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Friday, August 31, 2012

The Little Brush that Could-Week 9

I have been thinking about my family a lot this week and how to say "I love you" when words don't seem like enough. You see, when I got married, I not only gained  an incredible husband,  I also gained Jane. 
Her strength and her kindness inspire me. She has always been the perfect example of what a mother-in-law should be. I get frustrated at myself sometimes because I can't ever seem to find the right words to tell her how much of a blessing she is to me. 
A couple of Christmases ago, I was trying to figure out a way to show her how much she is loved and how much all the little things that she does means to us. good as she is at being a mother-in-law, she is even better at being a grandmother. So I naturally had to get the kids involved.  I decided to help the kids paint something for her. This is what we came up with. I hope she gets the message. This painting has been on her mantle ever since.


Volunteers Are Important

Today I want to talk about the importance of volunteers at Digifest South 2012. We need as many volunteers as we can get because Digifest is such a big event and the small staff at the Bossier Arts Council can not do everything needed to keep Digifest going. That is why we need volunteers.

Volunteering at Digifest South will be a wonderful oppurtunity to get to know other people and get connections in the Digital Media World. This is the first ever Digifest South and we want this to be the best it can possibly be.

Saturday, September 1st there will be a Volunteer Meeting at 4pm at the Bossier Arts Council(630 Barksdale Blvd. Bossier City, LA). There I will be discussing each position and go over everything you need to know. Please join me tomorrow at 4pm.

Digifest South 2012 will be at the Bossier Civic Center from September 7th-9th, Friday and Saturday 12pm-9pm and Sunday 12pm-6pm.

Thank You

Exciting News for the Shreveport Writers Club

One of the many resources the Bossier Arts Council has to offer is a meeting space for regional organizations.  One of those organizations who utilizes this space is the Shreveport Writers Club.  We got word today about some exciting news for some of their members.  

"Prime Time" a new publication in the area has published two of their members Dennise Aiello and Shirley Brown in the premier issue.  

Another member Marian Poe had an exciting summer in July she won 1st place in a July Haiku contest sponsored by Howard Kilby of Hot Springs, Arkansas and she was published in "Ouachita Life" newspaper.  She also had two haiku published in "Modern Haiku" in the Summer 2012 issue.  

Last but not least Dennise Aiello won a honorable mention in the July Haiku contest sponsored by Howard Kilby of Hot Springs and she was published in the "Ouachita Life" newspaper.

We are excited to be sharing our space with such talented individuals.  The Shreveport Writers Club meets at the Bossier Arts Council art annex the first Saturday of every month.   Congratulations to their members on all of their accomplishments.

Remember if you are an artist in our area and have some exciting news be sure to share it with us by writing Leigh Anne Chambers at 


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Secrets of an Arts Administrator

Secrets of an Arts Administrator is a weekly blog post written by BAC's Executive Director Leigh Anne Chambers.

Topic: Why grants aren't scary

Okay.  Maybe they are a little scary.  What I really meant to say is you shouldn't be afraid to write them.  Like all things that most artists have to do rejection is a possibility.  But that's okay.  It's alright if you try and don't succeed.  And the first few times you probably won't succeed.  Practice makes perfect.

What I can give is a few tips when writing grants.

  • Read the Guidelines: Guidelines are directions.  They tell you all that you need to know about the grant what it will fund, who it funds, what it WILL NOT fund, how much they give, when it's due, etc.  This is where most individuals make their first mistake they glance and miss important details.  So below is some hints on how to read guidelines.
    • Print them off.
    • Just read it through once without stopping
    • Step away.
    • Come back with a highlighter.
    • Highlight important information
    • Step away.
    • Come back with a friend and make them read it.
    • Quiz your friend about what they thought was important details.
    • Now re-read
    • If you have questions email the contact person BEFORE you start writing the grant.
  • Give yourself time: Grant writing is best done over a period of time. NOT THE NIGHT BEFORE IT'S DUE.  So when approaching a grant schedule time over a few weeks to work on it.  A couple of hours a night spread over a few days or weeks.  Do it in stages.  
  • Narrative: This is the section where you have to provide written details. Here are some hints.
    • Be specific but brief.
    • Don't assume your reader will understand jargon.
    • Grammar matters.
    • Know the difference between character limits and word limits.  (Character is each letter and space and words are words.)
    • Get a proofreader.  
  • Budget: Don't think that this is not important.
    • Research numbers don't guess at the price of things.
    • Be specific about how you will use their funds.
  • Supplemental Materials: These are additional items you have to provide.  It varies from grant to grant but it could be images of work, resume, support letters, examples of what you plan to purchase, etc.  Remember the following.
    • Format matters.  Follow the guidelines on WHAT FILES SIZES AND TYPES ARE ACCEPTED.
    • Make sure you treat your supplemental materials like they are primary materials..
So now that you know it's not scary let me list a couple of grant opportunity for you to seize!  

