Archive for March, 2011

ArtsFest at GSU

Oh my gosh, I have been so incredibly busy the past few weeks. I haven’t really been posting anything new in my Etsy shop or any new links to my Facebook page or posts on here… I’ve been working 24/7 at creating things to sell at ArtsFest next Saturday at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, GA, down in south Georgia near Savannah. Georgia Southern is my alma mater. I graduated from there in 2008 with a double major in Art History and Studio Arts (just a credit or two shy of Painting, I decided I had been in school long enough and Studio Arts looked good enough, right?).

Anyway, ArtsFest has been an annual event down there for how many years? Almost 30, I believe. It used to be called the Youth Arts Festival, but now it’s geared more towards people of all ages, not just kids. I know I’ve been going almost every year since I was in kindergarten or something like that. Two years ago, Molly had her birthday party there. It was just a little get together of her and a few of her friends and they all went around and did the crafts together, and got their faces painted and stuff like that.

So this year I have a booth in the Artists’ Market down there. I’m so excited! I’ve gone as a kid, as a student, as a volunteer, as a mom, and this year I get to go as an artist. Pretty cool. I’m listed under the Artists’ Market as Upcycled Art by Maggie Horne Thomas. Some of the things I’m selling- gift bows from book pages and magazine pages, recycled gift tags from cereal boxes and etc., decoupaged keepsake boxes, decoupaged frames and mirrors, assorted quilled ornaments, paper ornaments made from book pages, book sculptures, hair bows, and framed, mixed media collages. Most of these things are listed in my Etsy shop or pictures of them are in my Facebook albums.

I’ll write up another quick blog post later this week as soon as I get closer to finishing all the items for sale, and I’ll make sure I post pictures. Right now, I’ve got to get to work!!

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To Keep or not to Keep… My Artwork is my Life.

I was recently asked by someone I met how I dealt with letting go of my artwork once I create it. I mean, how do I deal with selling something once I make it? She asked me if I had trouble keeping and holding on to my artwork once I was finished with it.

Well, I explained that I used to have lots of trouble letting go of things and letting other people take them and display them in their own houses and such. I usually spend sooo much time working on a piece that it becomes a part of me and once I finally tear myself away and proclaim the piece finished, I can’t imagine it being displayed anywhere other than the walls of my own home.

She asked, “How did you get over that? Is it something you figured out on your own or is it something you were taught or learned in school?” Believe me, it’s something I had to figure out on my own. It was definitely not something that anyone else could have taught me. They might have tried to help me with it, but I was the only one who could make myself finally come around.

It’s just like when you’re trying to stop smoking or biting your nails, or any other habit that isn’t good for you. And creating and then hoarding your own art isn’t good for you. Friends and family can tell you until they’re blue in the face how bad biting your nails is, or how annoying it is, or how harmful it is to your hands and teeth and all that, but until YOU decide that it’s what YOU want to do, stopping is not an option.

That being said, let me give you a piece of advice- the thing that works for me (almost all the time). Spend as long as you want or need working on something- 6 months to a year on a 4′ x 3′ canvas, for example- and once it’s done, sit back and enjoy it in all its glory up above your dining room table. But then, once it’s lost its exciting “newness,” start making smaller-scale reproductions. Sure, it took you 9 months to complete that one, but now that you know the process and path you took to get to that end point, you can start streamlining the process. Get it done in a month rather than a year.

Believe me, your heart and soul will still be put into the piece, but not such a hefty chunk of them.

I’m not sure exactly who I’ve helped by writing this little blog post, it was just something that I thought I needed to share. Happy arting, kids…

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Zombie Family Stick Figures for the Modern Undead Family

My most recent article is up on Zombie Cat Productions website!

As a contributing writer at Zombie Cat Productions as well as a new Etsy shop businesswoman, we’re trying a new concept and combining the two. You’d be surprised at how many horror and gore themed, handmade items you can find over there. Well, maybe you wouldn’t be… Anyways, my new bi-weekly article series is  called Arts, Crafts, and the Macabre. Keep an eye out! I’ll be posting some of every article here on my blog!

Here’s an excerpt from the article for you. Visit www.zombiecatproductions.com to read the whole thing.

“Howdy, fans. It is I, your favorite artist turned Zombie Cat and proud Etsy shop entrepreneur, Maggie/Vixen. This is the first installment of my new Zombie Cat column that will highlight some of my favorite things- horror, gore, and arts and crafts. What a combo, huh? How in the world are these things related? It’s not a stretch by any means…

…I’ve been creating art my entire life and I’m no stranger to the “art” vs. “craft” debate that has been raging since the beginning of time. The term “craft” has developed an ugly little stigma over the years…

…Let me introduce you to one of my all time favorite items that I have ever found on Etsy: The Zombie Stick Figure Family Stickers.

