Handcrafted Jewelry – What Makes It Special?

Walk down any street in an American city — I live in New York, but it doesn’t matter where you are — and almost everyone is wearing some sort of jewelry. Lately even men are getting into the trend — wearing paired hoop earrings — one on each ear.

Most people are wearing the standard fashions you see in department and chain jewelry stores. Current fashion jewelry takes good advantage of colored stones and modern jewelry making techniques, and so there is a vast array of truly beautiful commercially made jewelry available. For most people, that’s fine. There are some of us that want something different … something with feeling … something handmade.

Handcrafted items take a person with skill and talent time to make using hand tools.

Handmade jewelry isn’t confined to the boundaries factory made jewelry must have simply because it is mass produced. In order to make thousands of pieces that look exactly the same they have to be made in exactly the same manner. Machines can do that easily and cheaply. Each piece of handcrafted jewelry can be different, like the artist.

We all know the difference between a home cooked meal and fast food. Handmade sweaters are a more personal gift than machine made sweaters. Handcrafted jewelry is special in the same way. The person who made it cared about what they were doing. The artist hoped this creation would find a home with someone who would know, feel and truly appreciate the unique nature of their jewelry.

Handcrafted jewelry can be made of almost any material. Designs can vary with every piece. It is truly an art form. Most jewelry artisans design unique rings, pendants, earrings or other jewelry items. Many will make a series of related designs that compliment each other. The creative process is different for everyone. The limited manufacture of handmade jewelry is what drives the artist to constantly create new designs.

Art has many mediums. Contemporary art jewelry is made with an endless array of beads from all over the world. It can be made from rubber, many types of metal, plastic, glass and even paper. Art jewelry is available to fit every individual and every budget.

People are starting to notice. They ask – “Wow — where did you find that pin?” or “That is SO different — I LOVE it!” More are shopping in small stores, craft fairs and online from small artisans. Handmade jewelry is becoming more popular every day.

Consider handcrafted jewelry the next time you’re shopping for someone special. The lucky recipient will know you cared for them and spent the time to find a truly unique and personal gift.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Robert Edwards

Understanding Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) is known to be one of the most exclusive and effective systems created for self-defence. BJJ is a form of martial arts and is different from other martial arts styles with the emphasis on ground fighting rather than standing.

Once on the ground, the aim is to control your opponent’s body movements, maneuvering yourself in a superior, more dominant position. The idea is to control the fight through a series of techniques such as sparring, grappling and rolling with the goal to gain a greater physical advantage over your opposition so they are left with no alternative but to surrender.

The basic philosophy and ideology behind BJJ is that anyone who faces an attacker with a larger frame should have the necessary skills to defend themselves.

BJJ came into existence in the early 1900’s. It derived from the martial arts family of the Japanese Jiu Jitsu (JJJ). JJJ was known and practiced as a Japanese street style, self-defence type of martial art. The Chief of a Japanese immigration colony Esai Maeda, was assigned to Brazil. Esai Maeda an accomplished master and former JJJ Champion, taught and shared his skill to the locals who adapted the martial art. This is how the creation of traditional and authentic BJJ was formulated.

Given the philosophy behind BJJ, it is easy to understand why it is not only a popular choice for men, but for women and children too. It really is a great martial art that everyone can participate in. After all, no matter how big or strong you are – there will always be someone bigger and stronger than you out there. Once mastered, these skills are with you for life.

Whilst BJJ is commonly referred to as a martial art, it is also in fact a form of sport; this is why many use it to promote physical fitness.

In addition to self-defence it’s a great tool for achieving physical health benefits such as stamina, balance and coordination.

There are also many not so obvious additional factors that BJJ can help with. It is a subtle yet powerful confidence builder, self-esteem enhancer and discipline developer.

