News from the Studio & a poetry reading

Welcome to the monthly update from the Studio! May was a busy month and there’s loads of activity to share with you. So keep reading to learn what I’ve been up to.

(Feeling) Isolated – My Latest Textured Fiber Painting

(Feeling) Isolated is complete!  This piece was made in response to the sense of isolation felt on a global scale brought on by sheltering in place during COVID 19 coupled with a personal cross country move to a new home.  It’s available to hang on your wall for $2,500.00.  Get in touch if you’d like to buy it.

(Feeling) Isolated (link to poem):

Isolated ~ May 2020 ~ 34-/14″ x 23-1/4″ ~ $2500
Detail View:
Isolated ~ May 2020 ~ 34-/14″ x 23-1/4″ ~ $2500
Detail View:
Isolated ~ May 2020 ~ 34-/14″ x 23-1/4″ ~ $2500
Detail View:
Isolated ~ May 2020 ~ 34-/14″ x 23-1/4″ ~ $2500
Detail View:
Isolated ~ May 2020 ~ 34-/14″ x 23-1/4″ ~ $2500

Next up: (Feeling) Connected – to recognize the universal connection between all of humanity, even in the midst of a pandemic.

As always, most of my textured fiber paintings are for sale. You can visit the Gallery page on my website for a closer look of every piece I’ve ever made or go straight to my online portfolio to purchase an item from my Feelings series. Eventually, my online portfolio and my Gallery will be combined into a single resource – until then, I hope you’ll bear with it as a work in progress.

I’ve started sharing progress on my textured fiber paintings online via Facebook Live a couple times a week. During these “Window Into My Studio” events, I demonstrate my process and sometimes share productivity and creativity tips, tricks, and ideas as food for thought. Think of me as the stitching version of Bob Ross. 🙂 I’d love for you to join me as often as you can.

The videos are saved and uploaded to my YouTube channel so you can go back and watch anytime you want (none are longer than 30 minutes).

It All Started With a Haiku

I wrote a book!!! I published my book of poetry on Amazon for Kindle and in paperback. Titled “It All Started With a Haiku”, it’s a small collection of my favorite poems I’ve written over a span of 40 years. I’ve always wanted to write and publish a book and now I can say I have! If you’re interested in supporting me with this dream come true, you can purchase the book by clicking here.

Book Cover: It All Started With a Haiku

A Poetry Reading: Future Gwen

In this week’s video, I read one of the poems in my book and offer the back story behind it. I hope you enjoy.

Daily Drawings

I’ve told myself for years I have no ability to draw. Recently, I decided to put that belief to the test by adding a daily drawing practice to my schedule – because you can’t improve at something if you never do it.

I’ve had a small sketchbook for the last year and only occasionally drew anything in it. Most of what I’d drawn up until this last month was a representational image of something in my house. None of those are very good, although a bit better than I expected them to be. This wasn’t particularly surprising because…I wasn’t practicing regularly.

Then one day just a few weeks ago, no more than 4 or 5 days since I’d started drawing something every day, I was struck with the urge to draw geometric shapes in abstract composition. Mind blown! I love abstract work, so it felt like no wonder my drawings of real, tangible items were barely above young child level in terms of appearance. As soon as I began to draw triangles, circles, squares, and arrows, arranged in abstract ways, I felt like I’d found my drawing voice. I’m posting them on Instagram and Facebook in the evenings, asking people to tell me what they see in the drawing. It’s become one of the favorite parts of my day.

Pen & gel ink drawing

I firmly believe finding my voice so quickly with these drawings is the result of the regular creative practice I’ve followed for the past 6 years with my textured fiber paintings. Putting systems and structure in place to ensure there’s time to create consistently opens you up to greater creativity and easier connection to your inner child so you can let him or her out to play.

Once I can safely and comfortably visit an art store like Blick’s, I plan to buy a large canvas or two and some paint and convert these drawings (sketches, really) into acrylic paintings, which will be available for purchase. I’ll let you know when that happens.

Inspirational Message Signs

For over a year, I’ve been posting inspirational messages with corresponding captions on Instagram (you can find them at @harmonylifebalance for everything through May 22, 2020 and @hilaryclark13 for the more recent posts now that I’ve merged businesses). These messages were all downloaded during my morning meditations, where I was directed to share them with my audience. Just recently, I received an intuitive hit to turn these messages into inspirational message signs printed on an 8 x 8 canvas. I’m in the process of creating these signs using the messages that most resonated with people. If you’d like to purchase one (or more) for yourself, hop on over to my Instagram feeds (links above), select the one you’d like, and then drop me a message. Here’s a sample:

Steer with Joy 8x8
I’m Writing a Novel!

It’s shaping up to be an intrigue novel with a bit of romance thrown in for spice. I’m a huge Nora Roberts / JD Robb fan, so there are shades of her preferred writing genres in my work. I’m about 10,000 words in to what I intend to be a 60,000 word book and I’m loving every minute of it. In the past, when I’ve attempted to write a novel, I’ve hit a wall at about 3,500 words. This time, the story is pouring out of me every day when I sit at my computer to write.

