Monika Blichar

Art World presents Two Carrots Studio

by Monika Blichar

5D00D46B-A3B0-4D8A-B96B-2924DF8D947C - Carrie Carbol-Ritcey (1).jpgIt’s always interesting to see new artists come to our Art World Expo family and when I saw Carrie Carbol-Ritcey work come through our submission, I was not only thrilled but really interested in what she is doing because she is really invested in her work and business. Not only is she a talented metalsmith, she is also teaching, exhibiting, partnering up with local merchants in her area and continually learning about her craft by pursuing higher education in her industry. She is really doing it all. I caught up with her today and here’s what she had to say about her work, inspiration and goals for her company Two Carrots Studio.

You are an accomplished designer and metalsmith. When did you know you wanted to pursue design as a career?

I’ve always been involved in the arts. Music, creative writing, mixed media collage, building, sewing, I am incredibly lucky to have a family that has always supported my artistic pursuits, whatever they might be. I had a conventional job for a long time, but my years in the corporate world left me wanting to do more. One silversmithing course led to another and another and I realized I had found my passion. My favourite line from my artist’s bio reads: I find silversmithing to be the perfect combination of right and left brain thinking: art and science, engineering and physics and just a little bit of alchemy that results in beautiful and accessible pieces of wearable art. That’s why I do what I do.

What inspires you when you create new pieces?

I always have a sketchbook with me, and have been known to rummage in my bag for something to sketch on while at the movie theatre! I find inspiration everywhere, in architecture, nature, books and music. My Stick Flower line was and is inspired by the
artwork of my youngest daughter. Kids draw the most fantastic things, in bold lines and vibrant colours. She’s been drawing amazing stick people lately, with impossibly long limbs and giant cartoon hands. I just love them, and one of them is going to have to become part of a piece soon. My oldest daughter is an artist, and I proudly frame and display her pieces around our house. I get inspiration from just watching her create, and I will support her Arts passion just like my parents did for me.

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Do you have a favourite piece you have made?

Usually my newest piece is my favourite! I love to tell my customers that my rings all come in ‘not my size’ or I would have to keep them all!

I think my current favourite is the piece I made in a week long workshop at the Red Deer College Series Summer Arts program last year. ACAD’s Linda Chow was my instructor and I learned so much that week! The piece is a two sided pendant featuring a huge labradorite stone with a hand fabricated water lily and carved lily pads on the front and back of the piece. Linda taught us that ‘sculpture has no front or back’ and to reflect that in our work when creating a sculptural piece of jewelry.

Another favourite would be the copper poppies seen in my logo. Like a lot of my projects, these started out as a simple idea on paper, probably a bit out of my current skill set. I love a challenge, and making the poppies pushed me to learn several new techniques. The first set was a gift for my amazing mom. After that, I made several more sets and still carry them as part of my line.

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You teach a variety of workshops in the area. Can you tell us more about any upcoming workshops you are hosting?

I am lucky to be part of the group of instructors at Bedrock Supply. I learned a lot of my skills in the Bedrock studio, and I am thrilled to be part of the teaching team. I have two classes left in my winter schedule. Both classes give students a chance to work with metals, learn about tools and gain some foundation techniques in metalsmithing. On March 22 I’m teaching a simple silver band ring class, and on April 2 I am teaching a roll printed earring class. I’ll have examples of both at the Art Expo show-come see me to learn more about the classes and the pieces we will be creating!

What are your goals for your business in the coming year?

I have a few things in the works. I just finished up a Valentine’s Day collaboration with the amazing local chocolatier Colleen Heidecker, and would love to do that again. I am working at making as much of the behind the scenes work as streamlined and automated as I can. The business of being a maker and an artist isn’t as fun as the creating!

There is nothing I would like more than to be a silversmith 100% of the time. Right now I’m balancing small scale production work with the creative pieces I love to do. Selling the ‘bread and butter’ pieces frees up time to create the really fun stuff, and also pays
the bills. Professionally I’m always looking to learn more about the craft. I’m headed back to Red Deer College Series Summer Arts in July. Being surrounded by artists and makers in the fantastic studio spaces at RDC is the best way to spend my summer vacation. In 2020 I plan to travel to Washington State to immerse myself in a week long workshop with one of my favourite silversmiths, Nicole Ringgold.
Will you have any show specials for Art World Expo guests at the show this year?