You may wish to use BJJ as a method of exercise or if you are looking for a self-defence system this is your answer. Some wish to start the BJJ belt ranking succession others wish to take on the 19year Black Belt journey – whatever the goal there are tremendous accomplishments to be achieved and BJJ can be a great solution to many problems. Everyone’s journey is different and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can support your journey, whatever it may be.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Meena Kaur

The Art of Business Blog Writing

“It is precisely minds of the first order that will never be specialists. For their very nature is to make the whole of existence their problem; and this is a subject upon which they will every one of them in some form provide mankind with a new revelation. For he alone can deserve the name of genius who takes the All, the Essential, the Universal, for the theme of his achievements; not he who spends his life in explaining some special relation of things one to another.” – Arthur Schopenhauer, “The Art of Literature”

“We are in an age that assumes the narrowing trends of specialization to be logical, natural, and desirable. Consequently, society expects all earnestly responsible communication to be crisply brief. Advancing science has now discovered that all the known cases of biological extinction have been caused by overspecialization, whose concentration of only selected genes sacrifices general adaptability. Thus the specialist’s brief for pinpointing brevity is dubious. In the meantime, humanity has been deprived of comprehensive understanding. Specialization has bred feelings of isolation, futility, and confusion in individuals. It has also resulted in the individual’s leaving responsibility for thinking and social action to others. Specialization breeds biases that ultimately aggregate as international and ideological discord, which, in turn, leads to war.” – Buckminster Fuller, “Synergetics”

What do you do?

We live in an age where people are more likely to ask “What do you do?” rather than the more proper “How do you do?”. People are expected to specialize. Granted, I am speaking generally. I am a generalist.

But what if people were to heed the advice and warnings of a Schopenhauer or a Fuller? Is it possible they would become more fully human? More well-rounded as we say? More of a lady or gentleman, as was once the code?

Bloggers, from what I have seen in my years of blogging, tend to be more generalist than specialist, except for a few who are both…which is to say they have wide knowledge and interests, but also have one or two things that they know a great deal about.

Business bloggers, ideally, fall into this last category. They know a great deal about their company, service, products and so on, but also have a wide-band tuning which allows them to connect with people of all stripes, types and interests. After all, one should not expect that a customer or client know all the fine points of what they are seeking to buy, yet the seller should know those fine points, but also a good deal about the customer as well. This is where a wide-band understanding comes in handy.

The business blogger is a specialist AND a generalist. And if she’s not, you might want to remedy the situation, one way or another. The kindest way is to educate them.

If they don’t know the products or services…teach them about them. If they don’t know how to write, how to deal with people, the give-and-take of conversation…you have a more difficult problem, but not an insurmountable one. Just one that may take more time. So when hiring your business bloggers, look first for those who have decent social and verbal skills. You can teach them the bidness in shorter time.

To Everything, there is a Seasoned Blogger

But…should you hire a seasoned blogger, or a new blogger? Would it not be better to create your own Frankenstein and have them simply say what you want them to say?

My vote is for seasoned bloggers, for a variety of reasons. The first being perhaps best exemplified in this quote also from “The Art of Literature”:

“There are, first of all, two kinds of authors: those who write for the subject’s sake, and those who write for writing’s sake. While the one have had thoughts or experiences which seem to them worth communicating, the others want money; and so they write, for money. Their thinking is part of the business of writing. They may be recognized by the way in which they spin out their thoughts to the greatest possible length; then, too, by the very nature of their thoughts, which are only half-true, perverse, forced, vacillating; again, by the aversion they generally show to saying anything straight out, so that they may seem other than they are. Hence their writing is deficient in clearness and definiteness, and it is not long before they betray that their only object in writing at all is to cover paper. This sometimes happens with the best authors; now and then, for example, with Lessing in his Dramaturgie, and even in many of Jean Paul’s romances. As soon as the reader perceives this, let him throw the book away; for time is precious. The truth is that when an author begins to write for the sake of covering paper, he is cheating the reader; because he writes under the pretext that he has something to say.

Writing for money and reservation of copyright are, at bottom, the ruin of literature. No one writes anything that is worth writing, unless he writes entirely for the sake of his subject. What an inestimable boon it would be, if in every branch of literature there were only a few books, but those excellent! This can never happen, as long as money is to be made by writing. It seems as though the money lay under a curse; for every author degenerates as soon as he begins to put pen to paper in any way for the sake of gain. The best works of the greatest men all come from the time when they had to write for nothing or for very little. – “The Art of Literature”

Seasoned bloggers have written, oftentimes, for years for little or no money at all. People who say they will blog if you pay them may write what they are told, but in that case, why not write it yourself?

The Blog and the Walking Stick

“The pen is to thought what the stick is to walking; but you walk most easily when you have no stick, and you think with the greatest perfection when you have no pen in your hand. It is only when a man begins to be old that he likes to use a stick and is glad to take up his pen.” – “The Art of Literature”

Another advantage to hiring seasoned bloggers is that you can see where they’ve been, see what they’ve blogged, learned whether or not they can sustain the writing over time. A new blogger may actually run out of things to say. Seasoned bloggers are seasoned because they are still writing. The others you call ex-bloggers.

