One year – ten surrealistic paintings

Link

My first painting done in 2017.

Head In The Cloud – My first painting done in 2017.

With 2017 coming to a close, I decided to look back on all of the surrealistic paintings I’ve done this past year. Initially, I thought I was on my 12th painting, hoping to finish it before the year ends. Actually, I’m only on my 10th and I’m about 70% done as of December 11th. My how time flies.

Still, 2017 has shown promise in terms of my overall skill development. I am continuing to improve as a painter and though I still follow the surrealist path of Rene Magritte, I’m also developing my own, unique style.

Was there a common theme? No. I like to paint ideas and they come in a variety of imagery.

Was there a common theme? No. I like to paint ideas and they come in a variety of imagery.

I love the idea of surrealism. I love painting things that seem like they are, but could never be. I love painting the impossible. To me, it’s fun to have an idea, develop it, do my best to paint it and then have people wonder, “What was he thinking?”

The photograph doesn't do this painting justice. The bridgework is very detailed. It was a strange idea that literally came to me in the middle of the night with almost this exact image in mind.

The photograph doesn’t do this painting justice. The bridgework is very detailed. It was a strange idea that literally came to me in the middle of the night with almost this exact image in mind.

I’m not afraid to borrow. I have used other paintings as inspiration. I often use source material to get my own drawings as close to reality as my skill level permits. When I created “Bridge to Nowhere” I found a schematic of a footbridge. I don’t pretend to draw these items from memory. But I do draw them all freehand and then begin the process of turning it into a painting.

In the concept stage, I envisioned a conductor in charge of the elements similar to Fantasia.

In the concept stage, I envisioned a conductor in charge of the elements similar to Fantasia.

Some of my ideas are borrowed adaptations. Others, I have no idea where they come from. With “Lightness of Being” I was exploring Magritte’s concept of a giant floating rock. For some reason, I thought of a little girl holding a hot air balloon – only instead, it would be a floating rock. I loved that image and that’s what I drew on the canvas. At first, she was going to be standing in a field of flowers but once I had drawn the balloon/rock, I decided to shift the scene to a rocky beach. It’s probably one of my favorite images I’ve done so far!

A girld stands gazing out at the ocean, holding a giant, floating boulder that some people think is an asteroid.

A girl stands gazing out at the ocean, holding a giant, floating boulder that some people think is an asteroid.

What to paint next is always the mystery upon completion of whatever I’m working on at the time. Similar to reading a book, I never conceptualize a new painting until I’m done with the one that’s right in front of me. While searching for inspiration for my next subject, I ran across two items that I combined into one – a spiral staircase and a view of clouds shot from above, rather than below. And thus was born, “View from Above”.

A man stands atop a spiral staircase that has given him a view from above the clouds.

A man stands atop a spiral staircase that has given him a view from above the clouds.

I’ve been very happy with both the concepts and the execution of my last three paintings.

Yet most of my work seems to go unnoticed – especially when it comes to sales. If I relied on the income generated from my paintings, I would truly be a starving artist. I remember after my second gallery show back in 1991, I created a painting called “Nobody Noticed”. It featured two people walking off either side of the painting, oblivious to a roped off gallery that featured a framed painting of the night floating against a cloudy blue sky.

That painting has received more views on my pixels website than any other painting I’ve done. Perhaps that frustration that since I’ve resumed painting about 3-1/2 years ago, creating more than 30 new canvasses resulting in a grand total of two sold paintings led me to my most recent effort which is still a work in progress.

My most recent painting is about 70% done. The other art work needs to be added along with the two frames and then lots of shadowing still awaits.

Modern Art – still in progress. The other art work needs to be added along with two picture frames, a baseboard and then lots of shadowing.

Overall, 2017 has been a year of interesting concepts combined with better painting techniques. I had my first solo show in more than twenty years in 2017 at 1900 Park. I exhibited at Soulard Art Gallery twice and received an Honorable mention for “Head in the Clouds”. I also was part of MySLART’s monthly 33 show in the summer and I’ll have my three most recent completed works on display December 29th at the Old Orchard Gallery. Add in a few greeting cards via Greeting Card Universe and there’s certainly been a lot of activity.

