Tuesday, March 25, 2008

So, by now I'm sure you're all wondering what a floorcloth artist actually makes...

I am a floorcloth artist, who is mostly unemployed, which is why I have an online collectibles shop, and sell Silpada Jewelry, and thankfully, have a husband who doesn't mind my meager income, which doesn't even qualify me for my own social security over the last 25 years, lol. Damn. That was a mouthful. Try to keep up because I have to say all this before my aging brain totally FORGETS.

One year into this new venture, I had completed nearly 45 large & medium sized floorcloths to sell during the arts festival we have here every Spring. It's a juried show, to which I had to submit slides of 4 of my pieces and I'd been accepted! I was excited to be having my first show ever.

This is one of the pieces that got me accepted in the art show & festival.
So is this one.

Then, 2 weeks before the festival, I awoke one morning to see thick black smoke pouring from my art studio in back of our house. My studio had almost burned to the ground, due to really old wiring and 103 degree temperatures everyday for a week. Truly an artist's worst nightmare, and if it had not been for good friends, I think I might never have attempted this again. However, they got me back on the horse in no time. Unfortunately, 2 weeks was not enough curing time, much less painting time for me to get many pieces completed. I still went ahead with the show because I'd already paid my $450.00 for my booth. I just borrowed back all the floorcloths I'd sold for potential clients to see what they would be getting. Then, I just took orders, which all worked out fine. However, from the day of the fire I was working out of my formal dining room, until the studio was rebuilt & finished 6 months later.

Floorcloths are basically hand-painted rugs made of canvas. Some are hemmed & some aren't. I make the hemmed kind and go to great trouble to insure that they are as close to perfect as I can get them & still be homemade. They are perfect for homes with asthma problems because they don't hold any allergens, like a regular rug would. With proper care, they can be passed from generation to generation and last many, many years. I'll go into the care & cleaning later.

This piece is one I commissioned to do for my dear father-in-law. He was friends with the Pennzoil owner, Hugh Liedtke and he wanted this to give Hugh for his birthday.

This 3' by 4' zebra print was a floorcloth I made for the Cause For Paws Charity Fundraiser one year.

Anyway, I started making floorcloths back before it was all the rage, as a vehicle for my own art. I never could work for anyone who had a specific idea about what they wanted. I had to be given free reign or the deal was off. Maybe I passed up some good money, but I'm not a landscape or a portrait artist. I create works of art that become part of your environment and they are a part of me and my vision of the way things are.

This was a 2' by 5' floorcloth I made for a friend who gave it to her daughter as a present.

This floorcloth was one I was commisioned to do for the lakehouse of a friend. I called it "The Mad Hatter's Piano" and it measured 8' by 5'. Frankly, I was never happy with this particular piece, but I was going through a lot of crap in my life at this time. And I think it is reflected in this floorcloth.

In the early days, I created a lot of crazy, free-spirited work, that I mostly donated to charity auctions just to get my work out there. Very few people understood that they were actually indelible works of signed art, for the floor, but also could be used as wall art. I make them well enough to last for several generations, and if properly taken care of, they can last even longer.

This floorcloth is named "Celestia" and it measures 5' by 7'.

You might appreciate the the gradual progression in my works. It's all still a work in progress and I haven't really painted for a while now. I have at least 5 or 6 unfinished pieces and tons of blank canvas.

I made this one & the next two for some good friends, whom I cherish with all my heart. I named this one "Qui Sono Felice", which measures 8' by 10'.

I named this one "Casa de Hospitaliero" for the same friends and it also measures 8' by 10'.

This one, I named "La Cocina de Amore". It was for the same couple's kitchen and turns the corner around an island. Needless to say, it was one of my more challenging projects.

I feel like their home is my gallery at times.

Then, I made baby splat mats to go under a highchairs for a while, but I grew tired of it (totally bored actually). It measures 52" by 52" and is an easy cleanup. This is one of them:

Later, I got talked into making collegiate floorcloths for a friend who was selling her wares all over Texas at Jr. League shows. Unfortunately, by the time I had at least 10 for her to sell, she decided to give up the business. Thanks again, *K*. That was a totally wasted 3 months.

I am still in pocession of those pieces because I'm not licensed to sell the items with trademarked logos. (Yes, the person I was going to sell them with, is licensed.) It is a minimum $15,000.00 fine to sell these items without a license.

Sadly, I also had made cute trinket boxes to go with the floorcloths. (I still have all of those as well.)

What you see are some of the examples.

Maybe I can eventually come up with a contest so that I can finally give some of these away. That would certainly clear out a fair amount of space. Actually, this might be the perfect answer, because I'm tired of this stuff being everywhere.


your daughter said...

Awww the fire! Ugh that was such a bummer :( your stuff was soooo good!

Snooty Primadona said...

Thanks dear daughter. Remember, that was the day of y'all's school Field Day? After the firemen left I finally got to go & got there just in time to see you two compete.

brneyedgal967 said...

Okay, this is a little freaky now. I paint also - haven't in a few years and didn't do floor cloths, but I'd do tables, chairs, peg racks and all in bright wacky colors with black/white borders. Might have to be something I pick up again - I sure enjoyed it alot. I usually spend way more on supplies though, than I would ever make in income selling them though... so I definitely hear you there.

Nice work!!

Janie said...

I love that art! I want someathat! That's AMAZINGGGGGG! I love the cornerpiece in the kitchen. Wow.

If you get going again, I'd love to have a cool floorcloth for Zack and Zoie's dishes. The zebra one is cool (and you can tell I have brown and white Zebra rugs)....(they match my dogs...kind of!)

Well, whenever you quit chasing bees/wasps/other stinging creatures and get your garden going, get out of your robe, and ummm slow down with the golf (I know you don't golf in your robe, hehe.) and have a second to breathe, will you consider such?

And...if you're willing to quote prices on the college ones, I have lots of friends I could give those to...you got the e-mail, chica...I won't turn you in to the trademark police, I promise.

noble pig said...

Those are beautiful! How are you not a millionaire?

elizasmom said...

Oooh. Floorcloths. I have a friend locally who does them and I always thought it was such a cool idea. One under Eliza's chair would certainly go a long way toward keeping the kitchen from looking like such a disaster.

Aside from their functionality, though these are beautiful! I like the black and white with ivy one the best, I think, but they're all lovely.

Snooty Primadona said...

Thanks you guys! Wow, I might just have a renewed faith in my work, lol.

Tammi, I think you have alot on your plate just now, LOL!

Janie: That size is relatively easy & affordable. I like to make messy mats for pets. I forgot to mention those.

NP: I think it has something to do with marketing. I didn't major in that.

e'smom: They are so fun! Besides, they're much more attractive than what is normally available for catching all the jewels thrown from the highchair. :-)

Rob said...

Gorgeous stuff, Snooty!

Meg said...

AMAZING...really! How cool are you? Get yourself a website, already..or a new blog to highlight this stuff!

Snooty Primadona said...

Thanks you guys!

imbeingheldhostage said...

Gorgeous! I'd insist everyone walk around them-- gorgeous. You are an inspiration dealing with the fire the way you did. I think I would've just gone to bed.

TSannie said...

Wow! you are an incredible artist! I am very impressed!
I hope you find an outlet for the collegiate ones. I have a good friend whose grandson goes to UT and I know he'd LOVE one. If you ever figure out how to sell them, let me know!


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