Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring Brings The Local Art Show

(Click on the thumbnail for the bigger, better version)

Lately, it has been easy to forget that spring is around the corner. Days of rain, followed by days of snow that melts only to be replaced by more snow, then followed by rain. Gray has been a dominant color with the exceptional sunny days serving as welcome reminders that this won't really last forever.

I haven't had time to fret over the gloom, as I have been immersed in preparations for the Bear Valley Springs annual art show. Since I missed the event last year, I have only participated in this show once and that time I entered pieces that were conventionally matted and framed. It was basic gallery style frames, standard mats, and your typical color prints for me. This time around, I am trying new things.

For instance, I am experimenting with prints on metallic paper (finally, I might add—the paper has been around for ages now). I also am ordering one piece printed on metal. Of course, like a child, I will be waiting for the delivery truck tomorrow when I get to see my sample pack from Bay Photo. They offer so many finishes in the metal that I needed to see samples before placing my order. While I am catching up with the rest of the photography world, I will test out one print on canvas. I decided why not have fun with this show and check out what everyone else has been playing with for several years now. When this show is over, I will not only have had the fun of participating, but I will have learned a great deal.

Beyond the new print materials, I am also placing my first order for frames and mats from Frame Destination in Dallas, Texas. I have read good reviews about the company for years and thought it was time I found out for myself how good they are.  A few weeks ago, I placed a small order with them and was impressed with the way they handled it. It happened that one item in my order was temporarily out of stock. They called me to inform me of the delay and I was already impressed that a real person called to let me know. Then, the item arrived, having been shipped Fed Ex 2-day, although I had not paid for the expedited shipping. Their handling of the situation gave me an idea why reviewers have given them raves for their customer service. I felt the service warranted further investigation.

You will hear some of those last minute howls of "woe is me" as the deadline nears for hanging pieces, but you know I will be having fun, as well. I remember the opening day reception as a marvelous party where I met a number of delightful people. Why should 2011 be any less a day of celebration?


  1. Well, it's a lovely spring day here in the UK! Metallic prints, that's something new to me despite it "having been around for ages", I expect you might have to choose your subject matter carefully for it to be suitable and I wonder how your ICC profiles work with it. You are braver than I am with the exhibition, all my prints go into a box never to be seen again! Good luck with it.

  2. Colin - You certainly got my jealousy stirred up. We have signs here—the daffodils, for example—but old man winter just won't give up.

    I am not sure that "brave" is the right word. "Foolhardy" may better fit the fill. Oh, well, I couldn't deal with it if I took it all completely seriously.

  3. This is a great shot, Anita. I love the foggy/misty atmosphere. Gives it a little mystery.
    I've had good luck with Metallic Prints for subjects with a lot of texture, hard edges and high contrast. For photos like your post here I've use a luster finish. It's a softer finish and compliments the subject.
    I think it would be fun to prepare for a show. I've never had to do that.

  4. Ken - Thanks for your comment on the photo. I was reluctant to post it, since it is so soft. Finally, I decided, "What the heck. I like it. It fits the weather, not to mention it meshes well with the anxiety here." I am so pleased that it connects with someone else.

    This show is an open one and so huge that if I bomb, almost no one will notice. There is safety in numbers!

    I appreciate your tips on metallic prints and assume you are referring to metallic paper. I wonder if the same holds true for prints on metal? I would think so. I know I am jumping into the deep end of the pool, but I can always drop back and punt.

  5. I had a couple of 24x36 prints on Metallic paper done for our family room of Florida wetlands scenes...lot of deep blues, silvers, shifting light and small wave ripples. We loved the effect and it provided a definite WOW factor to those images.

    Love the photo in this post. it looks like a scene which could have come from near here, in the Great Smoky Mountains.

  6. Earl - Thanks a million for the info on your print. By the way, it sounds sensational. I'll bet it is a showpiece.

    You may have hit on why my photo here appeals to me. I was in the Great Smokies only once, many, many years ago. But, the experience left a deep impact and this picture probably taps into those distant memories.

  7. Anita, your image also looks like it might have been made in the hills of the Oregon coast. Great job!

  8. Steve - Thanks for your kind words about the picture. I have never been to the Oregon coast and it's interesting to learn that this image reminds you of it. Thank you for letting me know this.

  9. It's funny how we have different tolerances. Preparing for a show seems to have absolutely no appeal, like processing film for you. :) Good luck, my friend. I'm sure you'll make a great showing.

    Good to hear about Frame Destination. I've thought about ordering from them, but never have. I haven't framed any of my photos. I have a few on the wall, but they are on foam core board with adhesive on one side. They really would look nicer if they were framed, but I'll get around to it ... one day. ;)

  10. Paul - Yours are very interesting observations. You are so right. Different tolerance for different stress. I am learning a great deal by taking this on and that makes it worthwhie to me.

    I am looking forward to the delivery of my order from Frame Destination. I find myself planning all sorts of new and different things now, and they all depend upon how much I like the products I get from this company. I have framed quite a number of pieces—mostly because of previous shows. Looks as if I need outside pressure to get these things done. I thought I would try mounting things on foam core, but never got around to it. I hear you on "one day".

  11. I thought of the Smoky Mountains also in seeing this image. It is just so symbolic of the moody qualities often found there, and obviously elsewhere.

    Good luck with your experiments. I had one print done by Bay Photo on metal and have mixed feelings about it. Not of the lab's quality, I just wasn't sure I picked the right image. It is one of those things where the media and photo need to be a good match to really work.

  12. Mark - Thanks for comment on the photo. I know it is the moodiness that suited me.

    I am a bit conflicted about prints on metal. I think you are exactly right about needing to pick the right image, and I may still be conflicted after my order arrives. Oh, well, it happens that I am in a mood to try new things. The slight pressure of this community show was a good excuse for me to get adventurous. So far, I certainly am impressed with Bay Photo's customer service.


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