The Everyday Life of a Working Artist


Attention! My blog is moving to my website in early January 2016. If you are receiving daily emails about this blog you will continue to receive them after the switch. Until then, you might want to head on over to my new blog here!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days

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I am starting a 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge on January 2nd. I think this is a great way to kick off the New Year and I invite you all to join me. It's very simple and easy ... all you need to do is paint 30 paintings in 30 days. You can post your paintings daily here on my blog to share and I hope my blog will offer encouragement for those of you who might fall behind, need inspiration or have no idea what to paint!
I am doing this challenge for a lot of reasons. Personally, I need to paint more so I know this challenge will get me in my studio every day. I also firmly believe that if you paint more regularly you will improve your painting skills in dramatically. I decided to share this with all of you because I think it's a wonderful way for all of us to start off the year ... together!
So, what do you need to do to accept this challenge and stay on track? Well, here are my steps ...
1. Post a link to your blog below to say officially that you are in!
2. Make a commitment to yourself to enter this challenge and understand there may be days when you need to paint more than one painting to "get ahead" or "catch up".
3. Understand there are no real rules for this challenge. If you miss a day, then paint two the next day. If you fall behind stay in the challenge! No one is counting how many paintings you have completed (except you), I promise! The only rule is that you must have fun and enjoy the process.
4. Tell your art friends about this challenge and get them to join in so you can share your experiences with your art buddies!
5. Decide in advance on what you want to paint for the month. You might select a theme (such as painting still life, reflections, glass, flowers, landscapes, value studies, portraits or as in my case "no boats"!) or a particular size or different medium. I do suggest you paint fairly small as a painting a day is a big commitment.
6. Get organized. Go through your photos and pick at least the first week of inspiration or plan out your plein air locations in advance. Check your supplies to make sure you have enough canvas(es) for at least the first week. 
7. Spend an hour organizing your painting area. If you studio looks like mine from crazy holiday deadlines, a bit of organization is a good thing.
8. Tell your friends and family you are doing this. They can provide great support.
9. Blog about it. Be sure to upload your daily painting on your blog and put it on your blog and website. Talk about the experience, what you are learning and the fun you are having! Be sure to include prices (and please charge a price that makes it worth your while ... paintings listed too cheap seem too cheap) and an easy way for someone to buy your paintings (i.e. buy now buttons ...). Then share it also on Facebook.
10. Post your daily painting on my blog and include a link to the page on your blog featuring that painting. I am hoping the visibility here will help you sell your paintings! Who knows. I will also teach you how to create one of these collages (as seen above) featuring all 30 of your paintings when the challenge is over. You can post your collage to my blog too!
11. And most importantly, have fun. If you get behind no one will notice. If you do paint all 30 paintings then you will know you accomplished an amazing goal and have started off 2013 with a bang! If you reach some hurdles, talk about it on my blog as all of us are here to help. We will support each other, I promise.

This is going to be fun.

Don't forget my webinARTs course starts in January. Sign up now and start anytime ... It's the best thing you can do for your art career. Use the discount code save25 to save $25 on the registration price.
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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

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"Resting for the Holidays"
Oil, 6" x 6".

Merry Christmas! My Twelve Days of Christmas giveaway has come to a close and I want to thank each of you that were kind enough to join me in celebrating the holidays these past 12 days. Yesterday we had 73 suggestions as to ways we can all give back and help our fellow artists in the coming year. I will be sharing many of these wonderful ideas (along with details on the January 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge) on this week's "Artists Helping Artists" show. Be sure to tune in Thursday at 9:00 am PST, 12:00 noon EST. If you would like to participate in the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge you can sign up here on my blog starting tomorrow, December 26th. Also, be sure to sign up to receive my Daily blog posts as well so you don't miss anything!

The winner of the final giveaway (which is one of my original paintings) is Teresa Telehany! Congratulations! Email me so we can finalize all of the details and I can get your mailing address. 

Finally, for those of you that participated in the Twelve Days of Christmas, there was a reason behind every "request" you had to do to participate. I tried really hard to get all of your artwork shown and publicized on my blog. My stats for the last few days averaged a 1000 % increase in viewership so I think it worked! For those of you that went back and found a favorite painting or blog post, make a mental note of what you liked! Try to incorporate everything you saw and liked in to your own artwork. And most importantly, take one of the suggestions of how you can help your fellow artists and make a point to incorporate it in to your plans for 2013. Life really is about giving back and helping our fellow artists.

