Monday, January 30, 2012

Art of the Week: Foot Fetish

This week's Art of the Week, entitled Foot Fetish, is dedicated to all of those shoes seen tied together and hanging from telephone poles, lines, trees and so on.

Friday, January 27, 2012

New Website

Chuck and I totally revamped my website; there are all kinds of hidden fun things to interact with and a lot more projects have been posted, including some that are still in progress. Please feel free to check out the changes here.

And don't forget about the trunk show at Framations and the 10-year anniversary January eBay auctions tomorrow.

Valentine Trunk Show
218 North Main St.
St. Charles, MO
Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012, 10 - 3

Jennifer Weigel's eBay store

Thursday, January 26, 2012

This Week

This week, I will be at Framations for the Valentine Trunk Show this Saturday, Jan. 28 from 10 - 3 during the Fete de Glace ice carving competition! A great opportunity to splurge on something special for your cherished loved one (or yourself), just in time for Valentine's Day!

Valentine Trunk Show
218 North Main St.
St. Charles, MO
Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012, 10 - 3

Please check out my 10-year anniversary blog for an exclusive coupon redeemable at the event.

Monday, January 23, 2012

EBay Auctions

Here's a 10-year anniversary update: I have listed my first set of eBay auctions. I posted some highlights to the blog, or you can check them out at my eBay store. Just follow the links below.

10-year anniversary blog

eBay store

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

This Week

My Manhood piece, which was included in the Women's Caucus for Art Reversing the Gaze, Man As Object show at SOMArts in San Francisco late last year, will be featured in the upcoming February show at Shameless Grounds. I've even reworked it for Mardi Gras, so it's a new experience. Please stop by and check it out, just in time for the popular & provocative Koken Art Factory Naughti Gras show!

February Show
Shameless Grounds
2650 Sidney St.
St. Louis, MO
Feb. 2012
Reception: Saturday, Jan. 21, 7 - 9 PM

Monday, January 16, 2012

Weighing In on the "Pay to Play" Game

This is a continuation of my last blog post, a rant about rising fees which can be found here.

With rising costs and commitments, a lot of artists have had to cut back on the number of things that they can be involved with. It is imperative when determining what to support and what to cut to weigh the pros and cons of involvement, whether that be a gallery, exhibition, membership, organization... So here are some considerations and questions to ask yourself when thinking about the benefits. Feel free to respond with your own thoughts and other considerations that I may have overlooked.

Some Considerations & Questions for Artists

- Artwork Sales
Does art sell? In what volume?
What sort of commission is taken?
How are sales handled? Are artists responsible for their own sales?

- Attendance
Are their shows, events and other happenings well-attended?
Who attends? Those involved? The public at large? What is the demographic?

- Community
What community do they serve?
Do you feel included as part of it? Do you feel you belong and/or fit in?
Can they extend your influence outside of your status quo?
For the social advocates:
Do they work with otherwise underserved communities?
What sort of community social advocacy programs do they offer?

- Exposure: exhibitions, interviews, member databases, web presence...
How much exposure do they generate?
What sort of press and publicity do they garner?
How well do they promote members? Exhibitions? Events?...

- Monetary Commitments: dues, fees, other expenses...
What costs are involved?
How does the fee schedule work? Are membership fees due at a certain time or on a revolving basis?
Are show fees for jurying, acceptance or both? Do you have to pay even if your artwork isn't accepted?
Are there any hidden or additional fees? Handling artworks for show? Rent?...

- Opportunities to Show Art
What sort of opportunities are there to show art?
Juried, non-juried or both?
Solo, group or both? How large of a region are group shows curated from?
Member-only sales opportunities, like sales galleries and boutiques?
Off-site venues?
Other show opportunities?
How long do show rotations last?
How many people are represented? At what stages of their careers?

- Social Connections & Networking
Do you feel you are an important part of a larger group?
What sorts of people are involved? Who do you meet?
How can you promote yourself and connect with others within the group?
Is there a psychological connection? Do you feel a sense of personal emotional, mental, physical and/or spiritual benefits?

