Friday, September 16, 2011

Uxbridge Studio Tour - Samantha Turnbull

Our featured artist today is Samantha Turnbull. Her studio is located at S 455 Concession Road 8, Brock, Sunderland.

Samantha's work is incredibly varied in both style and subject. Today we featured the 'Rock Star' series of work which uses 'iconic images of "rock stars" and other faces from John Lennon to Feist in contrast electric colours and bold strokes for the contemporary eye.'

Make sure to check out Samantha's entire portfolio and visit her this weekend on the Uxbridge Studio Tour. Maps are available at Blue Heron Books and Presents, Presents, Presents.

[All images courtesy of Samantha Turnbull]

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Uxbridge Studio Tour - Gerd Untermann

Our featured artist today is Gerd Untermann. His studio is located at 4560 Sideline 22, Claremont.

'My work is not about me; it is about you, the beholder, whom I beg to find a moment of stillness, and touch the work as you contemplate it.' - excerpt from Gerd's artist's statement.

Visit Gerd on the Uxbridge Studio Tour this weekend and make sure to check out his website to see other examples of his work.

[All images courtesy of Gerd Untermann]

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Uxbridge Studio Tour - Cynthia Cupples

Our featured artist today is Cynthia Cupples. Her studio is located at 8319 3rd Concession, Uxbridge.

Cynthia's work, often made of porcelain, ranges from travel coffee mugs (which make a perfect gift for a teacher or friend) to larger custom designed vessels. Her creations feature original designs, or an "Ode to Group of Seven," or "Ode to Matisse" theme.

Cynthia also offers pottery lessons as well as paint-your-own-ceramics parties for both children and adults. Visit her website for more information and check out the Uxbridge Studio Tour website to find out more information about all the artists participating.

[All images supplied by Cynthia Cupples]

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Uxbridge Studio Tour - Sparks will fly forge

Our featured artist today is Mark Puigmarti of Sparks Will Fly Forge. His studio is located at 402 Reach St. Port Perry.

Artist's Statement: "Yellow hot metal...focus...controlled violent blows...more heat...repeat again and again. Result...metal transformed with energy and passion."

See examples of Mark's work below but also make sure to visit his website to see sketches of these pieces during the creative process. Visit the Uxbridge Studio Tour website for all the information you need to visit Sparks Will Fly Forge this weekend.

[All images courtesy of Sparks Will Fly Forge]

Monday, September 12, 2011

Uxbridge Studio Tour - Lynne McIlvride Evans

In Uxbridge we are very lucky to have a thriving arts community. Whether it is visual, performance, or written arts, we have many local groups, events and venues through which people of every age can experience our community in many different ways. There is no better time to do this then in September during the Uxbridge Celebration of the Arts.

One of the many highlights of this festival is the Uxbridge Studio Tour (this weekend - September 17th and 18th) which takes us into the creative spaces of 30 artists who also invited 30 more artists to showcase their work at the same time. Each day this week on the Take Root Creative blog, we will be featuring one artist who you can see this weekend on the tour.

I am currently working on expanding my descriptive vocabulary since words like 'beautiful' and 'stunning' are not conveying the way I truly feel when I look at the work of these artists. Therefore, with all of our features this week, you will see descriptions of the artist's work from their own words and then accompanying images. Most importantly, make sure to visit these artist's studios and see the work in person. No words can describe that kind of experience.

Our first featured artist is Lynne McIlvride Evans. Her studio is located at 415 Scugog Line 8, Port Perry.

Artist's Statement: "My constructed paintings are built up layers of paper, canvas, glass, all manner of paints, gold leaf, found objects, and other materials that I can no longer recall. Some layers conceal and others reveal but in the end each work is a whole world -- a portrait of 'all there is, seen and unseen.'"

Lynne's recent experiences have directed her into landscape painting which you can see below. Visit her website to see more of her work and read about her residency in Montserrat, Catalonia, Spain. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

{5 Things to Do This Fall} - Part 1

1. Learn to knit. 
Ellen, of On The Lamb, assured me that anyone can make the cozy gorgeous scarf pictured below. Get going on it now and you'll have a stock pile of gifts for the holidays!