Happy holidays. Merry Christmas. And thanks for making my life so complete!
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Sunday, December 23, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Twelve Giveaway

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It's hard to believe tomorrow is the last day of the Twelve Days of Christmas giveaway. This has been a lot of fun and thank you to the hundreds of you that have participated in the fun. 
I love all of your favorite paintings that were posted on my blog post yesterday. Please take a minute to click on the links to see all of the great art.t

The winner of the 11th Day Giveaway is Debbie Lamey-MacDonald. Debbie is the winner of a month long webinARTs course. Email me and I will register you for the class. Congrats!

The 12th Day giveaway prize is one of my original oil paintings. If you would like to have a chance to win the painting, my request is simple. I am a true believer that as artists we all need to think about giving back. We need to do everything we can to help our fellow artists.  That's why my radio show is named "Artists Helping Artists". 

I am looking for suggestions as to how we can all help our fellow artists. So to be eligible for the final giveaway leave your suggestions here. What do you think is a great way to help a fellow artist? Share your ideas on my blog or on any of my facebook pages. And you are welcome to make as many suggestions as you want if you would like to increase your chances to win. 
Good luck. And thanks for sharing.

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12 Days of Christmas - Day Eleven Giveaway

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Wow, only one day until my Twelve Days of Christmas Giveaway is over! I can't believe it. And, I survived our party. Now that's good news! I can't wait to get in my studio and start painting again.
Some of you may have heard about my "30 Paintings in 30 Days" challenge. It starts on January 2nd and for any of you that are interested in joining me, we are going to paint 30 paintings in 30 days! You will even be able to post your painting on my blog if you choose to participate. It will be fun and it is a fantastic way to start of the new year. I think it's a great chance to try some new things and also get in the habit of painting more often. Think about it. Give it a try. What's the worst thing that can happen? Perhaps you paint 15 paintings and after 15 days you can't continue. At least you will have painted 15! 

Some of you are putting together a theme for your thirty paintings. That's great. You can also just choose a size and paint that size every day. Or paint 30 value studies. Maybe you will paint 30 larger versions of paintings you have already done. Or paint 30 paintings that each represent a month of the year (then you can print a 2013 calendar right away!) Maybe you want to paint the same painting but just vary it each day. It's up to you! Just make sure you are ready by the 2nd of January ...

Yesterday's giveaway was fun and I loved reading all of your posts about the one things you would like to learn. There were lots of techniques mentioned, as well as art marketing. Be sure to visit my blog from yesterday and read all of the posts. And if you did submit an entry, be sure to think about adding your "wish" to your goals list for 2013. I bet it's not that hard to accomplish.

Today's Giveaway for the 10th Day of Christmas is a webinARTs course. It's a month long course and will prove to be very valuable for all of you! If you don't win, be sure to use the "save25" discount code before December 31st to save $25 on the January webinARTs course because it will expire! 

To qualify for the 11th Day Giveaway all you need to do is post a link below of someone else's painting that you love. Be sure you link to their blog for everyone to enjoy!

The winner of the Day 10 free workshop giveaway is Joan Funk. Congrats! Be sure to email me your contact information so we can get you all signed up for one of my workshops.

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Friday, December 21, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Ten Giveaway

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It's been an incredibly busy time as tomorrow is our annual holiday party and I am cooking for 250 guests.  Fortunately I have been cooking for weeks and today many of my friends came over and helped with the last minute preparation. I have 24 items on the menu and today we actually made 500 crab cakes! I am very tired but thanks to my family, the house is entirely ready and tomorrow will be a pretty easy day. Yahoo.

Thank you so much for all of your very inspiring comments about "why you love being an artist". sometimes we need to stop and think about how lucky we are to be able to create and enjoy the wonderful lifestyle of an artist! I hope this reflection has helped to reinforce why you have chosen this wonderful profession, regardless if you are doing it full or part-time.

The winner of Day 9 of the 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway is Susan Garriques. You have won a $100 gift certificate. Just email me and we will make arrangements to to figure out how you would like to spend it!

The Day 10 giveaway is one of my painting workshops at the Carriage House in South Pasadena. It's a $325 value and can be used to attend one of my three day workshops which includes a gourmet dinner cooked by yours truly. 

