have been pondering the idea of being nice. Are you really being nice when you do something you don't truly want to do? Is it possible that doing nice things can be a way to manipulate others into liking you?

If you are a nice person who "just wants everyone to be happy", do you find yourself wondering if people like you or the niceness?

For me, the copper represents a melting away of the facade and the fear of what will happen if you say no to someone.

This painting is currently available for sale: Lizardo Art Abstract

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Shout Out! Cut Out and Collect


Thanks to Cheyne Little at Cut Out and Collect, I was able to have my first solo showing at the Coffee Haus in Arlington, Texas. She runs the show over there and does a damn good job!

When you walk into the coffee shop, there is a great little area to the right full of fun items...necklaces, purses, pouches. It's awesome! My friends ran over as soon as they saw the purses and went crazy.

So, check out Cheyne's shop for well made bags with fun prints!

Liz

P.S. She also did a fun feature of me for the Etsy Dallas blog. You can check it out here!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lizardo Art @ The Coffee Haus Downtown


Last night's reception at the Coffee Haus downtown went well. It was pretty low key and that is totally fine with me. This is also my first solo show so I feel like I have reached a little milestone in my emerging art career. Thankfully, Ben was on hand to take pictures and I was able to talk about my work. It's getting easier for me to talk about my art. I guess that just comes with practice.

I'm also excited because Ben has been taking video interviews at all of my latest shows so he'll be putting something really cool together. I'm looking forward to being able to share my personality a little bit with all of my internet friends. So, thank you Ben!
image of liz ballard lizardo art
image of lizardo art coffee haus show

Friday, July 17, 2009

Painters need to paint

image of paintbrushes lizardo art

It's so easy to get caught up in marketing, promoting or general worrying about how you are going to sell the next painting. I am convinced that my path to sold art is taking trips. I have sold a painting before the last four trips I have taken. (I'm going on another at the end of the month, in case anyone planned on purchasing art from me!)


Anyway, today I took some time to just paint. And it felt really really good. Soon as the paint dries, I will share some of my latest work!

Liz



Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Short List

image of tree at Fort Worth Botanical GardensA couple of days ago, I received a nice little e-mail saying I am on the short list to *possibly* have the photograph above included in an online map of Fort Worth, Texas. They found me through Flick and apparently they do a new one every year. I'm not exactly in yet but I do feel flattered. And I love to feel flattered!

Liz

Cleaning House

I am on the rampage! Well, maybe not but I have been cleaning house a little bit.

When I first joined Etsy I did all of the Twitter lists and follow my blog lists and now I am kind of regretting it because I follow a lot of blogs/twitter streams that I am not interested in. And then I feel kind of mean because I am not interested. However, there are so many people in the world and I think it's just better to go where you feel good.

Oh, and not feel guilty about it!

This may sound kind of strange but I have learned how not to be nice at my current job. By nice, I mean, being a people-pleaser. Okay...I still have a lot of that going on but it is not nearly as bad as it used to be.

Mainly because I realized that you will never be happy if you go against your own wishes. And if you are unhappy you have nothing to give anyway!

So, cheers to being happy and true to yourself!

Liz

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

SF Pics

image of Lizardo Art at Stem SF
image of Lizardo Art at Stem SF
image of Lizardo Art at Stem SF
San Fransisco was hotter than I expected to be but still a lot of fun. Due to some airline drama, I only had one night there but I made it to the show!!! I will definitely be going back sometime.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Quick Update

image of Lizardo Art
There is my official 30th birthday pic...it wasn't nearly as scary as I thought it would be! We had tons of fun in Vegas. I'll share more pics as soon as I get them edited a little.

This month has absolutely flown by! I am so glad I took the summer off. July will be a great time to lay by the pool and relax.

I am still getting ready for my show in San Fran. Super excited about it! It's my first time in Cali and I am sooo looking forward to a break from the Texas heat. We've been in the triple digits lately. It gets in the 50's in SF and I'm freaking out about wearing sweaters and jackets and light layers in June! Yeah!

Alright, y'all, I'll talk to you soon!

:Liz:

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Sale in My Shop

Starting on Sunday afternoon, I am holding a sale in my etsy shop. Basically, I want to clear out some of my older works as I make way for new ones. Several of my larger works will be marked down from Sunday through Wednesday.

If anyone is wanting some art for their home or office, this would be a good time to buy a peice!

Take care,
Liz

www.LizardoArt.etsy.com


Please pass the word to anyone who may be looking for paintings. Thanks!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Announcement: San Fransisco Art Show



This June, I will be joining two talented artists in San Fransisco for an art show. I would love to meet anyone who lives in the area! I am super excited since I have never been to the west coast before and I have always wanted to visit San Fran.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Recent Commission

image of Charlie's Commission painting

Hi! It's been a while! Here is a picture of the last commission I did.