New bloggers may enjoy blogging for a time, but then they are seized with youthful wanderlust, and the next thing you know they are out chasing phantoms. A good seasoned blogger, on the other hand, is interwoven into the fabric of the blogosphere, and is content to make his or her mark there. And because they are part of the blogosphere, they are not an island, but rather a constellation, or, in some cases, a galaxy. You have not hired one yea-sayer, you have hired potentially dozens or hundreds, even thousands of yea-sayers. I daresay that, in some cases, you may have won even millions of yea-sayers. These, of course, are few and far between, but the future is likely to look a lot different than the past.

And should you get the occasional chorus of nays, count your lucky stars that you have a free feedback mechanism. Your adjustments might prove far better press than the grunts that led to the change. And all companies change. Only some never learn the reasons why they should have, and suffer the consequences of their ignorance.

The question is not if. It is when. So when you hire someone (or a team of someones) in order to connect your company to the blogosphere, you may want to keep some of these points in mind. Your blog need not be literature, but there is nothing wrong with having a beautifully written, edifying body of work associated with your company. In time it may be your greatest legacy. For surely a future Twain or Faulkner or Ogilvy will be borne in these enabling laboratories of discovery. And the world needs more employment, not less. Choose, act, but act wisely. It’s good to be first. But it’s better to be good.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Dave Beckwith

Care Bears History and Facts

The lovable Care Bears were first created by the American Greetings company in the year 1981. They were intended to be used on greeting cards and become very popular to the public. Artist Elena Kucharik was the very first to create the images of our beloved Care Bears and by 1983 they were made into a series of plushy teddy bears popular amongst kids. Later on they were given their own cartoon series that lasted from 1985 to 1988 and then they got three major motion picture cartoon movies called, The Care Bears Movie, Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation, and The Care Bears Adventure in Wonderland.

Each of the Care Bears comes in a different color and they have colorful graphics on their bellies. The Care Bears are able to make magical power beams shoot out from their bellies to help fix a lot of problems. Each of the Care Bears has a different beam that shoots out from their bellies and holds the all of their love and special care. Each Care Bear has a different specialized graphic and a different special care. For example, Bedtime Bear has a sleepy crescent moon on his belly. He is able to send out a beam of special sleepy time care. And Cheer Bear is a happy fellow who can help others feel happier with his beam of cheerful energy.

Even today the Care Bears are popular among the kids. They just love to cuddle with their own special Care Bear. The Care Bears have all kinds of merchandising and entertainment available. You’ll find them in cartoons, books, music, classic Care Bear toys, and video games and even in comic books. They still feature the Care Bears on greetings cards too, so you can send a Care Bears card to someone special on their birthday.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Gail Leino

Painting on Fabric – How to Enhance Your Painting With Acrylic Fabric Medium and Gel Medium

If you’re just getting started with fabric painting, you may not have heard of these two handy aids that experienced artists rely on to make painting easier and create better-looking painted pieces. They’re called fabric medium and gel medium, and you’ll be glad when you’ve gotten to know them.

What are acrylic mediums?

Fabric medium and gel medium are thick fluids made of the same kind of acrylic polymers that go into acrylic paints, but without the pigments that give paints their colors. They look opaque when wet but are colorless when dry. Each one has a different role to play in enhancing your fabric painting.

What is fabric medium, and how can I use it for painting?

Fabric medium serves a number of useful purposes in fabric painting:

  • Dilutes or thickens acrylic fabric paints without affecting their color.
  • Slows down drying time so you can blend colors without having to worry that they’ll dry before you finish.
  • Keeps fabric from stiffening as the paint or ink dries.
  • When colors are thinned with water, adding fabric medium minimizes color bleeding.
  • When you paint rough or heavy fabrics such as canvas, fabric medium helps the paint penetrate the surface so you get good coverage without having to scrub the surface first.

How much fabric medium should I use?

For blending colors or extending wet time, mix the medium 1:1 with acrylic paint. Add more paint to get a more opaque look, and use more medium to achieve a more translucent effect. You can apply medium directly to fabric to blend colors.

To minimize color bleeding when you use water-thinned paints, mix fabric medium 5:1 with fabric paint.

What is gel medium, and how does it help with fabric painting?

