Tag Archives: Kristen Ferrell

Artypants Update….

15 Sep

Helloooooooooooo bunnies!!

Just a few little artsy announcements to fill your Saturday afternoon (which I hope isn’t as unseasonably hot for you as it is for me… because it’s like hell took over outside here in too-sunny Huntington Beach- and it’s GROSS!!).

TONIGHT!!!….  in beautiful Asbury Park, NJ (I love this town) at the AMAZING Parlor Gallery (I love this gallery even more) I am in a wonderful group show called “We Find Our Way”.  Artists in this show include Michael Mapes, Paul Romano, Scotty Albrecht, Jody Travis Thompson, Bryn Perrott, Brandon McLean, Ray Sell, Andy Pawlan, Kevin Hebb, myself, and Dennis Lee Mitchell.  It opens tonight, and if you’re in the area you should go.  For reals, yo.

“We Find Our Way” Group show at the Parlor Gallery in Asbury Park, NJ

The next show coming up is local for me (which I hardly ever do local shows, so I don’t have to travel for this… YAY!!!!).  I am participating again in the wonderful “Monstoberfest” group show at the fantastic Rothick Art Haus gallery in Anaheim, CA.  The opening is October 13th, and it is always a blast!

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Aside from works for upcoming shows, I’ve decided to start a couple huge paintings (which I always regret doing because they take so damn long to finish and cost a fortune to ship- but I apparently am in an abusive love affair with stress, so I will continue to keep doing this to myself), and have been doing silly drawings.  To put giggles into your day, here is some of my new silliness:

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I did a bunch of these… they’re my “Hare Studies”… get it? “Hare” studies?! Well… it made me laugh. 🙂

I’ve been posting a bunch of my “works in progress” on instagram.  So if you want to find me and be a friend with me on there, my username is kristenferrell.  I also post way too many photos of my dog, my cats, and all the ridiculous plants I grow in my backyard.  That is all I have to say for today.  Until we meet again, my darlings, I will leave you with some glorious photoshop magic performed by my dear and wonderful Stevil Kinevil on a photo of me and Brad …. enjoy.

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Giving Etsy it’s own department at the Center for Lessons Learned….

15 Apr

8 months… holy shit…. It’s been 8 months since I’ve posted anything on here!!  Dear lord, my bunnies- if I had known that time had actually sped up while I wasn’t looking I would have adjusted my life accordingly.  Let me say that the past 8 months have been a foggy blur, and I’m sorry for the dead air coming from my end, and let us move forward.  🙂

What has brought me out of the black hole I’ve been living in was an extremely shocking experience with the DIY shopping site Etsy.com.  When I’ve lectured at art schools or been asked in interviews/blogs/etc what a good way to start selling art/arty goods is, my first response has always been Etsy.  It’s a great way to get exposure because of it’s social media aspect, and it’s really cheap and easy to use.  Just as an experiment to see how many new people I could draw to my works, I decided to open an Etsy store in addition to my official webstore where I offered smaller one-of-a-kind arty things as well as my sunglasses line.  It was going great, and was cheaper than my official webstore so I decided to drop my big webstore and move everything over to Etsy.  Here’s where the problems started.

The day after I announced on my facebook fanpage that I would be moving everything over from my webstore to my Etsy store, I got an email from Etsy saying that items of mine had been flagged because they didn’t meet the Etsy requirements- and they had shut my whole store down.  I’d like to think that the timing of my posting the store move and my items being flagged were a coincidence… but there are a handful of creepers out there who don’t like me, and realistically one of them reported my store to be a dick.  Eyerolls and sighs all around.