I have some exciting news for tomorrow so stay tuned!

Take care,

Liz

www.lizardoart.etsy.com

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Wordless (almost) Wednesday

This is the type of things I saw at my bar all night. Enjoy!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Hi everyone! I have been MIA lately. I apologize for that. The last part of the semester always sucks up some major time.

I have been working on a commission and can't wait to share.! :)

As I get closer to graduation, I've been thinking about the level of commitment I have to my art. It's something I think about all the time. My art, I mean. During my business classes, I think of how it can apply to an artist/entrepreneur. How do I want to use this for my art career? Who goes to business school to be an artist? Well... me. I think it was a good decision. I will be looking forward to taking some art classes though.

Anyway...that's what is on my mind these days. What's on yours?

Liz

Shop for Original Abstract Paintings







Friday, April 10, 2009

Short Update

Well, the bar has been pretty low-key and boring lately. Maybe someone found out that I was writing about them and everyone is on their best behavior. It is Friday night though, so things could get a little interesting.

I've been working on a series of small paintings that I plan to turn into my first line of prints. It seems like prints do really well on etsy and I like selling on etsy.

I donated a painting from 2005 to a silent auction and it sold. It's kind of funny how you never know which painting is going to sell. They don't sell in the order that you paint them. What seems like old work to me is new work to someone else.

I hope everyone has a great Friday night!

Liz

Friday, April 3, 2009

Cheers!

My bar guests never cease to entertain or amaze me. The first bar guest I served last night asked me to conjugate a verb. What?!? I haven't done that since junior high or high school and never considered it something fun to try at the bar. Whatever. That's when I knew it would be a weird night. At least as long as he was there, anyway.

In case you have forgotten how to conjugate verbs, I have included a helpful example...


The conversation moved from conjugating verbs to politics. Not the best when you are dealing with someone who has been drinking and is making themselves angrier by the minute. I think he might have asked me to take Hilary Clinton out but I refused. I'm a good bartender but some things I cannot do. Sorry, sir.

I have to admit that people get on my nerves a bit but it's so much easier to deal with them when I can laugh at them. It's easier when I am laughing at the other bartender dealing with a guest.

For example, last night, this woman told the other bartender that he looked like Snoop Dogg. Ummm...not so much. Another bartender has been told that he looks like an Egyptian hieroglyphic. What does that even mean?

Its back to the bar for me tonight...we'll see what interesting stories I have to share. ;) Hope everyone is visiting thier fave bartender tonight!

Liz

Thursday, April 2, 2009

WIP: My Studio

I have decided to let you into the amazing world that is my studio. Well, today it is the amazing kitchen table but the light is nice and it's cleaner than my real studio. I am working on a couple of small pieces and I like to go back and forth between the two.

Hope you enjoy a glimpse into my process!

Liz

Shop for Original Art

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wordless Wednesday



Monday, March 30, 2009

Illustration Friday: Poise


Calm. Confident. Quiet strength. Poise.

For Illustration Friday I created this original aceo painting. It represents the type of person who moves through life with ease and grace no matter what is going on around them. This person handles any difficult situation, making it look easy.

To add this aceo to your collection, click here.
To view other aceo's as well as original paintings, click here.



Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mailing List Coming Soon

Hi everyone! I will be starting a mailing list within the week. My plans are to send one out once or twice a month with updates on my shop and special promotions to members. I will be getting all the details together this week and deciding completely on the format so stay tuned!

In the meantime, click here to view my shop and have a great day!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Growth

This weekend, Etsy featured my original painting in their Weekend Deals Storque article. Seeing my painting show up in an e-mail definitely excited me!

I wish I could say I sold everything but I didn't. I didn't sell a damn thing! Is that Etsy's fault? No. The economy? No. Blaming those things won't get me anywhere.

What have I learned? If you want the big opportunities, you have to be prepared for them. I have 30 original paintings in my shop, which is pretty decent but I have no prints, nothing that gives a different price point. I am not leveraging my art. That is the truth and it really doesn't hurt at all. If I can be in one article, I can be featured in another.

The more I work at this, the more I realize there will never be one thing that gets me there. It will always be a consistent continued effort and growth. I have been featured in a Storque article twice and on the front page several times. If you read the forums, you would get the impression that your business takes off when those things happen. Maybe some do.

There are really so many factors in a business and I am learning them firsthand. School can teach you certain things but experience teaches you something totally different.

