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  • Painting Donation: HomeFront Calgary

    I love this painting. Metamorphosis was my largest painting to date: a whopping 4 ft squared canvas! It took me a long time to finish it, and I had to negotiate my time wisely…acrylic paint spread over a large surface area created some parts that would dry before I could finish the effect I was going for! I had to work quickly and not linger on my artistic decisions (a difficult task for me most days!)  It was a great learning experience.

    Because of its size, Metamorphosis was best viewed in person to be appreciated fully. The way the silver metallic paint caught the light and the depth of the fushia-coloured glazes…MMM! Beautiful!  Unfortunately, this meant hauling it from show to show, hoping it would catch the eye of a serious buyer. This wasn’t a big deal until we installed a car seat for our daughter and lost the ability to fold down our back seats on a whim…suddenly, toting Metamorphosis around town didn’t sound appealing anymore!

    Enter: Fashion Forward YYC! It is an annual fashion and art show that promotes local artistic talent and raises funds for charitable organizations. This year’s charity was HomeFront: an organization designed to combat domestic violence (If anyone has followed the news in Alberta lately, domestic disputes have skyrocketed as the economy nosedives…). I was happy to donate Metamorphosis to the silent auction fundraiser, and kissed it goodbye as it was comfortably loaded into the back of a moving van with the other event artwork.

    I was told my painting had five bidders and raised over $400 for HomeFront. I feel thankful to support a charity that I don’t need to call upon. I hope Metamorphosis is making someone as happy as it made me feel when it was in my studio.  

    Love, 

    Taylor

  • Yes!

    Yes!

    Agreed! Even the smallest good deed can make a difference.

    That's why I am proud to donate 25% of my art sales back to charity, and am grateful for the ability to do this :)

    Thank YOU for making this movement possible!  

  • Annual Review of 2015 (Economic turmoil, waterfalls, and some BIG news!)

    Well folks, here we are again. 2015 snuck up quickly, slapped some reality into me a few times, and zoomed out of town seemingly faster than it came. I’m standing here in shock and awe: It's 2016. How the heck did this happen?!

    I guess the old adage proves itself true: Time flies when you’re having fun!

    I would like to share some highlights and photos that have made 2015 a very memorable year.

    1)      Shane got laid off in February and made a bold move to reinvent himself from a mechanical engineer in the O&G sector into an indie video game programmer (one of his passions he hasn’t had time to pursue in the past). I’m not going to lie…this was a hard transition for me to accept. I was scared to think about our future, but what else could he do? The job market was saturated with skilled O&G people searching for work in Calgary, and it’s certainly better to be creative/productive rather than wither away from boredom at home. He bought a license for GameMaker software and immediately taught himself how to program. He designed, coded, and marketed his asteroid-inspired arcade game called CMYW. He often programs 10+ hours per day, including weekends, and the final game was approved for sale on the huge gaming platform called ‘Steam’ in October…an impressive result for only 8 short months! He has participated in a few local Calgary events such as Indie Game Bash, Ludum DareMakers Faire, and became a member of the Calgary Game Developers Association (acquiring several new friendships with some awesome people, to boot!). Shane has become a bit of a local sensation with several TV, radio, and newspaper interviews sharing his inspirational story during these tough economic times. As scared as I was about the big career move, I can’t deny how much joy it brings him and am thrilled with how much he has accomplished this year. (Plus I’m hooked on CMYW. It’s addictive! Check it out herehttp://store.steampowered.com/app/396590 )

    2)      TRAVEL! What an amazing year!!!

    -Romantic getaway to Radium Hot Springs where we watched bighorn sheep lick salt off our vehicle and soaked in the pools until we were wrinkly.

    -Backpacking through Skoki Loop (near Lake Louise) with some kickass coworkers. We hunted for fossils, admired the Indian Paintbrush flowers, saw a sprinting grizzly bear and defended ourselves from the bugs and notorious porcupine. It was my first full-on backpacking trip, and the photos were worth the effort. 

    -GIRL’S TRIP TO CROATIA! The food (OMG, the food!), the quirky people, the stone architecture, the salty Adriatic sea, the war-stricken remnants of old buildings, the National Parks and their cascading waterfalls, the Westcoast-like trees along the shoreline, the melodic and unique Sea Organ, the horrible wine that they were very proud of (we tried REALLY hard to enjoy it…but I’m a BC wine-o! My taste buds have high expectations!)…I loved the whole experience, and would go back in a heartbeat.

