My.FresnoArts.net

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Well here we are at the beginning of a new year! The past year was filled with terrific jobs commissioned through our business, The Metal Shoppe, and we are very fortunate that our calendar is still filled with committed jobs through April of this year. Admittedly, though, as the economy has changed, we have had to work a little harder at finding work. In an effort to expand our customer base, we have learned quite a bit about enhancing our website with the right key words and proper website enhancement, etc., in order to pull in the work from out of the area. Because of this, we have been fortunate to have made contacts and have sold work outside of Fresno, from Long Beach, California, to Indiana and Colorado. And to those who have continued to refer customers our way - I have nothing but absolute gratitude for your support!

As far as my business, A Copper Rose - the past year brought me a couple great opportunities to get some exposure for my art work. I sold some work to a customer in Orange, Ca., and made a terrific contact with an architect and custom builder in the process. I have made it into two juried shows in the past six months, The Butterfly Events "Emergence" show in Long Beach and I have a piece in the Quady Winery Show in Madera in February of this year. My witch hat sculpture made the front and back cover of the Artist-Blacksmith Assn of America magazine and our company, The Metal Shoppe, was featured as the cover story! I feel EXTREMELY fortunate to have been given these opportunities and I hope it is a sign of a door opening with more opportunities for more exposure of my artwork this year!

My goal this year is to create more wall hangings along with the sculptures. I need to get professional photographs of my work versus taking the photos myself. I realize that I need to get a professional portfolio put together for my work and proper photos are very much a part of that. I want to focus more on my jewelry, but primarily cuff bracelets. I also want to take some art classes this year, both in drawing/sketching, as well as more coppersmithing classes. I would like to teach some small classes in copper repousse this year, maybe 2-3 students. I will also be in search of some grant money to help fund the equipment I need for the classes and to help fund my further education/training. We will see what unfolds!

As far as The Metal Shoppe - we are keeping abreast of any public art "call to artist" opportunities that come up to try and expand our portfolio in that direction. We are learning about the ins and outs of putting together a proper presentation for this type of work. Again, we need to focus this year on more professional photography of our completed jobs and investing in a good photo editing software. We are also feel we have to be more creative in our marketing in this current economy to be able to find the jobs but are confident that we will be able to keep the doors open as we always have.

And last, but not least, we both are going to strive to have more balance in our lives between work and play! I think we make this a goal every year - LOL! But ya know what they say - all work and no play....... And of course, we want to work on being more healthy, spiritually and physically!

Again, let's see what unfolds and here's to a prosperous new year for everyone!

Deb

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