I am determined to keep on keeping on and look forward to what’s next knowing that someday, the sales will come.

So onward we go. I’ve got a painting to finish.

(BTW, if you want to take a better look at any of these paintings, please visit any of the websites listed below.)

In addition to providing advertising and marketing communications services by day via BloodLines Creative, Tom is dedicated to becoming a better surrealist painter, trying to paint the impossible. He invites you to visit his work at his Pixels website, or via his BloodLines Art website. His work can also be viewed on Pinterest, Saatchi Art and on the mobile app, Art Loupe.

Wrap your phone in art

Visit http://tom-blood.pixels.com to order yours today

Visit http://tom-blood.pixels.com to order yours today

I recently received my second iPhone cover featuring my own art on it. When I’m out and about, I’ve often been asked, “That’s cool – where’d you get that?”

I tell them it’s my own art (most people don’t even know I paint) and when I tell them they can order one of their own for about $20 bucks – which is actually a lot less than you’d pay for most iPhone or Galaxy phone covers, people say, “Cool, I’m gonna buy one.”

But they rarely do.

I’ve had my http://tom-blood.pixels.com website for about a year-and-a-half now. During that time, I’ve sold about ten of these covers and a few battery chargers as well. You can order all kinds of things featuring my art – pillow throws, coffee cups, notebook covers, tote bags – I’ve even sold a shower curtain featuring my Incoming painting.

Whoever thought this painting would end up on a shower curtain? But it did!

Whoever thought this painting would end up on a shower curtain? But it did!

The website has had almost 18,000 visitors since I opened it. Now, every time I post a new painting, I get more than 300 views within a day’s time. That’s pretty cool. But views don’t equal sales.

So I’ve been trying to more aggressively promote my artwork in the hopes that a few people will think it’s cool enough to order something. You don’t need to buy the original art. Instead, you can order a print to hang, a coffee cup to drink out of, a tote bag to carry things, a pillow for your couch – all virtually guaranteed to become a conversation starter.

Here’s the website again: http://tom-blood.pixels.com

Please don’t just visit.

Buy something.

With the holidays coming up, you’ll be glad you did.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

 

Is there a PuppyMonkeyBaby in my future?

Would I ever have thought of this?

Would I ever have thought of this?

I’ve been creating ads now for well over half of my life. During my time, I’ve come up with some rather unusual creative solutions. But I must admit, I have yet to ever be part of selling a client something as outrageous as Mountain Dew’s PuppyMonkeyBaby used to sell their Kickstart drink. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ql7uY36-LwA

Yes, I know, this is old news. The commercial made its debut this past February on the Super Bowl. But I saw it again last week and for some reason, it really stuck with me this time.

BBDO out of New York was the agency that created it. I have no idea who the writer on it was. Amazingly, I think the ad is very strategic. The team knew they were creating an ad for the Super Bowl so it had to stand out. Kickstart is a combination of three things – Dew, juice and caffeine. On the Super Bowl, everyone loves commercials that have a baby in them – or a puppy – and yes, there have been quite a few memorable commercials featuring a monkey.

So someone had the very simple thought, “Hey, why not combine all three into some really weird creature with a dog’s head, a monkey’s upper body and a baby’s lower body walking around in a diaper?” It’ll be a Puppy Monkey Baby.

It makes no sense. It makes brilliant sense. It’s weird. It’s disturbing. It speaks – in a very strange voice. It dances. It carries its own little bucket full of Kickstart and it makes its grand entrance through a kind of little trap door in some guy’s apartment where three slackers are just sitting there chilling when the PuppyMonkeyBaby arrives.

Later commercials play up the tag line “It all starts with a kick”. They’re fun, they’re crazy. But they’re nothing like the PuppyMonkeyBaby.

So the question I ask myself is this – “Is there still a PuppyMonkeyBaby waiting inside me, just yearning to come out?”

Yes.