I just might! People will need to come see the Expo to find out!

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To learn more about Carrie and Two Carrots Studio, visit her website twocarrotsstudio.com If you haven’t bought your ticket to the show yet, you can do so HERE.

Follow Two Carrots Studio on Social Media:

http://www.facebook.com/twocarrotsstudio

http://www.instagram.com/twocarrotsstudio

 

Fall Sales Ideas for Artists

by Monika Blichar

As an artist, looking for new ways on how to market, promote and sell your work this fall can be intimidating. Many of us fall into the same routine and often forget that seasonal promotions are a great way to engage new customers, create special products or service packages, and most importantly have fun doing so! Today, I have compiled five fall sales ideas for artists to help you take advantage of a this wonderful fall season!

1-Create a Fall Promotion for your Product or Service 

It sounds simple and it can be! What is your best selling product or service? What do you enjoy making or doing the most? Start with these two questions and then build from there. If you are a photographer, offer a Fall Mini Session for Kids in a Pumpkin Patch. If you are a painter, create an image of a fall harvest scene and then offer prints or greeting cards in time for Thanksgiving. Be sure to offer a special or incentive for customers to buy from you such as limiting the number of sales you will make for the promotion or offering a limited edition run of your prints. The possibilities are endless!

We partnered with WAVES Coffee in Yaletown in 2010 to host a Pumpkin Carving event.

2-Buddy Up! 

Working together can be better than working on your own. Who can you partner up with to offer a special package, gift basket or service package with? Some of the benefits of working with others include reaching new markets, sharing the task of marketing, and cross promoting on each other’s networks.

3-Run a Contest! 

A simple thing like “Guess How Many Candy Corn are in this Jar and Win” can help you gain new customers, get shared and also keep your followers engaged. If you’re always posting about your product and your service without giving your fan base something to look forward to like a contest or a special, you will loose opportunities for your fans and followers to help you build your brand by sharing it and tagging their friends. What could you do that will help engage your fan base this fall?\

4-Plan an Event! 

Aside from things you can do to promote your business this fall online or via social media, be sure to host an open studio, special event, or workshop for your business! There’s nothing like connecting with people face to face! Here are some ideas for events:

-Fall Sidewalk Sale

-Start or End of Fall Season Sale

-VIP Fall Shopping Party

-Fall Customer Appreciation Event

-Fall Themed Art Show

-Halloween Event

Hosting a special event is a great way to feature your space and your business in person. Ask other businesses to donate door prizes, get involved or even donate their space and partner up with them if you don’t have a space that is suitable for the public. When I first started my business, I didn’t want people coming to my home studio so I often partnered up with other businesses and would host events, shows, and openings in cafes, restaurants and even car dealerships.

 

We have partnered up with Two of Hearts Boutique in Kitsilano to host a Halloween Party and Shopping Extravaganza! Monika will have her legging launch and we are pairing that with Cici Clothing, West Coast Hatters, and Carolyn Bruce Designs Jewellery! Get your ticket for only $10 HERE! Includes a drink, door prize entry ticket, and fashion show! 

 

 

5-Community Events 

There are lots of ways that you can join community events-and not just markets or fairs! Here are some ideas for you to look into this year or next:

Kids Sporting Events: sponsor a tent and hand out samples, give out water with your logo on the bottle, or enter attendees into a draw.

Pop Up: Ask a coffee shop if you can do a pop up for a day in their cafe, bring a table with your work and promote to the cafe goers!

Local Businesses: Find other businesses in your area who are hosting events and offer your time, a product to donate, or ask if you can have a small table at their event.

So what are you waiting for? Pick something and get going on creating a cool fall promotion or event that will help you generate more brand recognition, new customers and followers, and most of all, create more fun and joy for you in your business!