To be eligible for the giveaway, all you have to do is post a response to the following question: "If I could learn anything having to do with my art career it would be ...". Your question can pertain to technique, painting methods, marketing and sales ... anything you want! You can post your comment here or on any of my Facebook pages. Good luck ...
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Thursday, December 20, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Nine Giveaway

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Wow. I don't even know what to say. There were over 100 suggestions submitted yesterday for topics for future AHA shows. Really? Do you all have any idea how awesome that is? And do you have any idea how wonderful that is for yours truly? I am stunned. And forever grateful. Thank you so much for taking the time to send in your suggestions. I am so touched that you all rallied to help me with this. Thank you.

The winner of the 12 Days of Christmas Day Eight Giveaway is Carol Steinberg.  It's not all that surprising since she submitted A TON of AHA show ideas. I was a bit curious to see if would "randomly" pick the one person who submitted by far the most suggestions ... and sure enough, that is exactly what happened! So congrats! Email me and we will set up your free consultation.

The Day Nine Giveaway is a $100 gift certificate towards one of my paintings or any of the merchandise featured on my website. To qualify for the giveaway, all you have to do is leave a post on this blog or my Facebook pages answering the following question.
"I love being an artist because ...".

Dig deep, and take a moment to think about why we are so blessed to be artists. And enjoy your day!

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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Eight Giveaway

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If you haven't figured it out by now, there is a method to my madness in asking you to do certain things to be eligible for my 12 Days of Christmas giveaways. Most of them are to prepare you to get ready for 2103. By having to go back and decide on your favorite painting and blog post for this past year, I am hoping the process will lead to some good things for 2013. The same goes for having you choose your biggest marketing challenge. I am hoping the challenge you identified will be added to your goals for 2013.

The Artists Helping Artists radio show this Thursday is titled "Organizing Tips for Artists ... Getting Ready for 2013". The show is going to be REALLY GOOD and I hope you will all listen to it as it will tie in some of the things we have done for my giveaway. Click here to listen to the show (it will be broadcast at 9:00am/12:00 noon on Thursday, Dec 20th). 

The winner for the 12 Days of Christmas Day Seven giveaway is Stephanie Berry. Congrats on winning a set of 20 notecards. Email me with your address so i can send them off to you later this week.

Keeping in the AHA spirit, to be eligible for the 12 Days of Christmas 8th Day giveaway, all you need to do is make a suggestion for a topic for the AHA show. I'll be honest, coming up with show ideas is one of the hardest things I do every month. So for each suggestion you submit, you will get an extra chance at winning. Please read the entries submitted before you as I will need delete any duplicates. I can't tell you how much these ideas will help me! I will be forever grateful.

The giveaway is the most expensive one yet ... a Private Marketing Consultation. It's a pretty cool service I offer that's valued at $250.00.  If you want to learn more about what happens in one of my marketing consultations, just go here. So, start thinking about those ideas for the Artists Helping Artists shows. Post them here on my blog or either of my Facebook pages. Thanks!
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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Seven Giveaway

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Yesterday's blog posts are all about selling your art. I asked all of you to identify the biggest marketing challenge you face as an artist. The response was amazing! Many of you want help with identifying your audience, getting in to galleries, building a better website and just balancing marketing and painting at the same time.

I have tried really hard these past few years to answer many of your marketing questions through the Artists Helping Artists show. But I realized earlier this year there was a need for more detailed information. That's why I created webinARTs to show you EXACTLY how to do all of this "marketing stuff". 

I posted this question on yesterday's giveaway post because I wanted to get an even better understanding of what artists need to help make them more successful. I am thrilled that almost all of the items mentioned yesterday are already in the webinARTs course. But I now have a list of more things that I can't wait to address in future AHA shows and webinARTs courses. So thank you for sharing and I am going to do everything I can to help all of you!

One thing I would like to suggest is that you go back to the directory of all of the "Artists Helping Artists" recorded shows and listen to the topics you would like more help with. If that isn't enough then take a look at the sample video on the webinARTs page and see if you think the course is something you want to pursue. 

I am not trying to push webinARTs on any of you. It's just that I believe it is a really great resource. All of the information is there to create a website, better blog, manage all of your Facebook pages and build a client list. And you have access to it for a year. As a way to say thank you for helping me I have created a discount code to save $25.00 off the January class. Use "save25" at registration to redeem this discount. 

Now ... The winner of the Day Six Giveaway is Durinda Creek. Durinda has won a one month webinARTs course. Just email me and I will get you all signed up for the course. Congrats!

Today's giveaway is a set of 20 of my notecards (valued at $60). To be eligible for the giveaway, all you have to do is post a link below of your favorite blog post from 2012. If you don't have a blog, then post a link to another artist's blog that you like. This will be a great way to share our favorite blog posts!