Unfortunately, I don’t get to create TV commercials all that often anymore. It’s my biggest lament of running my own business that caters to a client base that most times, simply do not have the budget nor the need to do broadcast advertising.

So that PuppyMonkeyBaby stays locked up in my brain, just waiting to be unleashed.

It’s in there.

And it wants out.

My 70 cent return on Greeting Card Universe

Recently, I joined GreetingCardUniverse.com in an effort to try and sell some of my artwork that I turned into greeting cards. My thinking was that I had some fairly unique artwork that in turn, I could use to create fairly unique greeting cards. So I enlisted the help of a designer to take some of the messages I had created and use typography to create greeting cards with fun, out-of-the-ordinary messaging.

To date, the experiment remains somewhat of a failure. I have submitted 9 cards overall. Five of them have been approved and now live on Greeting Card Universe. If you visit the website and search for Tom Blood, (https://www.greetingcarduniverse.com/search/go?w=tom%20blood) this is what you’ll see:

Search GreetingCardUniverse.com for Tom Blood and this is what you'll see

The five cards that are currently for sale on Greeting Card Universe.

When I first announced that I had launched the cards, I was kind of excited. Getting them approved for sale is somewhat of an arduous task and that’s a good thing. You have to be pretty specific with your card descriptions and use of key words. The first day I announced that cards were on sale, I actually had a sale. To date, I’ve had two sales – which comes out to a whopping 70 cents of income to date.

But no, I’m not giving up. I actually have plans to make a few more. And I understand that some of my card topics aren’t exactly heavily sought after items. I have a retirement card, a Bon Voyage card, a thinking of you card, a sorry about your bad luck card and an apology card for men or boys to give to their significant others.

Here's a closeup of my End of the Line Retirement Card. If you know someone who is retiring, please buy them this card!

Here’s a closeup of my End of the Line Retirement Card. If you know someone who is retiring, please buy them this card!

Currently, there are no birthday cards (rejected my one attempt), no Thanksgiving or Halloween or Christmas cards, either – I simply don’t have the paintings to back up those kind of occasions.

And similar to my site on Pixels.com (https://tom-blood.pixels.com/), I’m just one fish in the ocean. Just like on Pixels, this site has thousands of designs from thousands of artists. Even if you want a Bon Voyage card (how many of those have you bought in the last decade – or even in your life?), my version is still one of many available.

So I don’t think I’ll be retiring any time soon off of the royalties I make selling these greeting cards. The same applies to selling my art on Pixels. There are millions of images on that site. I’m happy with the limited sales I’ve had and hope to continue to sell more in the future. (Now’s a perfect time to order for the holidays getting a pillow throw or iPhone cover or tote bag or just a coffee cup featuring some truly original art!) More important, I think it’s pretty cool that I’ve had more than 18,000 views of my artwork on that site since I joined in July of 2016. If only these people would buy something!

In the meantime, I’ll keep on painting because I love to do so. If the painting seems like it could be turned into some sort of a greeting card, I’ll give it a shot. But I’m not creating art to turn into greeting cards – that’s simply an off-shoot.

And obviously, I’m not making art to make a profit. Though I do hope to bolster my 70 cent earnings from greeting cards sometime soon!

In addition to providing a wide variety of clients advertising and marketing services via BloodLines Creative, Tom Blood also creates surrealist-based art which you can view via http://tom-blood.pixels.com – allowing you to purchase prints or Tom’s artwork on a variety of items.

 

 

Milpaws Tells Customers, “Don’t Ever Get Hosed By Your Hose”

The home page for Milpaws.com is direct and to the point.

The home page for Milpaws.com is direct and to the point.

I don’t often get excited by websites for hose, fittings and fluid conveyance systems.

But the new website for Milpaws (http://www.milpaws.com/) is a definite exception to the rule.

BloodLines Creative joined forces with E-Merge Interactive to design a whole new look for Milpaws – a supplier of hose, fittings and fluid conveyance systems here in St. Louis, Missouri. The photography is crisp and clean along with the design.

