Friday, May 30, 2008

Domino Effect

I can't stress enough how valuable it is to participate in shows and promote your work. Last year, I found out about a site NJ offers called It's a great site that promotes all of the arts in NJ and offers many free promotional opportunities to artists. I applied to be included on their web site as a featured artist and was chosen. My work was on their home page for the month of April. Since then it is permanently archived on their site, always searchable.

Of course I hoped for sales or some future opportunity to come from this great exposure, and last week it did. I received a phone call from the editor in chief of NJ Savvy Living magazine, asking me if I was interested in them writing a feature on me. Well, of course! My husband said, why would they even ask you? But there are those obstinate artists out there who don't want to become successful, unless they are discovered by chance. Well, in a way I was discovered, but I set the stones in place.

So today I will be speaking with their editor, George Anderson, about my work. He's interested in focusing on my appliance paintings. the article, which he aims to be eight pages long, will be published in either the July/August or September/October issue. Hopefully he'll help get me past the emerging artist stage! I'll keep you posted; I'm looking forward to the phone interview, George seems to be a fun guy to talk to.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Wedding Cake Portraits already Written about

Wedding Cake Portraits are quickly winning people over. Just yesterday Nicole Block, designer and owner of Nic Events, a stationary / event designer (and college friend of mine), devoted an entire blog post to my new web site. Thanks, Nicole, for the extraordinary mention and addition of my site to your wedding industry faves!

And you can order a portrait before the wedding. I'll make a beautiful card to present to the bride and groom detailing what they'll receive, when and from whom. Your gift will be more than timely.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Eat Your Cake and Have it Too!

It's official, is now up and running! The long-anticipated site launched on Wednesday. Of course there will be some things to tweak as time goes by. In progress since January, the site features a gallery of original paintings of wedding cakes; testimonials by clients and colleagues; a page on how to order; news; a link to this blog.

You may be asking why paint a portrait of a wedding cake, but why not? After my first anniversary, I was going to eat my entire wedding cake topper by myself; it was chocolate and I am a chocoholic. Then I thought I really should paint it and came up with a conceptual series of paintings looking at the metaphor of the transformation of a wedding cake and marriage. Soon thereafter an article in the NY Times discussed brides finding new ways of preserving their wedding gowns by being photographed in the expensive gowns, post wedding, in unusual environments. The idea for Wedding Cake Portraits was born.

As wedding season approaches, consider a new and different gift for that special bride and groom that will be sure to become an heirloom of the 21st century.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Art of Promotion

A friend of mine just recently dubbed me the queen of marketing. It was quite an honor for her to acknowledge my efforts. Most people who read the paper think the writers are putting together all of their stories and news, but that's just not the case. Newspapers and other media are hungry for information and most often willing to publish what you send them, given the information is newsworthy and pertinent to their market.

I've never taken a business class or a marketing course for that matter. I've read a lot and taught myself most of what I know; which in this media - savvy culture I feel is still only very little. And I have to mention, my husband did go to business school and worked in a marketing department for a couple of years; he's helped. But he would also be the first to tell you I do most of it myself.

Promotion is a very important aspect for an artist to get beyond an emerging artist. Most of us have to do it ourselves. Since moving to my new studio location, I spent a lot of time writing and submitting press releases about my upcoming grand opening and my studio. Though I haven't made a lot of artwork in the past four weeks, I've taken on three new students, sold 5 pieces of artwork, and have had two direct serious inquiries from potential students. Many of this is due to my press releases.

A local paper published my recent release on Thursday and both of the potential students' parents evoked such excitement at seeing that I'm teaching lessons in Newton. This was great, free advertising. I think a press release often has more power than an ad, the only downfall is it runs once. And, the paper has the right to edit it and I discovered they never included my phone number. One parent was going to have her husband drive by my studio to see if there was a brochure or more information. But then she realized the photo they printed showed the lettering on my window; she was able to make out the phone number. Whew!

I can't express enough the power of self-promotion.

Check back in a couple of days for some important new self-promotion.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Vintage Touch

The Easton Express Times, my hometown newspaper, just featured me in Friday's Enjoy Section headlining, Vintage Touch with Emerging Artist, Jennie Traill Schaeffer. Susan Kalan, the arts editor for the Express, recently started a Meet the Artist column in which she wrote about me. I had sent her a press release about a month ago and she suggested I send her specific info for the new column. In researching the format, I discovered Todd DeLuca's Meet the Artist feature from a couple of weeks ago. He and I went to school together and were in many art classes; it was exciting to see another Easton High School Alum working, might I add, successfully, as an artist. Unfortunately I couldn't locate any of his work online.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The TraillWorks Grand Opening Weekend

I'm pleased to announce the celebration of The Grand Opening of TraillWorks. The studio unofficially opened on April 19th, and I've begun making plans for the official opening on June 7th and 8th. The weekend is sure to be fantastic; people in Newton are abuzz about the opening of another gallery, bringing more culture to this small county seat.

TraillWorks will be open on both Saturday and Sunday. During the weekend I'll be offering a door prize, showing new artworks, and exhibiting past and current student works. On Sunday from 12 - 2pm I'm inviting the first four pet owners with their pets for a complimentary 30 minute sketch (if they can get their pet to sit still that long) and from 3 - 4pm I'll be giving a gallery talk about my work.

So save the weekend and drop by TraillWorks at 135 Spring Street in Newton, NJ.

Come to Newton and see why the NY Times calls it a Main Street with Real Staying Power; visit the new ice cream parlor, pet boutique, art galleries, antique shops and a variety of restaurants.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Impeccable Timing

I received a phone call from the NJ Herald's Lifestyle editor, Kathy Stevens, last week asking if she could come into TraillWorks and interview me. They were writing an article for the Sunday paper featuring the Skylands Juried Show, opening Saturday and wanted to highlight an artist. Luck was on my side because I had sent the Herald a postcard notifying them of my new address and upcoming events.

Low and behold the result was the article below which spends a lot of time discussing my new studio. Thank you to the Herald for the great press!