So here is the nutso part of this… in the email from Etsy, here is a list of what I had to provide to them in order to get my entire store reopened:

  1. All shop info
  2. The names of everyone involved in any aspect of my shop from ideas to creation to shipping,etc
  3. Location of shop, identities of photographers, shipping locations, etc
  4. Photos of everyone involved in the shop
  5. Detailed description of how all items are made
  6. Length of time to make each item
  7. Every material used – and photos of raw materials of all everything involved with making the item
  8. Where materials are purchased plus proof of purchase of materials: photos or scans of receipts
  9. Photos of all tools and equiptment
  10. Photos of all work spaces
  11. Photos/graphics of all patterns used for items
  12. Photos of a step-by-step process of how everything was made

All the photos sent to them had to be shot next to a piece of paper showing your username and the date for authentication.  My shop was to remain closed until I provided answers that they felt sufficient to all of these questions.

To all my arty little sweethearts out there – THIS IS BULLSHIT.  Allow me to go, step-by-step through all the reasons WHY this is bullshit…

  1. Only ever disclose what shop info that you are comfortable disclosing to an unknown source.  You have no idea what’s on the other side of that email you’re sending out- so be careful with what you give out to protect yourself.  They have all the information that they should need when you set up an account.
  2. You are the owner of the store, and that is all they should need to know.  You shouldn’t be required to expose the identities of anyone who might have anything to do with your art.
  3. Photos of everyone involved in your art?  Come on… really?  So if I have friends who drop off my packages for me, I have to photograph them and send it to Etsy?  No way.  Too intrusive.
  4. Detailed description of how items are made… don’t provide this.  These are your trade secrets.  If you’re making something that is really unique, do not send this information to a faceless business that creates daily blogs on how to make things.  Again- you don’t know who gets these emails and you will have no idea how this information will be used.  Protect your art and it’s process.
  5. Length of time to make your items… I had clothing, jewelry, sunglasses and paintings on my store.  To be able to answer this is fully unrealistic.
  6. Photos of the raw materials- again, do not give out this information.  Unless you are selling materials, don’t give up aspects of how you make your unique items.
  7. Reciepts or proof of purchased goods?  That is information for whoever does your taxes- NOT for a faceless corporate website entity. No one but the IRS has the right to see that.
  8. Photos of tools and workspace:  The majority of the people on Etsy create out of their home,and Etsy knows this.  There is no way in hell I’m going to send photos of my house to anyone I don’t know.  That is an invasion of privacy, and just creepy for them to demand.
  9. *Photos of graphics and patterns*- this is a biggie.  Never ever ever ever ever disclose your graphics/ CAD illustrations / patterns to ANYONE except those who will be assisting you in production.  Period.  Ever.  Etsy states in their “DO’s and “DON’Ts” that: “A third-party vendor may be used for intermediary tasks in some crafts. Acceptable examples include but are not limited to: printing the seller’s original artwork, metal casting from the seller’s original mold or kiln firing the seller’s handcrafted ceramic work.”  I am in the unique position with my day job (where I design sunglasses and eyewear) that I am able to design unique sunglasses with my own CAD illustrations and have them manufactured in small quantities, and then I do the embellishments and packaging by hand.  The same goes for my clothing (which are from my own patterns), and my laser-etched necklaces. These items fall within Etsy’s guidelines.  But I will NEVER give out the original patterns, illustrations or CAD’s to a corporation.  And industry standards/ common knowledge dictates that I keep this information private for my own protection.  To hold my potential income and entire store hostage until I give up this private information breaks so many ethical rules that it’s insane.
  10. Never give anyone you’re step by step unless you want to be knocked off.  Period.

I emailed them and told them that I wasn’t about to give out such detailed and personal information, and that I wanted my store closed permanently but to remain on buyer status so that I could still shop from the artists that I loved.  They proceeded to kick me off Etsy completely.  I emailed them letting them know that it was sad that I could no longer support the artists that I shop from through Etsy since I was totally booted- but that I would just buy directly from the artists instead.  They didn’t want to loose a single penny, so they reinstated my account as just a buyer.

Here’s what creeped me out the most about this… there are people who have built up their etsy store so much that it is a major source of income for them.  And all it takes is 1 person flagging their shop, and the whole thing is shut down.  Your store and source of income can get hijacked and put on hold indefinitely until you meet Etsy’s the over-the-top demands that violate industry standards and your privacy.  So if you have 1 crazy person out there who doesn’t like you, they have the power to shut you down.  And if you are able to convince Etsy to open your store again- you can just be flagged again, and again, and again.  You have no power over your own store.

