Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Selecting a domain name

Recent Portfolio Website tips

Building a Website

You are required to turn in a hard copy portfolio and have a website.  Your hard copy disc can be a collection of high quality JPEGs or a PDF document and your website can be made any number of ways...

Free(ish) Blog Sites that can double as Portfolio Sites (you must use a domain name with it) (managing) (themes) (portfolio)
Tumblr examplesmore
Blogger (example
Google Web Pages (set up) -must host the site (themes) (mistakes)

Artists blogs that double as portfolio pages
Difference Between and
Routing a domain name through
Routing a domain name through Blogger
Routing a domain name through Google Sites
Setting up a static front page in Blogger
Routing a domain name through Tumblr

Template and Theme  sites

examples - tumblr julia maria
blooger claudio valdez

Getting a Domain Name (10-40 dollars)

Bluehost - recommended for free domain with hosting purchase and easy wordpress install

Pay Portfolio Sites

Squarespace (examples)
Otherpeoplespixels (examples)
Carbonmade (examples)
Adobe Portfolio
Wix (examples) (more)

Web services/online communities (have limited free options)

Deviantart - must use the portfolio option


Professional Organizations (not free, but gets a lot of traffic)

AIGA Portfolios (design)
Photographic Society of America

Adobe Muse or Dreamweaver
Creating web galleries in adobe Lightroom

How to make an artist website
Creative Capital recommendations

For class you must have a website with your own domain name that is a portfolio site.  Meaning it only shows your best work and your contact information and statement.  It should be professional enough to show an employer.  Then you are encouraged to put up your work on other social media sites.

Your site should have (and only have)
Images of your best work
An Artist Bio
Artist Statement
Upcoming Exhibitions or News items
Contact Information
links to other social media sites/blogs (optional)

Artist/Designer Statement

(this post taken from pacificgraphicdesign)
“Why do I have to write an artist statement? It’s stupid. If I wanted to write to express myself I would have been a writer. The whole idea of my art is to say things visually. Why can’t people just look at my art and take away whatever experiences they will?”
Think about what you wrote in answer to the essay questions concerning “What is Art”, What is Design”, etc. These can help you form your Artist statement.
Some examples:
Be honest with yourself. Before you write a word, take some time to just think about you and your art. You need to understand what it is that you are trying to achieve, before you attempt to explain it to anyone else.
  • Ask yourself what you’re doing. What does your art express? What makes your art unique?
  • Ask yourself why you’re doing it. What motivates you to create art? What emotions or ideas are you trying to convey? What does your art mean to you?
  • Ask yourself how you’re doing it. What do you draw inspiration from? What tools and materials do you use?
Consider your influences. Think about the things that influence you, whether it’s art, music, literature, history, politics or the environment. Think about how these influences have made an impression on you and how they manifest themselves in your work. Try to be as specific as possible.
Make a mind-map. Mind-mapping is a good way to free your thinking. It will also help you to trace the relationship between different ideas.
  • Jot down a key idea that informs your work in the center of a blank page. Then spend 15 minutes writing down any words, phrases, feelings, techniques etc. related to that idea.
  • Free writing is another technique that can help get the creative juices going. Spend 5-10 minutes writing whatever pops into your head when you think about your art. You’ll be amazed at what you come up with.
Determine what you want people to understand. Think about what you want people to take away from your art. What message or emotion are you trying to convey?
Another Approach:
Make a statement about why you do what you do. The first section of your artist’s statement should begin with a discussion of why you make art. Try to make it as personal as possible. Talk about what your goals are and what you hope to achieve through your art.
Describe your decision-making techniques. In the second section of you statement, tell the reader about your decision-making process. How do you select a theme? How do you choose what materials to use? What techniques to utilize? Keep it simple and tell the truth.
Talk about your current work. In the third section, provide some insight into your current work. How does it relate to your previous work? What life experiences informed it? What are you exploring, attempting or challenging through this work?
Keep it short, sweet, and to the point. Your artist statement is an introduction to your work, not an in-depth analysis of it. Your artist’s statement should be one to two paragraphs and no longer than a page.
  • Your statement should answer the most commonly asked questions about your art, not overwhelm readers with irrelevant facts and minute details.
  • Brevity and efficiency of language are key. A good statement will leave your readers wanting more.
Use simple language. An effective artist’s statement reaches out and welcomes people to your art, no matter how little or how much they know about art to begin with; it never excludes. It should make your work more accessible, not obscure it with convoluted language filled with artsy jargon. [2]
  • Write in simple, straightforward, everyday language.
  • Make “I” statements rather than “you” statements. Talk about what your art does for you, not what it’s supposed to do for the viewers.
III. One More
Let it rest. Your artist’s statement is a piece of very personal writing. Once you’ve finished writing, let it rest overnight before your reread it. Taking some time will help you take a step back and give you the detachment necessary to polish the writing without violating your sense of integrity and safety.
Seek feedback. Before you go public with your statement, get feedback. Show your art and statement to friends, friends’ friends, and maybe even a stranger or two.
  • Make sure your readers get it, that they understand what you want them to understand. When they don’t, or you have to explain yourself, do a rewrite and eliminate the confusion.
  • Keep in mind that you alone are the authority for what is true about your work, but feedback on clarity, tone and technical matters such as spelling and punctuation never hurts.
Revise as needed. Many times, a little rearranging is all that’s necessary to make your statement a clean, clear read. If you need help, find someone who writes or edits and have them fix the problem.
Use your statement. Make the most of your artist statement and use it to promote your work to gallery owners, museum curators, photo editors, publications and the general public.
Save all your notes and drafts. Save all the notes and drafts that you’ve made. You’ll want to revise and update your artist’s statement from time to time to reflect changes in your work. Having your original notes and drafts at your disposal will help you to immerse yourself in your past thought processes and will give you a sense of creative continuity.