Navigation of the site is easy – and there’s going to be an e-commerce portion coming in the very near future which will make it easier than ever for customers to order the parts they need.

But that’s only part of the story. Milpaws is a company that is totally devoted to customer service and it’s their custom-made pipes, fittings and fluid conveyance systems that they’ve designed for a wide range of applications that enable them to stand out from the crowd.

They’re a no-nonsense company that tells it like it is. A faulty connection that breaks down can cost a manufacturer thousands of dollars – sometimes reaching into six figures – and bring an entire production line to a halt.

It’s imperative to work with a company that helps assure that every fitting and every custom-designed solution works on a day-in, day-out basis. And if something ever does go wrong, the supplier needs to be able to jump in and solve the problem immediately.

That’s Milpaws. And that’s why we came up with the simple theme of “Don’t Ever Get Hosed By Your Hose.” No, we’re not using it as a tag line. It’s more of a description of the way they do business.

The company’s DNA was forged as a commercial hose and fitting distributor in the St. Louis market over 40 years ago. Though Milpaws designs and fabricates fully-integrated Fuel and Potable Water fluid conveyance and dispensing systems for the US Military, their key focus has always been servicing contractors and contractor supply companies with both industrial and hydraulic hose and fittings to meet their needs on a moment’s notice. They know with Milpaws, they’re getting the best products, backed by the best service – no matter what the application – from industrial to environmental, manufacturing to utilities.

There are some very simple things about Milpaws.com that makes navigating the site just a little more interesting. The Products page features an accordion-style drop down menu – click on a specific category and it opens right up, only to get folded back into the menu when you’re done. The Applications page features a parallax means of navigation where one category naturally flows into the other.

We intend to make Milpaws.com a site worth visiting time and again for both customers and potential customers. The e-commerce portion of the site is currently being developed and that’s going to be a game-changer. We’ll also be regularly updating the “In The Flow” section with pertinent news a customer can use to help them with their business.

Overall, it’s a very cool site in what was once a very boring category. Not anymore.

BloodLines Creative provides advertising and marketing communications support to a variety of consumer, B2B, non-profit and government-related clients. No project is too big, no budget is too small. If you’re looking for big idea thinking, you’ve come to the right place.

The endless pursuit of ‘What’s Next?’

As a business, BloodLines Creative is continually in new business mode. Even with my existing client base, I’m always seeking new ways to help build their business, knowing full well that if I can help them expand their market share or drive more customers to their website or Facebook page or directly to their store it will ultimately generate more business for BloodLines.

So I’m always on the lookout for new ways to deliver messaging, new techniques for grabbing attention, new avenues for targeting potential customers, new ways to reach people in unexpected ways. One must remain forever curious.

With BloodLines Art, I face a similar challenge. I do paintings very similar to the way I read books – once I start one, I don’t even consider what’s next until I put my name on the painting. When I do finish, I begin searching for ideas.

Rene Magritte said that the most difficult part for any artist is deciding what to paint.

I agree with that dilemma.

So with my work by day and my art by night, I continually face the challenge of, “What’s next?”

Work has been strong this year. One project seems to lead to another and when one client goes dormant or isn’t currently in need of marketing support, it seems another one comes along. I have been very fortunate.

I have also been quite pleased with my painting progression this year. My techniques are improving and I feel as if I’m getting better at what I do and finding my own unique style.

Every business faces that “What’s next?” quandary.

The key is to never stop learning. Never stop exploring. And always be open to possibilities as well as opportunities.

If you do that, the opportunities will find you.

Working partnerships – Part III – E-Merge Interactive

I’ve been working with the fine folks at E-Merge Interactive (http://www.connectwithemerge.com/) long before they were known as E-Merge Interactive.

Barry Lee, David Smith and Kerry Brown are pretty much the brain trust behind E-Merge Interactive and I have worked with all three of these individuals for more than 25 years. I used to do quite a bit of video and audio production at Smith-Lee for a variety of clients. Dave’s wife, Sandy, is an amazing composer and gifted musician who I worked with to create award-winning commercials and videos back in the day.