If you are still hesitant you can schedule a time to utilize our Artist One Stop resource center free to all BAC members.  Call 741-8310 to schedule an appointment today!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Business of Art- Supply and Demand

“Artistic inspiration ignores the law of supply and demand.” – Mason Cooley

How much art to produce should be a very thought provoking question to ask yourself.

As an artist, inspiration may strike at anytime and the wheels of creativity start flowing and are very hard to stop. This leads to a house full of art and no one buying it. I am not saying there is anything wrong with being a prolific but it definitely needs to monitored.

Do you have an idea journal? This should not only hold sketches of upcoming masterpieces but it should include: sizes, materials, framing supplies, and any other cost normally associated with your work. This is a great way to figure out which pieces you can produce for your set budget each month and also keep your house from filling up with artwork quite as quickly.

Do you need help pricing certain aspects of your artwork? Do some research before you start and research the different qualities and price levels of your supplies. Figure out the average price for the supplies in the various styles and colors and write them into your budget and your idea journal. This will help you when you are pricing your work because there might be a huge difference in Kelly Green and Turquoise that you weren’t expecting when you named your price. Never name a price for your artwork without doing your homework and figuring out your expenses first!! 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

DigiJam @ DigiFest

DigiJam is a first annual video game design competition taking place during DigiFest South at the Bossier Civic Center September 7-9th in Bossier City, LA. The event is being led by Nolan Baker of Moonbot Interactive.

During the 44-hour session, teams will create video games from scratch utilizing computers and software donated by Dell Computers. In addition, participants can attend talks on game design, tutorials on Unity3D and collaborate with one another to create original video games.

The games will be evaluated by judges including Dr. Mark Goadrich (Computational Mathematics Chair at Centenary College of LA), Keith Hanson (Co-founder of Twin Engine Labs), and Adam Volker (Creative Director at Moonbot Interactive). At 5PM, the judges’ favorites will be awarded 3D-printed trophies provided by LSUS Animation and Visual Effects Program and Moonbot Studios.

Teams will be composed of 2-4 people.    Game design types include sidescrollers, first person shooters, and topdown adventure games. Teams are not limited to this codebase.  Participants will pay the $10 DigiFest daily ticket on the first day, but receive a three-day pass upon registration for DigiJam.  All competitors are required to be work on the projects at the Bossier Civic Center when DigiFest is going on.

One theme will be presented at the time of the competition. All games must somehow fit this theme. Judging will be based on aesthetic value, design innovation, and technical achievement.  Special thanks to Dell, Moonbot, CoHab Shreveport-Bossier, and the LSUS Animation and Visual Effects Program for making DigiJam possible.

  • Friday 6:00-7:00 p, Registration.   Max of 75 participants.
    • 7:30 pm Game Design 101 (20 min)
    • 8:00 pm Prototyping - No Code or Art Needed (1 hour)
    • 9:00 pm – teams released from Digifest – CoHab available for afterhours (no computers available)
  • Saturday
    • 10:00 am – Bossier Civic Center doors open for gamers
    • 10:30 am Game Art with Gimp (20 min)
    • 11:30 am Prop Building with Google SketchUp (15 min)
    • 12:30 pm - 2D Games in a 3D Engine (30 min)
    • 1:30 pm - Scripting Basics (15 min)
    • 2:00 pm - SFX and Loops (10 min)
    • 2:30 pm - AI Crash Course (30 min)
    • 9:00 pm – teams released from Digifest – CoHab available for afterhours (no computers available at CoHab)
  • Sunday
    • 10:00 am – Bossier Civic Center doors open for gamers
    • 11:00 am - Put a Bow on It (20 min)
    • 3:00 pm – All games must be turned in – judging begins
    • 5:00 pm – Winners announce

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Emerging Artist Gallery Presents

The Bossier Arts Council Emerging Artist Gallery is thrilled to announce an exhibition of artwork by regional artist Steve Zihlavsky.  His show “Omnicyclomentopoeia” will feature a variety of styles and subject matters.  His works will be on display throughout the month of September.