Gel medium does some of the same things fabric medium does: like fabric medium, it extends the drying time of acrylic paints or inks, giving you a longer time to work on a painting and perfect your color blends. Gel medium also serves several other useful purposes in fabric painting and textile arts. Gel medium comes in several different thicknesses and gloss or matte finishes. Use gel medium to:

  • Glue paper or objects to fabric for collages.
  • Create a permanent protective coating for collages or paintings that is UV-resistant, water-resistant, and non-yellowing.
  • Seal porous surfaces before painting them.
  • Make any fabric into a do-it-yourself fusible. Just coat the back of the fabric with a thin, even coat of gel medium, let the it dry, cut the fabric to the desired shape, then use a press cloth to iron the gel-coated fabric to the background fabric.
  • Use as a substitute for gesso for painting with acrylic paints on canvas. Thicker gel mediums will show your brush strokes and help create a 3-D impasto (dimensional) effect in your painting.
  • Transfer images from paper or transparencies onto fabric.

Where can I buy fabric medium and gel medium?

Acrylic mediums mediums are available at art supply or crafts stores anywhere.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Christine Mann

His Most Famous Painting (On White II) – Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky

“On White II” is a phenomenal creation by Russian painter Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky. Created in the year 1923, this painting is a classic example of ‘Abstract Geometrical Art,’ based on different geometric forms and shapes, especially portrayed in a non-illusionistic manner. Kandinsky’s “On White II” is a work of detailed analysis and critical precision. Each geometric feature, right from a triangle to a circle to even the points, the lines, and even the surface used for painting, all involve a meticulous competence. In Wassily’s words, these are called as ‘the basic plan.’ So powerful ‘Abstract Geometrical Art’ was that it was later included in the curriculum of an architecture & art school, ‘The Bauhaus.’

The span of the details of Kandinsky’s, “On White II” spans to include each unit of it. Each point of this artwork is significant in its own way. This 105cm x 98cm creation depicts a magnificent usage of complex shapes, climaxed with an interesting harmony of colors. A milestone of the twentieth century ‘Modern Art,’ “On White II” definitely manages to catch a viewer’s attention for good. It will compel you for its critical analysis, leaving you amazed. The original and the excellent color scheme of the painting reflect Wassily’s love for freedom and imagination, while portraying a broad spectrum of emotions.

The prolific white was used to endless dimensions, thereby representing the possibilities and the opportunities of life, while expressing peace and silence as well. On the other hand, Black portrays the non-existent, the nothingness, and the terminal death. “On White II” employs an intelligent and an expressive combination of these two key colors, black and white. The next attention catching hues are blue and yellow. The overall effect of the painting can be connected to Wassily Wassilyevich’s love for music. The riot of colors is quite similar to the riot of notes a good piece of music creates. In Kandinsky’s words, “music is the ultimate teacher.” He always related the art of painting with composing music and therefore, often referred to his paintings as “Composition.” In his words, “Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammer, the soul is the piano with the strings.”

To keep his art alive, a lot of oil painting reproduction of “On White II” were made and were transacted by several art lovers globally. Today, even so many years later of Kandinsky’s death (1944), he is still remembered him as the creator of first ‘Modern Art’ painting, “On White II.” Very few artists can express death deeply enough through colors. In his words, “Black is like the silence of the body after death, the close of life.” – Wassily Kandinsky, 1911.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Annette Labedzki

Hard Work Is Its Own Reward

In August this year, newspapers were full of the story of the discovery of a great Italian painter and sculpture, Pordenone Montanari, 73, who had shut himself away from the world for 18 years to exclusively devote himself to his work and relying for his bare necessities on his wife. He was discovered when his wife was putting up a “For Sale” sign to the gate post and a local businessman of Indian origin was passing by. The businessman bought the house within hours and, in partnership with another Indian businessman, bought the rights to the artist’s work.

His work prompt comparison to Cézanne, Braque, Bacon, and Picasso. Dr. Rossana Pitteli, art expert at the Italian Cultural Institute said, “Montanari is a truly exciting new Italian discovery.”

Edward Lucie-Smith, a leading British art historian to whom the work was shown by the buyers, said that Montanari was unique. She said, “Some contemporary artists pursue fame; others find in an obstacle in the path of their highest ambitions. Montanari belongs to the second category.”

I would like to make two points here.

In Gita, Lord Krishna tells Arjun, “You have right to action only; not to its results. Don’t be attached to the results to your actions; and don’t be without action too.”

