Tag Archives: Steve Williams

Artist Takeover, Day 4: Steve Williams

2 Aug

Steve Williams and I go way back, although he doesn’t remember.  When I was a college senior, my painting professor encouraged me to meet with two artists/gallery owners, Jim Draper and Steve Williams.  They liked my work and were very encouraging, wanting to see more and see it framed.. but I chickened out and didn’t follow through.  Who knows where my life may have led had I followed their advice and diligently pursued it?  Oh how stupid we are when we are young! 🙂

A gallery owner and artist, Steve is always a source for interesting work, his own and what he features in his gallery, Florida Mining.  He is also a businessman running not only his gallery but his family’s sign business, Harbinger Sign.  So it’s no surprise his questions related to the business of making art!

Jackson, mixed media, 60×30

Steve Williams | What have you found to be most important to an artist’s success?  What do you see as the activities an artist does that puts them in an arena of “success”, whatever that means?

Artsy Forager | Hmm.. I suppose to answer this question, you would first have to define success, which differs with each artist.  For some artists, financial success, i.e., selling lots of work, taking on commissions, making a living solely by art-making, may be their touchstone.  While for others, critical achievement is utmost in their minds– being lauded and accepted in the highest of art circles.  Or maybe they are looking for their Andy Warholish 15 minutes of fame.

For success in both arenas, first I would say an artist has to just WORK.  Create all the time.  Creating work is the most important activity an artist can do because after all, it’s impossible to achieve financial or critical success without having the work to sell or show.  Second, use the tools at your disposal and use them smartly.  An online presence is more important for an artist now than ever– keep your website updated and make sure it loads and allows browsing easily.  Post regularly on Facebook and Twitter ( Hootsuite is a great tool for social media time management ).  Write a blog if you’re so inclined– but if you don’t have something interesting to say or share, whether about your work, other artist’s work, your interests, etc., don’t feel like you need to write a blog.  Do it well or don’t do it at all.  Third, be open to everything.  Opportunities come your way when you put yourself in their path.    Don’t be afraid to propose a collaboration with a dream brand or approach a dream gallery for representation.  You’ll never know if you don’t try.

TV Exploration of Mars, mixed media, 12×12

SW | Is there an area in America that seems to be enjoying greater success in art sales? Or an area that seems to have less?

AF |  This is a really tough question for me to answer, as I’m so ingrained in the Southeast and Northwest and I’m not truly in the business of selling art ( yet..?  ).  There are exciting shows happening in Los Angeles and San Francisco, but is that translating into sales?  I can’t say for certain.  I see some Southern galleries and artists doing really well, but I can’t say if that is a product of their location or if the galleries are just working really hard to sell art and build up a following of collectors for their artists.  Artistic epicenters like NYC, Santa Fe and Miami are always going to be ahead of the game, sales-wise, I think.  But there are smaller cities like Austin, Asheville and Portland that are gaining in popularity as artistic tourist destinations, which could equal greater sales.

Haiku Metaphor, mixed media, 22×30

SW | Have you seen/done research to see if people are buying art more online now?  If so, what type of work is being purchased?

AF |  I can only speak for what I’m witnessing on my own and hearing about from artists.  Collectors ARE buying more work online these days.  I see online buyers as more apt to purchase limited editions or less expensive originals than to purchase originals with a higher price tag over the internet. There is inherently less to lose by purchasing work online with a lower price tag.  Also, the intricacies and textures inherent in original work are almost impossible to truly see online, so that makes some originals a tougher online sell.  Perhaps as technology continues to advance, we’ll see more truly fine art originals being sold online.  For now, the online market seems to be made up more of prints, limited editions and lower priced originals.  I hope to see that change, as galleries continue to fold, the internet is soaking up the slack– but the technology of viewing originals online still has a long way to go. Hmm.. maybe I need to team up with a venture capitalist and some uber-smart techie and make that happen!

Marco Polo, mixed media

Thank you, my dear Mr. Williams for what may have been my toughest set of questions all week!  You never fail to make me think or smile.

To see more of Steve’s artwork, please visit his website.  Don’t miss tomorrow’s final Takeover when artists reveal their favorite Artsy Forager finds!

Friday Faves: You Spin Me Right Round, Baby, Right Round

11 May

Note: The title of this post is a reference to the original Dead or Alive song, not more recent versions featuring people who are possibly young enough to be my children.  Children of the 80s unite!

I love art of all shapes and sizes.  Large scale, small, square, rectangle, ROUND.  Artists who take on the circular composition get extra kudos.  Check out some examples I’m loving this week!

Andy Says by Jill Ricci, mixed media on wood, 24″ diameter

National Soil Destruction Leading to Self Implosion by Steve Williams, mixed media, 48″ diameter

Emily by Ben Hughes, oil on canvas, 22″ diameter

No. 555 by Nicholas Bodde, oil and acrylic on aluminum, 80cm diameter

 Jill Ricci Steve Williams | Ben Hughes | Nicholas Bodde 

Any other orb-obsessed artists I should know about?  Tell me about ’em in the comments!