Of course I am not giving up. I don't see any reason to. There are people that really enjoy my work and I am going to continue working. Now, the question is, how can I add value? In other words, what do my potential customers see as value?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Illustration Friday: Legendary

The theme for this week's Illustration Friday, my first one, is Legendary. I started this painting a little while back and forgot about it. After a relocation effort, I finished this work and used it for my entry. My thoughts centered around Hollywood and the Walk of Fame as I worked. I decided to add the dark silvery gray because it reminds me of old brick buildings with places that have crumbled away. Right now I am thinking of the old style movie theaters I've seen while driving on Main Street in almost any town. I always wonder what it was like when the theater was still shiny and new and people came out for a show.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Dallas Inspires Me

I took this pic driving around Dallas in Ben's convertible. I love looking at the tall buildings with the top down. It's a really cool feeling that I never knew before. Thank you Ben!

I've always been inspired when I am in Dallas or any downtown area. I love looking at all the time periods kind of thrown together in a small area. I love the way a new skyscraper looks next to an old brick building. I like to wonder what some of the areas were originally intended for and what life was like before the city was the city.

I've never come right out and painted a cityscape but the influence is definitely there. I think the color choices I make come from driving around the city. I like the energy and the mood there.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

St Patrick's Day Festivities

St. Patricks Day

Every year I intend to attend the parade on Greenville Ave and every year I miss it. I did, however, make it out in time to grab a few beers, nearly freeze to death and spend hours in line for the restroom. The sun came out for a couple of minutes, everyone cheered and then it went back to cold and gray. We made the best of it and had fun regardless.

Today I'll be in Dallas again at another block party but this time I want to check out the booths. (I think I am done with beer for a while. ) I saw an ad advertising the booths for pretty cheap. I want to see how the crowd is before I start doing anything in the West End. It's been a while since I've been to that side of town anyway.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Starting Small

Starting Small

Lately, I have been focusing on changing one small thing at a time. When it came time to start the new year, I decided to continue what I was doing. At the time I had made it my goal to work out 5 times a week. I am still doing that because I decided to start small and add momentum. My goal was ridiculous at first...30 minutes of walking 5 times a week. That is the kind of goal they give to people who have high cholesterol and heart problems. I am still young-ish..I should be working out for two hours a day and running a marathon every single day! Not so much. I didn't even want to go the gym, even though I was paying for my membership every month.

So, I started with my 30 minutes of walking 5 times a week. After a little while I realized I could do more than that. I was starting to feel more comfortable there and feeling better overall. In time, I have built up my workouts. Now I like to jog or do the elliptical. And lift weights. I have a workout partner now and that helps so much.

I used to feel embarrassed to even go near the weights because I didn't know how much I could lift and all kinds of weird reasons I made up in my head. Looking back, it makes me laugh. It's so easy. All you have to do is set it on a weight, try it and adjust. No one cares or even knows how much you are lifting. They are all looking at themselves. (Okay, that's not totally true. I am completely fascinated by the guy wearing those little biker shorts and the tank top that has a scoop neck all the way to his waist. I'm fascinated because he looks like he just stepped out of a bad 80's movie, not because I care about his workout. But that's neither here nor there)

Why am I sharing this with you? Is it to get you to work out? No. I'm not going to be a personal trainer any time soon. I am sharing this because it is my method for building a good habit. Start with something small and let it grow. I knew I could walk for 30 minutes a day and it actually seemed really easy. I let myself succeed right away and then built it up from there. Now working out is something I do every day no matter what. I don't go at the same time every day but I go every day. If I don't go, I feel weird, like something is out of place. That is a good habit.

The funny thing is that I am more apt to challenge myself now. I push it to the limit more often. I increase the weights and increase the resistance on the elliptical or run for longer periods of time. Totally different attitude than when I started.

What habits are you wanting to start? How can you break it down to start small and build up? What are your successful methods for building new habits? Let me know in the comments!

Take care,

::Liz::

Original Abstract Paintings @ LizardoArt


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Features

Today has been a great day for me. Actually this whole week has been pretty good. It's nice to see some of my "hard" work paying off.

Jay Neale III, who is great at promoting artists from Etsy, included me in a blog that he wrote for the Design Style Guide. Awesome team, by the way. Be sure to check out Jay's shop on Etsy.

Distressed Pine Candle Holder, Honey Brown

In other news, the treasury I curated made the front page of Etsy. That excited me a lot because it is bright yellow and has all kinds of interesting things, including a floral arrangement. Very spring-y.

The spring season always gives me a feeling of optimism. I feel excited about so many things this year. I am on the home stretch of my super extended college career. My blog is starting to take off a little bit. I am learning the ins and outs of selling art online. Life is good!