Zihlavsky a regional artist works in mixed media to create abstract creations.  When asked about his work and upcoming exhibition he responded  “As my skin wrinkles I'm endeavoring to learn more than ever from every artist and everyone I encounter and absorb new knowledge, skills and ideas to augment my current library.  I want “no boundaries” in my creative process, but until then I will widen my range and push for spectators to not be amused, but, rather puzzled, surprised, confused, tickled or anything other than amused.  More importantly, I hope to broaden the scope of thinking, for children especially, in every aspect of life; to step outside the cone of societal thought and ponder in ways more like the plastic amorphous brainscape all of us had in youth did.

The Emerging Artist Gallery is a project of the Bossier Arts Council and is committed to promoting art work of regional artists.  It is located in BAC headquarters at 630 Barksdale Blvd. right off of I-20.  You can visit the gallery Tuesday-Saturday from 11:00am-6:00pm or by appointment. 

For more information about Steve Zihlavsky or the Bossier Arts Council feel free to call us at 741-8310 or visit our website at

BAC's Call for Artists

The East Bank Gallery Committee is preparing its schedule and needs artists like YOU! We are accepting applications for both the East Bank Gallery and the Emerging Gallery. The submission process is the same for both galleries. Artists need to submit an artist statement, biography, resume and 3-5 digital images of their work. If you have any questions, please call 318.741.8310 or email


The East Bank Gallery is a project of the B

ossier Arts Council is committed to promoting art work of regional artists. It is located in BAC headquarters at 630 Barksdale Blvd. right off of I-20. You can visit the gallery Tuesday-Saturday from 11:00am-6:00pm or by appointment.

Supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Louisiana State Arts Council, and the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Little Brush That Could- Week 8

Back to school nights, back to school shopping, and late nights at the office have kept me from spending as much time with my children as I would have liked this week. I was looking for a craft to do with them that would also serve as a tool to use at school. I came across a tutorial on about making stained glass bookmarks. This week instead of me showing you how I did it, we can do this project together. I am looking forward to talking to my kids more about their first days back to school and hopefuly they'll look back and remember that I made that extra effort and a cool bookmark!

Stained Glass & Tie-Dyed Bookmarks

Make bookmarks from card stock and decorate them with tissue paper or crepe paper for a stained glass or tie-dyed effect.

 ·        White card stock
·        Tissue paper or crepe paper
·        White glue
·        Decoupage medium (e.g. Mod Podge) - for tie-dyed bookmarks only
·        Plastic placemat or plastic wrap
·        Yarn, leather string, or ribbon
·        Scissors
·        Hole punch



Cut out your bookmark's base from white card stock. Mine is 7 inches long and 1 ¾ inches wide.


Gather 2 or more colors of tissue paper or crepe paper and cut them into irregular-shaped pieces. Here are some notes regarding the type of tissue paper or crepe paper you can use and their effect on your finished bookmark:

·        Tissue paper (Non-bleeding) - creates a stained glass effect

·        Tissue paper (Bleeding) - creates a tie-dyed effect

·        Crepe paper (Bleeding) - creates a tie-dyed effect, has nice texture


Thin down white glue with a bit of water (about 3 parts glue to 1 part water) and mix thoroughly.


Put a plastic placemat or a sheet of plastic wrap under your bookmark. Dip one tissue paper piece into the thinned-down glue and allow it to soak in the glue. Shake off excess glue and lay the piece on your bookmark. Smoothen the piece with your finger.



Dip the next piece in glue and position it next to the first piece, overlapping them in parts.


Continue gluing the tissue paper pieces until you have covered the entire bookmark. The overlapping parts create a nice stained glass effect.

