isn't it funny how things work out?
Years later my friend Janice worked at a gallery in Old Winter Park and she got to arrange the gorgeous store displays, and I thought that must be a marvelous job. Since then she came out, I came out, and we both moved to new places to spread our wings in new (and old) creative endeavors.
Everywhere I go I notice and enjoy advertising and what it is about the visual that makes things click for people. My whole world is about the visual, but for some people it is only sometimes about the visual. The secret is to figure out what captures and captivates people. It is that moment when the visual works for lots of assorted and different people that is magical - a genie has been let out of the bottle.
Now, so many years later I have my own store front of sorts... the window fronting my studio has become my place to play with the visual, to see what tantalizes and captivates people to stop and look. I am a window designer and an advertiser, a business owner and a window washer all rolled into one.
That window, the tablescape, is my opportunity to welcome people and make them smile... to make them pause for a moment and maybe think about how wide-ranging art can be. Art is not just a painting or a sculpture... it can be an artfully arranged grouping, a stack of postcards arranged just so. It is all about the visual, and through my window I have the chance to make people think about just that. Whether I am at the studio or not does not matter, people can be engaged at all hours of the day and night.
The other resident artists are talking about their windows too..... and paint colors, and the visual. Those windows are an opportunity to reach out and grab people without ever saying a word. Last week a woman visiting the big event room for a meeting saw my beaded praying mantis in the window and needed to stop and show me a tiny red mark on her pinky finger and tell me the story of a lovely mantis from her childhood who bit her finger. She LOVES these beautiful little invertebrates. The display initiated that conversation.
When I am working in the studio I sometimes turn to see people perusing the tabletop... so engrossed that they do not notice me looking. Advertising at work. When they finally do look up and meet my eyes, they smile. How cool is that? A conversation has happened with no words. The transfer of information visually has occurred. We each 'know' something about the other that we did not know before. That window is a place for people to peek in, but it is also a place for me to peek out.
It is all about the visual.
The listing in today's Washington Post:
Under Museums > Galleries and Art Spaces > Opening Show > Maryland:
-- WASHINGTON SCHOOL OF PHOTOGRAPHY "Snapshots -- The Fine Art of Green," today through May 5. Judith Olivia HeartSong displays her photographs, which depict elements of nature. 4850 Rugby Ave., Bethesda. 301-654-1998 or http://www.wsp-photo.com.
(Well... they got it half right..... I hope they come and see the show.)