Last day to order paintings and an invitation!

This Sunday at the Millennium Center in Winston-Salem, come see some artwork and listen to live jazz. I’ll be there along with a group of Artfolios artists, and all artwork there will be available for purchase. The center is at 101 W 5th St, Winston-Salem, NC 27101, and the event is from 2:00 – 5:00 PM. You can find all the details here.

The Spring Studio Refresh is still open if you haven’t had a chance to check out some of these artworks. These are pieces I’ve made to try out ideas, to hone my craft, to demonstrate technique to students and for fun. You’ll find that work here.

And lastly, I’m headed to France soon to visit family and friends and for some hiking in the Alps. I’m closing my shop while I’m away, so if you have your eye on something you’d like to get your hands on soon, now’s the time!

Last day to order a painting for delivery or pick up this month is Monday June 6th.

High up in its windy nest, oil and acrylic on canvas, 40 x 40 inches
Field and forest with turquoise, acrylic on panel, 5 x 7 inches

 

Running the Pilot Mountain Marathon

On Saturday, I ran a trail marathon on Pilot Mountain in North Carolina, a state park 30 minutes from Winston-Salem. These are typical East Coast technical trails with plenty of rocks and roots to navigate and 4,500 feet of climbing. This mountain has inspired much of my work, both paintings and installation, notably Paper Mountain. I’ve also spent countless hours hiking and running and camping here, so it felt pretty special to have the chance to run this event. Here’s my race report for anyone who cares about the nitty gritty details.

The race approaches the mountain on the Pilot Creek Trail, heads up the mountain on Grindstone, then Ledge Spring trail, goes around the Jomeoke trail at the top, back down Grindstone, around the Mountain trail, then back up Grindstone, Ledge Springs, Jomeoke, down Grindstone, around the Mountain trail again, and back out on Pilot Creek trail. Here’s a map of these trails if you’d like to take a look for yourself.

Pilot Mountain 11, acrylic and oil on panel, 12 x 12 inches. One of the paintings I’ve made inspired by my time on this mountain, specifically hiking along the Mountain trail

It was a little above freezing at the race start and got up into the mid forties by the end. I carried a hydration pack with 1.5 liters of water, a small first aid kit, a little baggie of potato chips and gummy bears, and planned to grab most of my food and additional drink  at the aid stations along the way.

The morning of, I had my typical “race breakfast” of oatmeal, scrambled eggs and coffee, and I did my physical therapy exercises to help make sure I didn’t hurt myself. I drove the 35 minutes to race start and after picking up my bib, I did my usual dynamic warmup, ate a banana and drank a bottle of water.

A small group of us gathered at the start and it started to rain freezing rain. There were many more people racing the 20km course, and they stood nearby.  The mood seemed fairly calm and relaxed. The race officially started and those of us doing the marathon ran into the woods. I could hear the freezing rain, but the tree canopy kept us dry. The ground was muddy – as expected since it rained most of the previous week.

I passed some people and was passed by others as we all established our rhythm, and within 15 minutes or so I was basically on my own in the woods. The first section, Pilot Creek trail, is a 3.3 mile section that brings you to the base of the mountain.

I stopped at the first aid station about 30min in, grabbed a cup of water and some Oreos and was on my way to start the first of 2 laps up and around the mountain. I ate an Oreo on the way up Ledge Springs trail, one of the big climbs, and was shocked by how sweet it tasted. I had a hard time getting 2 cookies down, but knew I needed the calories. My belly felt a little off after that, so at the 2nd aid station at the top of the mountain, I drank some Coke which thankfully helped. I grabbed 1/2 a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and ran down the mountain.

Of Stones and Earth and Air, oil on canvas, 60 x 72 inches. One of the paintings I made inspired by hiking at the top of the Grindstone trail

About halfway down the Grindstone trail, I took a wrong turn (100% my fault). Luckily I realized I was on the wrong trail fairly quickly, turned around and headed back to rejoin the right trail down the mountain. I lost a few minutes there and laughed it off to keep my heart rate from spiking due to the adrenaline.

