Thursday, October 22, 2015

My Husbands Danish Apprentice

One day back in April, my husband, Tom, came into my studio with a befuddled look on his face.
He said that a girl in Copenhagen just contacted him asking if she could be his apprentice. She was by trade, a furniture maker but wanted to learn the art of automata, which my husband excels at.
My response was probably something like, "What the flip?"
Paula Joerling Studio
In the studio with Tom and Laura's final creation. 
Tom and Laura (the apprentice) emailed back and forth with the details. Originally she wanted to have a three month apprenticeship but Tom was sure he could teach her everything he knew in a week. They settled on a one month stay. We decided that she could stay with us with the provision that if it wasn't working out for either party other arrangements would be made. 
While we pretty much have a revolving door of house guests, a whole month with someone we never met seemed outrageous. After all, it's always just been Tom and I.
After having her here for two weeks, we wished it was for three months. 
She was AWESOME and we adored her.  
Paula Joerling Studio
Making Danish sandwich's and Tom is delighted.
Upon hearing the news, friends and family had a variety of reactions, the most common being " What? A perfect stranger in your house? What if she's a killer?"
She wasn't, as a matter of fact, she is a vegetarian and a darn good cook as it turned out. 
She made dinner for us on several different occasions. I got into the habit of taking photos of her dinner creations and posting them to Facebook. This led to much confusion and to several people asking why I had a kitchen apprentice and where could they get one. 

She made delicious Danish style sandwiches, vegetables roasted with dark beer, pasta and garlic bread. We, in turn exposed her to southern treats like moon pies, key lime pie, turnip greens and banana pudding. She even tried a raw oyster for the first time. 
It was a match made in heaven and we still marvel at how seamlessly she slipped into our lives.
In Savannah and Laura's first raw oyster.
Although we did a lot of sightseeing and took a side trip to Savannah she did learn quite a bit and managed to complete a fully operational piece. 
At the start of her third week, I had to leave to lead a workshop in Florida. When I returned she was well on her way to her next apprenticeship in with  Kazuaki Harada in Japan.
Leaving for Japan.
We enjoyed every minute of the time she spent with us and are so glad that we decided to open our home and our lives to her. It was a great experience from beginning to end. 
I think it goes without saying that we're saving our pennies for a trip to Copenhagen .......

In Japan.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

ArtBiz Jam 3.0

Despite rain and tropical storms, this years ArtBiz Jam was loads of fun. 
It was great seeing the repeat Jammers as well as welcoming the new ones. We talked about art licensing, social media, networking and everything in between. Laura Pagley from C.R.Gibson was there and spent time with each artist looking at their portfolios. Kelly Alford, creator of the Iota Brand, had us all put together books from pages that we painted and then stitched together. 

And we laughed, a lot.

The weather didn't cooperate this year but that just gave us all more studio time and no one seemed to mind that. The rain did clear up long enough so we could get a group shot on the beach.

Special THANKS to Laura and Kelly for being this years speakers.
A big THANKS to all of you for coming!
xo, Paula, Chad, Phyllis and Lori

This years awesome group!

The rain started on the ride down. Fortunately, Chad had these goofy, yellow, allegedly glare reducing glasses in the car so he could navigate us safely from Atlanta to Florida through the torrential rain. I was just happy that it was him driving and not me. 

Everyone painted large sheets of pattern then cut them into smaller pages that were then stitched into books. Everyone was hooked and said that they intended to make more of these.

For some of the pages, we wrote without lifting the pen. It created a beautiful pattern and was more difficult to get the hang of than you would think. 

Again, a big thank you to all of you who attended-
and as Mary Anne would say..........YOU HAVE BEEN JAMMED!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Story Behind the Art-Robin Davis

Welcome to the second installation of "The Story Behind the Art".

If you are new to my blog, The Story Behind the Art will take you on a little journey into the STORY behind a particular piece of art created by one of my talented friends from around the globe. The stories are posted on the first Wednesday of each month.

This months featured artist is Robin Davis and I am very happy to share her work with you. Robin and I were both licensed artists for The Lang Companies many, many moons ago. I was always in awe of her amazing work and was, therefore, a little intimidated to actually meet her. 
She and Dan DiPaolo were coming to town for the Atlanta Gift Show several years ago and I decided to have an artist meet and greet at my studio, which is just a couple of blocks from the Gift Mart. 
As luck would have it, an ice storm hit, Dan didn't make it in and Robin was coming over early. All I kept thinking was "What if we don't hit it off? and I hope this isn't one of those awkward meetings". Well it wasn't, and she has been sleeping on my sofa when it's gift show time ever since.

So, without further adieu, here is my friend, singing partner and fellow lover of wine night Robin Davis......................

The Story Behind the Art - Robin Davis

My son was born in year 2000. His arrival changed the trajectory of my career in the most amazing and creative way. Most of my life, I loved doodling, sketching and painting, gravitating towards characters. As my son grew, so did my love for drawing silly
yet sweet and kind little Monsters and Robots.

paula joerling

When Connor was into Dinosaurs, that’s what I drew, but I have to say, when he got into Robots, I was in CREATIVE HEAVEN! I think seeing me in the studio all day, also made him want to draw and paint. We sure did a lot of that together, and I have boxes of his art to prove it. I just couldn’t part with any of it. I know Mom’s out there are nodding & giggling with me on that one, LOL!

One of my favorite doodles from Connor still hangs in my studio, it’s a little robot he drew at age 3. If you look at my sketches and paintings of Robots, you can see Connor’s influence on me. Life really does show us the way…my artwork is a reflection of the wonderful world that surrounds me.

paula joerling
Paula Joerling

Anyone that knows me, would probably say "I’m just a big kid with a big heart”. I think having my son, made me feel like it was ok to be “silly” and boy can I be silly, especially around kids! So I’ve always tried to put that sweet silliness quality into my characters as I create them.

paula joerling

Over the years as my son grew, so has my career and art. At times, during my Licensing career I was working on assignments very different from my Children’s Art. I branched into Home Decor & Gift design but my heart continues to bring me back to my characters and ROBOTS. These days, I can’t stop creating them. I’m just having so much fun playing with paper and rusty metal bits and bobs, whatever I can find. Even my friends and family bring me rusty things they discover in their garages or on their travels. Who would have thought someone would get so excited to see a bucket of rusty tin and metal, but I DO, I REALLY DO! I see, eyes and noses, arms and legs when I look at the parts. I start creating the Robot in my head! 

Once I create a Robot, I photograph them. Using my computer I can then add backgrounds and text. The words I choose are always about encouragement for my son.  Words of promise, hope, support and reassurance that everything is going to be ok. That being UNIQUE and ONE of a KIND like every one of my robots is INCREDIBLE! Most importantly that “The Sky’s the limit” there’s an entire UNIVERSE out there to EXPLORE and my hopes and dreams for him, is that he explores IT ALL!

paula joerling

Children really do make my heart BIG! But maybe my Robots aren’t just for kids, maybe they are for THE KID IN ALL OF US!

paula joerling

Hugs Robin

Want to know more about Robin? Just follow the links.

Website-Robin Davis Studio

Follow her on Instagram

Check out her Blog

She has a Facebook page
Robin Tweets