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Category Archives: Syros

Well here I am again. What a few weeks. It was going so well. And then the Law of Sod took hold. My hard drive failed taking with it weeks and weeks of work that hadn’t yet been backed up. The circuit board is currently en route to the other side of the world where some clever chaps reckon they can put the right chip onto the right new board and send it back to me so I can talk to my life again. All this going on with temperatures in the high 30s/90s which doesn’t turn anyone in my house into a saint believe me.

I’ve also been researching like crazy to try to make the right decisions about how to sell my work, I’m extremely serious about it at this point in my life and on a mission. Things are pretty bad in Greece. About the only hope is to look to overseas customers and artwork is a perfect product from a country whose greatest gift is beauty.

But what a nightmare jungle it all is. Ebay? Etsy? Half a dozen other sites? Or just rely on my site, good SEO and social networking to build the traffic? I am sorely tempted by the latter I really am. I am trying to keep in mind that I am starting out and it might all get to be easier and faster but honestly I feel like I will never be liberated from filling in forms and reading dense rules and regulations not to mention having to serve rookie time virtually giving work away on these sites in order to get established. Trouble is for an artist like me is that I don’t do things by halves. I take time and really want to make a product that is a joy to hold in your hands let alone look at. I also don’t do cutesy which seems to be the style with the Wow Factor that attracts the collectors but I wonder if I am right about this. Will collectors like my work too?

All the same, meanwhile I have been painting furiously making these great little miniature ACEOs…I’ve taken to it like a duck to water. I like painting big and loose but there is almost a whole separate stream of my art consciousness that really gets off on tiny brushes and intricacy.  I’ve been loving it and finding the tiny format oddly liberating. I’m very happy with the results too, I’m dying to do more.

But what to do to sell them? These painted pieces are worth I think at least £40 each. I’ve never done an Ebay auction and the whole idea fills me with terror to be honest.

I’ve put a page of them up My First ACEOs. I wonder what other people think.

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Agios Antonios HandpaintedACEO Print Copyright Luigina Ware 2012

Fishing Boat at Syros Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Lalakia Garden Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

Wave: Handpainted ACEO PrintCopyright Luigina Ware 2012

I spent last weekend on an experiment, albeit one that I thought would succeed. Here are the results. These are my very first efforts at ACEOs* (see below for an explanation of what an ACEO is). ACEOs can be made in any media but they must be right size – these are quite tiny – only 2.5 by 3.5 inches. I had a particular aim with these ones which was to see what I could do with an image by painting onto a canvas print. I chose these four as they each offered a particular challenge – some like Agios Antonios and Lalakia Garden were originally paintings and Fishing Boat and Wave were both digital art. I originally got into making these digital pictures when exploring photographs I had taken in Photoshop with a view to painting them. They then became digital artworks in their own right. Now I am painting over those prints so I suppose you could say these images have come full circle. 


I have tried to photograph them so that the very nice zingy sharpness and vivid colour come out well and also so that you can see the scale – there’s a 1 euro coin in some of the pictures. They are still sitting on my chair in the kitchen in the afternoon sun and I just went to have a look to see how accurate the colour reproduction is. Hard to tell what you are seeing – always be aware when viewing art online that different monitors and computer equipment display colour somewhat differently. But I really don’t think anyone buying these would be disappointed in the contrast between these photos and the actual objects. I am really pleased with them and they were great to work on. I’ll photograph some of the print ones later, they also look pretty far out.

The little canvases are mounted on good quality mat board, the edges are all blacked and they are gloss varnished.

I’ve made up my mind to put them to auction on Ebay and see if I can catch the eye of some collectors. Might work, might not…let’s see what happens!!!
Click on the images to visit the relevant pages on my websites where you can buy the full size prints and read something about the original artworks.