One my way around the base of the mountain,  as I stuffed my gloves into my pack, I twisted my ankle hard, but quickly recovered. To me this stretch is mentally the toughest of the race because it’s long and feels never-ending, but I felt pretty good. I ate my 1/2 PBJ sandwich and passed the water aid station, a gallon of water along the side of the trail, and opted not to stop there.

Pilot Mountain 7, acrylic on panel, 20 x 20 inches. One of the paintings I made inspired by hiking along the Mountain trail

I passed the fourth aid station at the start of my second loop up the mountain, had some coke again since it worked well to keep my stomach settled and grabbed a half banana to eat up on the steep Ledge Spring climb. Just after starting that stretch of trail which is a series of steep rock “steps” for almost a mile, my left inner thigh threatened to cramp, so I tried climbing leading with my right leg each time. After a few steps, I realized I’d quickly fry that leg too, so I went back to alternating legs up each step, but focused on engaging other muscles. It worked and I was able to very gingerly make it up the climb without fully cramping.

Another coke from the aid station at the top and I took a gel with me for the loop around the base of the mountain. On the loop, my right inner thigh threatened to cramp, so I resorted to taking very small steps as I climbed and hopped around the rock gardens along the trail. I ate some of the chips I had brought with me, hoping the salt would help. It didn’t help fast enough, so I quickly downed the gel and that did the trick. My pace felt pretty good on the flats and descents and I eventually made it to the last aid station just before heading back on the Pilot Creek Trail. I walked to drink a cup of water and had another gel to make sure I didn’t “hit the wall” on the last few miles. Other than stiff legs, I felt ok, so I decided to pick up the pace on this last home stretch. I caught and passed a group of 3 men about a mile from the finish and happily kept them at bay. They were chatting as they ran, so I think I was working a lot harder than they were, but I’ll take it!

As soon as I popped out of the woods I saw and heard my husband and our son cheering for me, and felt a surge of emotion as I ran up the grass to the finish. I did it! I was greeted with a finisher’s medal (and I’ve never been so proud to receive one of those) and a bowl of chili and cornbread which I ate as I walked around in a daze.

The race promoters put on a great event, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a challenging trail marathon. I’d also like to take a second to thank my husband for supporting all my training and for being generally awesome. Thanks Tim!

Pilot Mountain 10, acrylic and oil on panel, 12 x 12 inches. One of the Pilot Mountain paintings I made over the years, this one specifically hiking along the Mountain trail

Feature in Art Beat of Forsyth Woman!

This month Forsyth Woman is featuring my work in their magazine! Writer Taryn Jerez and I discuss many aspects of being an artist including influences, my evolution as an artist and how I carve out studio time. You can read the piece here.

Thank you Taryn and Forsyth Woman for the feature in the February issue!

Paper mountain and the space between the clouds installation
Installation shot of Paper Mountain and the Space Between the Clouds at Sechrest Gallery of Art at High Point University

40 hours installing an art exhibit

Last week, with the help of a whole team, I installed my latest exhibition at the Sechrest Gallery of Art at High Point University. The show includes a 19-foot tall painting installation as well as a 19-foot tall mountain of paper cranes with an approximately 12-foot square foot print. There is also a monumental video projection and a collection of paintings. Below is the video showing all 40 hours of the installation process. Read on for a breakdown of what happened during that time.

 

Day 1:

Measure/Cut/Attach the wire mesh to steel beams about 25-feet up

Tie fishing line to the mesh

Prep wall with masking tape to install 63 sky paintings in a grid

Day 2:

Tie fishing line to mesh

Prep wall with masking tape for 63 paintings grid

Lay out all sky paintings on the ground to arrange them for installation

Rebox paintings in order they’ll be installed

Start installing sky painting grid

Start attaching paper cranes to fishing line

Day 3:

Finish tying last remaining fishing line

Attach paper cranes

Interns start on this day: explain the work and each person’s job

Finish installing sky painting grid

Day 4:

Attach paper cranes

Hang all other paintings in the exhibit

Begin lighting mountain

Day 5:

Attach paper cranes and refine shape of mountain

Finish lighting mountain

Install largest painting in exhibit

Trim fishing line

Light all other paintings

I shot 1 photo per minute over the course of about 40 hours over 5 days, using a GoPro Hero 3+.