2. Invest in a good pair of warm socks. 
When the temperatures begin to dip, your feet will stay toasty warm in these durable socks by Scotch & Soda from Strawberry Threads.

3. Learn about an important Canadian like Terry Fox. 
On Sunday September 18th, Canadians across the country will take part in the Terry Fox Run. Douglas Coupland's book Terry takes both a visual and informative look at this incredible Canadian. Pick it up at Blue Heron Books.

4. Add some autumn-themed curb appeal. 
Mums are great because they are hearty (so they aren't easy to harm with lack of attention) and they look beautiful! Pick up a couple at La Petite Fleur.

5. Go on the Uxbridge Studio Tour. 
Speaking of great holiday gifts, the Uxbridge Studio Tour provides the perfect opportunity for finding one-of-kind pieces and meeting the talented artists who create them. You might find you'll be keeping everything for yourself!

[Uxbridge Studio Tour, On the Lamb, Blue Heron Books, Strawberry Threads, La Petite Fleur]

Friday, September 2, 2011

{Marketing Tips} - Things you can do in under 5 minutes

Our last post for this series is all about research. It's a way to receive new and relevant information every day so you can grow your knowledge and stay up to date with changes both in the world of small business and the specific industry you work within.

If you are not familiar with Google Reader, you will quickly learn that it can be both your best friend and your worst enemy at the same time. What Google Reader allows you to do it compile every blog/website/online information source into one place so you don't have to visit each bookmarked URL to check for new posts. It is a time saver, but once you start reading new articles and updates, you will be be surprised at how fast time will past. Make sure to monitor how much time you spend on Google Reader - it can become very addicting!

The first thing you need to do it set up a Google account if you don't have one already (Gmail is a google account) then go to and login. You will see the screen below:

Click on 'Add a subscription' at the top left to add the feeds of blogs you want to follow. Where do you find these 'feeds' you may ask? On the Take Root Creative blog it is the orange and white symbol on the right side of the page.

When you click it, you will be directed to the 'feed' of the blog. Copy the URL at the top of your web browser (the 'www.' part) and paste it in the box that appeared when you clicked 'Add a subscription' in Google Reader.

What should you follow? Anything that you find interesting or relevant to your business. You can start with our blog, as well as the blogs of other local businesses in your area. Here are a few other recommendations to get you started: - this is a great resource for social media news, technology and business tips
American Express Open Forum - this forum features short but extremely relevant articles by contributing business owners.
The Financial Post - features articles online from the print version of the paper

Another way to find relevant blogs is to check out any trade publications your receive in the mail. Chances are high that they have a blog you can subscribe to. Have any favourite resources you already follow? Let us know in the comments section.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

{Marketing Tips} - Thing you can do in under 5 minutes

We continue today with our mini-series featuring easy-to-do marketing tips. Tomorrow will be a last post in this feature.
  1. Take a file folder and label it 'Advertising Inspiration' then put it somewhere easily accessible. every time you see an ad in the newspaper you like, or receive a postcard or flyer in the mail that grabs your attention, stash it away in this folder. When it comes time to create some marketing collateral for yourself, you'll have your file of ideas for reference.
  2. Offer a time-sensitive discount coupon via Twitter or Facebook (or both) You can do this a bunch of ways but here is one option. Post a comment in the morning to your followers saying that there will be a special time-sensitive deal posted at 1:00 pm and to check back at that time. At 1:00 pm post the deal. Tell your followers that if they post a comment between 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm, they will receive a coupon (via private Facebook or Twitter message). At 2:00pm, send the promised coupon to all followers who commented during that time frame. Make sure to talk about the missed deal to the other followers who did not get it so they make sure to check back regularly.

    You can also take it one step further by tagging on some market research. In your post, ask your followers a question to answer in the comments that will help you make some decisions. For example, you could say this: "Leave a comment here telling us your favourite fall fashion trend between 1:00 and 2:00 pm to receive your 20% off coupon. " Not only are you offering an incentive to get customers in the store, but you are finding out what your followers are looking to purchase for their fall wardrobe updates.