I have been wanting to post to the blog for the past week, but life has been getting in the way. As some people know, my life has been challenging and not altogether happy over the past two weeks. There have been frustrations, there have been tears, there has been sadness, and there has been tremendous stress and exhaustion, physically and mentally. This is one of those times when I contemplate throwing in the towel, but I know I wouldn’t be happier doing anything else, so instead I take inventory of my life and business and determine what I can change, knowing that this will blow over in time. (And that my health will eventually improve).
This is a change that has been coming for awhile, and one that didn’t surprise my assistant Christina at all, but I will no longer be doing Decopaw art commissions at any other time of the year besides during the holidays- so October through December.
The Decopaw art has lived it’s useful purpose, and I know has brought many smiles to many clients, but I feel my brain changing in a way that makes it very challenging for me to design art proofs and stay motivated and creative the entire time, and really enjoy the process. There is something about designing art for gifts for people during the holidays that jazzes me, and it’s just a different time of year with a different feeling, so I would like to, for now, at least continue to do them for a few months of the year.
BUT, I need my primary focus to be on photography for as much of the year as possible. It’s what started this business, what I have always been MOST passionate about, and I can never lose sight of that. I miss getting outside and taking pictures when I am creating art, and that is really telling me something about what I should be doing.
A series of unfortunate events recently have also really helped me learn that this is a decision I *have* to make, and make now. I am so sorry if this disappoints any clients who were hoping to have me design art for them this summer! I will of course be finishing the art projects I am starting and/or working on with current clients. (Bekki we will definitely still be creating some beautiful pieces of Mattie!). But from here on out I won’t be taking any more art clients until mid-late October. If you would like to get on my waiting list feel free to contact us at any time. Clients who have purchased regular full (non-decopaw sitting) photo shoots with me will be given priority.
I should also note that I have raised my prices on the art pieces and have eliminated prints from the offering, sticking with the beautiful archival canvases. I took inventory and realized that given that I normally spend 8-10 hours per client per piece I really no longer had a profitable product anymore. My expenses have tripled in the past two years, but my art prices have remained the same since 2006, which was just hurting my ability to pay my bills. I considered nixing the product altogether last week, but I think this solution is a much happier medium, and I do look forward to working with my art clients during the final quarter of the year.
This also means that I will no longer be doing my annual Decopaw wall calendar. (I know- I am so sorry!!). But never fear- I WILL be doing a super awesome photography calendar, and you can bet that your favorite colorful, funny pet shots will go in it.
Since no blog post is complete without a photo, how about one of my all-time favorite art pieces? That’s Yax-Belle, a sweet spirit who lived in Austin Texas during her prime. She is now passed to go play in the big dog park in the sky. Awwww….
p.s. a huge and heartfelt thanks to my peeps who have been so supportive of me on twitter. It means more to me than you could possibly know.