…Please, do everyone a favor and buy a pack of these Zombie Stick Figures. If you don’t visit his Etsy shop, you can go to his website: www.zombiesticker.com or go “like” his Facebook page.

 

 

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Artist’s Statement

Here it is! Wow, that was a lot easier to find than I thought it would be… Again, this artist’s statement, though much of it rings true with my art in general, was written for this particular exhibition show I held back in 2008 during my graduating semester from college.

Maggie Patricia Horne
“Immaculate Misconceptions” Artist Statement

“A painter’s tastes must grow out of what so obsesses him in life that he never has to ask what is suitable for him to do in art.” — Lucian Freud

My art is indeed, about obsession. It is a visual fusion of several prominent obsessions throughout my life: the significance of religion, society’s preoccupation with physical beauty, the desire for individuality, and the lifelong collection of found objects.

Born and raised in the Deep South, the region of America known as the Bible Belt, religion and the practice thereof has been in the foreground of my life experiences. As a human being, I have struggled over the years with my faith, abandoning and embracing my spirituality regularly. I struggle with the emphasis placed on religion and the diverse forms of worship and adulation of Jesus Christ.

Within my art, I combine this struggle with that of society’s emphasis on physical beauty and the unattainable standards set by the media to be attractive and thin. As a woman, I am constantly bombarded with images of how I should look in order to fit within our society’s “norm”. My desire to be an individual and not follow that “norm” is at a constant battle with my desire to be beautiful. I see this struggle within religious images as well. There is a definite standard of how the characters within Christianity are to be portrayed. They should be beautiful, attractive, and pleasing to the eye in order to convey the calmness and peace found within Christianity.

My question is therefore, can religious images successfully exist outside the “norm”: unattractive, aggressive and provocative, and still be seen as genuine and deserving of veneration? My answer is a resounding “yes.” I strongly believe that it gives these images more humanity, thus enabling the average person to more easily relate to the icon.

I use a wide variety of materials within my mixed media paintings consisting largely of what most people would consider to be trash, junk, and everyday non-art objects; things that I literally find on the streets or in the garbage, abandoned by others. Alone, they are not what would be considered beautiful or worthy of adoration. But the obsessive manners in which I combine all of these individual objects into one, transform them into something more precious, something that I consider worthy of representing images of such reverence.

For me, this is a liberating experience, an opportunity to express my individuality through art. My paintings, just like my physical identity, are beautiful and worthy of esteem outside the restrictions of today’s society and mass culture

 

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Jesus and John and Mary, oh my!

As far as fine art goes, this is the kind of thing I specialize in. Mixed media. Well, mixed media is the nice way to say it. The way I explain it, I make art out of other people’s trash. Whatever isn’t wanted or isn’t valued as something usable, I use it. Broken things, ugly things, discarded things, I love it. It’s the absolutely best way to recycle. The next few images in this post are from my Senior Painting Exhibition from back in 2008 when I graduated college and had my Senior Exit Show, entitled “Immaculate Misconceptions.” All of my work is half paint (mostly oil, some acrylic) and mixed media (which includes, but is not limited to fabric, fur, lace, ribbon, wood, shells, metal, glue, rubber, latex, duct tape, masking tape, toys, plastic objects, flowers, paper, marker, book pages, etc., etc., etc.).

I know I have my artist’s statement from this exhibition around here somewhere too. As soon as I find it I’ll post it as well. It does a pretty good job explaining why I create this kind of art, especially why I created this particular series of art and why I called it Immaculate Misconceptions.

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Decoupaged St. Luke Mirror

This sturdy, wooden mirror measures 10″ x 10″ and is texturally decoupaged with pages from Luke, the 3rd book of the New Testament of the Christian Bible. St Luke is the patron saint of artists.

Accented with a simple brown-stained wooden cross and fitted on the back with a metal hanger so it can be hung on the wall.

Decoupaged St. Luke Mirror

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Upcycled Book Paper Photo Frame

The perfect, unique gift for the librarian at heart!

Giving it a beautiful antique/vintage look, this sturdy wooden frame has been intricately decoupaged in an intertwining checkerboard pattern using strips of pages from a paperback novel. The particular book used for this pattern is “Love and War” by John Jakes, author of “North and South.” It is also accented with brown and grey buttons for a clean and simple effect.

The frame is approximately 7.5″ x 7.5″ with a 3.5″ x 3.5″ picture opening. On the back, there is a small metal picture hook for wall display as well as a peg for table-top sitting. A beautiful photo of fall leaves, a plastic covering, and white backing cover are included.

$20.00, $5.00 shipping

Preview Image

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