After this happened to me, I got tons of emails and links from my darling bunnies to tons of other artists that this happened to.  Here are a couple:

“Etsy shop suspended!- What you need to know”

“Etsy Closes Azreal’s Accomplice”

Apparently it’s impossible to get them on the phone.  And even after you comply with everything they ask, they can still keep you shut down- just because they want to.

So here is my official retraction for any public promotion that I have ever given Etsy.  This is not a safe business step.  The control over your shop is apparently in the hands of people who want to falsely flag you and the whimsy of Etsy- and not in your hands where it should be.  This is just wrong.

To the spiteful little creeper gem who flagged my etsy store- THANK YOU SO MUCH!!  And I mean that with the most sincerity ever.  I got shut down on etsy before I moved everything off my official webstore, so this was such a blessing.  I learned so much about etsy that I needed to know, and was able to (with great ease) just move everything back onto my official webstore and not lose a penny of my DESPERATELY needed income. This was an awesome learning experience, and in the end I am super thankful for it.

So here is where I open this up to my readers…. can I get some feedback for the crafty cuties out there who want an inexpensive and reliable webstore?  Where should they go?  I’m on homestead.com- and I do love them very much, but there is a monthly fee for it (and some new artists aren’t at a place where they can afford a monthly fee).  Ideas and feedback, anyone?  Let’s all help each other out with big brainstorming!!!

Thank you for tuning in to my lengthy rambling.  In my head, I’m giving you all a gigantic hug!!

(ps… since everything is back on my webstore, you can get these new editions there right now.  Click the pic and check it out!!  xooxoxoxxo)

"Eve" apple sunglasses

Sticking a toe in the water….

22 May

Before the economy crashed, things were pretty awesome.  I was able to run my arty business from home, have the money and time to do pretty much whatever I wanted, and had the freedom to make whatever clothing I thought was cute and fun to sell.  I had my dream job of staying in my pajamas all day long, painting and designing clothing for all my adorable customers.

Then the economy crashed.  And the first 2 things that came to a complete standstill were sales of art and sales of non-necessity clothing… which is everything I did.  Sucks for me!!  So with that, I came to a screeching halt on making anything new until things got better and jumped into day-job land as an art director at a fantastic sunglasses company.

Fast forward 2 years…. guess what?  Things are better!  People can bitch all they want about Obama- but things are better than they were 2 years ago.  People have started spending again… and that’s a good thing.  When the media instilled financial terror in our society (whether it was warranted or not… and in a lot of cases it wasn’t), pocket books closed.  When an entire nation shut their wallets, business’s lost money and had to start firing people.  Those people weren’t able to pay their bills and lost their homes and there was less spending, which lead to more downsizing and more people being broke and more downsizing and homelessness and people being broke, etc etc etc.  The one thing that actually stimulates the economy (spending) is the thing that the media made people too terrified to do until people were actually at a place where they couldn’t do it.  Thanks, media!!  But that has gotten better.  I’ve seen it in the daily lives of the people I know, and on a national scale.  Is it great, or anywhere near where it was before the crash?  Of course not!!  But it is better.

So now that it’s better, I’m getting back into the game.  I wasn’t about to go into production on ANYTHING unless things looked a little brighter because going into production on ANYTHING is expensive, and I was broke.  But because of my amazing day job at the sunglasses company, and because of a few tips from glorious friends… Kristen Ferrell Clothing is getting a makeover and hitting it hard once again.

Last night I was up until around 6am with the flu putting my new sunglasses line on the webstore.  Here are a few examples of my new fun that I am SOOOOOOO excited about!:

Forrest Wayfarers- these already sold out, but more are on the way!

Daisy- which are one of my favorites!!