This exhibition is at the Sechrest Gallery of Art at High Point University, NC
October 25, 2021 – December 17, 2021
Opening Reception: October 28, 5:00-7:00 PM
Gallery Hours: Monday through Friday, 10am – 5pm

To see more details about each artwork or for purchasing, visit the gallery shop page.

THANK YOU to my partner Tim Bowman, the team of interns, Emily Gerhold and High Point University for supporting this exhibition.

Big skies, beginnings of a project

Big skies… this is the working title for a new project I’m working on. I announced last week that Sechrest Gallery at High Point University invited me to show Paper Mountain, Sky Project and a group of paintings for a solo exhibit in the fall, and installation for the show starts exactly 90 days from today. Because I want to make a lot A LOT of paintings between now and then, I decided what this exhibit needs is a wall-full of paintings – sky paintings to be specific.

So I am making 50 sky paintings that will literally cover one of the gallery walls.

The paintings will be hung in a grid 19ft tall and 17ft wide.

I’ve decided to use acrylic on Yupo, a polypropylene paper. The acrylic dries relatively fast compared to oil paint, so I can easily stack finished paintings as I work. As for the Yupo paper, I like how slick it is to paint on, and I know that it will sit against the wall rather than buckle.

Why am I using paper rather than wood or canvas to make these paintings? I want the images to sit flat on the wall rather than jut out into space like a panel does. I don’t want the objectness of a panel.

I’ll share with you progress on this project as I go, so stay tuned for images as I figure things out.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with an image of a sky I particularly like. This is Field and forest with red, one of the paintings from my Tiny Landscapes collection. I enjoy being able to see some of the underpainting of the sky… bits of pink and gold glimpsing through layers of sky and cloud. This little painting is acrylic on wood panel and measures 6×6 inches.

Long Branch Trail mural in Winston Salem, NC

Last week I completed a mural along the Long Branch trail in Winston-Salem, NC. It was a real pleasure to paint outdoors with passing runners, walkers and cyclists giving me words of encouragement and approval.

The mural is 50-feet long and varies in height from 6’2″ to 7’6″. The project was commissioned by Innovation Quarter.

Know someone looking for a mural artist to paint something BIG? Send them here.

Long Branch Trail Mural in Winston-Salem, NC
detail of hand lettering on mural 
Jessica Singerman painting a mural along the Long Branch trail in Winston-Salem, NC.

Jessica Awarded 2018 Duke Energy Regional Artist Grant

2018 Duke Energy Regional Artist Grant Recipients
2018 Duke Energy Regional Artist Grant Recipients – Photo credit: Owens Daniels

I’m excited to announce that I was awarded a 2018 Duke Energy Regional Artist Grant! Thank you Arts Council of Winston Salem and Forsyth County and Duke Energy for believing in my work, and congratulations to the other recipients. Read below for the press release from Yes! Weekly.

The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County has made 14 awards to local artists through its Duke Energy Regional Artist Grant program. A total of $24,500 will allow the artists to further their artistic professional development through a specific project.

Award recipients include Kate Carey (Literature/Davidson Co.), Mike Chamis (Film/Forsyth Co.), Amy da Luz (Theatre/Forsyth Co.), Owens Daniels (Visual Art, Forsyth Co.), Zach Deas (Craft/Davie Co.), Marianne DiNapoli-Mylet (Visual Art, Forsyth Co.), Nathan Ross Freeman (Film/Forsyth Co.), Kendra Harding (Music/Forsyth Co.), Cashavelly Morrison (Music/Forsyth Co.), Zach McCraw (Visual Art/Stokes Co.), David Petty (Storytelling/Forsyth Co.), Leo Rucker (Visual Art/Forsyth Co.), Jessica Singerman (Visual Art/Forsyth Co.), and Will Willner (Visual Art/Forsyth Co.).