The book features a female police detective, Helen Rich, on the hunt for an escaped murderer. The murderer kidnaps her own child and then taunts Helen with her freedom. With the help of Sam Wright, a journalist, she must rescue the child and put the criminal back in prison where she belongs, while battling her own demons and her secret crush on Sam. I’ll need beta readers at some point, so if you’re interested in reading the draft of my novel when it’s ready, let me know!

In closing…

My life is richer for being an Artist. The opportunity to share what I create with the wider world inspires me every day.  Making art connects me to the imaginative, intuitive, playful part of myself and life’s so much more fun when we play.

Before you go…

Want to catch up on “Window Into My Studio”? Watch past episodes here.
Interested in buying my art? See and purchase it here.
Feel like reading some poetry? Buy my book, “It All Started With a Haiku”!
Looking for inspiration to set on your desk or hang on your wall? Select a message for your inspirational message sign, then get in touch to place your order.
Would you like to be on the list to be a beta reader for my novel? Send me an email.

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Don’t forget to stop by my Gallery before you go!  Once you’ve selected the piece that will look perfect on your wall, get in touch and we’ll schedule a private virtual showing.

New beginnings

Today’s the first day I’m “broadcasting” from my combined business, where I’ve pulled my Harmony Coaching work under my Hilary Clark Studios umbrella. Thank you to everyone who subscribes to these posts. I truly appreciate it!

For those who’ve been following along with Harmony Coaching, the weekly articles with video will continue on topics related to developing, growing, and maintaining a creative practice. They’ll just come from Hilary Clark Studios now.

For those who’ve been following Hilary Clark Studios, you’ll start receiving the weekly posts I mentioned above. The monthly studio update will be one of those posts, so there’ll still be photos of my work in progress and/or full reveals of finished work. Yay!

Creativity is our greatest gift but many either take it for granted or, worse, believe they’re not creative. I’m working to change that – to help the secret rebel inside us all reconnect to his or her innate creativity so the child who still lives inside can come out and play. If that sounds like you, you’re in the right place!

Even if you believe you have some creative spark within you, you may not see how you could apply that creativity to everything you do, including your job. Or you’re not making time to do creative things because it feels foolish. Or you feel like whatever you make has to be perfect, otherwise, it’s just not worth your time.

These are the topics I’ll address in the weekly articles. I hope you’ll stick around.

What’s stopping you from being creative? Share in the comments or DM me. If you’d like to talk about how you could start, get in touch and we’ll set up time to talk.

If you liked what you read, please share – someone else might like it too!

Studio Update: April 2020

I missed a studio update in March but I had a great reason.  At the end of February, my partner received a job offer that required relocation from Chicago, Illinois to West Palm Beach, Florida.  March was spent preparing for and executing the move.  Thankfully, his new employer included payment for this relocation as part of his job offer so we purged and someone else packed, loaded, and shipped.  We’ve settled into our new home (renting for a while) and he’s going to work daily.  He works in construction, which is an essential business during the corona virus pandemic.

View from the back porch at the old house. Brrr!

View from the back porch at the new house. Yay!

I already worked from home for myself as a Leadership Trainer and Coach, so I just shifted to a new room in a new house.  However, the cross country move in the middle of a shelter-in-place pandemic also shifted my thinking about that business.  The whole reason I wanted to work for myself was to have the freedom to make more art.  And yet, building a business requires a great deal of time.  Art making didn’t go up.  And that hurt my heart.  I’m processing what it is I really want to do with my training and coaching business.  In the meantime, I’m upping my creative making time and I’m back in the studio.

When I’m not in the studio working on my latest textured fiber painting and not working on my coaching business, I’m mapping out a plan to build an art business, as opposed to or in addition to, the coaching business (that’s part of what I’m processing).  I’ve started writing a novel.  I’m developing digital wall art using messages I receive from my meditations.  I’m considering creating wall art from my poetry and from famous poets.  I may offer embroidered pieces with inspirational statements.  I’m absolutely going to create a guided journal to help inspire personal growth.  I’m brainstorming a LOT of art ideas and I’m thinking about how and where I want to offer them for sale.  I’ll keep you posted here and on social media (if we’re not connected on Facebook or Instagram, let’s fix that, OK?)  Links to each are here:

Facebook (Personal)
Facebook (Art Page – Hilary Clark Studios)
Instagram

For now, my big project is my latest textured fiber painting, (Feeling) Isolated.  The other day, I realized my textured fiber painting Feeling series has been built off the empathy hits I get from the Global Human Collective when it’s time to choose a feeling for the next piece.  For example, I made Grief in the first couple months of this year; a feeling that was sitting deep inside the Collective and which has risen to prominence during these #quarantimes.  Now I’m making Isolated (which is a pretty obvious connection 😊).

Isolated – Canvas
(c) Hilary Clark

Isolated – Mono Print
(c) Hilary Clark

Isolated – Progress
(c) Hilary Clark

Watch this space for news about my art business decisions, updates on new work, and musings on living a creative life.

Next up: I’ll continue work on Isolated.  Full reveal expected in May.  And I’ll continue to brainstorm and create other offerings.

