Second Chance, doing my artwork in my 50’s……..:)

As many of you know I am an artist. Over the last 30 years I never did it as a full time career as my family, health, interests and responsibilites have prevented me over the years.

Most of my work over the last 30 yrs has been for gifts for friends and family and or charitable to raise moeny to help other people , churches , schools and other organizations. 

I like doing it, but here I am now in a small rented farm house after losing my home 3 yrs ago with most of my possessions to have to start out over again and at 53 this isnt as easy as it would seem…

I am physically and legally disabled enough to preclude me from obtaining what would be considered a normal full time job, but sometimes I feel well enough to work and so I do volunteer jobs, like when I was working for the Red Cross at Ft.Sill in 2005, I was also able to start up and run as a manager , shelters in Oklahoma to assist the Katrina evacuees…

It was a bit ironic, but rewarding as I was able to help others get new homes and possessions, when I basically was living out of my van, while staying at my sons temporarily… I do enjoy putting others first, but then  people look at me and wonder why I haven’t gotten my own life together yet… I stop an wonder as well….

Now for me it is easy to advocate , promote and to do good deeds for others, but for myself, I tend to feel awkward and don’t like to ask for anything or any help, so that is probably the main reason I am in the dilemma I am in…

Here I am 53, single again, bad or no credit, a van that keeps breaking down monthly, in a rented one bedroom house, barely keeping up with utilities let alone rent. Still I am  helping others via the net and phone [ several hours daily] to get their needs met, but rather than meeting my own needs, I have learned to do without most things…

Taking a good look at myself, I have no one to blame but me… I have the talent, know I am worthwhile but  all the other forms of encouragement I give to others, I have failed to give to myself…

I realize that I have become reclusive and have a lower sense of self esteem, fearing that if anyone sees me as ‘needing’ that they will then take advatange and possibly hurt me. Writing it down here, it sounds silly but I think this  is about how I feel and although  I prefer to come off all knowing, all powerful, all together for the benefit of others, so others can rely on me and they do… and I don’t mind that, as I feel it is better to give than to receive and know that I have a hard time being a receiver.

I don’t think it is pride as much as fear of rejection, so instead of taking care of my own needs, I do without and help others.

If it were just me, I could continue in this survival mode living til I am called home to glory, but I have kids and grandkids, that I should be doing more for and now I think that if I devote more time concerning my art productivity into actually selling it and also getting ‘paid’ commissions, that I should be able to rise above this poverty and not only contribute more to society, but to myself and family, and with that I can help others even more… I have to get on  my own bandwagon and have some of the fruits of my labors…

I didnt realize that my oldest son, who has been away from home over 10 yrs, had such a disrespectful view of me as being a loser and a bum!.. That really hurt, since I even did free work for him and his wife while with them and thought they understood why I do what I do, but they didn’t as they are very materialistic, like most in the world today.

Seems alot of people dont respect volunteers or those working for free for good causes. He thinks I am stupid for not being rich, since I have the talent to work in the art arena like a Kincade or Rockwell or a Grandma Moses, but haven’t out of fear.

I want to stop being afraid and I want to develop my art in a way that will provide a better standard of living for me and something I can leave to my children when I am gone… I dont want to be remembered as a loser or a bum by the ones I love most. I feel bad that some of them like my son, dont understand that much of what I have done throughout my life was to serve God humbly by helping others..

My oldest son doesn’t seem to even demonstrate a need or  respect for God, so I must have sent him the wrong message over the years by the way I was living and so now I am attempting to change and become a more well known artist, again [ I was fairly well known and worked in the 70’s-80’s in NYC before moving upstate to raise my kids…]but after an accident in 1984,  I couldn’t use my right hand for nearly 6 years..

Now after God’s help and several surgeries, I have regained enough use of my hand to do my art once again.

For the last year or so, I have been doing my paintings and drawings so that they can be reproduced into other useful forms. I have learned the Giclee inkjet process through trial and error on digitally preparing paintings for printing and now can make orirginal ink printings in 8 x 10 and card size original images, clear coat them, sign and date them and they are valuable when in comparison to other Giclees…  But where to sell them and to whom is a dilemma for me.

I am self learning how to use Photo Impression and PhotoShop to make new image rendtions of other paintings and trying to create as many new paintings as I can.