Sunday, March 18, 2018


Paper -


BandH Photo

Epson Lustre Paper, glossy but not too much, good paper at good value
Red River Paper - the Nice stuff, all kinds
Epson Cold Press - nice matte paper with textured surface
Epson Hot Press - Nice matte paper without texture

French Paper co.  Graphic Design Paper

Graphic Design - the art of choosing the right paper

Mounting - Gatorboard

Dick Blick

Dry Mounting Tissue

B and H photo

Speciality Printing

Fort Worth Photo Lab
Courpralux Dallas


Aaron Brothers - Fort Worth
Frame Destination - Dallas
House of Frames - south fort worth


Jerrys Art O Rama

Monday, February 19, 2018


Here is the schedule for the senior shows.  We have 7 exhibitions, with 1 outside show in Annalea.  All the lectures are on tue/thu except one on Wednesday 4/25.   We will do 2 students per lecture instead of one this time. 

Kiyana Cherry and Taylor Martin April 9-11 Lec April 10
Jessica Moore and Tiara Tatum April 12-16 Lec April 12
Blake Goldsmith/Ranlee Kunkel/Nikki Valdez April 17-19 Lec 17 and 19
Taylor Hughes and Rachel Nunez April 20-24 Lec 24
Aleisha Bryeans/Tommy Capps/Colin Craig April 25-27 Lec 25 and 26
Annalea Nelson April 26 to May 2nd lec TBA offsite
Matt Huskins April 30 - May 2 Lec May 1

Jacob Fritts and Yuki Holloway-Ogiamien May 3 - May 11 Lec TBA

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Presentation Schedule

Presentations start this  Wednesday
W 1/24 Colin, Annalea
F 1/26 Taylor H.  Taylor M
M/1/29 Jessica, Rachel
W 1/31 Ranlee, Kiyana
F 2/2 Tommy, Matt
M 2/5 Nikki, Tiara
W 2/7 Blake, Jacob
F 2/9 Yuki, Aleisha

Week 2 Presentations/Art and Fear

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Questionnaire, due 1/22


What is the theme of your work that will be in the senior show?

What descriptive words would you project communicate (10 or more descriptive terms).

Of all the media you could choose, why did you pick the one you work with? What do you love about it? How does the process fit along with you personally?

How will you utilize time to make the work before the show? 

What are the main challenges to making your show a success? Any equipment, financial,  or practical concerns?

Where would you like to make your work after you graduate?

Describe the type of audience you would like your work to appeal to?


What are some of the topics that you are interested in writing about for your research paper?  

How would this research benefit your exhibition/portfolio?


Who are two working artists/designers that you admire?

How did you find out about them?

What makes their work successful to you?

Where do they show their work and/or what level are they at with their career?

Who do they follow, or what inspires them? What professional affiliations do they have? 

If you could ask one of them any questions about their career, what would you ask them?

What is their contact info? 

Find 3 Blogs/Online communities related to your career.  List them and follow them.  

List 10 other inspirations, of any kind.  