14 local artists receive a total of $24,500 in career-development awards

Regional artist grants are available to artists working in the disciplines of music, film, literature, dance, visual art and craft and residing in Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Stokes, Surry, and Yadkin counties. The program is sponsored by Duke Energy and supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

“We are especially pleased with the variety of artistic projects that these artists will be working on this year,” said Dara Silver, Grant Program Manager for The Arts Council. “These awards are a way The Arts Council invests in our local creative entrepreneurs by helping them move forward a project so that they can leverage additional opportunities and commissions.”

Cashavelly Morrison is an American-Alt Country singer and songwriter whose debut album The Kingdom Belongs to a Child received the Independent Music Award for Best Alt Country Album. This grant will support the completion efforts of their second album, Hunger. “We’ve been writing and recording our second studio album for two years, and now because of this grant, we can complete the mixing, mastering, and printing to get it out into the world at a time when the songs will be particularly timely and culturally relevant. It’s support like this that makes the artistic dreams of working parents possible,” said Cashavelly Morrison.

Nathan Freeman is an award winning screenwriter, director, and filmmaker. This grant will support the production of his next feature film, Gem, about an Archangel named Gem who is involved in a prophetic story of religions at war. Nathan said, “This award is most appreciated and will support the film needs of Gem by helping to cover costs for the local hiring of costume and design and production artists.”

Jessica Singerman is an award recognized artist and received her MFA from the University of Delaware. Her works are inspired by the poetry of nature’s changing color, light, and the passing of time. This grant will allow her to obtain a professional photography and video equipment to support the marketing efforts of her works on her website, blog, and social media. “This grant is an investment in the infrastructure of my career as a working artist. It will help me to better document my work and to build my web presence. Having an internet presence is vital for an artist because it allows them share their work worldwide. Viewers are able to gain a deeper understanding of my work and process and it is a way to share that process with other artists who are still learning and exploring their craft.”

Winston-Salem, known as a City of Arts and Innovation, and Forsyth County have a robust arts community that enriches the lives of area residents every day and accounts in large part for the recognition they continue to receive as a great place to live, learn, work and play. The Arts Council raises funds and advocates for the arts, sponsors events in conjunction with other arts organizations, promotes and funds arts education, creates cultural and learning opportunities, develops social capital and aids economic development. Last year, The Arts Council made 98 awards totaling $1,699,500.

Get organized! A quick and easy art inventory

This post is for artists looking for a professional solution to keep an inventory of their artwork. I use Microsoft Excel, but you could also use Google Docs or Numbers, so this technique is free and pretty painless.

To begin, I used this tutorial to make the basic inventory:

If the video doesn’t load properly, here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kl-jgdl0fnQ

As you build your inventory, be sure to use low resolution images, otherwise the excel document becomes too big and performance slows down.

As I used this method, I made a few modifications to better fit my needs and to make using it a bit more efficient. 

In each record, I add the following headings:

  • Exhibitions: List any exhibitions where the work has been shown.
  • Place: If the work is at a gallery or has been sold, write that here, including the name of the collector and city/country.

To speed things up, I replace images rather than deleting and entering another. This way the image goes in the right place and doesn’t need to be reformatted again. To do this, right click on an image  and select “Change Picture.” I use this method on each tab after I copy it and in the master inventory sheet.

Also on the inventory sheet, I add hyperlinks to each thumbnail. This way, when you click on each image, you instantly go to that image’s tab. To do this, right click on an image, click “Hyperlink,” select “This Document,” then scroll down to the tab number and select it. Click “OK.” When adding new images in the inventory, you can copy and paste images, replace each image, then right click and select “Edit Hyperlink” to change the links to each new tab number.

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