It means to do one’s duty without bothering much for its results and rewards.

Mind you, this was taught by Krishna with a view to persuade Arjun to fight the great was of Mahabharat.

In the world great people, artist, writers, and scientists do work without directly being much bothered about the results and rewards.

In India, nobody knows who wrote their great Vedas and Upanishads. In fact, they seem to be the combined effort of many people over a long period of time.

The second point is that success comes after long and lonely hard work and many times after many failures. Some say that for success in any field seven years of hard work is necessary. Get Rich Overnight, Get Famous Overnight, or Get Successful Overnight schemes don’t work in real world. Only hard work over many years bears fruit.

In this connection, please, also ponder over the following:life history of one of the greatest ‘failures’ of the world:

1. Age: 21 years: Failure in business.

2. Age: 22 years: Failure in elections.

3. Age: 24 years: Failure in business.

4. Age: 26 years: Death of wife.

5. Age: 27 years: Nervous breakdown.

6. Age: 34 years: Defeat in Congress elections.

7. Age: 45 years: Defeat in Senate elections.

8. Age: 47 years: Defeat in attempt to become Vice-President.

Who was this man?

Abraham Lincoln who became President of America at the age of 52


Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Pradeep Gusain

Poker Art Work

There are many talented artists that offer a wide variety of poker art work. From originals to limited edition prints, there are poker paintings that depict scenes from old poker movies to abstract works of art that feature modern day poker celebrities.

Darci Faulkner ‘s art is widely collected and has been honored with many national awards. Her poker art work is a testament to her talent and commitment to embracing new and challenging subjects. Where many artists embrace one style and adhere to it, Darci is always reaching for something new, challenging herself to learn. Darci’s poker art work that includes a series of celebrity poker paintings combine digital technology and her experience in traditional painting. Reflecting an influence of the genre developed by Andy Warhol and Peter Max, her style, embraces a whole new approach of combining the image of several celebrities to capture a specific moment in time. “I was looking for a way to do something with my art experience and with my knowledge of computer technology and I found it.” Not unlike her poker art work, characteristic of Darci’s divergent styles, her sports paintings have been described as a marriage of the styles of Norman Rockwell and Leroy Neiman.

She is always exploring new techniques and avenues to create new images and works that combine her endless curiosity, knowledge of technology and love of color…lots and lots of color!

Kathy Womack, the artist behind the celebrated Women and Wine series is now adding poker art work to her resume. Her proven success with the Women and Wine series made her the perfect candidate to capture the sport and excitement offered in the medium of poker art work with pokers recent surge in popularity. Kathy got her start as a newspaper fashion illustrator in the early nineties. When the transition to computer generated imaging began, the need for illustrators lessened. Searching for a more creative outlet, Kathy left the paper, picked up her brushes, and began making a name for herself. Only five years later, at age 32, she opened the Kathy Womack Gallery in downtown Austin, Texas. Now with the imminent opening of a Houston location, and her sights on Las Vegas in the near future, she is fast on her way to becoming one of the most successful artists of her time.

LeRoy Neiman is probably the most popular sports artist in the world, followed only by younger artists Stephan Holland and Richard T. Slone. Neiman produces about six different serigraph subjects a year, generally priced from $3,000 to $6,000 each. Gross annual sales of new serigraphs alone top $10 million. In addition to being an internationally renowned sports artist, Neiman has created poker art work inspired from his experience traveling the world visiting the worlds grandest casinos.

Neiman’s poker art work and gaming paintings include;Baccarat, Baden-Baden, Black Break, Casino, Chemin de Fer, Desert Inn Baccarat, Gaming Table International Poker, International Roulette, Pool Room, Roulette, Roulette II, Salle Privee – Monte Carlo, Stud Poker, The Game, The Game of Life, The Green Table, Vegas Blackjack and Vegas Craps.

Neiman produced much of his early work for Playboy Magazine, for which he still illustrates monthly.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Dennis B

Artist Action Plan: How To Create Yours Now

Beside creating art, the most important step in developing your art career is to take action! You can enter or relaunch your career either haphazardly or with a plan. The one you pick will likely determine how long you stick with it and if there is a happy ending to your story. If you enter (or re-enter) the market with a plan, it means that you’re tuned up. Your tools are in order, your strategies are focused and your attitude is adjusted.