Syllabus - Spring 2018


This is a required capstone course for all BFA majors.  This course marks the end of each student’s undergraduate studies in art and/or digital media studies. It also fulfills the final writing intensive course required by Tarleton for graduation. This course demonstrates strategies for students to continue in their chosen creative fields after graduation by raising awareness of opportunities and the preparation necessary to achieve those goals.  The course allows students to draw together their learning and their critical thinking into a defining experience, through the exhibition of their senior project and preparation of a portfolio that is a professional platform for their work.

Along with the in-class information regarding relevant professional practices, students will be expected to continue to make work for their portfolio and for the senior exhibition.  While preparing your portfolio you will explore the conceptual and historical basis of your work through research and writing assignments.  As this is a writing intensive course, deemed by the Texas AM system, you must complete and show proficiency in all the writing portions of course to pass and receive your degree. 
Here is a run down of some of the topics covered in class….
3 paths (Industry, Artist, Graduate School)
Artist Statement
Cover Letters  
Graduate schools/workshops/residencies
Job Interview tips        
Legal Issues,  contracts, copyright, digital arts, insurance      
Demo Reels                              
Creative blocks   
Documenting your work   
Getting art exhibited and sold
conferences, web presence, networking, looking at other’s work
competitions / juried shows/ exhibitions
pricing work            
Speaking about your work   

Course Objectives
I have organized the three most important components of the class that you will be expected to complete in full in order to complete the class and the BFA degree.
  • Portfolio Component - Define, prepare, and present a professional, entry-level portfolio of creative work.
  • Written Component - Research and write essential documents for career application and artistic summarization.
  • Exhibition Component - Publicize, prepare, hang, and take down an exhibition of your work
Student Learning Objectives
To successfully pass this class, Students must
·      Produce a body of new work for the capstone exhibition. The body of work must be within the student’s area of concentration
·      Write a proposal for their exhibition that follows the specifications provided later in this syllabus. Once accepted, students are responsible for advertising their exhibitions.
·      Actively participate in regular critiques of their work and their peers’ work; appropriately describe and defend his/her work orally in critique
·      Write an artist’s statement that situates their work in the context of its own development and in relation to historical and contemporary aesthetics and practice.
·      Attend all lectures and presentations for professional development.
·      Plan and install her/his work in a public exhibit that meets professional standards (including compliance with standard gallery practices).
·      Create a physical and online portfolio that documents the developmental progress and final work for your senior exhibition
·      Draft a research paper that expands on the ideas set forth in your artist statement.
More so than a typical studio course, this course is partly self-directed.  Our meeting times allow for us to prepare for the show, discuss related issues, critique work, and discuss relevant issues regarding professional practices that any BFA graduate would be expected to know.  You are expected to complete almost all of your work (described in the course objectives) outside of class.  

Officially, class meets at 12pm on MWF in room 173.  While the locations and times may change over the duration of the class, you will be required to attend all mandatory class sessions.  Any change to the schedule will be announced in class and on the blog (  


1.) Blog:  There is no textbook. All assignments and required source material will be posted online. Specific Xeroxed articles, tutorials and other online source material will be assigned and posted on the blog as the course progresses.  
2.) Attendance: mandatory at all class sessions. Assignments are due on the day they are required as set by the instructor.  Do to the nature of the course being at the end of your Tarleton career, there will be NO LATE work accepted without the possible punishment of failing the class.  3 times late equals 1 absence. After 3 absences and your letter grade drops 1 grade each additional.  Do not be late, being more than 15 minutes late counts as an absence. 
3.) Required Assignments: There are nine graded assignments in this course, and they are listed under the Class Objective section #4
Failure to not finish any of these required assignments to the approval of the art department can result in you being required to take the class over again the following semester.  If this action must be taken you will be informed immediately. 
4.) Grading: Your grades will be calculated based off the results and your participation in the above assignments.  You will receive a grade check list at the end of section #6 in this packet.
5.) SuppliesYou will need to have your name cut into Vinyl for your exhibition, which usually requires a fee of about $10.  The major emphasis will be buying materials for your exhibition.
6.) Academic Honesty:
Cheating, plagiarism (submitting another person’s materials or ideas as one’s own), or doing work for another person who will receive academic credit are all impermissible. Turning in work made before this class, or from other classes, is also a violation of academic honesty. Disciplinary action may be taken beyond the Department of Fine Arts.