Featured image is Andy Says by Jill Ricci.  Be sure to head over to the Artsy Forager Facebook page where Jill Ricci is this month’s featured artist!  All images are via the artists’ websites, linked above.  Special thanks to The Jealous Curator for introducing me to Ben Hughes’ work!

Steve Williams in Sustainotopia

27 Apr

I hope you guys have wandered over to the Artsy Forager Facebook page to check out this month’s Featured Artist, Steve Williams!  It’s been so much fun sharing Steve’s work with you over the month of April.  With the Month of Steve is coming to a close, I wanted to share with you a few new pieces from the irrepressible Mr. Williams.

Cap Tossing Over the Wall of Space

These latest works were created for the Sustainotopia conference, which happened in Miami this week.  Sustainotopia is “an impact conference that encourages people to really consider how social relationships between investing, finances, and environmental sustainability can become more collaborative, creating a global community that benefits economically from doing what is, essentially, the right thing.”

A Slender Acquaintance With the World

National Soil Destruction Leading to Self Implosion

You can read more about Sustainotopia on their website ( and make plans to attend next year! ) and read about Steve’s thoughts on living an impactful life on his blog, Making Cheddar.  And if you’re new here or haven’t already done it, be sure to check out Steve’s website!

April Facebook Featured Artist: Steve Williams

16 Apr

When I launched the Artsy Forager Facebook Featured Artist program this month, I was thrilled when Steve Williams agreed to be my inaugural artist. Like me, Steve is a native of our hometown, Jacksonville, Florida and has long been a fixture on the art scene there.  Steve, along with his then gallery partner, Jim Draper, encouraged a young Artsy Forager  to continue painting just out of college.  Even though I allowed myself to get sidetracked, I never forgot their kindness.

Marco Polo, mixed media

As he splits his time between being president of his family’s successful sign business, Harbinger Sign, the gallery he has created at the business’s headquarters, Florida Mining, his own work as an artist AND being a devoted father of three, Steve is a busy soul.  Which makes it all the more amazing to see the quality of thoughtful work he creates.

Jackson, mixed media

His experience in the sign business is evident in the strong graphic quality and balance evident in his compositions.  His most recent Money series ( images above ) explores currency as symbolic of all that we strive for as a society yet ensnares and imprisons us.

Into the Goodly Land, mixed media on panel, 60x72

While I love this current direction, my personal favorite works of Steve’s are those that incorporate layers of texture and color in which graphic signs and images are enshrouded.  These works, as well as the Money series, invite us in, asking us to look more closely at not only the world around us, but the motives and desires within us.

TV Exploration of Mars II, mixed media, 12x12

Revolutionary Exploration: Shallow Discovery, mixed media, 11x19

I hope you’ll check out more of Steve Williams‘ work on his website.  And do yourself a favor– don’t miss his blog, Making Cheddar, or his Twitter feed.    He’s as hilarious as he is insightful.

Featured image is Grant, mixed media, 60×36.  All images are via the artist’s website.

Friday Faves: Different Kind of Hanging O’ The Greens

16 Mar

Sometime in my late 20s I went through a slight obsession with the Irish part of my heritage & Irish culture in general.  I think it stemmed mainly from too many Maeve Binchy books and multiple PBS viewings of Riverdance.  Add to that the fact that my husband thinks Guinness is the greatest thing since, well, Guinness, and it isn’t any surprise that we love St. Patrick’s Day.  So to get you in the mood for a little Erin Go Bragh, how about some artwork to remind us of the Emerald Isle?

Runaway Trees by Christina Baker, acrylic on canvas, 48x48

Ives Pond I by Susan Morosky, acrylic on canvas, 30x30

Cold Feet by Casey Matthews, mixed media, 24x24

Covenant Commitment by Steve Williams, mixed media on canvas, 84x84

Christina Baker | Susan Morosky | Casey Matthews | Steve Williams 

Make sure you check out these artist’s websites ( linked above ) to see more of their work.  Happy St. Patrick’s weekend!

Featured image is Empty Bathtub, Full Power Meter by Steve Williams, mixed media, 84×84.  All images are via the artist’s websites, linked above.

Friday Faves: It’s Like High School Without the Bad Hair

6 Jan

‘Tis a new year and with that comes all sorts of lists documenting the good, the bad and the ugly from the past 12 months.  While there’s certainly no bad or ugly here at Artsy Forager, I thought it would be a kick to award our featured art some high schoolish superlatives.  Put your mittens on your kittens and away we go!

