03 February 2019

Artist Julea Boswell talks about her new inventory system and online portfolio

Avant Garde 2 by Julea Boswell w8" x h16"
SAQA Atlantic member Julea Boswell, from Frenchfort PEI (and Ottawa ON) recently launched her online portfolio on a platform called Artwork Archive.  

Julea is an abstract acrylic and mixed-media artist, a modern quilt designer-maker and a part-time contemporary dance company manager. 

Last week, Julea had a chat with Cathy Drummond, about her experience with Artwork Archive.

See Julea's new portfolio: 

Julea, how did you come to choose Artwork Archive as your online presence?

JB:  Actually, I was searching for a simple art inventory system before even realizing it would serve the purpose of also being a public portfolio. Last fall, when I was making several submissions of my work, the job of pulling together all the details for the submissions from scratch each time became a real chore. It was cumbersome finding files, remembering which image was the latest perfectly-cropped final version, finding the details of the piece, dimensions, specific materials used, pricing and so on. My files were a mix-mash! All of a sudden I’d reached a tipping point and had a large enough body of work that I really needed a system to view all my work in one place and have everything readily at-hand. It occurred to me there must be some ready-made web tools and sure enough I found Artwork Archive. 

How many pieces do you have on the site? 

JB: I have 32 loaded in my inventory right now. But there are older ones I'll eventually add, such as the functional quilts I made before I started making art quilts and paintings. With Artwork Archive, you have the option to make a piece public, or not, with a simple checkbox. My priority was to get the ones I wanted to show publicly on the site first.

How simple is Artwork Archive to use?

JB: If you can drag and drop images and fill out an online form, it's literally that easy! Once you load a couple of pieces, you really get to know it. There's a drop-down menu where you can choose the status of the work too: in progress, available, sold, destroyed, archived, etc.

Is it expensive?

JB: It's free for the first month with up to 50 pieces. That was fine for me to get started. There are then 3 levels of payment. The cheapest, at US$6 per month, allows people to whom you give your URL to view your site, and that's what I have for now. If you want your work to be available to anyone searching your name, it’s US$12 a month.  

Is there a way to back-up or download your files if you need to, for example if Artwork Archive should no longer meet your needs?

JB: All the main data items are fully exportable. You have the option to export to a CSV or Excel file anytime. 

How does it work as an online portfolio?

JB: This is what I think is really great. I was at the point where I knew I should be creating a website, but it seemed like a bigger job than I had time for right now. As soon as I saw that Artwork Archive could be a public portfolio too - and the portfolios I looked at were all great - I just went for it. Every time I add a new piece to my inventory it can become part of my public portfolio with one click. Another thing I find really good is the way you can organize the work by "collections". I work in different mediums and my work is varied in style. I wanted to find a way to present both my art quilt pieces and my other work in a cohesive way. 

Screenshot, Artwork Archive

So, am I right to say that you would recommend Artwork Archive to our readers as both an archive and a web presence?

JB: For sure. If you're an artist who would like to create an online presence, don’t hesitate. New tools like this make it easy and allow you to work along at your own pace. The biggest job is the initial upload so don't delay, the more pieces you have the bigger the job becomes!

Julea, thank you so much for introducing us to this interesting tool.  It certainly sounds easy and useful.

Improv Curves 1-2-3 by Julea Boswell w8" x h8"


Thank you to both Julea and Cathy for producing today's blog post. We always welcome members' submissions.

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