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12 Days of Christmas - Day Six Giveaway

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I am learning so much thanks to this giveaway! 

Yesterday there were a lot of wonderful links posted to on my blog that represented websites that you all enjoy. Be sure to visit them all as I think you might find a few a new favorites.

The winner of the panel holder for the Day Five Giveaway is Sharon Rose Smith. Just email me your address and I will send it off to you later this week!

The Day Six Giveaway is a free month long webinARTs course. There is a Marketing 101 course starting in January or a Marketing 102 course in March. The course consists of 20 on-line classes and all of the students have access to a private class blog (with almost 80 videos) for a year.

To be eligible for this giveaway I would like to get your input about marketing your art. I'd like to know what areas in marketing you would like to know more about. Is it your website, blog or Facebook you would like more information? Is it getting in to galleries ... pricing your art ... or building your client list? Give it some thought and post on my blog what you think is the most important marketing need for you, as an artist. I'd really appreciate your input. One of you will win the free webinARTs class for giving me your input. Thank you!
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Monday, December 17, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Five Giveaway

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I think I underestimated the impact all of your submissions were going to have on my 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway. I am so inspired by your paintings from Day 1, the pictures of your studios on Day 2, the artists that inspire you most on Day 3, and the music that helps you be creative on Day 4. If you have missed any of these be sure and go to my blog posts and check out all of this wonderful information. I love the fact that we are sharing resources and I think today's posts will continue to inspire us all! Plus it's always fun to giveaway stuff!
First off, I need to announce the winner of the Day Four 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway. I am so pleased that Annie Salness was the winner of one of my 2013 calendars! Just email me your address Annie and I will send it off this week!
Today's giveaway is another one of my canvas panel holders. I heard from so many of you that you wanted a one of my panel holders so I have decided to give away another one! It holds panels up to 12" in height.

All you have to do to be eligible for this prize is add a link below to your favorite art website. Choose a website that inspires you, gets you excited about your art and one that you think other artists need to know about! I cannot wait to see the links posted here tomorrow.

Finally, if you went to the trouble on Day 1 and 2 to select a photo of your favorite painting and your studio, be sure to post these photos on Facebook, your blog and your website. Photos are a great way to tell your followers more about you and your art!

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Sunday, December 16, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Four Giveaway

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Wow ... it's been wonderful reading about all of the artists that inspired so many of you. I can't wait to spend more time following the links and getting to know many of these new names. Thanks so much for sharing! 

The winner of the Day Three Giveaway webinARTS month long class is Melissa Adams. Email me your contact information and I will get you all signed up for the January class!

Today's giveaway is one of my 2013 Calendars. It's easy to become eligible for the giveaway. All you have to do is leave a suggestion here (or on my Facebook page) of music to listen to while you are in your studio. I love Pandora and I am always looking for great artists to add to my play list! And I think we would all love to know who everyone is listening to while painting in the studio!
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Saturday, December 15, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Three Giveaway

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Things happen in life that are hard to understand. We look for answers and explanations but some things just don't make sense. Yesterday's events left most of us in disbelief and numb. I can't even fathom what those families are going through and my heart is absolutely broken. 

I seriously considered canceling my 12 Days promotion. It just didn't seem right. But I want to continue my giveaways because I really want to thank all of you for supporting me and believing that artists helping artists is something we all want to do. 

Yesterday's photos of your art studios and painting shots were wonderful. It was nice to be able to see  where so many of your amazing paintings are created. If you haven't seen the posts, be sure to go back to yesterday's blog and check out the more than 60 wonderful pictures. There are photos of great studios and beautiful plein air painting shots.

The winner of the Day 2 Giveaway panel holder is Rebekah Sisk. Congrats! Be sure to email me with your mailing address. 

I've decided to step it up a bit so today's giveaway is a free month long webinARTs course. 
The winner gets to choose either the January Marketing 101 course or the March Advanced Marketing 102 course. The giveaway is valued at $179.00. If you don't know about the course, it's an on-line 20-day course that shows artists exactly how to build a better website, blog, newsletter and sell art on Facebook. The September class had over 120 artists and I am so impressed with the amazing websites, blogs, newsletter and Facebook Pages that were created by the students! 

To be eligible for the Day Three Giveaway all you need to do is leave a comment here (or on my Facebook pages) telling us about an artist that you admire. Perhaps you love this artist's art, teaching style or daily blog posts. Just let us know. And be sure to include a link to their website so we can learn more.