Now let's take a look at how the bleeding crepe paper turned out. The colors have expectedly bled and mixed together to create an awesome tie-dyed effect. Allow your bookmark to dry completely.


If you chose to make the tie-dyed bookmark, you will need to apply a coating of decoupage medium such as Mod Podge to make sure that the colors are permanently sealed in (and don't accidentally bleed into your book's pages). Allow the bookmark to dry completely.


Once dry, peel off the bookmark from the plastic wrap or placemat. Trim the excess length of tissue paper or crepe paper along the edges of the bookmark.


Your bookmark will naturally be a little curled along the edges because the card stock had previously been soaked in glue. This can easily be remedied by pressing your bookmark in between the pages of a heavy book or you may glue on another piece of same-sized card stock at the back of your bookmark.

Finally, punch a hole near the top edge and make a tie from yarn, ribbon, leather string or thin paper twine.


These bookmarks are pretty easy to make. Make them for your book-loving friends and family!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Business of Arts- Bio vs. Statement

The Bossier Arts Council is currently accepting submissions of exhibition in both the East Bank Gallery and the Emerging Gallery. The requested information is an artist bio, artist statement, artist resume and 3-5 digital examples of your work.  
These items must be received by August 31, 2012.

I have had a question about the difference between an artist bio and an artist resume.  The purpose of these documents is to expand the viewer’s knowledge of you as a person as well as an artist and give them a clearer picture of you and create a connection that could lead to a sale.
In terms of writing style, an artist bio should be written in third person so as to tell your background outside of art. It should go into enough of your background to give a potential buyer a clear picture of who you are and what you have done to expand your artistic endeavors.

Your artist statement on the other hand should be written in first person about why you create your art and what your inspiration is. It should explain why you work in the mediums you do and how your creation process ties into those mediums.  Think of your general artist statement as your “mission statement.” It tells people how you see your world and the passion behind the artwork. 

If you would like specific help, please schedule time in our 
Artist One Stop so we can assist you!

TedxRedRiver Highlighted Speakers

From now until DigiFest (September 7-9th) we will be posting about our speakers for the TedXRedRiver Event. Special thanks to InterTech for sponsoring the event and TedxRedRiver for being so incredible to work with.  This is just a few of the exciting people who will be speaking more to come over the next few days...

Michael Marshall
Logic Nation
Friday, September 7th @ 5pm

Mr. Michael J. Marshall is the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Logic Nation Incorporated.  He was part of the founding group of the company in July of 2011.  Prior to founding the company Mr. Marshall served in the US Air Force for 7 years.  During his career int he Air Force he worked in the maintenance career field, gaining familiarity with government systems and operations.  At Logic Nation, Mr. Marshall has direct responsibility for the company's vision and direction.  He uses his experience gained in the Air Force to create complex systems with simple user interfaces.  He continues to refine the developing website with the latest internet technologies while leading the company to utilize the functionality for business purposes.

Brandon Oldenburg
Friday, September 7th @ 8:30pm

Brandon Oldenburg is an award-winning illustrator, designer, sculptor, and film director.  He co-founded the Shreveport, Louisiana-based Moonbot Studios and co-directed the Academy Award winning short film The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore.  Prior to launching Moonbot, Oldenberg co-founded Reel FX Creative Studios specializing in design and special effects for clients as Troublemaker Studios, Pixar, Disney, DreamWorks, and Blue Sky Studios.  While at Reel FX, Oldenburg oversaw a joint venture with William Joyce, collaborating on works for Martha Stewart, Disney and title design for such feature films such as Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium.  Additionally, Oldenburg and renowned designer Brad Oldham collaborated on a giant, nationally-acclaimed sculptural series for a $1.4 million commision called "The Traveling Man".  His illustrations have graced the covers for prestigious authors' books such as Elmore Leonard and Michael Chabon.  In 2010, Oldenburg was honored with the Distinguished Alumni of the Year from Ringling College of Art and Design, where he received his BFA in illustration in 1995 and sits on the Board of Trustees.