Monday, March 9, 2009

Exposure

Exposure

This word gets thrown around a lot. Exposure. When I used to dabble in acting, I would often run across listings that promised exposure rather than pay. To whom? I'm not sure. Now, on Etsy, I hear that word quite a bit. Exposure. Mainly when someone says that word, it has to do with the front page.

I love being on the front page of Etsy. It's cool to see something you made pop up on the home page of the site. That being said, it's a really short thrill. Once the front page comes down, the exposure screeches to a grinding halt and you're left feeling empty and alone. Okay. I'm being a drama queen.

I have been asking myself how I can get regular exposure whether I am on the front page or not. In other words, how can I market myself and bring traffic to my website?

I do some things that a lot of people might not be willing to do. For one, I use LinkReferral to bring traffic to my blog. Yes, you have to click on 30 websites and do the reviews and it takes a little bit of time. But I have regular traffic to my blog and I can gauge how interesting the content is better than not having any traffic at all. I have also found some really cool sites (and some truly horrible ones.) Yes, I get some bogus reviews that make absolutely no sense. Every once in a while some one will review my site and give me the suggestion that I need to hear. That is a great thing!

I have also started using paid advertising. I know, I know. No one has the money for that and they don't want to advertise if they don't know it is going to work. I get that. I also get that quite a few of the most successful artists I have seen have pay for advertising. Businesses have advertising budgets, whether they be small or large.

Here are some options that I have been experimenting with.

www.StumbleUpon.com
www.ProjectWonderful.com

With both of these sites you can set a spending limit. A lot of sellers use $1 a day budget to renew items on Etsy. I have decided to use that $1 a day to advertise my blog and my Etsy shop.

Since I started doing this, the traffic to my blog has increased and I have gained followers and feed subscribers. So I know it is working. I am not looking for extreme growth but I do want to let it build.

Solutions

One thing I have learned about business is that you have to seek out problems and then give people the solutions to them. Sometimes, you will give a solution for a problem that no one knew they had.

Other times it will be glaring them in the face. And if you are looking for something to glare at you, I would suggest the ideas forum on Etsy. Why? Because there is no possible way that Etsy can address every single suggestion that shows up on that board.

There are always discussions about who gets to be on the front page and which categories are "exposed" the most. I have seen a few people really take the bull by the horns and create websites and blog features to get some exposure to artists. There are several people doing this, actually.

Some good ones:
www.ByHand.me
www.designstyleguide.net
www.timothyadamdesigns.blogspot.com

There is no possible way for every single seller on Etsy to reach the front page. The numbers are too big. Why not seek exposure elsewhere?

Another example...someone created a site where you can check to see if you are featured in an Etsy treasury. Now, if we are really being honest, we can admit that it is not that hard to check for the gold stars from time to time. However, it is nice to type in your shop name and have someone else check the gold stars for you. I am guessing whoever started this site probably read the forums a little bit. Maybe not. The good news is that they can sell advertising, bring in revenue to their business and provide a service to use at the same time.

www.craftopolis.com


I'll be letting you know how everything works out for me. If anyone has ideas, feel free to leave a comment below!

Take Care!
:::Liz:::

www.LizardoArt.Etsy.com

Friday, March 6, 2009

Quick Tip for Blogs

Last night I decided to add the StumbleUpon button to my blog and came across this site that lets you add the Bookmark and Share option to your posts. It's really easy to do and you can add it to all of your posts if you want.

When you add the code to the layout, the easiest way to find that line is to click control F and copy "div class='post-footer'>" into the box on the bottom of the screen. It takes you directly where you need to go without trying to scan all of the code to find it.

Hope you find this tip useful in some way!

::Liz::

Original Paintings Available

Monday, March 2, 2009

Updates and Opinions

Hi everyone! I have been such a bad blogger...LOL...very busy with school right now. The good news is that I am almost through the long stretch and on to other things. So, not as much painting as before but still managing to get to it.

Original ACEO by Lizardo Off The TrailOff The Trail
Original ACEO by Lizardo

My latest ACEO, pictured above, is titled Off The Trail. It could mean different things. To me, it just means that sometimes you have to start looking around off the trail to find what you want. I have to be honest this is inspired by reading the Etsy forums. I think that there is a certain point in every shop where you realize you have to look outside of Etsy for support and promotion. Since there are so many of us, it is easy to get lost in the crowd. It is business and that is okay.

I really like to study small business and entrepreneurship. If you start reading the statistics for new businesses, you will see that Etsy is really on par with all of that. The majority of shops that open will never do anything. There are a few people that will do really well. Others might piddle around for a while and eventually give up. This is not Etsy's fault. This is the business world.