Finally, hug somebody today. We all need more hugs.
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Friday, December 14, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day Two Giveaway

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Yippee, another day to give something away!

What a joy it was to visit my blog all day yesterday and see so many BEAUTIFUL paintings posted by all of you! There are so many talented artists out there and thank you for sharing your art! I can't think of a better gift for the holidays than a piece of original art. So think seriously about painting, giving or buying a piece of original art. Of course if you would like to see some beautiful paintings, check out all of the wonderful artwork on yesterday's blog post. There are almost 100 paintings posted and I promise you all of these amazing artists have artwork for sale.

I picked yesterday's winner by using It's so simple, as you just type in the nmber of entries and the website picks the winner. The lucky winner of the custom embroidered Artists Helping Artists apron is Josephine Hardison. Congratulations! Please email me your choice of a white or black apron, the name for monogramming and your mailing address.

The giveaway for the "2nd Day of Christmas" is a panel holder, and it's one of the most important tools in my studio. It holds any panel size up to 12" tall. The best news ... it weights about two pounds! It's valued at nearly $50.00.

And speaking of studios, for this giveaway all you need to do to be eligible is to post a photo of your painting area or your studio (if you have one), or a photo of you painting in your studio or plein air! I am hoping we can share these great photos and even end up sharing great ideas about other artist's painting areas! If you don't have a photo then get out your camera or smart phone and take a photo. Download it to your desktop and upload it to my blog below. Just click the link titled "Add Your Link". Feel free to link the photo to your blog where it asks for the URL link. Type in your name and email and then upload the photo on the next screen. It's very easy, I promise!

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Thursday, December 13, 2012

12 Days of Christmas - Day One Giveaway

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Day One!
Giving gifts at the holidays is one of my favorite things to do. Just ask any of my family members and they will gladly share a long list of mostly homemade, mostly "nice" gifts that I gave out every Christmas. Over the years there were some duds and quite a few that were given when "still unfinished"! It's time to continue my holiday tradition of gift giving!
The Day One giveaway is an AHA embroidered apron. The lucky winner can pick either white or black and I will embroider your first name on the apron!
To be eligible for the Day One prize, all you have to do is click below and add a photo of one of YOUR paintings that you consider is your most favorite from 2012! If you are not an artist feel free to upload any painting that you love! Just click the "Add Your Link" Button. You can link to a painting on your website or you can upload a photo. Have fun! This is my chance to say thank you by showing off YOUR ART to my friends! 
Be sure and sign up to receive my blog updates so you will be the first to know about the 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways!
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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Twelve Days of Christmas

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It's that time of the year again!

"The Twelve Days of Christmas" is my favorite time of the year. It's my chance to say thank you to all of you for supporting me, my art, the Artists Helping Artists Radio Show and webinARTs. It's my chance to give back. For twelve straight days I will be giving away prizes (which are valued at over $2000.00). There's no catch, it's just free stuff. Everyday for twelve days. And you can enter everyday and win more than once, so don't be shy!
I will ask you to complete small task each day to be eligible for the prize. This year you will even have a chance to post on this blog, so stay tuned to see some really great things shared right here by all of my art friends!
The contest starts tomorrow, Thursday, December 13th and continues with the last giveaway on Christmas Eve. Be sure to make sure you are receiving my daily updates of this blog so you don't miss anything.
Happy Holidays! Enjoy.
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Friday, December 7, 2012

An Inside Look at My webinARTs Course

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My next webinARTs course starts in January. The course is for artists who want to learn how to sell more art by understanding how to sell it on-line. The class teaches you exactly how to build a website, blog, Facebook page and newsletter. If you already have all or some of these, the class also teaches you how to do them better and sell more art.
I have decided to release one of the 76 videos included in the webinARTs Marketing 101course so you can see exactly what taking a webinARTs course is like! Each class has three to four videos and there are 20 classes in the course. Since the course is on-line you can follow it at your own pace. You will have access to a private blog where the classes are posted and can post all of your questions on the blog. Since you have access to the private blog for a year, you can go back and re-watch the videos in case you forget how to do any of the things taught in the course.
This is one of the ten videos included in the classes about blogging. At this point in the class all of the students have already learned how to build their own art website. And everything shown is presented in more detail in future videos. Just click on the triangle on the bottom left side to view the video.

If you take the webinARTs class you will learn how to build a website, develop a blog, sell on Facebook, manage and enhance photos, build videos, create a newsletter and tons more! 

To learn more and sign up go to

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