 

monikaheadshotMonika Blichar has a B.A. in English and French and a British Columbia College of Teacher’s Certificate. She is the owner and founder of Art World Expo, Monika’s Art Boutique, Painting Dreams International Art Tours and her own brand Monika Blichar. Originally from Wroclaw, Poland, Monika is actively connected to her culture in Poland and works heavily to promote Canadian artists via her events. She is an avid creator, passionate about creativity and creating authentic connections in the communities where she works. Monika has produced Art World Expo in Vancouver since 2010, one installment in Toronto in 2015, an annual show in Edmonton since 2017 and has launched two Art World Expo Christmas Fairs in Vancouver and Victoria, BC. To learn more about Monika, visit www.monikablichar.com 

 

What’s in a camel’s hump?

https://youtu.be/-8woOKnLkgo

Now that you know, go check out Travis Cataldo, the artist who created this animation.

Here’s a link to his website – www.traviscataldo.com

Facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/TheArtOfTravisCataldo/

Have an awesome day!

Top 3 Reasons to Exhibit at the Art World Expo Shows!

Whether you are an artist or business, we want to help you at our events this year! Join the Art World Expo family today! Gain a spot on our roster and gain a whole new family too! 

#1 Reach new markets! 

Every year, we work hard to get thousands of people to our events in British Columbia and Alberta! Not only do we see lots of new guests attending our shows each year, we also offer free admission to our Christmas Fair so that guests do not have to buy tickets at all! Since 2010, we have seen over 20,000 people attend our various shows in Vancouver, Edmonton and Toronto! Pretty amazing! This doesn’t even include our mailing list features, social media followers or online events that we host either!

IMG_8645Aryn Effert in Edmonton, Alberta-March 2018 Show! Photo by Richard Beaudoin.IMG_8735Amazing body painters in Edmonton’s March 2018 show! Photo by Richard Beaudoin. img_3369

Line ups each year at the Vancouver show at Telus World  of Science! Get your ticket early! 
#2 As a vendor, you get support! 

Our mission is to continually help our members grow their business. We know it can be hard to be an artist out there and we pride ourselves as being one of the only shows in North America with an extensive services menu for artists which includes things like a vendor only membership group, advertising in our newsletter, one on one coaching calls or meetings monthly as well as support on social media! We also host Art World Expo Speaker Series every few months! These are free events for our members to learn about all sorts of things related to business! Learn more about our membership benefits here!

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Billie Sinclair came to speak in May 2018 and we had a Social Media Training in August 2017. We have an array of opportunities for vendors to learn how to grow and get better at business all year round! These sessions are always free for members! 

#3 Brand Recognition 

When you show your work in one of our events, you gain ongoing brand recognition year round! We post event photos of all of our vendors, body painters, performers and business booths after the event which stay up indefinitely! We also do cool things like post your photo on our social media throughout the year including tags to your page, share your work on our Facebook cover albums, feature your upcoming events in our membership group or newsletter and if we can, we do live interviews with you via cool marketing with other well known brands. Check out what we did with Genesis Richmond this past spring on our Youtube Channel. Here’s our cool Interview with Carolyn Bruce Designs! She’s amazing by the way!

We pride ourselves in not only putting on exciting events that appeal to a variety of guests, but also to our continued dedication to the arts professionals and businesses who participate in our events. We have been offering these shows and services for almost a DECADE and aren’t planning on stopping anytime soon! We have worked with some amazing artists, brands and corporations who continuously support our shows and we want to help you succeed as a business too!

Looking forward to seeing you at the shows this season!

Call us today to book your booth or fill in the online form here today!

Art World Expo-Artists in Cars with Sarah, Lynn, Aidan and Pampadour the Giraffe

by Monika Blichar

Interviewing people in the Genesis G-80 the last couple of weeks has been incredible. Not only did I have the opportunity to learn more about the people who are participating in Art World Expo more, I also enjoyed riding around in a sweet luxury ride for two weeks! Boy did heads turn-people just seem to love the look of this car and haven’t been afraid to ask questions about what it is! It’s been really great and not just because of the whole new luxury car thing, it’s been really special because of the relationships that these video interviews have nurtured.