But times changed and though Smith-Lee still does an impressive array of audio work, they shifted their focus more to the interactive world and formed a separate company,
E-merge Interactive, providing a full range of interactive services, primarily for B2B clients.

One of those clients is Byrne & Jones Construction. (http://www.byrneandjones.com/)

A partial look at the home page of Byrne & Jones Construction.

A partial look at the home page of Byrne & Jones Construction.

When we first began working with Byrne & Jones, their website was, to put it politely, a work in progress. Many of the sub-pages were incomplete. The home page featured rotating imagery but it didn’t really focus on key benefits of what the company provided.

And Byrne & Jones provides a lot. They’re the largest asphalt provider in the St. Louis metro area. Their sports division is one of the largest builders of tracks and athletic fields in the Midwest. They have a booming micro surfacing division, as well as perform concrete and soil stabilization work. In the past year, they also bought a company called Midwest Foundation that does marine work on rivers and lakes throughout the Midwest. (http://midwestfoundation.com/)

We recently launched a newly updated website for Midwest Foundation, a Byrne & Jones Company.

We recently launched a newly updated website for Midwest Foundation, a Byrne & Jones Company.

Over a period of time, we completely overhauled the website and began doing SEO work as well, partnering with Romondo Davis of Davis Interactive for his expertise in all aspects of social media. The Byrne & Jones blog, that hadn’t had any new posts for quite some time began getting regular entries which we pushed out via social media to help drive more traffic to the site.

Thought leadership articles and profiles of projects are now regularly posted via the Byrne & Jones blog.

Thought leadership articles and profiles of projects are now regularly posted via the Byrne & Jones blog.

Numbers have been trending upward and the growth of Byrne & Jones continues to be on the rise as well. They are a well-managed, well-run company that needed their website and social media to catch up in order to better tell their story.

Byrne & Jones is just one of the clients that I have partnered with E-Merge Interactive to help provide marketing communications. We’re in the process of launching a new website for another B2B client and there are more projects in the works. It’s been a good blend of their interactive capabilities and my branding and writing expertise.

There’s always room for more.

The business model for BloodLines Creative is fairly flexible. I work directly for clients. I also work with agencies to help with their client needs in times of overflow or for select projects. I work with in-house agencies, helping to write or produce videos. And I partner with other designers, social media providers or production companies to assist their client needs. It all results in an ever-changing, always interesting flow of assignments. I am honored to be a part of each and every one. Now, what can I do for you?

Working partnerships – Part II – The Epstein Group

I didn’t know Alan Epstein when he was Partner of Adamson Advertising. But I did meet him back in the early days of BloodLines Creative. Alan enlisted my help, along with E-merge Interactive, to create a campaign for Maryville University – and that began a working relationship that continues to this day.

Over the past year, we have partnered together on a variety of new business pursuits and, once again working with E-merge Interactive, did some significant branding work on behalf of J.F. Electric – a large, family-owned electrical contractor located in Edwardsville, Illinois.

The work done for J.F. Electric began before I got on board. Alan had helped conduct a market research strategy that identified key strengths of the company as well as a few areas in definite need of improvement. On the plus side, the company was known for their customer service and how hard they worked to find solutions to their customers electrical needs, often delivering innovative solutions that saved time, money or oftentimes, both.

But the J.F. Electric brand seemed dated. Their website had been launched quite a few years ago and was never actually fully completed and the info on the site was rather nondescript. They had a theme line but it was so generic I can’t really remember what it was. The J.F. Electric logo needed a refresh as well.

So we went to work. With a focused creative strategy in hand, we continued the branding process, beginning with the development of a new theme line as well as creating a new logo that wouldn’t depart too far from their scripted logo treatment to a bolder, more contemporary looking version.

The script format seemed dated and some people mistook the 'F' for a 'T'.

The script format seemed dated and some people mistook the ‘F’ for a ‘T’.

download

The new J.F. Electric maintained the bright red and the italic flex of the font was similar to the scripted version but  was also easier to read.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next, we focused on the theme line. When it came time to present, we had three options, all of which we liked but after the meeting, we knew we had landed on a version that made perfect sense for the company – “Creating connections. Delivering value.”