    -VEGAS VIRGINS NO MORE! We toured the strip and iconic hotels, saw Sir Elton John in concert, rented a car and hiked around the beautiful red sandstone formations in the scorching desert heat, saw the Hoover Dam, and enjoyed one night of gambling and all-you-can drink… We could have spent another week there, easily. Definitely going back someday!

    -The White Cliffs of Dover, and the hilariously windy hike to the historic lighthouse for tea. As a geologist, seeing the iconic chalk cliffs from all my university textbooks was very exciting for me (but apparently not for many locals. Everyone asked us “why are you going to Dover…??”). I even used a piece of natural chalk to write my name in a concrete retaining wall….No big deal! (*happy dance*) If you ever visit Dover, make sure to check out their Bingo Hall. Seriously. 

    -Winning a photoshoot package from Red Plains Photography in Spirit Island, Jasper. Shane and I rented canoes, played with the loons, camped overnight in the wind and snow, and got rescued by the Park Warden on our paddle back home. What a weekend! The weather was crap, but we made two new friendships from it (and got some incredible photographs!)

    -Our annual summer road trip to BC’s coast. Always beautiful!

    -Summer road trip in the opposite direction: Lake Wascasieu, SK! The water was warm, the weather was great, and Shane’s little nieces and nephew were playful and hilarious. Shane’s family rented a pontoon boat and putted around the lake, andwe  saw two baby bears effortlessly scoot up a tree when we startled them on a hiking trail (we got the hell away from them - FAST! Gosh, they were cute…).

    3) My bestie flew out to Calgary to visit! We Stampeded, hiked around Canmore, rode horses in Banff, floated down the Elbow River, got sick and had several movie nights together...It was perfect. I wish we could do that more often.

    4) Weddings! Congratulations to our dear friends the McClary’s and Hoehn’s! One wedding was so wild, Shane strained his neck from his epic dance moves. The other one was so romantic that we got…

    5) PREGNANT!!! Surprised?! So were we! I’m due in April and the little Monkey has been surprisingly easy on my body (so far). No morning sickness, no mood swings…I’m still me, just a little rounder and slow-moving! Shane and I are looking forward to becoming parents. It’s going to be a game-changer (in a good way, I hope).

    6) I survived the first round of layoffs at my company, and it was one of the most stressful experiences I’ve had to go through. I was scared to tell anyone I was pregnant, because I didn’t know if it would protect me or make me a target behind closed doors…the day the “men in black” made their rounds through the hallways I was shaking, I cried tears of joy when I found out I was spared, and I mourned the loss of my colleagues. It has been an incredibly rough year for Albertans. I really hope the new year will bring about some stability and that the job market will diversify. I really hope I can survive a second wave of layoffs if the price of oil does not improve… (want to buy a painting?? Ha!)

    7) Art Shows and Sales! Despite the downturn in the economy, 2015 was a record-breaking year for my painting sales. I sold seven paintings, finished two commission jobs, participated in two FosterMAK shows and had my first RAW Artist Calgary showcase. My painting ‘Bolo Tie’ even made an appearance on Global News! My charitable donations from my art sales totaled $450 (matched by my company for a total of $900! I’m amazed!). I chose to support iHuman Youth Society and Oxfam Canada’s Syrian Refugee Fund, along with donating a painting for a silent auction benefitting the Alberta Children's Hospital. Thank you, collectors, for being catalysts for positive change and for supporting a local artist! Click here to see a summary of the paintings sold in 2015.   

    8) ENGAGED! Squeeeeeeee!!! The rock (a cognac sapphire!) came after the baby news, which is fine...Shane and I have never been very orthodox! First comes love, then comes…a condo, two cats, a house, a baby, and THEN marriage! That’s how the song goes, right? Don’t expect a wedding announcement any time soon…planning for this baby has us occupied! Staring at this beautiful ring is going to help me get through labour contractions by releasing oxytocin into my bloodstream, so really, the ring is for the baby. Science rules!  

    WISHING YOU ALL AN INCREDIBLE 2016! Thank you for your ongoing support of my artistic endeavors over the past year, and for all the love pouring in about the baby and engagement. I am truly blessed and am looking forward to the adventures waiting to unfold in the new year! 

    With love, 

    Taylor

  • $500 donation to iHuman Youth Society!

    BOOM!