Today I caught up with Sarah, Lynn and Aidan who have been painting in my studio for a few years. During the spring last year, Sarah brought in an image of Pampadour from the Vancouver Zoo. I investigated a little more and found the original article from The Province which is headlined “The Fight Against Animal Extinction”. Though the argument to have or not to have zoos has been a hot topic for many years, the article explains that habitat loss and population decline have placed giraffes as ‘vulnerable’ on the International Union for the Conservation of the Nature’s (IUCN) official watch list.

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This year, our event theme is “Eco-Sustainability” is at the forefront of our efforts to raise awareness for our environment and nature through the arts. As mentioned earlier, Sarah has been painting in our space for a few years now and I have always known her to paint meaningful works. Animals have been mostly what she has worked on with us. Together, we are going to host a painting party in the summer hopefully at the zoo as well as sell some merchandise featuring Pampadour. Proceeds will not only support conservation efforts via the zoo but also support a local artist with a vision and message about supporting wildlife and animals. Check out the latest Artists in Cars video to hear more from her as well as Lynn and Aidan who also paint with us and who are as equally as talented and supportive of each other’s works.

To help support Pampadour, order a card featuring Sarah’s painting via our boutique website here. You can also order capris and a beanie too! To be placed on our Pampadour Painting Party wait list, please register to be notified here.

 

To learn more about the Greater Vancouver Conservation efforts visit their website. To learn more about the Genesis G-80, get in touch with our Genesis Experience Manager Jennifer Friesen. Thank you to Project Her for supporting this project. Tickets to the 8th annual Art World Expo are available here. Be sure to attend and dress in Eco-Friendly attire or makeyour own upcycled outfit!

Art World Expo: Artists in Cars-Brad from The Giggle Dam Theatre

by Monika Blichar

I always love meeting new artists from all kinds of backgrounds. In February, my family and I went to The Giggle Dam Theatre in Port Coquitlam for my father-in law’s birthday celebration. We all had a great time and as soon as I got home, I sent an email to Brad Lovell who works as a performer and the marketing manager there. I thought that somehow, the theatre could get involved with our organization in some way and bring even more light to artists pursuing their passions.

I caught up with Brad on Friday and had the pleasure of interviewing him in the Genesis G-80 from Genesis Richmond‘s Genesis Jenn. Here’s what he had to say about the theatre and following your passion!

Enter to win two tickets to an upcoming show with dinner by tagging two friends on our Facebook post below. Winner will be announced on April 6, 2018! Good luck!

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FArtWorldExpo%2Fposts%2F955978234564454&width=500.

Artists in Cars: Our Latest Interviews

I’ve been having a great time with these video interviews in this luxury Genesis G-80 over the last couple of weeks! Here are the latest interviews with Patrick Parenteau, photographer and Francoise Boise, body painter. Enjoy and be sure to get your tickets to our 8th annual Art World Expo today! Our event theme this year is “Eco Sustainability” and we are looking forward to seeing all your DIY, upcycled and recycled creations at the event! Tickets are available here. 

Want to learn more about Genesis Richmond? Contact Genesis Experience Manager Jennifer Friesen via her LinkedIn account.

Art World Expo: Artists in Cars-Genesis G80 from Genesis Richmond

by Monika Blichar

A few weeks ago, I went to a great event by Project Her Inc. called “Hacking Success, Her Way”. It featured many different speakers, panelists, vendors and highlighted women doing amazing things in business. Along with some of my favourite artists and associates in my network, we enjoyed sharing a table together and learning from other women in business. One of the best parts was that I won the use of a luxury car from Genesis Richmond for the week!  Anyone who knows me, knows that I always love to do interesting things with promotions for Art World Expo so this week, I’ve started doing interviews with artists involved in the 8th annual Art World Expo in the car! Be sure to follow me on YouTube and check out all the interviews!

Here’s the first in the series with Cristina Petersen who is a linguist, instructor at UBC, artist and author!