I know I don't sound compassionate at all. But I am being realistic. I am seeing demands to see the marketing plan of Etsy and I think it is ridiculous. For starters, I don't think it is practical to have that info in the hands of hundreds of thousands of people that may or may not be with Etsy while this is being implemented.

The good thing about these forums is that I am able to see some needs that I can fill. That is how you start a business. Find a need and fill it. The forums are full of needs. And I have some ideas on how to fill them. More on that later...

My next big project is actually for myself and my boyfriend. I have been wanting to do a huge painting similar to the sizes you would see in an art museum. The only thing stopping me was the lack of skills making frames. So I did find the stretcher bars that I wanted online and everything will be started soon. I'm thinking spring break will be a good time to start this project. Of course I will keep everyone posted because it will take quite a while. I should apologize in advance to Ben because I will be taking over the front part of the living room.

All right, ya'll, time for school work. I'll talk to you soon!

::Liz::

Friday, February 13, 2009

Abandoned: Original ACEO by Lizardo...The Story Behind It.

Abandoned Original ACEO LizardoArt It's funny how I think I am creating things because I am just playing with colors and texture, then something deeper will pop out at me. It always happens backwards this way. I never paint my emotions on purpose but I do paint them.
Ben always makes fun of my titles. He asked me if I felt abandoned and I said no...that I was thinking of an old abandoned building I saw when I was driving. This is true. I was thinking of that when I created Abandoned.
Then, it occured to me that I do actually feel quite abandoned. By people...yes. But worst of all myself. That is the worst too. Because in the end, it really is all about me.
I think a lot of people do this. It's easy to get caught up in all the things that people want you to do for them. And then you wake up wondering...what about me? I have been very naive to think that if you do more for people,they will turn around and do more for you. This is so not true.
I am not suggesting that we not do things for each other. I am suggesting that we take a look and see we are really doing the things we want to be doing. People love to help each other. But when it gets to the point where you feel you are missing out on aspects of your life that you enjoy, it's time to take a step back.
So, there is the story behind the art. Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Thoughts About The Business World

So...a couple of nights ago, I am working in my hotel and the alarm starts going off. Apparently a tornado has touched down in the city I work in. Very close to the hotel. So we have to take all of our bar guests to the tunnels underneath the hotel to safety. Not an easy task considering you can't even hear the rain from inside our bar. Of course everyone is giving us a hard time and thinks we're overreacting. Well, not really since this is the first time they've actually made us take shelter. But that's okay. We do what we have to do, tornado or no tornado.



I'm actually pretty immune to tornados. They happen all the time in my area and if I freaked out over every single one I would be insane. I understand they happen and I am okay with that. I can't control it and I'm not even going to try. If one is coming straight towards me, I'll take shelter and wait for it to pass. And I have never been inside a tornado in the 27 years I've lived here.



My professor has been talking about how the business world is complete chaos. From my experiences with the jobs I've had so far, I can agree. He said we are seeking structure and all kinds of good stuff like that. I see that all the time at work really. People are always asking the managers to enforce rules to make up more rules. It makes them feel better I guess. I hate being micromanaged. That is why I am learning how to build a successful business.



So...as a self employeed person trying to survive the choas, how do you find structure? Create every day. Promote every day. I am not the type to stick to a specific schedule. I have my list of things to do and do them one at a time. As long as they get done, it's cool. And now that I have my list on my phone, things get done. (I think this phone is magical...LOL)



I truly believe Etsy is chaos, just like any other business. The front page selection is chaos. Completely out of our control. The design of the website....out of our control. The featured seller...out of our control. The aesthetic of the site...out of our control. So let's not try to control that. Let's do the best we can with what we have. There are so many ways we can help each other out and help ourselves out.



I keep seeing threads in the forums about how Etsy needs to do stuff for us. I'm never going to bank on that. It is my job to promote my business and I know that. If they change a search or whatever, that's fine. If I am getting views from my promotional efforts, what's a few hits here and there? They are providing the place to list and potential customers. I'll take it from here. I have learned so much from the Storque and from the forums...I think Etsy has done enough for me.



You know, the more I do this, the more I realize that it will take a lot more than listing on Etsy. It will take art shows and openings and mingling with the art world. It will require getting up at hours I don't necessarily care to be up at sometimes. It will mean working at art shows on weekends when I'd rather be drinking beer on the patio somewhere. It will mean taking a serious amount of rejection. The more I get into it, the more that I see there will be some rejection. I can deal with that.



