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    Our top posts for 2016

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    By Emma Clark Gratton

    Can you believe it is nearly the end of 2016? Gah! I feel like I only just recovered from last Christmas. We are getting ready to take a well-deserved blog break over the holidays, so have prepared a round up of our top posts over the last year for your reading pleasure! Bookmark this post to read later on the beach, in a hammock, or on the couch over a glass of eggnog and the shortbread biscuits meant for Santa.

    Small town creative: how to live, work and create in a regional area

    By Jasmine Mansbridge

    I am writing this blog post while also preparing for a trip from my hometown in Hamilton, Victoria, to Sydney. So it really is a good time for me to think about what is means to be a creative person living outside of the city and how I have gone about finding and generating creative work opportunities.

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    How to succeed as a multi-passionate creative

    By Bec Mackey

    Do you find yourself pulled in different directions by your work and your creative projects? Are you easily distracted by a new idea or flash of inspiration, only to abandon it again shortly afterwards? Or maybe you’re trying to juggle working and paying the bills with a creative side project, and finding it hard to manage both at the same time. You may beat yourself up for being fickle, unable to commit, or to make a clear decision. But despite what we’re told by society, not everyone is built to have just one linear career path, and being easily distracted isn’t necessarily a bad sign. If any of the above resonates with you, it may just be that you are multi-passionate.

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    Branding basics: Define your brand

    By Mirella Marie

    What is a brand? A brand is more than just a logo. A brand is who you are.

    There are five fundamentals that form a brand. One cannot exist without the other, and for a brand to be successful, the fundamentals must work together to communicate everything you think, say and do.

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    Project planning 101

    By Jes Egan

    Being organised is a skill. It’s something that you can learn and refine but it doesn’t always come naturally. I have always been an organiser since a very young age. Today in my day job, that is exactly what I do. I plan and manage projects from start to finish and all that stuff in between. You may be lucky enough to have a specialist around you who will do this, or like many small creative businesses have to become a bit of a jack of all trades and apply this skill to what you are doing. Here are a few of my tips to help plan away.

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    How to quit your day job

    By Emma Clark Gratton

    You’ve been working on a creative side gig alongside your main job for a while now. You’ve got a few regular clients, are making money and are in demand. Most of all, it’s so fun and rewarding that you spend all your lunch breaks and evenings working on your ‘hobby’. If this sounds like you, it might be time to take a leap and pursue your creative project full time.

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    Creative blues: five common fears and how to beat them

    By Emma Clark Gratton

    Working for yourself or passionately following a creative project requires a level of mental toughness and self-confidence that is hard to maintain. Dealing with rejection, financial challenges, working long hours with just yourself as taskmaster… all these things can build up until you are having an existential crisis before your morning coffee.

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    Posted by: Emma Clark
    Categories: Regular Columns | Comments Off on Our top posts for 2016
    Posted on

    Tips on Live Painting

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    by Júlia Both

    “Live painting"—when an artist is commissioned to create something in front of an audience—is quickly becoming a popular entertainment option at events such as corporate dinners, award nights, underground parties, exhibitions, and cultural festivals. Painting live at an event is an interesting and non-intrusive way to entertain an audience. Most people never get the chance to see a piece of art unfold, and find it fascinating to watch it progress.

    If you are an artist, live painting can be a great opportunity to network and get your art seen, though it is completely different than creating something alone in the peace and quiet of your studio. Here are some tips to help you paint live in front of an audience.

    Plan a piece that suits the event.
    When choosing what to paint, think about how you will paint it and whether it will be both interesting to watch and achievable in the duration of the event. Choose a theme and style with which you are very comfortable.

    Pick materials suitable for the space. If you are painting indoors or near people eating, do not use aerosols or paints with strong fumes. If you are painting in a pristine environment with expensive carpet, don’t plan to create a piece that will involve splashing lots of paint around.

    Go big. The point of live painting is for people to watch it happening. Your piece needs to be big enough so your body won’t block it, and should require you to move your arms and body, not just your hands. Unless it is a very small event, don’t go smaller than one square meter.

    Prepare as much as possible.
    If you are feeling nervous, why not do a practice run? You can paint the same painting or something similar the day before, perhaps on a smaller surface, to check your process and palette. This will help you build confidence and plan your timing.

    Depending on your style, it might be a good idea to sketch the painting on the surface before the event to save time. If you use light chalk or pencil, the audience won’t be able to see the sketch; it will look as if you are creating something completely from scratch.

    Keep in mind that while you’re painting, you will be seen and photographed as much as the artwork. Think about how your choice of clothes can complement the art.

    Get an efficient setup.
    Visit the venue beforehand so you can plan how to arrange your materials and tackle any problems with lighting, space, etc. Set up your materials within easy reach. Consider getting a small table for your supplies so you won’t have to lay them on the floor.

    Use a limited colour palette. If you have to mix specific colours, mix them before the event. It will make the painting go a lot more smoothly if you have all the right colours and can just focus on applying them to the piece.

    If you are using reference materials, don’t spend the event looking at them on your smartphone. Print out the images and have them somewhere accessible. I like to stick mine with tape to the floor in front of the painting, so my hands are free and I can check them easily, without detracting from the piece.

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    Consider movement and timing.
    While you are painting, think about your body as part of the performance. Can you make your movements more dramatic and interesting to watch? If possible, position yourself in a way that allows people to see your hands and the brushstrokes you make.

    Guests will want to photograph your finished work and talk to you about your art. Finish your painting before the event ends to leave enough time to network. To make sure you are not going too quickly or slowly, divide your process in stages and set milestones for certain times. Keep a watch or phone handy so you can check your progress.

    Remember: no one is judging you.
    It’s easy to feel nervous when you have an audience behind you, and to think people are judging your every move. Don’t let your mind go down that path. Remind yourself that people are there to have fun; they are busy interacting with each other, not staring at you constantly. Most people don’t understand the process behind a painting and won’t even notice if you do something wrong. If you make a mistake or spill paint, don’t panic: stop, take a deep breath, and just follow the steps to fix it. 

    Júlia Both is a visual artist from Brazil. Since moving to Melbourne in 2013, she has run Mayfield Palace, a partnership that creates art for businesses and organisations all over Australia. She shares her work regularly on Instagram (@artofboth) and at artofboth.com.

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    Posted by: Julie Mazur Tribe
    Categories: Advice and Tips | Comments Off on Tips on Live Painting