Here are some answers to a few questions about this project. Enjoy.
1. What made you want to do this?
I was originaly inspired to give gifts at Burning Man. The last few years that I went I gave away a few paintings. This shared experience was a huge rush for me. Having that experience is really how all of this started.
2. Why give gifts everyday?
Daily giving makes you feel good! It is pretty simple. I feel that it lifts up my life or my perception of things and helps me face my big challenges. Doing it consistently really forces me to be more creative and to stay on track. I feel like it is a daily meditation.
3. Have you skipped any days?
Not with the gifting. I haven’t always finished the paintings on time but that is not a hard line rule for me or the project. Now towards the end of the project I find that there have been several ‘days off’ from painting. I am ok with that. I don’t want to this to be an exercise in doing chores! If I don’t meet 365 I will be fine with that.
4. Do you really think you can sustain the project everyday for a year?
Well…it is big and scary. I feel that I can do it. I know there will be several challenges. But the gifts sometimes spring from odd circumstance. Opportunity to give is all around. It presents itself quite a bit….you just have to be able to see it in the moment. This is yet another reason I believe that this is a meditation. It is very much about being present. But yeah….It is a lot of work!
5. How do you find the time to give and paint everyday?
It has been hard. I am a working parent. I have had to limit the painting time to 2 hours. And I try to paint after our son goes to bed. The gifts by nature don’t take as long as the paintings usually. Blogging and photo editing are another story altogether. Plus I have to make paintings for sale! I have commissions to do, shows to paint for and lots of other art deadlines outside of the project!
6. Do you have any favorite gifts or paintings?
So far….hmm. I like the donut painting. That was done on the day I was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes. I felt like it really helped keep my sense of humor intact. I like the Day 21 painting about the William Elliott Whitmore show. I am sure there will be more.
7. Do you have any you don’t like?
Haha….yeah. I have a hard time liking my own art from time to time. There are a few in there that I wish I could re-paint or rework. But letting them stand where they are is part of the process too. It is kind of a big sketchbook for me sometimes.
8. What are you hoping people take away from this?
I hope people will start to make gifts. I want people to be inspired to do more for others. I also would like to hear about someone being moved to make something awesome art-wise or gift-wise. I want people to enjoy life NOW….instead of waiting around. I also hope that people chase their dreams….no matter how big or crazy they may seem.
9. How much does this cost?
Too much. I am working on funding for the project. As of July 13th a great majority of travel cost, gallery costs, and some supply costs were funded by my enormously successful KickStarter.com campaign! Thank you to ALL of the backers. Your reward gifts will be sent out in September, after I get home from Burning Man.
10. The paintings don’t always look like the gifts, why is that?
Sometimes a painting wouldn’t be very interesting. So I make them as I see fit. Remember that all of them are going to be given away as well….so I want them to be something that I like and that someone else might connect with. Each painting can be researched here on this site to see what the gift was that inspired it.
11. Are you continuing the Gift Prolific for 2013?
I am! How great! I took a little break at the end of 2012 but now I am gifting a gift everyday in 2013….and writing about it. I am not doing a painting a day for everyday in 2013. I found that doing that took too much time away from my family…and other things. So I am posting sketches, paintings, photos and other people pictures. More like any other blog.
12. Are y0u going to do the Gift Prolific for 2013’s Burning Man?
Nope! I can’t expend that much time and energy every year. It was worth it. But I have to work on making art my full time job. That is really the big project for me right now. I may or may not go to Burning Man 2013. I am however doing some fundraising work for ‘Beezus Christ, Super Car’…a really great art car and honey bar. I may do the whole project again for 2014. But I will wait a little on making that decision.
13. I heard that you are going to sell some of the Gift Prolific paintings?
Well I did gift all 333 paintings from the first year. However, in Feb. 2013 I will be giving a gift away every day. Then making a small painting about each day. I will then be selling each of those paintings. It is a little experiment in making art accessible…and of course each painting will have a great story behind it. I still have some details to work out but don’t worry….when it is ready I will shout it from the rooftops!