Bill Willoughby 
Louisiana Tech University-Associate Dean of Liberal Arts
Saturday, September 8th @ 5:30pm

Bill Willoughby is a Professor in the School of Architecture at Louisiana Tech University where he has taught since 1998.  He has served as Associate Dean for the College of Liberal Arts since 2005.  He has been a licensed architect since 1993 and has maintained NCARB Council Certification since 1995.  He has authored over 35 publications on scholarly topics related to architecture and has presented his research throughout the United States and internationally.  Recurring themes in his research include digital tools and architecture, wireless technologies and their effect on cities, and the redefinition of our sense of self and place as we enact more of our lives digitally than in real space.

Brady Blade
Blade Studios
Saturday, September 8th @ 8pm

Brady Blade is an American rock, pop, and country drummer, record producer and composer.  He is a Grammy winning, world sought drummer having toured with dozens of big-name artists such as Dave Matthews & Friends, Emmylou Harris, Melissa Etheridge, buddy Miller, Indigo Girls, and Jewel.  After touring the world for over a decade, he has returned to his home roots, championing a world-class sound recording studio complex - Blade Studios.  After less than a year with Blade Studios was recognized by the industry's leading publication MIX Magazine as one of the top studios on the planet.  Brady enjoys working with new talent, developing their song writing, and ultimately producing and recording alongside them.  Brady's business and artistic dexterity has made him a point man in all areas of the entertainment industry.

Monday, August 20, 2012

East Bank Gallery Presents Lynn Laird

The Bossier Arts Council East Bank Gallery is thrilled to announce an exhibition of artwork by regional artist Lynn Laird.  Her works will be on display at the gallery from September 1st to October 15th.   

Laird a prolific artist who works in a variety of mediums has exhibited extensively in both Bossier and Shreveport.  Always being one to seek out new avenues of self expression she explores a variety of styles.  When asked about her upcoming show Follow the Octopus she responded.  “The exhibition embraces this sinuous marine animal’s ability to adapt instantly, morphing in both color and texture as it moves through different environments.  The ability of the Octopus to operate its four separate sets of articulated legs independently is reflected in the enthusiasm that our artist, Lynn Laird, embraces the multiple mediums of scrimshaw, painting, illustration, and photography.  As you move through the main gallery viewing artworks produced in distinctly different styles from traditional to brightly whimsical, we hope that you too will be touched by the passion in which they were created.” 
The East Bank Gallery is a project of the Bossier Arts Council is committed to promoting art work of regional artists.  It is located in BAC headquarters at 630 Barksdale Blvd. right off of I-20.  You can visit the gallery Tuesday-Saturday from 11:00am-6:00pm or by appointment. 

For more information about Lynn Laird or the Bossier Arts Council feel free to call us at 741-8310 or visit our website at

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Saturdays with James

Today I want to talk about another very important areas in which you can volunteer at Digifest South (September 7-9th) 2012. This area I will talk about is the Floater Position

The job duties for the Floater Position are:
§  Serve as back up to all other positions
§  Watch exhibits of vendors who set away from their booth
§  Help watch for possible suspicious activities and alert security

This area is a very important position. You have to be able to do every position whether it is greeter/guide, box office, Tedx, Phenom, etc... You will also need to be able to stand for at least 3 hours and keep a watchful eye out of everything.  Most importantly acknowledge guests as they walk by and make lifelong friends.

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Little Brush that Could- Week 7

Parents are the biggest influence on a child’s confidence level and their outlook in life. Without even knowing it, you could be a reflection in your child's eyes of  missed opportunities, disappointments and bitterness because of past negative experiences. You may make them afraid to take risks or try out new things.
The physical impression that a person has of him/herself is very important. A child may feel inferior when compared with another person. Comments by kids related to physical traits that are different, may negatively influence young children. Such comments can create low self esteem, especially during the preteen years, this becomes even more important when the person is trying to establish an identity.
A self-portrait is a great project to work on with your child, I affords you the opportunity to see your child as they see themselves. Kids are brutally honest and it shows in their artwork. Ask your child to create an image of themselves and maybe an image of you or someone that they look up to. Look at piece. I mean really look at it. Look for signs of low self-esteem or traits that your child may find bothersome. This is a case where a picture really can say a thousand words.

Secrets of an Arts Administrator

Secrets of an Arts Administrator is a weekly blog post written by Leigh Anne Chambers, BAC's Executive Director.