I tried to sell some on Ebay, but was lame on the way I listed them and found that how they are listed determines how many will actually see them.. S0o for me it was a waste of money advertising them there. I have listed with Lowbid.com, but havent had any sales there either, but at least they dont charge to list..There are so many people trying to sell paintings online, that it is like winning a lottery to even have someone view my links…

My niece found Etsy and told me about it, so I checked it out and joined… $.20 per item to list for 4 months and a free online store… not a bad deal at all..I actually sold 3 items the first month there, but that was it… no other sales…so far, since I don’t know how to advertise or promote the right way apparently and can’t afford to advertise professionally. 

I then researched a bit and found that my prices were cheap, perhaps too cheap for the serious buyers and not cheap enough fot the middle class collectors… so I am struggling to learn the in’s and out’s…how to present and to price things. 

I tried lowering prices but found that when I printed one order, it cost me more to print and ship than I charged for the order, so that wasnt working!…

I hope to also get some commission work, so I found a muralist site and have joined it.

Please, check out the links of the places I am located online and see if there isn’t anything you might want or want done… I can work within most budgets and love to do the work.I can work indoors and outdoors and paint on any surface.

 This is an art service listing online for people looking for artists to do projects at their homes or businesses.

I have just joined: https://www.findamuralist.com/Pennsylvania/ave-hurley-mansfield.php

I have  set up a profile and a portfolio in hopes to get some work..I am willing to travel anywhere to work.

It is spring and I feel like painting BIG, so if you have any ideas that you’d like on a wall or on a mural board, I can do them for you!! I can work within almost any budget just about and like I mentioned before I am willing to travel to your location [if transportation is provided and a place to rest my head between painting sessions]..

I do what is called ‘speed painting’ and also Coney Island Style billboard art, so I can actually do a mural in the same time frame as I would do a fine art painting.. I have done full scenes on little 1 inch rocks and also huge murals on sides of buildings.. In my mind I can easily work in enlarging a scene and have been doing so since I was in my teens.. I can get some large murals done in one day! I also do sign painting and am not afraid to climb a ladder…[it is getting a bit hard however, lol]

I am basically a shut in here in PA in a small farm house and the winter has pretty much given me a sense of cabin fever, so I am ready to come out and paint….:) travel a little [ must be the gypsy in me,lol] My van needs alot of ‘upgrades’ like a tune-up alignment and oil change.. typically normal things to do, but I never have enough to get them done, so most of the winter my van has been ‘off the road’ waiting til the beginning of each month to get itr ‘started’ run some errands and then be stuck home again… not to mention gas prices.. I was shocked when home for 3 weeks after getting out of the hospital for my cellulitis, only to see prices jumped about $.70 a gal and now here it is going to be $4 by summer… [not fair!!! Iraqi oil should be paying for the war, not us!]

If you know anyone who wants some artistic work done, big or small, let me know and I would really appreciate the work!

For years I have done mural boards for people [up to 4ft x 8 ft and larger ones that interlock] and they can be done from home and later applied to walls [which is good in the event you were to move or redecorate, they can be easily removed and applied elsewhere.

I can do all that ‘faux’ type painting– too, like paint a brick wall  in 3d and it look real [ but really be plasterboard], lol and I have a ‘nac’ for painting realistic looking stones and rocks so that I can turn a doorway into a castle entrance or a child’s room into a wonderland…I have done castles and seascapes, landscapes for years. I can also do spot murals- you know like foliage and flora around windows or doorways, entranceways etcs.

I have some of my art at
www.AveHurley.Etsy.com
in basically framable prints and note cards.

I also have some of my art transferred onto clothing, housewares and more at :
www.avehurleyillustrations.onlyhere.net

I haven’t figured out how to adequately advertise those sites and see from the visitor counters, that there just isn’t alot of people out there that even see my ‘stuff’ ;(

So if you even take a peak, I ‘d appreciate it and if anyone has any suggestions as to how I can get some business going, please let me know…

I have been  on www.myspace.com/avehurleyillustrations  for over a year and have met alot of wonderful talented people and myspace has been a good place for me to make some friends and learn new things and share things I know..

I do however have to do some sort of work and need some sort of art jobs or sales since I am basically stuck at home because of my health and also finances, [like many others I am sure} so I am not complaining, but it would be nice to have something else to do sometimes…

Have a great weekend and God bless you all, my friends…:)

Ave Hurley [LadyMadonnah] ave1954@msn.com  1-718-554-0289

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One thought on “Second Chance, doing my artwork in my 50’s……..:)

  1. Pingback: Second Chance, doing my artwork in my 50's........:) « Ave Hurley « Ave Hurley

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