I have been taking a long hard look at myself lately. As my confidence grows, I see that I am capable of much more than I am doing for myself. That's why I started working out. That's why I study in little pockets of time, work on my business in little pockets of time. I've already decided that I am not giving up. Not after this week where I have been featured in 2 places and have one on the way. I'm getting closer!



Thank you for sticking this post out!

::Liz::

Friday, February 6, 2009

How To Use MySpace

How Do I Use MySpace For My Business?
I have made sales from MySpace and you can too. The key to this is letting it happen organically. How do you do something like this? Where do you start?
Add the right people.
I started by adding all of the galleries in my area. Every one, little and small. They send announcements of shows and calls for artists. It's a good way to get to know the gallery too. You will see what types of work they typically show and know if you are a fit or not.
This is how you find the galleries, for example. Everyone will be different. I try to add anyone organization that has shows or opportunities for me to meet other artists or show my work. I like to attend events and this is one way that I find out about them.
When you find a gallery, scan through their friends to look for more galleries or organizations. If you see an artist and like them, add them but tell them that you like thier work in the notes. They'll appreciate that.
Post pictures of what you do.
If you post the pictures, they will show up in the feed of what is going on. Then maybe, a bulletin or post in the blog section. But no need to advertise every five minutes that you have a painting. It gets annoying.
Also, be personal. MySpace and sites like this are a chance for people to see you as a person behind the art. Etsy is business. If someone is on your MySpace they are looking for clues about the real you. So post pictures of what you are doing in life too. You don't have to post 80 vacation pics but let people see who you are.
Make connections in person.
Whenever I am in an art show, I always make friends with the other artists on MySpace. If they post something I like, I comment. This is a great way to keep a business connection going. It's a two-way street. If you have an opportunity, why not share it with the other artists you know. They will do the same for you, most of time. A lot of artists will post information about openings and calls for artists.
Invite your MySpace friends to your openings.
It's amazing what people will come out of the woodwork to see a gallery show. At least one person I haven't seen in years shows up to every opening. Send out the invite. Make them feel special. It's nice to see the widespread support of others around you. It's also less scary when you see a familiar face or two at your shows.
So there you have it. This is how I use MySpace and Facebook to support my art.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

F6 Gallery Show

F6 Gallery show Original Painting by Lizardo Art Oh, the life of an artist. As you can see I am pretty normal looking and that kind of made me stand out like a sore thumb at my last gallery show. LOL Seriously, the show was really fun and there were all kinds of people there. I really like that aspect of it.

The low point? I am talking to my boyfriend's parents and suddenly the unmistakable smell of weed fills the air. You couldn't light up somewhere else? Just a few feet away? It really doesn't bother me and I don't think his mom really noticed. Made me laugh actually.

I like selling my work online but there is something so cool about watching people view your art in person. At one point, I noticed some people taking pictures of my painting on thier phones and talking about the texture and it was just the best feeling in the world.

I'll definitely be applying for more and more shows this year. It's just fun.

In the meantime I have been on this organizing kick all week. It's easier to create when you don't have laundry looming in the backround. My goal is to sell so many paintings I can afford to have someone clean my house from time to time.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Staying Consistent

I started working out last week and I am on Day 6. (Skinny pics coming in a few weeks ;0 )In the past I have said that I would work out 5 days a week but then something happens after the two days off. So I am just working out in some way every day. Even if I am just going for a brisk walk on one of the days. I know that I have to be consistent for the new habit to take hold. I can already tell the diference. My body feels better and my mind feels clear. It's great, actually.

So...I am learning that the way to be consistent is to do it every day. This applies to art too. You don't have to spend 8 hours in the studio every day but do something every day. Even if you just get your workspace set up to paint the next day. It is something and it keeps you in touch with what you are doing. It works.

There will be days when it looks like nothing is happening. I have had many of those. Then out of nowhere things will just appear. They were on the way the whole time! I did a google search for 'original abstract art' today and my shop is listed on the second page. I don't know how many times I have done that search and found nothing! But now here I am. I have been working on this since October and it's nice to see some signs that I exist online!

I am becoming convinced that a small consistent effort will work better than a sporadic huge effort. The little things really do add up and I find myself wanting to do more and more. I hope that you will find something you can try consistently for a time and see how it works for you!

::Liz::

Look at Stylish Modern Abstract Art!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

F6 Gallery Show

This is the flyer for the next show that I am in. They put Elizabeth Ballard, not Lizardo. :( I did get an entire line to myself though. :) I can't wait to meet some new artists and check out everyone's work.

Check out all of my available art right here!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Change is officially here! I think this is the first time in my life that I really do feel like things are changing. I think it's cool that we have a black president but I think its even cooler that we have a black president, a white vice president and a woman as Secretary of State. I think it is a diverse representation and I am happy to see it too.