 *ACEO is an abbreviation for Art Cards & Editions, sometimes also known as ATCs – Artist Trading Cards – other people might just call them Miniatures. The rule with them is that they are made on card and must measure 2.5 x 3.5 inches – no more no less. They are loved by artists for the scope they give to experiment without the commitment of a major piece and because there is a certain amount of craft in them. It also means you can offer customers a genuinely affordable artwork.

How much there is to do to create an online presence for one’s art and hopefully sell some. I am not a full time artist – I want to be of course but life doesn’t permit it so I work at other things for a living. That isn’t even a sob story, it’s just that the artist in me is almost a separate function from the worker, I like my job and am lucky to be able to do it from wherever I am.
So, we thought, I’ll set up a website, sell some prints. Maybe I can win back a day a week to have for myself and start creating some more work, get at the paints.  Keep going, keep going!
Exploring the web I find myself in awe time and time again of the work to be found. Then you look and the date of the last post on the blog is months, even years ago. I want to make a flow. I guess it is the early posts that are the worst to deal with, one coughs and feels self-conscious. Everything seems pretentious.
So here’s the plan. I won’t have one. I’ll keep sticking something on here, sharing the picture that’s on my mind today or whatever and let the thing invent itself. I can see how it will be because I know what I do and what I want to share and I also know my objective, it’s just starting it that is weird.
Here on this island it is the most perfect time of year, beautiful, warm and sunny but not too hot. This little painting I did of a garden in a back street is the one most on my mind right now, were I to be able to paint today this is the sort of thing I would be doing:

Lalakia Garden: Painting of a Garden in the backstreets of Ermoupoli, Syros by Luigina Ware. Visit website to buy print

Well it has taken me just a bit of a while but finally, at last, after much wailing and gnashing of html, hollow-eyed nights wrangling with prices and sizes, angst over logos and layout and a really horrible state of consternation and misery over the copy I have finally launched two websites where prints of my work can be bought. If I had had any idea how long it would take I’d probably have printed a few off and made for a beach somewhere but truth to tell I am really proud of them now. Please come and visit:

The first one shows all my Greek art work:

www.aegeanlight.co.uk

 the second is for everything else – right now the digital work and some reproductions of paintings:
www.anotherlight.co.uk

A big part of the work involved was getting the test prints made. I had fantastic help from my printers in Syros, PrintIt Today who couldn’t do enough to help. The samples look really wonderful – better than I hoped. The colours are vivid, the paper and canvas choices are lush and the images are sharp – all in these are products I am very happy with and will be proud to show.

So now there is just the small matter of getting my social network fired up and operational.

For this blog in particular, I have made no rules. I am just hoping that good labelling and tagging will make sense of it all…..

agios-antonios.jpg

I have now made prints available of the this painting of the little church of Agios Antonios at Megas Yialos on Syros.

You can find them at my website Aegean Light www.aegeanlight.co.uk/agios-antonios.html

Come on over and see the new work there and at www.anotherlight.co.uk as well.

 

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The Hippy in Me is a Happy Bunny tonight. I just made such a cute little psychedelic Slideshow of a few of my digital art expeditions into the heart of Photoshop…..very enjoyable.

See it here at the page called Digitalissima

I’m loving Slide.com – this is the third slideshow I’ve made there and this one gave me a chance for a little unrestrained fantasy indulgence in their feature set.

I’ve also installed a new set of photographs of Syros to give you a flavour of this lovely island.

Find that one here at the page called Syros Photographs

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Island Poster

Hello, here are some of my paintings.

Some of them have been made since I have lived on Syros. I moved here nearly 5 years ago. Some of them are older, going back to around 1985.

 The picture above shows a poster I made of my newest painting Island. It includes a quotation from one of my favourite poets e e cummings:

love is a place
& through this place of
love move
(with brightness of peace)
all places

Just about sums up my thoughts on that painting for me!

 

PLEASE NOTE I NOW HAVE NEW WEBSITES at www.aegeanlight.co.uk and www.anotherlight.co.uk where you can buy prints of Island and many other new works. Please come by and visit.