The cases all the frames come with (and these cases make me giggle)

And here's a preview of one of the new pendants that I'm making. This is made out of wood, and there will be oodles like this... and I LOVE them!!!

So good things are happening.  Finally.  This year has been a rough one so far and filled with lots of crappy drama thrown at me by terrible people and health bullshit and money woes…. but it’s all seeming to turn around.  And it fills me with smiles.  I hope all of your days are filled with smiles, too…. because you’re all fantastic bunnies!!!

And this is my personal message to the past stint of struggle that I’m starting to see my way out of:

Dear Past-5-Months... ya see that fat middle finger? It's all for you!! (but those glasses can also be found on my site to anyone who fancies them!)

Big love to you all, dearies.  And gigantic hugs for staying tuned and giving support!!!  I kiss the foreheads of each and every one of you. And you.  And you.

Hellooooooooooo New Jersey!!!!!………..

12 Nov

My internet at home has been extremely bipolar lately and dropping out for days at a time, I’m up to my eyeballs with craziness, and I’m supposed to be on a plane in 4 hours… so this will be short and sweet.

This Saturday (November 14th) is the opening of “Tragically Delicious: the bittersweet art of Kristen Ferrell and Angie Mason” at the Parlor Gallery in Asbury Park, NJ.

8125_140747570123_720695123_3090228_1122521_nParlor Gallery

707 Cookman Ave

Asbury Park, NJ  07712

The opening reception is from 7pm- 11pm- and YES, I will be there!  And if I’m flying across the entire country to be there, you can be there too… right? (if you live in the area, that is.  I don’t expect any of you to hop a plane to come to the show!  I’m not THAT demanding!).

Above is an example of Angie Mason’s work if you’re new to her world. And here are a couple of my new pieces that will be exhibited for the first time….

art 005_low_resart 009_low_resI hope to see all your bright shining faces there!!!

Off to finish packing, and hopping that plane!  Can one of you out there take care of that pesky rain that is falling all over the place out there before I arrive?  Please?  I appreciate it.

XOXOXOXOOXOXXOOXXO

What happens in Vegas never really stays in Vegas….

17 Feb

… or at least now that things like Flickr exist.

Here are a few pics from the recent “Pool Tradeshow” that I was at with the girls from All-Mighty Clothing.  I never have a camera on me (or the battery is always dead when I do- which was the case during this trade show), but luckily the glorious Jen Daking from All-Mighty always has her camera ready and waiting (Jen also does makeup professionally, so if you need for some people to look pretty, check her out HERE).  All these pictures were taken by her.

Here’s our little booth at the show….

Kristen Ferrell/All-Mighty Pool 2008

a little more of the booth, Erica working and me making a stupid face….

pool 2008

This is Stella… she belongs to the owners of Vicious Cycle in Chicago.  I’m a devout cat-person, but I fell in love with this puppy (and I love the folks at Vicious Cycle tons and tons as well- go there and give them mountains of money because they’re great)…

stella

All-Mighty decorations are the cutest on the planet…..

cupcake

I don’t really drink much, or gamble, or have sex with hookers…. so when I’m in Vegas my vice is the bakery’s that can be found in the casinos.  I bought happy pink cupcake things that looked like cars and big balls of chocolate hazelnut madness.  I think this is much more fun than a hooker could be, and alot cheaper than gambling…

Erica thought so too…..

this picture was mandatory (and Jen is my favorite for taking it)….

That’s all I’m going to post on here… but you can see more on my flickr page (just scroll down and there’s a link to it) or on Fantastic Jen’s flickr page.

Wonderful Danielle was sick the whole show, and I have now come down with what she had… so I have no more energy to write, and I’ve got to muster the strength to paint all day for my upcoming show in France while taking care of my rowdy son and cleaning the house because we’re going to be having guests staying with us for a few days.  UUUUGGGHHHHH…

It never ends.

I’d like a show of hands of everyone who needs a nap…..