I don't agree with everything that Bush did and I'm fairly certain that Obama will do things I don't agree with. I do respect Bush for taking on a job like that because I know I wouldn't want to do it. So thanks for that, if anything.

As for me, I can feel personal change in the air too. I think it is this whole reaching 30 thing. All of the sudden I am wanting things I have never wanted. And wondering if certain things are ever going to happen, yet realizing it is better that they haven't. All in good time and under the right circumstances. And since I am still in college, I am obviously on my own little path here. Oh well. At least I look as young as most of the college students I go to school with.

I think I feel hope with the rest of the nation. I don't think that Obama is to the answer to my life's problems but I do think the attitude is changing. It's a good thing to see. This is probably one of the most historic days in my life so far. Life is good!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Cyberstalker Original Painting by Lizardo

Good news! I have been accepted into a show called Electroshock 2 at the F6 Gallery in Arlington, TX. All o the works are inspired by computers or electronics. This is my first show this year and I'm very excited. I like meeting other artists and talking to people in person about my work. The show is on January 31st. Thanks to everyone that wished me luck when entering!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Fashionably Late Post on New Year's 09

New Years 09, Lizardo Lizardo, New Year's 09


I didn't make any New Year's resolutions this year because I wanted to carry on what I am doing from last year. December was a fun month for me. I was featured in an Etsy e-mail and made my first sales. Great success! (Sorry , but I still quote Borat and I don't know when I'll ever stop.)
I want my entire 2009 to be as fun as this picture of me! I know I look really silly but this is my fave pic in a long time. I smile every time I see it.
So anyway, back to the point, if there ever was one. I didn't make the resolutions but I did just read someone's bucket list for 2009. I think I could handle that. The movie was great, by the way. I'm not sure if I should call it a bucket list since I am not planning on kicking the bucket in 2010. Either way, here is a fashionably late list of things I want to do this year.
Lizardo's 2009 Bucket List

Use my passport

Celebrate my 30th birthday in Vegas

Get my diploma

Offer prints in my Etsy shop

Have extra money for Christmas next year

Make enough money to hire someone to clean this poor house every once in a while

Be one of those people who is always in good shape no matter what the season because they consistently work out

Make my blog more interesting

Take more pictures

Actually visit hawaii now that I have two friends within 30 minutes of each other living there

Have one of my curated treasuries hit the front page

Be in more FP treasuries...it's happened once it can happen again

Promote myself in Dallas, Austin, Houston

Have a the best year ever!

Okay, there it is. Now everyone knows and I will always be able to find my list.

Today I'm working on a painting to submit to a gallery. I have no guaruntee that it will be in the show but I am having fun with it anyway. It has to be computer inspired. I am already calling it Cyberstalker and have some basic ideas in my head. Of course what is in my head usually morphs into something completely different when I start painting. But who really cares? It's not like anyone saw the mental idea, compared it to the finished product and found themselves disappointed. Oh wait, I did! Just kidding. If I remember, and I hope that I do, my plan is to take pictures of the entire process and post them in a future blog.

Hope everyone has a great day! Be sure to check out my interview if you haven't already!

Shop for Modern Stylish Original Art here!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Interview and Inspirational Story

I just did my first inText Colorterview. (That was fun to say. I think I might just say it again.) Jay Neale III from jn3 Hand Crafted Woodworks at Etsy interviewed me for his blog. Thanks Jay! Check out the interview and also be sure to check out his shop!

So, I am thinking my next series of paintings is going to be called space. Because that is what I am feeling right now. A huge amount of space. I am the type that needs some space but I don't like to have too much. I guess we all have our limits. I think it will be a great series.

I am not sure why I am complaining about having too much space. On Tuesday morning I start school again and there will be no space and I will be complaining about that. You can't win with me! LOL

I am looking forward to my classes this semester. At first I wasn't because there were some issues with registration and a lot of classes were gone by the time I got there. But now that I look at it, I think I ended up in the perfect classes. Sometimes life has a way of guiding you.

I hope my sister doesn't mind but I want to tell her story. It's pretty cool!

Okay, she's been wanting to move to a certain city for quite a while now. Got her diploma, started sending out her resume and everything but no leads. The company she worked for went out of business last week so she decided to take the trip to the new city. Some of her leads had told her that they would interview her if she could come in person.

So she's taking the big step, gets to the airport and does the whole security thing. Well..someone in line with her had the exact same model of laptop as she does. I'm sure you can guess where this is going. She takes this guy's laptop to her city and he takes hers to another city. Funny, they were sitting in the same terminal for two hours or something.