Stay tuned for more and be sure to check out Genesis.com and connect with sales representative Jennifer Friesen Genesis Experience Manager on LinkedIn. Get your tickets to the 8th Annual Art World Expo today! Tickets are available online.

Interview with Edmonton’s Soft Touch Photography

by Monika Blichar

Photography has to have an artistic eye behind it to stand out these days. After all, anyone with a smart phone can shoot and edit photos from their phones instantly today! When I saw Soft Touch Photography’s work come through on our submissions for our Edmonton show, I was excited because their photos not only capture the essence of a fleeting moment, but they are colourful, attractive and intriguing. Today, I caught up with Soft Touch Photography to learn more about their process.

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1-What is Soft Touch Photography?  When did you form your company?

Soft Touch Photography is a photography business runner by my husband and I, we formed our company in 2013, and had started as a dream, and now has developed into a reference only business and hopefully in the future more

2-You work with your husband. What are the best things about working together?

The best thing of working with my husband is that we compliment each other, we have fun, and keep each other focus and working towards something different that will take us outside the box, to create beautiful images and memories for our clients.

3-What kinds of things are your favourite to photograph and why?

This is a fun question because I love to photograph people and my husband loves outdoor photography.  This works great for us because he is the one that finds the spots to do those amazing images that we sometimes are fortunate to have.

4-What kinds of products will you be selling and promoting at the Art World Expo Edmonton on Friday night?

We are going to be selling some of our most favourite prints.

5-Where would you like to see your photography business in five years time?

We see our photography business growing and being able for one of us to be full time in a studio someday soon.

6-Just for fun: Who is your favourite photographer and why?

My favourite is BARON STUDIO https://youtu.be/VQVZhEBdTT4the reason why is because of their creativity.

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Learn more about Soft Touch Photography on their Facebook Page.

monikaheadshot

Monika Blichar is an Entrepreneur and Artist. She is owner of Monika’s Art Boutique-Studio & Gallery in North Vancouver and producer of Art World Expo and Painting Dreams International Art Tours. She is always pushing boundaries as an artist and creative entrepreneur. Her love of the arts has been a part of her life since childhood.

Interview with Artist Shivee Gupta

by Monika Blichar

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1-When did you start making art?

I always liked to draw and paint since age 5. But I seriously got into art in 2013.

2-Do you remember the first time you had an exhibition? What was it like to unveil your work publicly for the first time?

The first art exhibition I went to was in Wainwright at the Wainwright art show back in 2013. I was really nervous I did not think anything of it but the response from the community blew me away. I almost sold out.

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3-What kinds of things inspire you to make art?

Anything and everything. Sometimes it’s colours on furniture, shadows on walls, textures outside or the beautiful lady on the LRT staring out the window with the unique nose. It makes me want to capture that beauty and strength and put it on paper. I am highly influenced by social, racial, sexual injustices and much of my art reflects these themes.

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4-Will you have any special pieces, sale items or exclusive Art World Expo offers at this year’s Art World Expo Edmonton at the Muttart on March 16?

I have two exclusive pieces from a collection that is incomplete and I have not released for sale quite yet. These two pieces are very special to me as these are where I pushed comfort zone as an artist. This eclectic style of art is where I really want to be in the future.

5-Where do you see your business in 5 years time?

I think by putting more time and effort into my business I can promote it to build a brand where quite a few people will know who I am and can easily access my work.

6-Just for fun: If you could time travel, where would you go and why?

I don’t think I want to. I am happy with where I am right now, but I guess I wouldn’t mind getting chased by dinosaurs.

To learn more about Shivee, visit her Facebook Page. Thank you Edmonton for a SOLD OUT event! See you on March 16 at the Muttart Conservatory.

 

monikaheadshot

Monika Blichar is an Entrepreneur and Artist. She is owner of Monika’s Art Boutique-Studio & Gallery in North Vancouver and producer of Art World Expo and Painting Dreams International Art Tours. She is always pushing boundaries as an artist and creative entrepreneur. Her love of the arts has been a part of her life since childhood.