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Info about my Feelings series: I interpret my random abstract doodles as emotions.  The guiding point is the outer boundary of the doodle.  The boundary evokes the feeling and is based on the empathetic connection I feel to the Global Human Collective.  From there, I contemplate how to bring that particular feeling alive in fiber to reflect the emotion most prevalent within the Collective at the time the feeling is chosen.

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My art is my work and the majority is for sale.  Please visit my Gallery to view the items for sale.  If you’re interested in purchasing any of my creations, please contact me via this site.

Thanks for visiting my studio!

 

Studio Update: January 2020

I’m going to start the year with a post summarizing the textured fiber paintings I made in 2019.  But before I get to that, I’m currently working on my first piece for 2020 – (Feeling) Grief.  I knew I’d need to create Grief at some point; I guess that time is now.  Here are a few progress photos:

(Feeling) Grief – the template for the canvas

The canvas

The final design, photographed in black and white to show contrast.

Come back next month to see the completed work!

In 2019, I made 6 textured fiber paintings, which was my goal.  Feelings ran the spectrum from Woe to Dynamism.  (If you’re interested, I have the same goal this year.  Considering the amount of stitching I do on these pieces, 6 seems reasonable as I don’t make art full time.)  I’ve included photos below, with links to each piece’s article if you’d like a bit more information about a piece.  All of this work is for sale.  If you’re interested, please visit my Gallery page or contact me through this website.

Woeful - Full(c)
Woeful ~ March 2019 ~ 33-1/2″”x22″ ~ $2500

Passionate ~ May 2019 ~ 37 x 21-1/2″” ~ $2500

Crushed ~ July 2019 ~ 35″ x 22-1/2″ ~ $2500

Hopeful ~ September 2019 ~ 36″ x 23″ ~ $2500

Perplexed ~ October 2019 ~ 36″ x 23″ ~ $2500

Dynamic ~ December 2019 ~ 36″ x 22″ ~ $2500

Next up: I’ll continue work on Grief.  Full reveal expected in February.

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Info about my Feelings series: I interpret my random abstract doodles as emotions.  The guiding point is the outer boundary of the doodle.  The boundary evokes the feeling.  From there, I contemplate how to bring that particular feeling alive in fiber. 

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My art and my work go hand in hand.  I’m a Leadership Development Trainer & Coach, working with stressed, frantic, frazzled professionals who struggle to lead, experience self-sabotage, have difficulty communicating, and can’t break through persistent red tape.  What they want is to innovate, achieve consistent results, and come together as a team, so their employers call on me for leadership development training and coaching.  I’m an expert at shedding the stress, designing solutions, and building cohesive, consistent high-achieving teams.  My clients go from crisis mode to working in harmony, saving time, money, and energy, finally getting their shit together.  If you’re interested in leadership development training and coaching, please join me over at Harmony Coaching.

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The majority of my work is for sale.  Please visit my Gallery for available work.

Thanks for visiting my studio!

 

Studio Update: October 2019

In my last studio update (August 2019), I mentioned it typically takes me at least two months to complete a textured fiber painting.  I finished my most recent painting, (Feeling) Hopeful, in late September, so the two month thing is on track.

The reason it takes me about two months per piece is because my goal has been to spend at least 3 hours in my studio each week.  This goal goes back to when I was working corporate and was not self-employed.

In the 6 months I’ve been working for myself, I’ve learned a few things.  While building a business takes work, it also allows for way more flexibility in schedule.  This means I can increase my studio time if I choose.

I did choose and am now shooting for 6 hours in the studio every week.  I schedule one hour of studio time per day on my agenda, after I’ve completed my coach work.  I usually leave Friday open, no studio time, which gives me float and an extra day if I’ve fallen behind with my commitment to my art earlier in the week.

I’ve only been doing this for a couple weeks, but I’m already seeing the creative practice speed up.

I don’t know what this will ultimately mean for a production schedule, other than it’s certain I’ll finish a piece in less than 2 months.  The ultimate aim is to produce one new textured fiber painting per month.

My current work in progress, (Feeling) Perplexed, is almost complete.  In fact, since October has five weeks, it will be finished by Halloween/Samhain.  I started it the last week in September, so it looks like I’ll hit that one month goal!  Full reveal will happen in November, combined with that month’s studio update.

For now, I hope you enjoy Perplexed’s progress photos.

What goal do you have that could be adjusted to create a bigger impact for you?

(Feeling) Perplexed – the template

Color layout in the design phase

The stitching begins…

And the stitching progresses…this phase takes the most time, however, is also the most satisfying.

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My art and my work go hand in hand.  I’m a Performance Mindset Coach, helping stressed out, frantic, frazzled professionals slow down and reconnect to their intuition so they can get their shit together.  I’ve walked the road my clients are on.  My method to slow down was through development of a creative practice, which helped me regain my voice and led me to want to serve others in the same way.  If you’re interested in developing (or expanding on) a creative practice as a means to reconnect to your intuition, lose your stress, and improve your professional performance, please join me over at Harmony Coaching.

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The majority of my work is for sale.  Please visit my Gallery for available work.

Thanks for visiting my studio!