BEST DRESSED:  Kelly Reemsten

Holding Your Attention by Kelly Reemsten, oil on panel, 36x36 ( via Skidmore Contemporary )

CUTEST COUPLE:  Maggie Taylor

Ever After by Maggie Taylor, pigmented digital print, 15x15

BEST HAIR:  Robin Williams

Tired Prince by Robin Williams

MOST THOUGHTFUL:  Susan Hall

Peace by Susan Hall, oil on panel, 27x27

LIFE OF THE PARTY:  Sarah Ashley Longshore

Last Call by Sarah Ashley Longshore, acrylic on canvas with high gloss resin 48x60 ( via Gallery Orange )

MOST ATHLETIC: Eric Zener

Love by Eric Zener, oil on canvas, 14x11

BIGGEST FLIRT:  Deborah Scott

The Girl Would Believe Anything by Deborah Scott, oil and mixed media on canvas

BEST SMILE:  Ann Marshall

Ba. by Ann Marshall, graphite on paper, 20x14

MOST LIKELY TO TAKE OVER THE WORLD:  Steve Williams

Taxicab Situation with Counterfeit Results, mixed media, 48x48

Were you awarded a superlative in high school?  Let me guess, Most Creative? 🙂  Have a great weekend, Artsies!

Featured image is Books by Holly Farrell, acrylic and oil on masonite.  All images are via the artist’s websites, unless otherwise stated.

Artsy on Escape Into Life: Steve Williams

6 Dec

Today’s Artsy Forager post on Escape Into Life features one of my favorite artists, Steve Williams.  Check out his feature and peruse around the EIL site, lots of fabulous goodies to be had!

Steve Williams on Escape Into Life

Steve Williams’ Website

Stylin’ and Profilin’

15 Sep

Many artists see their wardrobe as an extension of their creative personalities.  So for artsyF A S H I O NWeek, I thought it would be fun to feature a few of my favorite stylish artists side-by-side with their work.  You’ll see that often their style carries over from canvas to clothes.

THE URBAN GENTLEMAN:  STEVE WILLIAMS

Passion Of The World ( cropped ) with Pioneer Chaser with artist Steve Williams

THE HIP RUSTIC:  DOLAN GEIMAN

Artist Dolan Geiman with Made In The Shade Guitar Collection ( Large )

THE ECLECTIC ECCENTRIC:  SHARLA VALESKI

Liberated with artist, Sharla Valeski

There are hints about who we are in what we choose to wear.  What are your clothes saying about you?

To see more of these artists’ work, please visit their websites, listed below.

Steve Williams 

Dolan Geiman

Sharla Valeski

Art For Guys

19 Jul

Today I was stuck on what or who to feature on the blog.  Nothing was jumping out at me.  Desperate,  I asked my husband.  His first ( joke ) repsonse was “Thomas Kinkade”.  Hardee har har.  His next suggestion was “Guy Art”.  I was like art featuring guys?  Art by guys?  No, art guys like.  Oh!  I asked if the blog was becoming too girly.. he said no, but I have my doubts.  There’s been a plethora of pink around here lately.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  But my taste in art isn’t always so feminine.  I like a bit of edge and irony, too.  So in honor of my hubby, whose own appreciation for art is growing every day, here are some examples of art that any guy would be happy to hang in his swingin’ bachelor pad.

Martyr by Alwin Jackson

Alwin Jackson is a painter.  He doesn’t put up a front of pretentious, artsy bullsh**.  Maybe that comes from having been in the corporate advertising world for twenty years.  His images are clean and bold and I think most guys would appreciate their no-nonsense attitude.  This girl certainly does.

Untitled ( History Painting ) 2011 by Tony Rodrigues

Tony Rodrigues’ work takes an introspective look back at icons from childhood and pop culture.  What grown man doesn’t have memories of playing “cowboys and indians” when he was young?  His sentimental take on figures and themes take us back to the “good ol’ days”, but leave us wondering, how good were they, really?

Beats in Paint by Robert Leedy

It is a truth universally acknowledged that most guys wish they were musicians.    ( My hubby will attest to this fact, though I think he’s a better guitar player than he gives himself credit for ).  How many rockstars started out by picking up an instrument as a way to meet girls?  I bet Robert Leedy’s Beats in Paint make you want to wail on a drumset like you’re Keith Moon.

Building Faces- Crown Fountain Juxaposition, Chicago, IL by Doug Eng

Boys love to build stuff.  It’s why Erector Sets and Legos have been around for so long.  Many men have contributed to the architecture of great cities like New York and Chicago.  Doug Eng captures a glimpse of humanity among the concrete and steel, reminding us that these buildings are built for, built by and filled with, people.

Freedom by Steve Williams

Teddy Roosevelt was a man’s man president.  A boxer, a soldier, a hunter and outdoorsman, embodying his ideology to “Speak softly and carry a big stick”.  Artist Steve Williams pays his due to this former president in his Currency series.

Stoic by Brian McGuffey

For those guys who want to show off their bagged game, but not actually, you know, kill a beautiful wild creature just for the bragging rights, Brian McGuffey’s Stoic is just the thing.  I don’t know, this deer looks seriously ticked off for having been decapitated. I wouldn’t cross him if I were you.  Just nod gently and let him be.

Remember that thing about guys wanting to be rockstars?  Is there a rockstar cooler than the gravelly-voiced Tom Waits?  Seriously.  John Duckworth renders his steely glaze perfectly.  And yes, there’s some pink in there.  Duckworth and Waits aren’t afraid to rock the pink.

Tom Waits by John Duckworth ( #2 of triptych )

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