As an artist, your mind is usually flooded with ideas – but great ideas will never reach their potential if they are not enacted. Often there are too many ideas swirling around in your head – that’s where your action plan comes in. Once created, you can identify priorities from your plan and focus on your creative path. Your priorities will provide you with a direction of where and how you need to spend your time. The other areas of your art career that don’t involve creating can seem like a tedious chore. Activities that involve marketing your art, writing your bio, uploading images, applying to shows – are all part of expanding your business. If you consider them an extension of your creating, you will find them more valuable as these activities begin to offer you more freedom to create.

Okay, so maybe this isn’t news to you. You’ve thought about creating a plan, people who support you have suggested it – maybe you’ve even written a sticky note and stuck on your To-Do list – yea? Hey good for you! Unless you’ve actually done it, my guess is that note-to-self has transferred along your calendar with each passing day and may in fact be losing its stick. Don’t look for blame or shame here, there is none, simply a chance to do it now, like there is no tomorrow.

So whether you need to shake things up and relaunch your career or you’re launching for the first time, get a note pad (a big one) and pen and write some notes to yourself while you read this article – quick before any panic sets in!

First, let’s address a couple of areas before we begin. Write your own list on your own paper. It’s okay to print this list here for reference, but to make it real and yours, write it in your own words. This article is focused for painters and illustrators, but is a good place to start for any creative career. Please adjust it to fit your own creative focus.

Next, these steps listed are quick and basic and are meant to spur you on in the direction that your inner artist already knows to go – so add to the list as ideas come to you, but keep it simple and small. I’ll put some resources at the end of this page to lead you to more detailed steps than there is room for here. These are steps that you can start right now that will build the foundation for planning and setting goals for your art for the long-term. The idea is not to make a super-detailed plan set-in-stone; instead, you want a bendable plan (like Gumby!) that moves and stretches with your evolving goals and your path of exploration as an artist.

If you want your art-making to blossom and grow, you must treat it like a living thing: nourish, nurture and release it. Once created it’s an outside thing – your seed bloomed!

Like it or not, your art is a product, a thing you’ve made. To release it, you either give it away or sell it. Selling it and making money from it is not a sell-out. Receiving money for your art is part of the circle of giving and receiving… and giving again. The unique way you produce your art, your story about your process and the methods you choose to sell it will set the tone for the integrity of your work. If you want only to create for yourself, then you wouldn’t be reading this far – so trust your instincts and move forward to create and share your unique vision.

Got your pen, paper? Write your title:

(your name) Amazing Artist Action Plan

  1. Evaluate your skills. (e.g., artistic, business, selling)
  2. Research and learn.
  3. Jot down your philosophy, mission or statement. Make note to review later.
  4. Set up a workspace.
  5. Schedule time to create.
  6. Create a budget.
  7. Create 10 or more finished pieces.
  8. Price your art.
  9. Have your art photographed professionally and saved digitally.
  10. Assemble a portfolio.
  11. Get a bank account for your art and a PayPal account.
  12. Select and build home base for your online presence as an artist. (e.g., website, blog, online shop)
  13. Select and create one or two places to connect and share your story and build your community. (e.g., blog, YouTube, Twitter)
  14. Select and create where will you show and/or sell your work. (e.g., Etsy, Flickr, Zazzle)
  15. Select sources where you will go to learn about fellow artists, get inspired, learn what’s new and find resources and opportunities and schedule daily or weekly visit. (e.g., Twitter, art magazines, art business blogs, art forums, Facebook groups)
  16. Make a list of your favorite artists who you consider working successfully and review how and where they market their work.
  17. Seek out seasoned artist mentors whom you can talk with.
  18. Decide what ways you would like to show your work in person and get applications and contact information. (e.g., open studio, gallery, festival, alternative space)
  19. Determine your audience and buyers.
  20. Create a calendar or dedicated planner for your office work.
  21. Make room for balanced down-time to exercise, meditate, eat whole, healthy foods and rest. A healthy lifestyle supports sustained creativity.
  22. Make a note to review this list a week or two from now and revise as needed.
  23. Find your Rhythm.
  24. Do #7 again and again.
  25. Keep going – Repeat.

Now, take a look at your paper and let’s go through them quickly together. Do you have all 25 written down? Cool. Schedule #1-3, 5 and 6 to be done within the next 10 days.

#4 can be a small corner in the kitchen or area of your house where you don’t have to move it. Doesn’t have to be a grand space yet.