- Time & Volunteer Commitments
Are you expected to volunteer?
What sort of volunteer opportunities are available?
Is your time valued? How do they track volunteer commitments?

- Travel Distance
Can you physically get there? If not, how can you be involved?
How long does it take to get there?
How much wear and tear on your personal transportation is required for involvement?
Is the distance potentially problematic? Does it make active involvement difficult?

- Workshops, Classes and Learning / Teaching Opportunities
What opportunities are offered for learning and honing skills?
How are those opportunities handled? Demo? Lecture? Hands-on?
What kinds of sessions are there? Ongoing classes? Day- or weekend-long conferences? Shorter meetings?
If opportunities are offered, what topics are touched upon?
Technique? What media and methods are explored?
Promoting yourself? What means of promotion are discussed? Press? Media? Online presence?
Career advancement? What directions of career advancement are considered? How is advancement determined? What about different stages of careers? Is there one-on-one assessment?
Managing yourself (legal, bookkeeping, shooting images of artworks, applying for shows...)?
What is the process by which artists are considered to teach or lead?

Other Considerations and Questions for Institutions:

Are your fees comparable to similar institutions? Consider the demographics of those you serve and your size.

Do you have anything in place for those who cannot otherwise afford to be involved?
For those who can't afford the time commitment, are there volunteer buy-out options so they can donate money in lieu of time?
Are there student / hardship memberships or rates available for those who don't have the money? What else do those rates entail? More volunteer hours? Other commitments?

Do you have different levels of membership and are the benefits of each clearly defined?
What is your highest level? Lowest?
Do you offer a general Patron / Sponsor level above Professional / Practicing Artist to help fund scholarships for Hardship / Student memberships?

Does your fee schedule conflict with the community you serve?
Can those you want to work with afford to be involved?

On the "Pay to Play" Game

With finances still being tight and a lot of funding cut, a lot of art organizations have been forced to rely financially more and more heavily on the artists and art community to keep their doors open. Entry fees, member dues and other expenses are on the rise everywhere, with many organizations charging more for Professional Artist level memberships than ever before.

The whole situation unfortunately reverberates with a "pay-to-play" mentality where those who can afford to be involved are while those who can't are bystanders that aren't always included, which is really quite saddening. It can all be rather dissuading and depressing, since many artists don't have a lot of funds and are trying to make ends meet themselves, and so it seems rather akin to trying to squeeze blood from a stone.

I have even personally struggled with feeling like I am not genuinely appreciated for myself or my art by those groups I have been involved with, and that I am just being taken advantage of monetarily or regarding volunteer time. But I'm not going to rant about that since I don't that feel complaining in and of itself is the most productive course of action, and because I feel that it really just evidences the fact that I've been far too overextended for far too long.

So now that I'm looking at having to cut back, I thought I'd write about weighing the benefits and costs to be more selective about involvement, since I know this affects a lot of artists beyond just myself. I'm going to organize these thoughts in a new post so that they are easy to navigate (outside of this rant) and can act as some advice to those in similar situations and circumstances, so look out for that coming up in my next blog post.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Only Two Days Left

There are only two days left to enter the January raffle on my 10-year anniversary blog, so be sure to drop by soon if you want to enter. Entries must be placed by midnight on Jan. 14. The drawing will be held Jan. 15.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Friend and fellow artist Sam Davis recently featured me on Showcase365 exploring local St. Louis talent on his blog. I am honored to be included; the blog showcase has featured several remarkably talented individuals from all walks of life. Please feel free to check it out here.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Art of the Week: January Raffle

I am posting my January raffle prize as Art of the Week this week! Here is Deserted, a mixed media assemblage from my Forgotten series.

This piece will be my first raffle prize for my 10 year anniversary celebration. Please check it out by following the link below. Just follow the instructions on the 10-year anniversary party blog to enter. Since this is my first raffle, I may have some kinks to work out, but hopefully it will all make sense.