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Old 03-29-2007, 08:39 AM
 
156 posts, read 665,464 times
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Hi Dancingearth, HaHa! I think affordability is in the eye of the beholder!
In his old book, John Villani had a better criteria, imho. It was all about the best SMALL art towns, and there were good profiles of each town,including a lot of reviews by artists who lived there. But it's so out-of-date now, don't waste your time. The new book is divided into large & small art towns, either above 30,000 people or below. He used census reports, and while the older book numbered them from 1-100, now his categories are 1-10 in 30,000 people or less and 1-10 in pop. of 30,000-100000.He talks about how some communities are out of reach for some artists...other criteria were: number of art galleries, natural beauty,affordability,local support for the arts, avail.of studio space, frequency of art festivals, diversity ,infrastructure,and 'creative vibe'plus lots more.

The second book is worth reading, from a library if you can,I got it from Amazon for @20$.
The thing I keep in my head is, that even though he personally visited all these places, he didn't live in them, but he does live in Santa Fe!

ps) my SIL lives in WA, in Olympia, she loves it,and maybe we'll visit her soon.
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Old 03-29-2007, 08:43 AM
 
156 posts, read 665,464 times
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Ontheroad,
I love the Hudson Valley, but I don't think I want to live there. Its pretty spread out,like you said, and I bet it has some great resources. I just need to get out of the NE for a while.
And, my stuff is so far removed from the "hudson valley" school look, not sure ,but I don't think I'd fit in, but I'm prob. wrong. I love to talk to other artists, no matter what their style.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:57 AM
 
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Hi Iriegirl, The criteria sound reasonable in the book. I'm still waiting for the library to get it from another branch. I live in Olympia too - is it in the book? I do love this town and after I'm finished with college want to give it a good try before moving again. I've made some good friends here. I think if I found the right place to live, the rain wouldn't get to me. I like the mild temperatures most of the winter. Actually the first two winters, I didn't know what people complained about--they were great. As long as I got out to walk, which you could do with the light rainfall and mild temperatures, I was fine. Then last winter I found out and I joined the moaners. But that was a record rainfall. This winter has been bearable except for November (16"!) But who gets to spend much time outside anyway? I typically have my noise in a book, at work, or the ceramic studio.

I love summers here--it is their secret--four years here and it reminds me of Santa Fe weather. I thought I'd be able to garden like in PA - no watering. Nope, it is the dry season - grass turns brown and if you grow things, you have to water. But it makes for great playing weather in the abundance of nature that is here. I'm only 1-2 hours from the ocean, mountains, Portland, Seattle. Although the beach is vastly different than the NJ shore. You don't swim in the ocean--bad currents and cold. And I haven't adjusted to the language--I keep saying "let's go to the shore" and they look at me strange. Oh yeah, "let's go to the beach." We drive over for the day and sit on the beach and watch the water, lovely except for where the d..n cars are driving on the beach. Can't believe they allow it - "it's the highway." Dodging cars with my three year old granddaughter was not cool. I'm hoping someone gets smart and figures out tourism would go up if they get the cars off the sand.

The downside to Olympia has been the cost of housing and so far my experience with finding groups to work with has been terrible. But I think that is a combination of humans comfortable with the known (cliques) and our culture of ego and independence, it is not place. But there are lots of artists here. Come during Art Walk and the Procession of the Species. Although I'm not sure how the Procession is doing--one of the groups that seem to be falling apart. They lost their studio last year but I heard they found another one. I need to get down there and make a giant puppet for the parade. It is one group that I think is worth investing time and the aggravation of working with others. http://www.procession.org/ Hmmm....I need an independent project for my Arts Production class, maybe instead of attempting to write a children's book, I'll make it something with the Procession.
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Old 03-29-2007, 12:31 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,910,412 times
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Iriegirl, I started a long response this morning but it virtually disappeared. So, a more abbreviated response.

The Thanksgiving before last, I made rounds up in Saugerties and Phoenica, and a stroll through Woodstock. I had been invited by some acquaintances. What they have given each other is huge support; two cooperative art groups, one in Saugerties which is housed within and adjacent to a bookstore, and the second in Phoenica that had just opened in a large, airy, second storey building on Main Street.

The entire area is so appealing, but yes, expensive and very cold. It wasn't snowing when I left NYC, but by the time I got to Phoenica it was more than covering the ground and I had to borrow some boots.

If I had $400,00 in loose change, I might really consider moving to the area--especially as my medical insurance is only covered in its entirety in NYS.

