Summer has come around in our neck of the woods, and there couldn't be more going on in the life of an artist. I recently made the decision to quit my full time job to pursue my dream of being an artist. The feeling is that of joy and determination, but the plunge is quite daunting. There is much work to be done other than sitting down and and doodling. Web sites that need polishing, commissions that need tending, and receipts yet to be filed are all part of the game. However, I still have sufficient time that is needed to create work at a reasonable rate, and have made plans to go on a little tour with this body of art.
Art fairs will be my focus, as well as knocking on doors of galleries and fly shops throughout Colorado during my trip. Art on the Lake in Excelsior, MN and Stone Arch Bridge Festival in Northeast Minneapolis have already come and gone with some successes, failures, and a great deal of learning. The next leg of the tour will find me in Colorado for a month from the middle of July through the middle of August, and I will finish the journey in Duluth, MN. Dillon/Silverthorne will be my first stop on the weekend of July 17th, followed by fairs in Denver at Cheesman Park on the weekend of the 25th, and Sloan's Lake the weekend of August 8th. I hope to get a good response from a fishing and outdoor oriented market, and slowly filter my name and work through West America. All is not sunshine and rainbows, however. Due to some serious repairs on my truck, and some apparently questionable ethics on part of the dealership from which I purchased the vehicle, I am now in a bit of a financial bind concerning the trip. I have set up a Go Fund Me page to raise some needed funds to help get me on my arting feet. If you would like to see me keep churning out art please visit the page at http://www.gofundme.com/joshdesmit. There will be artsy incentives at different levels of sponsorship. I will work with individuals to ensure they receive something they enjoy for their donation. If you donate $20 or more you will receive a poster print. if you donate $100 or more you will receive a plush, signed and numbered, limited edition giclee print. If you donate $200 or more you will receive a custom original fly box. If you donate $500 or more I will create an original work of art to your liking on a 20"x24" canvas. Finally, if you donate $1000 or more I will create and original work of art of your liking on a 30"x40" canvas. I thank you all in advance for your support, and hope we can make this happen. Look for updates along the way and hopefully a series of blog posts on a certain fly fishing web site while the trip is going on.
Other than money issues, art life is a great life. Linus the English Setter has a buddy at home all day and is pretty good about letting me get stuff done. I have been cruising through originals, and look forward to checking some commissions off the list. I am exploring different ways to push my work after a trip to Vail made me work quickly. I was fortunate to be called on by a friend at Redington to paint live at the GoPro Mountain Games Festival. I was asked to create a piece a day, and it turned out to be a blast and great experience for the creation period I have in front of me. Thanks to those guys for an awesome time.
Fishing has taken a back seat to working this art thing out, but I manage to escape every now and again. Out in vail we had some neat experiences on a small mountain stream with fabulous scenery and feisty browns, and the streamer game was rekindled. Carping has crept into my repertoire and has been fun to spend a little time sight fishing the yellow tanks. If you haven't tried, try it. Hook one and the hurt in your forearm will bring you back. Minnesota smallies should be heating up and sulphurs have supposedly been out on the trout stream at night. It's a good time to toss a fly into the sticky heat!