Topic: Celebrating 

BAC's Administrative Coordinator, Robin Jones,
applied for the grant.  We are super lucky to have
This week I will take a break from my typical posts and instead share some really exciting news.  We recently got news that we received a grant from Target.  The full information is found below:

Today, Bossier Arts Council (BAC) announced that its Bossier Parish Student Art Show program was awarded a grant from Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT). In recognition of the efforts of BAC in promoting, supporting, and providing cultural events and programming in order to enhance the quality of life and to develop a cultural identity for Bossier Parish, the grant will assist BAC in hosting the opening reception for the students and will help us award $1500 in cash prizes for winners in a variety of categories.

According to Steven Belk, BAC’s Business Manger and Gallery Coordinator, the Bossier Student Art Show “highlights creative talent present in both our parish’s students and their educators.  In addition it shows our community the creativity and ingenuity our youth posses and awards their achievements.” 

The grant is part of Target’s ongoing efforts to build strong, safe and healthy communities across the country. These efforts include Target’s long history of giving 5 percent of its income to communities, which today equals more than $3 million every week. As part of this commitment, Target is on track to give $1 billion for education by the end of 2015 to help kids learn, schools teach and parents and caring adults engage.

“At Target, we are committed to serving local communities where we do business,” said Laysha Ward, President, Community Relations, Target. “That’s why we are proud to partner with Bossier Arts Council as we work to strengthen communities and enrich the lives of our guests and team members.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Business of Art – PLAN

                “It’s not the load that breaks you down; it’s the way you carry it.” -Lena Horne

          Sitting in my office today I had a realization; I can only do so much at one time. This seems to be a simple concept but I see it all the time in the artists that come through our offices. This is usually the result of multiple projects that were started when one project came to a block.
          This can really cut into the production time of a piece because it gets to a point that you have too many projects going on at once and none of them ever seem to get finished. I bring up this point as an effort to keep you focused on what is actually possible in the time you have allotted yourself for the creation of art as opposed to the wishful time. Separating the actual production possibilities can be very difficult but in the end you will be far more productive and feel more accomplished.
          This will also lead to a better sense of the actual cost of your work and help you realize what your goals should be. It is very important to plan not only your future pieces but also to plan financially so you can achieve your creative goals!  

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Saturdays with James

Today I want to talk about 2 different areas in which you can volunteer at Digifest South (September 7-9th) 2012. The first area I will talk about is Front Desk Check in.

The job duties for Front Desk Check in are:
· Box Office Help
This area is relatively simple. All you do is help the Box Office employee take tickets and check people in.

The next area I will talk about are the Greeters and Guides
The Job Duties for the Greeters and Guides are:
· Greet people at the Doors of the 2 main Halls
· Guide them to where they want to visit whether it be Game Jam, Tech Expose, Career Fair, or any one of the other areas at Digifest South 2012
These areas are probably the most important of all the positions. This is because you have to be courteous and respectful to everyone and keep a smile on your face. Guests do not want to see someone who is just standing there minding their own business and not greeting anyone. They want to be greeted kindly. The guides will have have to know where everything is located. Guests would not be to happy if you direct them to the wrong area. Your image you put out will help guest decide if this is a fun, educational event or if they are wasting there time. We sure do not want them to think they are wasting their time now do we? So you need to have fun. Interact with these guests; you may make life long friends in the process.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Little Brush that Could- Week 6

I was looking back on some of my previous posts and decided that maybe I have been playing it a little too safe. Art, after all, is more fun when you can get messy. This week you will have to keep the paper towels handy, but you won't regret it!
What you will need:

1 canvas/paper- any size
1 roll of painters tape
1 little "Picasso" to do all the work

Start by taping off a pattern, border, name, or anything else your imagination can come up with.
Then simply have your little one start painting. I personally love finger painting with this one!!!

Allow paint to dry slightly and slowly peel off tape.

 Spending quality time with a child doesn't have to cost a lot of money or exorbitant amounts of time. Children who spend quality time with their parents and who are raised in loving and nurturing environments are more likely to be well-adjusted, secure, and  confident.  Spending quality time with your children is a great way to help boost their self-esteem, which helps, in turn, to develop confidence. A good relationship with your children based on quality time helps children reach their potential. Not only are you gaining beautiful artwork for your home, but also the satisfaction of knowing that you are getting to know your child.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Secrets of an Arts Administrator

Secrets of an Arts Administrator is a weekly blog post written by Bossier Arts Council's Executive Director, Leigh Anne Chambers.

