2021 North Carolina Artist Exhibition: A Virtual Retrospective

About: The Raleigh Fine Arts Society (RFAS) is sponsoring a virtual North Carolina Artist Exhibition. This year, due to the pandemic, they have organized a virtual retrospective with new work by North Carolina artists who were juried into previous shows in 2018 – 2020.  Deborah Kruger is exhibiting her new mural-sized piece Accidentals, which measures 92″ x 167″ x 6″.

Dates: April 17 – July 17, 2021

More information about how to tour the exhibition: 

https://www.ralfinearts.org/NC-Artists-Exhibition-Enter

Creative Blocks

If you are feeling creatively blocked, my guess is that you are also feeling fear. I can already hear what is going on in your mind. Terrible things like: you are a fake, you don’t have what it takes, your best work is behind you. Am I right?

I have two strategies for combatting Creative Blocks. 

Reflections on the end of 2020

The dualities of darkness and light could not be more exaggerated this year. On a personal level, this has been the hardest year in many as I lost both of my beloved parents. I am so grateful that I had such a special relationship with each of them and that I was raised by two extraordinary people. Later in my life, they became my biggest supporters and I owe much of my success to them…

Creating Beauty in a Turbulent World

At the tender age of 21 I attended the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City tostudy textile design. I went on to become a wallpaper designer, so the first formative decade of my professional life was dominated by decorative design.
This influence has never left me. During my training and subsequent employment…

The Fine Art of Preparation

This is a special update for my Art Patrons who may be wondering what is on my mind. Being a good planner is a great skill for artists. Since I had a long stint as a CEO of a small company, I am glad to have this skill in my tool box.My upcoming solo show […]

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On My Mind Right Now

Well besides the outcome of the election, which is on everyone’s minds in the US, I am actually thinking about other things related to art. Since you are one of my new Art Patrons, I thought I would let you into my head!

Although my first solo museum show is still 14 months away, I know that this time will go by fast. Next week I will meet with Sandra, my assistant, to make a master schedule of what we want to accomplish before the show opens and calendar these pieces so that we ensure that they get done. 

I will write more about that in my next missive. 

I can already anticipate that we will need to do A LOT more printing in order to have enough feathers for all the pieces we plan to make. This week, I had our other assistants, Alicia and Samantha (who are a mother and daughter-in-law), cut 4 x 8” samples that I pinned to the wall. I organized these samples by color and image. Since I am planning to make two white pieces there are three rows of white samples. One row has languages and the other two rows have bird images. Some of them have text overprints and some don’t. The next row is black and has languages in gold ink.Then I started a row of warm colors, a row of cool colors and a row of blacks. 

With all this visual information on the wall, it’s easier to see what I need to fill in the gaps. Sandra is going to Guadalajara on Friday and can pick up more recycled plastic bags in colors that we need. And I can start programming printing for next week that will start filling in the color gaps that we need. 

As you can see, there’s a lot of planning that goes into making the feathers! When I decide to make a piece in a monochromatic color scheme, I need to be sure that I have plenty of inventory on hand before I start working. Since there are so many steps to making the feathers, it would be frustrating to run out of them midway. 

In addition to fusing the plastic bags together, they also need to be primed before printing. Then we print on both sides and sometimes we overprint, so there may be 2 – 4 printings for each set of plastic pages. The next step is sending them out for sewing. This is actually a two-step process. The first step is bringing the pages to a sewer who has a free-hand machine and can ‘draw’ the circular design we have developed on each sheet. We give her a note specifying what color thread to use.  Then I set up groups of two and three sheets that get sewn together in lengths. When these sheets return to the studio I design groups of 3 different designs that are staggered so that each design shows. I sew these on my machine and then Alicia and Samantha cut them into the long feathers with tapered ends.

Stack of printed pages with note to sewer

So you can see, with all these steps, I can’t just ask for something I need and expect to get it the next day! From start to finish, each set of feathers takes at least a week and sometimes more due to the sewers schedules. We are constantly working on this part of the process and creating more inventory. Sandra has trained Alicia and Samantha in how to do silk-screening and now they can work independently. 

I hope you enjoy learning more about the studio processes and what it takes to make my artwork. If you still have questions, please let me know. I welcome getting ideas for new topics! 

Alicia and Samantha silk screening
Layered and cut feathers on the wall
Closeup of the tapered ends of the feathers

Announcing the Launch of Deborah Kruger Designs

Deborah Kruger

I am excited to tell you about the launch of my new line of designer home products. On my new website, Deborah Kruger Designs, you can shop for over 60 items all using details from my artwork.

Whether you are nerdy and like journals, sporty and love yoga, a foodie or enjoy unique décor in your living areas, you will find lots of designer merchandise that will brighten things up this winter. If you’re shopping for new babies or want to wow your friends and family with truly unusual gifts like puzzles and calendars, you can support an artist instead of Amazon this holiday season.

 

DEK cropped featured

Just to give you an example, here’s my artwork named Turbulence next to four items of merchandise: a yoga mat, body pillow, scarf and journal. On the new website, you can shop by design as well as by category.

Since we are all spending more time in the kitchen during the pandemic, I have designed several coordinated collections that include matching woven placemats, runners, cloth napkins, table cloths, and glasses. 

On the new website, you can shop by design as well as by category. 

Speaking of categories, the new merchandise falls into items for the kitchen, home décor, gifts (we have 26 selections!), baby and yoga:

Kitchen

Gifts

Home Decor

You can also bring my artwork into your home with ottomans, metal prints, cozy Sherpa blankets and of course lots of pillows.

Happy Shopping!!

Use Coupon Code blackfriday2020 on checkout to receive a 20% discount on ALL items!

Welcome to the Flock! A warm welcome to my new Art Patrons

Welcome to the Flock! A warm welcome to my new Art Patrons One of the things I love about being an artist is that we transform bits and pieces of nothing into something beautiful and meaningful. It’s the ultimate recycling project.Thanks to your help, I can now lean into my work in a new and […]

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TIME MANAGEMENT: Thoughts for the Self Employed

TIME MANAGEMENT: Thoughts for the Self Employed Managing time is a never-ending effort for every artist that I know. We are constantly recalibrating the demand from the studio with the rest of our lives.Folks who are not self-employed often envy our ability to choose and craft our schedules. However, in my experience, self-employment puts an […]

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