Saturday, July 31, 2010

Artists on the road

I recently went on a family vacation that covered a lot of territory. We never specifically planned to take in any galleries or art exhibits but one of the things I noticed is the way art kept popping up through the "regularly scheduled" activities. It was my pleasure this year to discover (or become reacquainted with) some talented artists and their work.

My first encounter was in Saskatoon, SK. The Circle Park Mall has made a number of display cases along the mall and in one of them I found Jackie Miller's cityscapes. They were bold, colorful and had the occasional flair for taking an unusual angle. I enjoyed them thoroughly.

Then in Louisville, KY, we went to the Louisville Slugger Museum. Beautiful building and fun tour but the exciting part for me was the display of original work by Kadir Nelson for his book We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball. I became familiar with Kadir Nelson through another book of his, Abe's Honest Words, and the chance to see his work in person was an absolute thrill. It is breathtaking.

Another unexpected intro to an artist showed up at the National Auto Museum, in Reno, NV. Throughout the museum was displayed the work of Robert Cinkel, a Reno artist commissioned by the National Auto Museum to depict autos in their historical context in an exhibit called "Even in Africa". His work is delightful and made an already unique museum an unforgettable experience. (Of course, I liked the period clothing, too.)

If you're near any of these art opportunities, I'd encourage to you to find them and enjoy them. And keep your eyes open. Who knows what treasures may be waiting along the road this summer?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


I've mentioned before that I love creativity in promotion. Lately, the "thing" seems to be book trailers. And so many authors are creating book trailers - some compelling, some fun, some odd and some - well - slightly painful. I think they serve their purpose, but for the most part, I don't think many of them have the advantage of novelty that they used to. Don't get me wrong - video book trailers have taken their place on the list of marketing essentials, but they are rather like author websites - much of a muchness.

But here's a GREAT book trailer! It's fresh, funny and he invents a word too! Enjoy...

If you're interested in producing your own book trailer, Writer's Digest did an article awhile back with some how-to advice. Check it out here.