    $250 charitable donation (25% of my 2015 art sales to date) plus a corporate match from Cenovus Energy Inc = $500 towards a worthy cause! I am thirlled to say 2015 is shaping up to be a record-breaking year for charitable donations. 

    iHuman Youth Society gives troubled youth in Edmonton an opportunity to break the vicious cycles of poverty, abuse and addiction and create positive change through the healing powers of art! Perhaps you’re interested in supporting them, too? Check out them out: http://ihumanyouthsociety.org/

  • Prices Are About to Increase (and I’m not talking about oil…)

    Prices Are About to Increase (and I’m not talking about oil…)

    Hello friends,

    I wanted to take this opportunity to warn you: my art prices are going to increase as of September 1st. I’m not trying to be a jerk, I’m trying to give myself a raise! Let me explain:

    2015 has been an incredible year for my art career so far. So much has happened since January:

    - I renewed my art partnership with Rewind Clothing and switched up the store display (visit my two Alberta-inspired landscapes, Alpine Meadow and Alberta Beauty!)

    - I joined FosterMAK’s online gallery and participated in their June art show. Because of Stacey’s hard work promoting the artists and organizing shows, she earns a commission on all her sales.   

    - I ordered new business cards to include my NEW social media accounts (follow me!)

    - I registered with Square Reader to now accept credit card payments

    - I became a RAW artist and participated in their GLIMPSE showcase in July, which included a live painting event AND a TV segment with Global News Calgary featuring one of my paintings!

    - I donated $250 to iHuman Youth Society last week, thanks to my fabulous collectors! Thanksgiving is usually when I submit my donations, but since my 2015 sales have been so hot I figured I should donate some of my contributions early. 25% of all my art sales go to charity, and iHuman is one of my favourite places to give.

    Because of all these factors, my ‘artist value number’ is going to justifiably increase from a 7 to a 9 starting September 1st. (What is an artist value number, you ask? To paraphrase DaSilva’s blog: It’s a combination of things, mostly related to the level of experience, exposure, gallery representation, etc.)

    Example: to calculate my painting’s worth, I add the gallery canvas dimensions together (24” + 24” = 48) and multiply it by my Artist Value Number (9). 48 x 9 = $432. Ta-da! Pricing is one area where I lack creativity!

    So, if you are interested in purchasing an original painting, you may want to consider doing it sooner than later…

    Contact me for a viewing!

    Thank you for your support and understanding. 

  • Bolo Tie is going to be on TV!

    Global News Calgary is covering a segment on the GLIMPSE showcase tomorrow morning, and I’m proud to announce: one of my original abstract paintings will be featured on TV! This painting was inspired by my Grandpa's turquoise and leather Bolo Tie that I remember from when I was a just a wee cowgirl. I remember square dancing with him in my pink boots, watching him fill up jugs of OJ and vodka for the crazy rodeo clowns at 7AM, and feeding leftover pancakes to friendly prairie dogs. I figure this is an appropriate painting to show during Stampede week, as it's a homage to him. I hope he'd be proud of who I have become. 

    Our RAW Calgary art director, Lizzie Carr, has done an amazing job advertising this event around town despite living in Edmonton; She is one organized woman! Lizzie, thank you for your dedication and hard work to make this event possible. Tomorrow is going to be amazing!

    In a nutshell: GLIMPSE will feature >60 local RAW Artists, and will showcase all different artistic mediums for 12 hours straight (11AM-11PM, Friday July 10th @ Standard Nightclub -- next door to the Palomino). For those of you who bought pre-sale tickets through me, you should be registered on an electronic guestlist. For the wonderful procrastinators in my life, tickets are $20 at the door (cheaper than any of the Stampede tents, I might add…). For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about…WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN HIDING?! You need to come see this and feel the ENERGY!   

    I will display eight paintings at my booth and will be present for the whole 12 hours (minus lunch and dinner breaks). If I’m not at my booth, you can find me LIVE PAINTING outside --EEEK!

    25% of my sales from tomorrow’s GLIMPSE showcase will be donated to the Children’s Hospital Art Program. Some of the kids will be there selling their creations for charity, too! 

    SEE YOU TOMORROW.

    Need more info? Check out the GLIMPSE Facebook Event Page: here

  • Painting donation for #RTCC

    SkyFall Remix was donated to Amber's silent auction fundraiser to raise $ for her Ride to Conquer Cancer (remember Amber, the one battling ovarian cancer? Not only did she overcome it and survive chemotherapy, she is continuing to spread awareness about cancer prevention and research by keeping a blog and riding a goddam bicycle for two days through the ROCKY MOUNTAINS! The RTCC would kill me, and I don't have any known health issues to use for an excuse. This woman is so inspirational!!).

    The last time she saw the painting in between bartending shifts it was up to $150...I am so pleased it could make a difference! I may not be able to rock the RTCC, but I can support the cause in my own creative way :) 

  • Pain and Suffrage

    Pain and Suffrage

    This is what happens when you wish for "more time".