5 Feb

Since this is my first posting on this little thingy, I’d like to state right off the bat that I’m a cusser. I use a lot of bad words. I use a lot of non-bad words and turn them into bad words. I’m very creative with this, and sometimes downright icky.

If this is a problem, please stop reading now and go on to a more “Full-House” “Cosby-esque” blog. I won’t be offended. I promise.

Today was a writhing pile of bile that just won’t stop oozing all over my shoes. And my husband, Brad, has chosen to play 1980’s German industrial music nonstop as I’m trying to decompress. Maybe he thinks this is funny. Actually- I KNOW he thinks this is funny. On any other day- it probably would be. But not today. Today, it is a parasite infested cherry on top of a rotted parasite infested moldy cupcake of a day.

I spent my day in a hamster ball. Running frantically from one tragically important errand to another- but all of this running in L.A. standstill traffic. Hence the hamster ball. Running running running… but only to find that you’ve been stuck under the sofa for the past hour, and have gotten nowhere.

Is any of this making sense? I can’t tell. Coherency is lost right now… all I can hear in my head is 1980’s German industrial music. Damn you, Brad.

I have a trade show in Las Vegas in 1 week. I found out today that only half of my samples are going to be made. And there are still about 5 different shirts that I need to pick up. This is bad. This is really really bad. Because I still need to get them screenprinted and embroidered. I still need to make the catalog- but how do I do this if half my line won’t even be at the show? The sales I make at these shows are what fund my business and all my living expenses for the next 6 months until the next show. How am I going to make this work? I have no fucking idea. Like I said… this is bad.

And Brad just turned to me and told me that for the next month, all he is going to listen to is 1980’s German industrial music. FFFFUUUUCCCKKKK!!! I must have participated in a lot of raping and pillaging in a previous life to have earned this.

Back to work related traumas… so the new line is going to be at the trade show incomplete. And in the midst of this, I’m supposed to be creative because on March 4th I leave to go to Cannes, France to participate in this:

Fusion Art Festival in Cannes, France

This is a HUGE opportunity, and I am sincerely humbled and honored to be able to be a part of it… but I still have to finish the pieces for it, and there just aren’t enough hours in the day. And how am I supposed to be creative when I have a gun pointed at the base of my skull from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep? It doesn’t really set a “creative mood”.

And speaking of “the moment I go to sleep”… I’ve started sleepwalking again. I did this when I was younger- but it’s been literally decades since this bizarre habit has reared it’s ugly head. I was able to go through my first marriage, the expulsion of that first husband, the stresses of single motherhood, moving multiple times, and all other grown-up icky situations without this starting up again… but now- when I need to sleep the most- I wander through the house in the middle of the night in a zombie-like state. Brad found me last night curled up in the living room. He’s caught me multiple times coming back into the bedroom after wandering around for who-knows how long. I want to set up spy-cams in the house so I can see what I do during these nocturnal journeys. It’s got to be wonderfully bizarre to witness. But I wake up every morning feeling less-than-rested.

Right now, Brad’s trying to convince me of the genius behind the 1980’s German industrial music that he’s still listening to. I’m not fucking buying it. And even if it is genius- right now, all it’s doing is making me want to pour bleach in his eyes. I love you, darling Brad- but the joke is going too far… and you’re leaving me little choice but to retaliate in violence.

To sum up my day… I’m tired. Achingly tired to my very core. The kind of tired where all I want to do is cry… but I’m too tired to even do that. But my brilliant friend, Jen (she is one of the girls who runs http://www.All-mighty.net… go there and gaze at their splendor) told me that because I get alot of people reading my “myspace” blogs, that I should have an “official” one. And since I needed to turn my brain off and lay on the bed and do “nothing”- but I have no idea how to do “nothing”… so I started this thingy. This is me and Jen at the last trade show in Vegas. She was trying to keep my hair from taking me down (it’s sometimes a little stubborn and difficult to tame):

me and jen

That’s all I have for the evening. We’ll see if I can continue to figure out how this blog site works, and I will keep updates on my midnight wanderings for all to enjoy.