They were in the business of creating connections – both electrical and on a personal level, too. Delivering value spoke to the added value aspect that stood out with so many of the customers that had been interviewed.

Once the new logo and theme line had been approved, we developed an overall collateral look, giving them new business cards, letterhead, powerpoint templates and how the logo and tag line would look on their new website – which was also underway.

With a company like J.F. Electric, oftentimes their best form of advertising is found on the sides and backs of their vehicle fleet. So we designed vehicle graphics for pickup trucks, bucket trucks, digger derricks, vans and trailers.

J.F. Electric's fleet turns into rolling advertisements for the company.

J.F. Electric’s fleet turns into rolling advertisements for the company.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile, work continued on the J.F. Electric website. We wanted to effectively capture the work they do in four different categories: Utilities/Commercial/Industrial and Telecom. We wanted case histories in each category and wanted to be able to tell the full story of J.F. Electric – a company whose roots go back to the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis.

It took a while – but in the end, both client, customers and the web team that helped develop it were all happy: http://www.jfelectric.com/

Screenshot 2017-08-14 14.23.10-1

A portion of the parallax formatted home page of the J.F. Electric website.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
On the J.F. Electric website you can view the history video that we created: http://www.jfelectric.com/About/History

In addition to the website work, we created an extensive Brand Standards guide that can be used internally and by vendors to assure that the J.F. Electric brand is consistently delivered across all media and platforms. We also created a new employee video and helped with the development of trade show materials.

All in all, the newly refreshed J.F. Electric brand is getting noticed, remembered more and business continues to grow. And that’s what it’s all about.

J.F. Electric has been an excellent client to work for and there’s more to come as Alan and I both continue to partner together to help collectively solve our client’s marketing challenges.

The business model for BloodLines Creative is fairly flexible. I work directly for clients. I also work with agencies to help with their client needs in times of overflow or for select projects. I work with in-house agencies, helping to write or produce videos. And I partner with other designers, social media providers or production companies to assist their client needs. It all results in an ever-changing, always interesting flow of assignments. I am honored to be a part of each and every one. Now, what can I do for you?

Working partnerships – Part 1 – Phoenix Creative

It all began with a recommendation.

Phoenix Creative needed a broadcast writer to assist them in the development of a new TV and radio campaign for one of their clients. They asked Mike Sneden, a director at The Arbor Group if he knew of anyone that could help and he mentioned my name.

The good folks at Phoenix Creative reached out to me, asking if I was interested and after a get-acquainted meeting where I met the team that I’d be working with, I was awarded the assignment: develop eight new TV commercials and eight new radio spots promoting a variety of topics for Jensen Tire & Auto out of Omaha, Nebraska.

A still from one of the 8 new Jensen Tire & Auto TV commercials.

A still from one of eight new TV commercials developed for Jensen Tire & Auto out of Omaha, Nebraska.

Deans Lynch was my key point of contact. Becca Jordan was the account coordinator who kept me in the know. And Matt Mauger was the art director/agency producer who ultimately would be turning my scripts into storyboards and then, working with Mike Sneden as director, turn those boards into actual commercials and my radio scripts into radio commercials.

Our initial download on the Jensen brand was full of information and gave me a solid understanding of the tone, style and expectations they hoped I could match. They gave me a list of about 10 potential commercial topics, provided a good creative brief and strategy and told me to see what I could come up with.

Jensen Tire & Auto is a locally-owned, family-owned operation that has been in the Omaha area since 1973. They’re honest. Straightforward. Down-to-earth. They’re proud of their stores, the people who work there and they all work hard to deliver the best in service and services. Both the TV and radio concepts had to reflect that.

So I began generating ideas. I wrote a variety of scripts – from the customer point-of-view, the employee point-of-view and a few from the store manager point-of-view. I wanted to be clever – but not overly so. I wanted to find interesting ways to help deliver key points of difference.