And btw, most of the artists in the area are modernists. You'd be amazed at what I saw in the co-op gallery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iriegirl View Post
Ontheroad,
I love the Hudson Valley, but I don't think I want to live there. Its pretty spread out,like you said, and I bet it has some great resources. I just need to get out of the NE for a while.
And, my stuff is so far removed from the "hudson valley" school look, not sure ,but I don't think I'd fit in, but I'm prob. wrong. I love to talk to other artists, no matter what their style.
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Old 03-29-2007, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,910,412 times
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Dancingearth, one of my closest art friends just moved to Aberdeen, WA (from Asheville, NC) about 30 miles from you. She is a terrific and well regarded doll artist, and just had a book published by Lark on altered books.

Perhaps you might find her helpful. She's bright, energetic and just retired. If you'd like I'll give her a call or write and ask her, too, if she'd like to meet you.
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Old 03-29-2007, 12:47 PM
 
1,025 posts, read 3,765,238 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ontheroad View Post
Figment07, many thanks for those lists. I can see already I am not going to buy into what it said, but rather have to see for myself.

In category 3, NYC, where I lived for the last 10 years before moving to Taos, I'd say art exists even on the subway platform. It was far more invigorating than I realized.
You're quite welcome, OTR.

For anyone who might be interested in a big city art "town", here's a link to another book suggestion:

An Artist's Guide -- Making It in New York City by Daniel Grant.
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Old 03-29-2007, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Old Town Alexandria
14,505 posts, read 23,775,798 times
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Thumbs up Lake Ontario!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgoldie View Post
Interesting list. This is one of my big things, I want to attract more artists here.

I've been to almost every place on that list and I'm wondering how many of them are affordable right now for artists, especially those places that are water venues?

If you took a place that looked a bit like Annapolis harbor and had available houses for $40,000, and a downtown with potential waterview lofts currently undeveloped, and miles of waterfront walkways like Portland, that would be a good place for artists, no? I want to see filmmakers, writers, photographers, musicians, and all other creative types move here.

We already have a base with theatre groups, opera, bookstores, festivals, a college and more. We're a few hours to a day's drive to nearly every major city in the NE and Canada to market your work, and in the middle of some of the most interesting and varied scenic venues in the country. Finger Lakes, Adirondack Mtns, 1000 Islands, Niagara Falls, Lake Ontario. Easy living and small city environment.

Calling all artists - Move to Oswego, NY
Any pix? I went to the school there for 2 yrs- late 80's- Oswego was a pretty town. What does it look like now?

sunny
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,910,412 times
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As I mentioned on the thread to plaidmom, but for everyone, wouldn't it be fun to write our own book. After all who would be better than a bunch of folks on a llist like this and spread throughout the States, and with more to gain than money--but nirvana.

Thanks so much, Figment07, you spurred this on!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Figment 07 View Post
You're quite welcome, OTR.

For anyone who might be interested in a big city art "town", here's a link to another book suggestion:

An Artist's Guide -- Making It in New York City by Daniel Grant.

Last edited by ontheroad; 03-29-2007 at 01:34 PM..
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:08 PM
 
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Grrrrr....just had one disappear too. Sure, it would be fun to meet your friend Ontheroad. My daughter has a doll collection I made her when she was little. Now I'm into making jugs with heads and eventually I would want to try using clay for dolls or puppets. I'd be curious what she thinks of Aberdeen. I've heard it is a depressed area--certainly affordable. If I was at a point where I could support myself on my art, I'd seriously consider living there. A year or so ago, I put a bid on a place at Ocean Shores - it was an old grocery store with an apartment in the back. Would have made a great studio. Work in the winter and sell in the summer. Right on the main drag. But I was turned down and when they came back and said they changed their mind, I had too. I recognized the overhang as an old gas station and the tank was still in the ground--looked like trouble. And I couldn't live there until I figured out income since I would hate commuting.

Now if I had a spare several million, I'd buy the old Olympia brewery and make a community art center.
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:44 PM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,085,138 times
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I keep playing with the idea of writing about the artist' journey. No matter where I live, I find creative people, living creative ways in order to do their art. Every so often I write down questions I would explore. Combining that with the town might be interesting.

I'd also explore what happens when a town gets to be known as an artist town. I'm guessing, it becomes a tourist town instead. Madrid & Taos NM are two I think are tourist towns. They are too small and expensive to support any new incoming artists. Santa Fe is a tourist town but maybe because it is larger with more venues to sell and more diversity in jobs artists are finding ways to survive there and do their art even when they haven't made it "big" by getting into the galleries on Canyon Road. Of course, the jobs are mostly state & tourism--I never met so many well educated people working multiple low paying jobs just so they could live there.

If you found a place that was nirvana, would you want to publicize it? It would be an interesting experiment. A recipe book... How to create your very own artist town
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