#7 is good to plan a minimum of one painting (change to fit your art) per month. I highly recommend more than that depending on your style and the speed at which you want to enter the marketplace.

#8-10 will take a little time to organize. Decide how you want to archive your images. Only digital photography or film? I still have my work shot with large format film (4 x 5) it takes a few days to process, then I scan and create digital archives. If a piece is late for a show or you’re in a hurry, going straight to digital works just fine. It’s a good idea to have a portfolio in more than one form, but I don’t recommend an expensive print product in the beginning. Over time, you can select your best work and create a showcase, for now, one image (with description and price) on a single white sheet of 8.5″ x 11″ paper and organized in a binder is a great start and something you can easily and inexpensively duplicate and edit. Organize your digital files by series and file size and create CD or external hard-drive backups.

#11 can be done in one morning. #12 can be started while you are working on your art. Get as much on your home site as you can right away: landing page, bio or about page, a blog page or space for news and events and a page for your online portfolio. Check what you’ve learned from #16 and 17 and apply it here.

As soon as you have your focus and philosophy, you can start #13. #14, can wait until your home web site is completed. Once you have your first targets, #15-18 will be an ongoing routine of keeping a feel for what’s going on and where your art sits in the mix and that will lead you to #19.

Start the business planner today (#20). It can be ruled notebook, a moleskin or a day planner with a calendar and place for notes. You can take this digital if you are more comfortable with it, but a plain old notebook encourages spontaneous doodles and sketches, so that’s my choice. As you find your rhythm, you can upgrade and personalize this vital piece or your art business.

I can’t stress enough how important #21 is. You may have the idea that if you’re a happy artist you’re not a real artist. The stories we all hear or maybe even a friend or two you know – where artists are tortured, depressed or have fits of dementia in order to create may seem like a prerequisite for creative genius. Sadly, states of depression, dark moods and illnesses are more prevalent today than ever. If a person creates within these states of illness, self-loathing or altered states of consciousness, brief moments of creativity may emerge. A better path for longevity in all areas is to support your whole person, which holds your creative spirit. The key is finding your balance of mind, body and spirit. If you do, you are rewarded with unhindered access to your inner space where true creativity lives. You’ll then be able to bring out your truth and communicate meaning with clarity and passion that will have the power to transform yourself and your community in positive ways – ways you never could reach with anything less.

Do #22 often. #24 and 25 are for life, they will change and grow over time, but you’ll never cross them off your list.

Before I leave you here, are your eyes glazed over or is panic setting in? Okay, try this for a quick refocus. After a deep breath (always the first step), take a break and get grounded. Get outside if possible and stick your bare feet in the grass or on concrete or stone for 15 minutes or so. Add your own special touch while you do this (e.g., more deep breathing, standing stretches, close your eyes and do peaceful visualizations let all that tension flow into the ground) Sounds silly, but it works. When you come back inside, read over your list with your renewed calm and simply begin.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Roxanne Vise

The Four Principles of Success For the Mixed Martial Artist

Identifying the keys of what separates a good mixed martial arts (MMA) practitioner from a great one is more than difficult. I’m sure you can identify a plethora of things, as can I, but there four principles that I have found to be evident and four principles that come up time and time again, no matter which sport I am coaching. These are the principles I want to share with you right now.

The toughest thing to do in sports and in research is create a system that is repeatable and as infallible as possible. It’s damn near impossible to do, but you have to try and maintain the constant iterative process that must be invoked if you want to become a champion and stay a champion. One of my former judo coaches from California, Nori Bunasawa, used to say, “Rhadi, in Japan, if you win something one time we count that as luck. If you win it two or three times then we say you’re the better competitor.” That didn’t make sense to me at the time, but it does today. Everyone knows that it is tougher to stay at the top than it is to get to the top. Thus the question is, “How do you stay at the top of your game?”

Well, here are four principles to help you get to the top and, if you are already there, stay at the top.

Principle #1:

Maximize before moving on.