At our first internal presentation, I presented campaign directions. We narrowed those down and I went back to work. At our next presentation, I presented more script ideas on the campaign directions I had previously presented. We narrowed those down some more and I went back to work.

By our third presentation, we had zeroed in on the direction – then I needed to fill out the roster, making sure I covered all of the topics that had ultimately been decided upon. We fine-tuned some more. After all those meetings, I understood just how well the people at Phoenix understood their client.

Ultimately, we narrowed down the script candidates and Matt went to the story boarding process. I, in turn, started in on the radio scripts and with a stronger understanding of what would and wouldn’t fly, I seemed to fall into the Jensen point-of-view and hit the mark right off the bat with a few of the scripts.

By the time we made the trip to Omaha for the client presentation, we were more than ready and I truly felt a part of the team – and for that, I congratulate and thank Deans, Becca and Matt for how they welcomed me and enabled me to play a key role in the presentation.

“So the only pressure around here … can be measured with a gauge.”

The homework, teamwork and hard work all paid off. The result is a new broadcast campaign that began airing earlier this summer and will continue for many months to come. This was a working partnership that really worked.

The business model for BloodLines Creative is fairly flexible. I work directly for clients. I also work with agencies to help with their client needs in times of overflow or for select projects. I work with in-house agencies, helping to write or produce videos. And I partner with other designers, social media providers or production companies to assist their client needs. It all results in an ever-changing, always interesting flow of assignments. I am honored to be a part of each and every one. Now, what can I do for you?

A dramatic ‘before’ and ‘after’ with BloodLines Art

About two weeks ago I worked with Scott Schaefer as we set up a mini photo studio in our basement and shot more than 80 of my paintings. Scott has his own company where he markets classic Winchester hunting artwork, selling vintage posters online. It’s a thriving business and he has found a definite market niche.

I’ve been hoping to find a market niche of my own with my artwork. Currently, I have two different websites – https://bloodlinesart.com/ and https://tom-blood.pixels.com/

My bloodlinesart website seems to only be visited by other artists. And not that often. I haven’t really done any full-fledged marketing efforts to promote it and when renewal time comes around, I’m probably going to cancel it. There are lots of other places where I can showcase my art that I haven’t fully taken advantage of to date.

The pixels website, which is also called Fine Art America, has done a lot better as far as visitation. About two weeks ago, I was nearing my 10,000th visitor. They come from around the world. I’ve had views from China, Russia, Germany, the UK, France, Italy, India – and that’s just to name a few as well as people from all over the U.S.

The fun thing about the pixels website is that you can order items featuring my artwork on pillows, tote bags, iPhone cases, shower curtains and a variety of other items. Unfortunately, sales have been less than lucrative.

So I decided to try and become a bit more professional with the presentation of my art and Scott got me going with the hi-res digital images he took. But that’s just for starters as he showed me a number of photoshop treatments all designed to make your photography sharper than ever.

Here’s a pic of one of my paintings before:

A true, 'before' picture.

A true, ‘before’ picture.

And here is the same painting that was digitally photographed and saved in a much higher resolution format. (The image is a higher resolution than the download of this site allows.)

https://tom-blood.pixels.com/featured/white-thomas-blood.html

I’ve tried saving my ‘WHITE’ painting image in smaller sizes but with no luck. So please click the link to see the vibrant color and sharp detail that will now be present with virtually all of the images that I have featured on my pixels site. (While you’re there, I encourage you to see many of the other paintings I’ve done!)

To date, I’ve uploaded about 14 of them – so I have a long way to go. But already, the number of visitors has skyrocketed as I’ve had more than 1,000 new views since I began re-uploading my images. I wish I could say that the sales have skyrocketed, too. Not yet.

But I’m hopeful. I plan on launching a new e-commerce site sometime before the holiday season officially kicks off where people will be able to order prints of my work direct from me. Scott will handle the printing and shipping and together we’ll both profit.

I have a lot of fun creating my art. I hope to soon begin having more fun (and success) in my efforts to sell it.