7.) Disability Statement:
It is the policy of Tarleton State University to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act ( other applicable laws. If you are a student with a disability seeking accommodations for this course, please contact Trina Geye, Director of Student Disability Services, at 254.968.9400 or Student Disability Services is located in Math 201. More information can be found at or in the University Catalog

The senior review has three major components – I) Portfolio, 2) Paper, and 3)Exhibit

1. Portfolio Component

 1A.   Hard copy portfolio – all students are required to prepare and present a portfolio of fifteen (15) original works. These works should represent what is expected to enter one of 3 paths (Industry, Artist, Graduate school).
The content and order of the work is dependent on the path. Only artwork from 3000 level coursework or higher may be included in the portfolio.  Designs/work created outside of class for clients may be included.

Formats accepted for hard copy portfolio include DVD or digital submission.

1B. Online Portfolio – Students are required to find or design an online portfolio.  This online site must serve as a portfolio of the same works you have selected for step 1A, and nothing more.

Students are required to choose a design the for the layout and presentation of their interactive portfolio, including information that will identify the purpose of the designs and the techniques used to create them. Any online tools, blogging/web templates, are accepted.

1C. Early Semester Portfolio Presentation/Group Critiques – At the beginning of the semester all students are required to give a 15 min presentation of their work.  The presentation should include images that are being considered for the final portfolio along with older work. This should be viewed as a practice for the final oral review required in the Exhibit Component.  There will be time allowed after the presentation for questions. 

Throughout the semester, Seniors will meet on Friday mornings at 9 for student critiques/weekly progress checks. In each of these meetings, three students will present their work for critique from their fellow senior art majors. These meetings will be announced by the professor, who may or may not be present. 

2.       Written Component

2A.   Research Paper – you are required to write a research paper that discusses the personal context of the work you make, and how that philosophy fits in a larger context within the chosen field of your study. 

Paper should discuss: a) the reason and relationship between subject, matter, form, and content: b) major historic and contemporary influences; c) working process and relationship with chosen media; and d) where you see yourself after graduation.

Format Requirements for the Essay
§  college-level paper, typed, double-spaced using a 12- point font.  It should include a bibliography citing references, influences, both historical and current, and should clearly explain artistic direction and intent.
§  The text of the paper must be a minimum of 2000 words (excluding the cover page and bibliography).
§  You must include at least 3 references pertaining to art or design history. You are encouraged to be as contemporary as you like. 
§  must also include 3 images with labels.  Both of these should be used to contrast, compare, or elaborate the techniques, processes, or ideas of your own artistic practice.

Tips for success
·      Interview a senior designer, art director, or artist for your sources.
·      Every field (painting, photo, graphic design, video games, whatever) has a national organization that has resources on career information and also is a showcase of artist/designers who are pushing new directions.  Find your organization and become a member. 
·      Writing Center - Students who are in need of intensive help with grammar, structure or mechanics in their writing should make use of the services of Writing Center, located in O.A Grant room 239 (254-968-1814). The services of the Writing Center are available by appointment, online and, occasionally, on a walk-in basis.

2B.   Artist or Designer Statement – students will write a 300-400 word statement that concisely states the purpose and intention of their current work in art or design.

2C.   Resume – students will write and design a resume that is specifically related to their field of study and immediate career goals.

2D.   Proposal – students will construct a written proposal for their exhibition.

3. Exhibit Component

3A.   Art Exhibition – students seeking the BFA degree are required to prepare and mount an exhibition of original artworks/design.  Artworks from lower level (200 level and below) coursework are not allowed for the senior exhibition.  Master studies or artworks that are copies of existing artworks (historical or contemporary) are not allowed in the senior exhibition.

The structure of the exhibition will be decided by early February as we work out any practical concerns about the space.  You will be required to write a proposal for your exhibition, detailing any needs for the space you might have. It is the sole responsibility of the class to prepare, advertise, hang, and take down the exhibit.  Your participation in this endeavor is essential for you to pass this course.  The specific guidelines for how to set up the show will be addressed in the next section. 

3B.   Show Poster Students are required to design a poster that announces the exhibit (title, dates, times, etc.) Students must also contact appropriate university officials regarding the promotion of the show. 

3C.   Oral Review – This is a public discussion and critique that focuses upon the artwork you have selected for exhibition, the student’s strengths and areas for improvement, the students view of their academic and studio experience, and future plans after graduation. 

You will be expected to speak confidently about the ideas behind your work and address any questions from the audience.  You may not read your artist statement or any other prepared statement, although having notes or an outline while presenting is allowed. 

The times and the format for the oral review will be decided on a future date by the art faculty.