 

 

I’ve been struggling with this blog for the past week. I like the new theme very much but miss having links and stuff at the side. So I’ve started a new page called Inspirations where I hope to be able to store links and ideas and all manner of other stuff from different eras of my life in Brighton, London, Wales, and Greece that feed into my particular river, float my boat etc. Just two links there to two good friends at the moment, each a special facet of my life which has been somewhat varied to say the least. I see possibilities! Exciting possibilities.

Back in the 70s I can remember long conversations about how no particular available medium exactly suited to convey our particular consciousness of our time. No wonder really, it was just the start of an era where people opened their eyes onto a world so very much larger, more immediate and more unusual than their ancestors could ever have imagined. Things – events, ideas, people, obsessions, fashions, homes, hearts, minds – moved faster than ever before, mixing and clashing invading and interweaving.

Media of personal expression of all sorts were being stretched and torn open. In those days few artists considered themselves close friends with technology. But it is technology that has provided the explosive new arena where art is no longer about static finished works forged in isolation. The blog is still a baby in terms of art and possibly many of us who might make wild use of it are still nervous and intimidated by the technicalities. But the free-form and collaborative potential is something that still has many minds to blow….. Call me slow but I’m just beginning to get it!!

Hundreds of years from now our era will surely be seen as extraordinary (the jury’s still out on whether it’s an extraordinary tragedy, comedy or epic – but evolutionary it most certainly will be by then known to be).

Also, I’ve added a new Gallery page today using a slideshow thing from Slide that has all the paintings I’ve so far got available online for printing. Very cool gadget, I like it. What fun! This makes me want to create more than ever….feels a lot more like there’s a point!

Phew! I’ve been working round the clock since I last posted here. The painting on the unfinished page is now complete, sold and soon to start it’s journey to England and it’s new home. “Port” is going too.

But before they set off from Syros they have been photographed and made ready to make their appearance as beautiful, vivid prints. I’ve opted for doing the Zazzle thing over Cafepress for a number of reasons which I will shortly reveal(!) along with all the stages of the process I’ve worked through for this.

What this means is that whilst I get on with making more paintings the images themselves can take on a life of their own as Greeting Cards, Prints, Posters, t’shirts and a really MAD variety of other objects of desire. I love it! I’m working round the clock t prepare the stuff at the moment so that people cans have things for Christmas if they want. Below this I’m posting two new paintings (both of which can already be bought as cards by clicking the link to my Print Gallery on the right of this page. The first is Island and the second is a ‘specially for Christmas’ little Angel with a story to go with her.


This is my Little Angel card. I made the painting last Christmas after a visit to a village above Ermoupoli on Syros called Alithini, which means Truth. There’s the most amazing view over the city and out across the Aegean up there (as well as a taverna hosted by one of Nature’s true gentlemen)

So this Angel, she’s walking along the path towards truth, and behind her you can see the two great churches of Syros. On the left the awesome Catholic Basilica of St George, affectionately known as Agios Tzortzi, and on the right the bright blue dome of the Orthodox Church of the Resurrection, known as Anastasi in Greek. Syros is famous for the happy coexistence of the two churches side by side on this island. As I’m sure you know Greece is historically Orthodox but Syros, for some slightly unfathomable reason, had until recently a predominantly Catholic population. I’m not alone in believing that the need for the two churches to live together somehow contributes to the gently humorous and kindly character that is so obviously the norm here. Or maybe it’s the character of the Syriani (due to something in the water or suchlike) which has led to this really very unusual intermeshing of the two faiths. You really have to experience it to understand it I guess but in a world where faith seems to more often inspire people to hate eachother rather than love and appreciate I really wish I could bottle whatever it is that makes this place tick.

As for the little angel herself, when I painted her a year ago I had never heard of Madeleine McCann but now this picture reminds me so much of her. I’ve spent most of this year worrying about her and incredulous and appalled at the spite and venom directed at her poor family. I so wish that this cheerful little picture might turn out to be a seen in days to come as a herald of her safe return.

Little Angel