Topic: Why is it important?

More than half my job is convincing people (sponsors, grant panels, elected officials, general public, artists) why the arts are important.  Often I have found myself stuck between frustration and elation but most of the time (for the sake of those around me) I try to stay positive.

Although, plenty of reason (including scientific, cultural, spiritual, financial) exist none of those are part of my blog post today.

Today, I want to talk about what it means to be "important".  (I know, I promised to stop defining words, but etymology is too darn fascinating.)  According to the online Merriam Webster Dictionary important means "marked by or indicative of significant worth or consequence".  On that note I think "important" can be a variety of things but what I find the most fascinating is that it changes given the individual.  An event of worth or consequence changes from person to person and culture to culture which makes it difficult to argue the importance of a single event.  However, I have been a part of art for as long as I can remember and what has always drawn me to artistic events was watching how it (art) affected those around me.

I remember clearly as a child seeing my Dad look at a painting and react.  It was an odd moment for me, because it was then that I was aware that he was thinking something.  That what he was looking at had stopped his own thoughts and taken them in an entirely new direction.  We have all seen the non-verbal response to art (film, music, visual arts, theatre, sculpture, etc.) on those around us.  We see it so much that I think it has become expected and thus goes unobserved.

As I write today I realize I don't have to "convince" anyone about the importance of art.  All I have to do is highlight what they already know, and have just taken for granted.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Business of Art- Going to Art Openings

Have you been to any art openings lately?

Part of the fun of being in the art community is gathering together and admiring each other's creativity and sharing in the satisfaction of a completed piece of art. This is also a time to collaborate about new ideas or techniques that you could use in your work.
      This will also give you an opportunity to meet the people who run the galleries and introduce yourself. There are usually at least 3 openings a month in this area so there are some options for you to choose from. In order to maximize your knowledge of the openings in the area make sure you sign up for the email lists of each gallery!

If you are looking for something to do this weekend, the Bossier Arts Council is having a reception for Pascual Alvarado on Saturday, August 11th from 4-6pm. Also in attendance will be Neecee Blackwell, the Emerging Artist for the month of August.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Art Opening This SATURDAY!!

You're invited to an opening reception on Saturday, August 11th from 4-5:30pm featuring artist Pascual Alvardo in the East Bank Gallery and artist Neecee Blackwell in the Emerging Artist Gallery.  So be sure to join us at the Bossier Arts Council, 630 Barksdale Blvd., we are located right off I-20 in Bossier City.

Alvarado paints vivid oils of flowers and cottage scenes.  The bright nature of the work is anything but your typical domestic scenes.  When asked about himself and his work Alvarado responded "I am from the state of Zacatecas, Mexico and come from a large and humble family with no formal education.  I was the only one in my family who loved art.  As a child art really grabbed me.  I go the opportunity to come to Louisiana when I was 16 years old.  Through the y ears I have continued to develop my passion for art.  I met my wife, Yolanda, and we started a family.  We have five children: Yasahira, Elian, Agustin, Randy, and Shahia.  Everything I draw comes from my mind and heart, and more than anything, my mother Tereza encourages me."

Blackwell is a 3rd year Louisiana Tech University Fine Arts major who works in a variety of mediums including photography, oil, and charcoal.  When asked about her work she responded "As long as I can remember, I have always drawn and painted.  While drawing, I began to study light and its effects on my subjects.  Light play and textures intrigue me and I try to render that which is pleasing to my eye.  I attempt to recreate the visual beauty around us - nature, the human body, creatures.  To me, the world is magnificent visual feast, beauty is everywhere.  When I see beauty, I attempt to capture it, appreciate it, and revel in it.  These are very creative and freeing moments for me.  I hope my art will have the same affect on viewers."

To Bossier Arts Council is dedicated to promoting, supporting, and providing cultural events and programming in order to enhance the quality of life and to develop a cultural identity for Bossier Parish.

We are open Tuesday-Saturday 11am-6pm.