Linda's Blog—Travel and Art


    DON’T Make New Year’s Resolutions!

    I really dislike the concept of New Year resolutions. The idea of starting off fresh, starting over, is an enticing one. The problem is, very few follow through for any length of time. 

    I always feel like I’m already behind the eight ball when I ‘start’ my resolutions on New Year’s Day (actually, the day AFTER New Year’s Day), and there is a great deal of pressure and stress. Is that really the way I want to begin my New Year? No. No, it is not.

    So, a few years ago, I came up with a different plan, and it is so much easier, with a far greater likelihood of success—I build success into my plan! I look at what I am already doing, and I expand on that. I start a few weeks before New Year’s Day, I consider all items to be part of a YEAR-long plan, and by January 1 I am already ‘working my plan’! 

    MY PLAN has two parts: 

          PART A. Where have I been?

    In order to build on success, I consider all the positive things I’ve done or accomplished during the current year. For example, at first I was thinking that not much had happened during 2016, but when I really started to think back over the year, WOW, a lot went on!  Among other things:

    1) I painted with Roos Schuring in Holland, something I had wanted to do for two years! During the trip I became fearless as I braved the cold, wind, and sand. I travelled completely by myself, and made all arrangements by myself, figured out what to do when my cards were lost, and basically learned that all the backup plans I had put in place worked.  Paintings      Blog    

    2) I COMPLETELY REDESIGNED MY WEBSITE. I am much happier with the way my website looks (although there are some flaws in the server that provides the service). I began the redesign in December of 2015, but did not launch until February of this year. See, built-in success

    3) I STARTED MY BLOG. This is something I have been thinking about for a few years, and so I give myself big kudos for finally acting on that notion. 

    4) For social media, I did Facebook LIVE videos,  I got on Instagram, and I just recently got on Twitter (not sure about that one).

    5) I applied for and received permission to copy some paintings at the VMFA. Again, something I had been thinking about for several years, and finally just DID IT. These will lead into some painting projects for 2017.


         Part B. Where do I want to go?

    1) I would really like to be more organized in my approach to using social media to promote my paintings. I have written down some protocols, some hashtags—sometimes I follow them, sometimes I don’t…I think my casual approach is actually taking too much time, and not doing a very effective job.

    2) I need to write shorter blogs, so I can more easily keep to a weekly schedule (see #3 for 2016) This one is part of that plan! Not worrying so much about images is also part of the plan.

    3) I would really like to do some video of me painting. My Facebook LIVE! posts will help me (see #5 for 2016). I will get a handle/stand for my iPhone, maybe this week.

    4) I want to paint what I want to paint, and not for the next themed shows. I think there will be less participation in such things, and more working on several series I have had in mind but not had the time because of other people’s themed shows. The paintings I copied in the museum have helped me work in this direction to a certain extent.

    5) I will be moving my studio in the spring, so I will need to organize, clean, and eliminate. Part of my plan for #4 is to use the large canvases I have in my studio.

    6) Just as an aside, I need to promote my workshops more, so check them out HERE! So far I have scheduled Art Marketing, Linear Perspective Drawing, Paint Knife 101, and Color Mixing January through April. ( See, now I've begun to put that plan into action...)

    7) I really must drink more water…I will begin with one 8-ounce bottle, and build up from there.


    Also, I haven’t taken class in a long time; I hear Vermont calling me—or France, I’m flexible...


    With all this in mind, a few weeks early (like LAST WEEK) I start putting plans into place and even begin to implement them. By the time New Year’s Day rolls around, all the pressure is off because I am already on a roll. For example, I have already sold a lot of frames in my studio that are of a style I do not use anymore. I have already cleaned my drawers. I have already started making my blogs somewhat shorter (AHEM, this one is less than 1,000 works), and I have already created a page in my iPhone’s NOTES app that has my hashtags listed and grouped so I can cut-and-paste quickly. 

    HOWEVER, I just read of a really neat way to MORE QUICKLY bring up a group of hashtags with a few keystrokes. SWEET.  Thank you, Leslie Saeta!  Here’s the LINK. My gift to you, by way of Leslie Saeta!

    And here is some info on the Power of Hashtags. Thank you, Lorelle Rau!


    I post these plans in my studio and at home. AND, if I don’t get to all of them, that’s OK too, because I will still be ahead.


    A work about bucket lists:

    I never thought about riding on a hoverboard, but this week I did that, and I have decided it should be on my bucket list, so I have put it down, and now I can  cross it off my list. See how that works? 

    Now, where is that bottle of water…


    "Don't fear failure. Fear being in exactly the same place next year as you are today."  Michael Hyatt



    Brenda says (Dec 20, 2016):

    You just saved me a lot of work. I agree and will implement a lot of what you said except for the hover board!


    Linda Hollett-Bazouzi says (Dec 20, 2016):

    Glad it helped you, Brenda! Feel free to share, and if you change your mind about the hoverboard, let me know.


    Elizabeth Hood says (Dec 27, 2016):

    Linda, I love reading your blogs and I personally enjoy all the stories from your trips. I looked at your workshops and presentations coming up and noticed that you have our group's name as James River Artist's Association, but it is actually James River Art League. I'm really looking forward to that presentation in February!


    Linda Hollett-Bazouzi says (Dec 27, 2016):

    Elizabeth, Thanks so much for the head's up! I knew that, but it obviously did not transfer as I was writing the post. I have already changed it. I'm just glad I did not put that mistake in my email! Linda

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