    I've been so busy these days that sitting down and typing a blog entry feels like the LAST thing in the world I should be doing. There are always dishes to wash, meals to be made, documentaries to watch, cats to pet, toilets to clean...

    Perhaps Sunday was a lesson in disguise!

    I was over at my Aunt's place to watch the Oscars on Sunday night (noting that I needed hang that commissioned painting in her hallway...), and goofing around with my adorable 'nephew'. I was clad in my fur stole and all my Grandma's gifted jewellry (C'mon...do you think ALL the great fashion statements happen in Hollywood? PAH-LEEZ!), and I was acting as a "blast victim". Jevyn was jumping on cushions strewn about the floor, and when he jumped onto the big purple one in front of me I LURCHED back in my chair and pretended to be blown to smitherines. In hindsight it sounds rather gruesome, but Jevyn was giggling so hard I couldn't resist and played along! Well, after a few blasts, one would think I was auditioning for an Oscar myself...my fur stole was rocking, my hair was everywhere, my eyes were rolling around all disoriented each time Jevyn jumped on that purple cushion (laughing hysterically!)...it wasn't until Monday morning I started to question my antics. 

    My shoulders were on FIRE!!! 

    One chiropractic appointment, one RMT massage, several hot baths and muscle relaxants later...here I am: Blogging for my long lost website!

    Moral of the story: be careful what you wish for! 

    ANYWAYS, the real reason I'm writing is to make an announcement about an art submission I made to a progam called TimeRaiser. My dear friend, Megan, informed me of this great organization that buys local artwork for auction purposes. What is being auctioned, you ask? Your time. 

    How cool is that?! You get connected to a great cause, bid your "hours" on beautiful pieces of artwork, and once your volunteer obligations have been fulfuilled you get to take your new art home! The artwork is not donated, it is bought outright. AND, while the volunteer hours are being served, the artwork is displayed in the various corporate sponsor offices around the city! Talk about a double-whammy of awesome: money and exposure? SIGN.ME.UP! 

    I submitted five paintings which will be reviewed and voted on by a panel of judges. I will be informed by the end of the week if any (or all?!) have been selected. If my artwork IS selected, I will:

    a) Pop a bottle of bubbly and do my happy dance (if my spine allows me to do so)

    b) Donate 25% of my profits to my "charity pool"

    c) Tell EVERYONE to come out to this event and show their support for all the local artists and charities involved (May 8th...save the date!)

    STAY TUNED (and limber) MY FRIENDS! 

    For more information about TimeRaiser, please check out their Website

  • 2012 Charitable Donation :)

    2012 Charitable Donation :)

    Dear Supporters, 

    I am fortunate to work for an amazing company that matches donations to registered Canadian charities. Every October, they put forward a "Thanks and Giving" campaign to encourage employees to donate to a charity of their choice...my 2012 painting sales were donated to a non-profit organization in Edmonton (iHuman) that helps troubled youth avoid a lifestyle of self-destruction by harnessing the power of the arts (artists supporting artists!).

    As much as I adore this organization's vision, the flooding in Alberta was devastating for so many people and I would like to put my 2013 profits towards a charity that will support recovery efforts for those in need. Please contact me if you have any recommendations for which charities to support this year! (Remember: it must be a registered Canadian charity to be eligible for company matches!)

    Thank you for making a difference in so many ways. 

    Taylor

  • Amber’s Walk of Hope

    "Ovarian cancer is the most serious of all gynecological cancers. Over 2600 Canadian women are diagnosed every year; and every year 1750 women succumb to this disease…There is no screening test to detect it. But when found early  – and treated – ovarian cancer survival rate is 90%.” – Ovarian Cancer Canada

    A friend and coworker of mine was recently diagnosed with Stage 3 ovarian cancer. This news took my breath away…Amber is young, healthy, and trying to start a family. It’s just not fair. Cancer is greedy, indiscriminate, and changes lives too often and too quickly.  

    I was pleased to donate one of my paintings (My Little Pony) toward a silent auction fundraiser organized by Amber’s awesome younger sister, Kristy. She totaled an incredible $2800 in only two hours! That money will support ovarian cancer research, which will hopefully lead to the development of an early detection test and eventual CURE.

    On sunny September 8th, Amber wore a blue shirt on the Walk of Hope to show that she is a fighter-- a survivor! Two rounds of chemotherapy are over, with four more treatments to go. We walked for her recovery. We walked for the thousands of other women in Canada that will be diagnosed this year alone. We walked for the hope of a future cure, and to the death of ovarian (and all) cancer.  

    Way to go, ladies! I was honored to be able to contribute to the cause and walk beside you.