One thing competitors have a tendency to do is to start looking for other options and situations before maximizing their current situation. For example, I was coaching an individual who didn’t have a great amount of economic resources, and this person would say, “I need to train somewhere else that has the equipment I need to get better.” As a former competitor, a current coach, and an entrepreneur I could understand where she was coming from. We all want the latest and greatest tools to help us succeed. But I had to confront her on a couple of points. I told her the following:

“Wait a minute. I understand the want to move, but you haven’t maximized everything that is here. This gym has Brazilian jujitsu 6 days a week, which you are already paying for, but you only go 3 times a week. First go to all 6 classes. Then strap on your shoes in the morning and go running. Running or even walking for 40 minutes every morning is more than what you are doing now and will provide an added benefit. There are heavy bags in your gym that you don’t even use. Your footwork could always get better, yet you only jump rope to warm up. Why not jump rope before or after class for 15 to 20 minutes? All I’m saying is that I understand you want to go somewhere else, but the fact of the matter is this: You don’t have the money to go and if you go you have not maximized what you can out of this place before moving on.”

Let’s look at this concept in terms of movement. The good competitors maximize their movements before turning to new ones. I’m a person who believes in mastering a move before going on to the next move (especially at the beginner phase). I don’t give a damn how long it takes to learn a move. You learn it until you own it, and once you own it, it is yours to keep! Maximize the move before moving on to the next one. Squeeze all of the juice out of the fruit before throwing it away. Or, as my parents used to say: “Don’t throw that bone away, there’s still some meat on it!” Get all the meat off the bone before you toss it in the trash. There’s some more nourishment there for you, your game, and your career.

Principle #2

Diversify your training partners (portfolio).

Of course you can see that this principle is a huge business principle. If you are an MMA competitor, you must diversify your training partners-not your training camp! The training camp has to be full of competitors who have been hand picked to mimic a certain style or to fulfill your need to combat a certain style of the opponent you are facing. What I’m speaking about is diversifying your training partners. On the Olympic and elite judo and wrestling level, what we usually do is go to different countries in order to train and compete. The competition is usually why we travel, but the most important part of the trip is the training. It is where we can experience different styles and actually see our game and level improve exponentially over a short time. To mimic this travel scenario locally, I recommend that you visit different schools and clubs in your area. If you are at a school that looks unfavorably at such exchanges between schools, MOVE! This exclusivity has no place in martial arts and is selfish and adverse to your growth and the growth of your school. If you go somewhere and train and then return, not only will you get better but also everyone at your school may get better as well.

Principle #3:

Remember your mishaps.

Great competitors remember their mistakes and use them as a platform to grow. Great competitors also use them as a reminder and as foundational stories for others so they don’t repeat the same mistakes. As a competitor you have to be willing to identify your mistakes. The one thing that I could never understand and still cannot to this day is why people who are still competing refuse to watch film of their matches. I mean, they love watching when they win, but they don’t want to watch the matches they lost. YOU HAVE TO! If you don’t watch the losing matches you will not be able to identify your mishaps so that you can remember them and make sure you don’t repeat them or the behavior that caused them. Remember, as the great Dr. Phil says all the time, “You cannot fix that which you don’t acknowledge.” As a competitor, you cannot make the same mistake twice. It is costly. Very costly.

Principle #4:

Change, but do so conservatively.

I’m all about changing. I believe in change and I believe in adding tools to your current toolbox. However, these additions should be made conservatively and in harmony with your core competencies. For example, I think that a flying arm bar is a great move, and I used it very successfully when I was a competitor. But just because I think it’s a good move doesn’t mean that I would recommend it to Brock Lesnar or Andrei Arlovski to perform or even spend their time practicing. It’s great to have an open mind, but stay open in a conservative fashion. In my game, the only thing I get really radical about is the basics! I get radical about going back to the gym and solidifying the jab, going to the gym and putting the gi back on for 6 weeks, going back to the gym and returning to the base style that is my strength. I get radical about that. When it comes to making huge changes in the MMA game, it’s not better to lead than to follow. It’s better to look at the most successful practices, look at the current data available, and make an intelligent and conservative decision about what changes should be made in your game. For example, I worked with Brandon Vera and his coach Lloyd Irvin to do all of the things that Brandon should have been doing-not to add anything new. Now Brandon has a renewed outlook on his career that could possibly yield him the financial return that he is looking for. It’s a conservative investment that may pay radical dividends.


Every competitor, coach, and fighter believes that this day is different from the days of yesteryear. The honest to goodness truth is that the game hasn’t really changed-just the players have changed. The same principles that were utilized in warfare in the ancient times are used in business today, and these same principles and practices are the foundation for preparing on a physical and mental level. What we must do is use the information that is available in order to grow as competitors, practitioners, fans, and enthusiasts.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Dr. Rhadi Ferguson PhD

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