The Coffee Shop as an Art Gallery
"I'll have a small cappuccino... and a side of art!"
Coffee shops not only provide a relaxed environment for conversation and studying, but many also contain hidden professional and unique gallery spaces. The relaxed environment allows visitors the opportunity to get to know works of local artists without any pressure to buy--while also enjoying conversation and a good cuppa joe. What could be better?
This Friday, I will be heading to Everyday Joe's in Fort Collins to hang a new show, featuring 20+ pieces--including several new paintings. Last summer I came across the beautiful gallery space in Everyday Joe's, and am thrilled to have the opportunity to show my work in this space. Over the past year, I have had the opportunity to hang shows in 4 Wyoming coffee shops--all of which have been positive experiences!
Next time you are in a coffee shop, be sure to take a moment to check out the artwork on the walls. And, if you do find yourself drawn to a specific piece of art of the style of art that you see, don't be afraid to contact the artist! Most would be more than willing to meet with you to talk more about their work. One of the best things about hanging my work in a public place, such as a coffee shop, is the connections that I have made with the local art enthusiasts!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
Till next weekend,
Buzzing in the Spring!
Last week I had the opportunity to head off to my family's cabin for a little peace and relaxation--complete with a visit from herd of 20+ deer! The herd came over to visit the salt lick, and then ended up bedding down for over 2 hours on the side of the cabin. It was so peaceful watching them--and resting WITH them!
On a completely unrelated topic--but still an important part of relaxation: My husband and I LOVE pancakes--they are our Saturday morning tradition! So, we decided to do a little experimenting while we were at the cabin, and came up with some new pancake flavors! I give you: Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Matcha, and Coffee! (The best were the Peanut Butter and Matcha--which is a green tea!)
And, of course, no vacation would be complete without a little art! Inspired by the recent beginning of Spring, I decided to create a story in a moonlit flower garden. Below is a process shot from the painting (which is near completion!):
As new growth appears, and the days begin to grow warmer--and longer, be sure to take some time to enjoy the beauty around you! Unplug and breath in that fantastic smell of fresh rain and fresh flowers! Go for a walk and be PRESENT--enjoying the sites and sounds around you!
May your spring be filled with inspiration!
The Artist Educator
"What do you want to be when you grow up?" is a common question asked of students from the time they are able to tie their shoes, to college-age and beyond! Students, from a very young age, are led to believe that they can do ANYTHING, be ANYTHING they want if they are willing to work for it. And that right there, is the key word---WORK. Having your dream job is a lot of work--and takes risks, which can be incredibly scary. The high school guidance counselor often forgets to mention that part. BUT, if you truly want to do something, you will take those risks, and work through the difficult times.
Last weekend I had the opportunity to meet many wonderful people at the "Zonta Ladies Night" fundraiser event in Cheyenne, Wyoming. One woman in particular told me that she was gathering information (business cards, brochures, etc) from all of the artists' booths to share with her daughter. Her daughter, she explained, was a very talented artist, but wasn't sure she wanted to pursue art in college, as it didn't seem like it would amount to a real job. In our conversation, I mentioned that I was not only an artist, but also an art teacher--which didn't seem to go over well. She laughed as she explained that her daughter thinks that being a teacher is something that artists have to do in order to make a living... and she doesn't want to become a teacher.
She has a point.
There are a lot of artists who resort to teaching as a way of bringing home the bacon, since selling artwork is not a very consistent means of income. While I do teach full-time, and having that steady income DOES make me feel more financially stable, that is not WHY I teach.
Teaching is EXHAUSTING. I'll be the first to admit that. After a full day of teaching, the thought of going home and trying to work on my studio art is not always appealing. However, teaching is also incredibly energizing! When I'm not creating my own art, I am sharing my gifts with others AND becoming inspired by their work at the same time! My elementary art students are some of the most creative little artists I know---and that is because they are not afraid to dive into a new project and see where their creative journey takes them.
In last week's post, I wrote of the importance of displaying your artwork for others to see. Just as showing your work to others is important, SHARING your expertise and love for art with others is just as important. In addition to teaching art full-time, I also teach two monthly painting workshops to the community--focusing on the processes that I use to create some of my paintings. Why do I do this? Because I feel that openly sharing my techniques with the community not only forms a good relationship between myself and community members, but also brings people closer to understanding my work! Art is a form of investigation, and recreating a painting forces the artist to get up close and personal with the artwork--increasing their knowledge of, and connection to the piece.
So, am I an artist, or am I a teacher? I like to call myself an artist educator, because not only am I an artist, but I'm also educating FUTURE artists! The most wonderful thing about being an artist is that it is one of those jobs that naturally fits with almost anything else. Can you be a prolific artist AND a pharmacist/doctor/lawyer/manager/accountant/etc? Absolutely! Find a way to weave everything together---make those connections between your various occupations, and you'll find inspiration in all that you do!
Have a wonderfully inspiring weekend!
If a Tree Falls...
If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, did it really make a sound?
I've always thought this was a ridiculous question. Of course the tree would make a sound if it fell. It doesn't matter if it has an audience to hear its sound. Or does it?
Let's think about this tree scenario in terms of art. If you make a piece of artwork and no one is there to enjoy it, is it really art? Now, some might argue that art is in the making--the expression. It doesn't matter who sees it.
I would argue that art sitting in a basement, sketchbook, or in a pile somewhere is not doing what art is meant to do. I believe that, while the making of art is important, the action of viewing art--the interaction between a viewer and a work of art gives life and meaning to the art.
This past weekend I had the opportunity to have a booth at a local fundraising event in Cheyenne, Wyoming. This was a great opportunity to get my work out there for some quality community interactions! It was a wonderful evening of discussing my work with others, and listening as connections were made between patrons and paintings! As an artist, there is nothing more rewarding than witnessing someone make a meaningful connection with a work of art. And, truth be told, there is no way that connection would have happened if my work was sitting in a pile in my studio. In order for my work to have MEANING, it must be seen.
This month I also have my work hanging in a show at Coal Creek, a coffee shop and gallery space in downtown Laramie, WY. Next month the show will move to Everyday Joe's art gallery in Fort Collins, where it will have the opportunity to be seen by a whole new crowd! I try to hang traveling shows every month or two, as well as more permanent installations in galleries in order to show my work in as many different ways as possible. If you know of a good venue for my work, please send me a message. I am always open to new opportunities to share my work!
Also, be sure to check my "Upcoming Events" tab to keep up with my upcoming shows and opportunities for YOU to see some of my work in person!
Welcome to the whimsical world of Tara Pappas' mixed media art! Thank you for stopping by to view samples of my work and read a little about my adventures as an artist. I am always looking for new ways to connect and grow as an artist, so would love to hear from you if you have any questions or interests in a particular piece. I hope that my work brings you inspiration and joy!
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