You would think this would be pretty awful...

Somehow during the whole FedEx involved laptop exchange, he ends up asking her why she flew there in the first place. She tells him she is going to look for a job because she is moving there. They talk a little more and he actually ends up forwarding her resume to some of his contacts and she gets more interviews. Go sis!!!!

Just wanted to share. I wish I could convey her excitement. It was pretty awesome.

I have to go but I hope everyone is having a great week!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Lizardo Loves....First Edition


I thought it would be fun to feature different sellers on Etsy and various things that I have found. I can't promise any kind of regularity but I will post my treasuries in here for all to see.


I created a Treasury this morning. Click on the picture for more from these sellers!
Take care,
Lizardo


Friday, January 9, 2009

My First Front Page Appearance

Last night excited the hell out of me! I absentmindedly clicked on Etsy,only to find my painting in a Treasury on the front page. The extra exposure was short lived but it happened and that is all that matters. Funny, I spent the entire day updating pictures in my shop. I'm glad I did! Here's the famous painting…


Original Abstract Art by Lizardo

Taking It As It Comes

8" x 10" acrylic on canvas panel

© Lizardo, 2008.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Following A Hunch

An interesting thing happened to me today. I was out at Hobby Lobby looking at thier sale items and I just got a hunch. You know what I mean...you have this feeling but no scientific evidence to back it up. Well, I have been looking for a particular item for a long time now and have had no success. I use it for creating texture in my paintings and it is my favorite texture ever. I originally found it at a sewing store. Hobby Lobby has a sewing department and I always look to see if it has suddenly appeared there.

So...I am walking around looking at things, not really knowing where I am going. I start heading towards the homecoming section. I thought for sure I was crazy but I went anyway. I thought I might find something comparable but lo and behold....My item is sitting there on the shelf, cut exactly the way that I need it and on clearance. Hell yeah!

Moral of the story...follow your gut instinct....sometimes it leads you to good things.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Art

New work posted! I have been working on this for the past week and am very pleased with the results. There is lots of texture and structure but it's not too perfect. It's a little symbolic of how my attempts to be more structured usually come out.

My Christmas vacation has been awesome! Just having the time to do normal things like laundry, grocery shopping and sleeping in has been great. I have the rest of this week and one more week until school starts again.

I've been having a lot of fun with my Etsy shop. I have been able to get a Treasury or two. When you create a Treasury, you are showcasing other sellers and things that you like. It's a fun way for me to explore Etsy.

I haven't been to work since the holidays ended but we're back to convention season. Yeah! I like kids and all but hundreds of them is a little overwhelming. Plus everyone has been getting sick and we're all tired. And I love my business travelers.

Who knows what the year will bring with that. I have heard that conventions have been canceled but I'm sure they will do something to bring the business in. I've always done well there.

Okay...off to ship my first sale of the year!


Friday, January 2, 2009

Only 6 more months until I turn 30! I've had a lot of fun in my 20's so I don't wish I could stay this age forever. I am looking forward to turning 30 and starting a new phase of my life.

It's funny that I can actually feel something changing. I feel more grown up and still the same. I think differently than I used to.

I am starting my senior year of college. I know...a 30 year old senior! I don't think it's any secret that I want to be an artist when I grow up, even though I am getting a degree in Finance. I am interested in both. I would like to be a rich artist.

I have to be honest when I say that I am feeling a bit of conflict towards graduating. I know I can get a good job and blah blah blah. But that seems so boring and easy. I have so much more fun when I am working on my Etsy shop, painting, promoting myself or working to get my art out into the world. I like the challenge and every little reward is worth it.

I think having a business degree is going to be the best thing. It helps me think both ways. I can't help but be creative and scatterbrained. The business side helps me to see opportunities to make money doing what I love.

My goals for this year include developing my online presence as well as my offline presence. I love being in shows because you get to meet new people and guage thier reactions in person. I'd like to start doing art fairs on some weekends. I'd also like to start offering prints.

Times have changed so much. Before it used to be that you would establish your art career to the point of being able to offer prints. Now, you can easily start offering prints. I am looking into the details but look for it in the next few months.

The business/creative thing isn't exactly new for me. When I was in 5th or 6th grade, I used to draw earrings and jewelry and clothing for hours. Then I somehow got my hands on some beads and wanted to sell jewelry. My friends thought it was a game and I remember feeling so frustrated because I fully intended for it to be a business. Maybe I had read to many Babysitter's Club books. LOL

So for now, I will get my degree and get a lame job until I get my art career to the point where I can just work for myself. Or better yet...have some people working for me! :)