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  • Writer's pictureAnn Marie Coolick

Updated: Feb 6, 2019

I'm excited to announce an opportunity to hopefully bring joy and light into the lives of those who need it most. I occasionally like to do a giveaway to thank my loyal supporters, but in the past, the winners have always been randomly selected. I kept thinking about those who didn't win, and those who may have truly needed it the most. Art can bring so much courage, optimism, and peace to those struggling, so with that sentiment I've decided to offer a giveaway for one custom commissioned 20"x20" painting.There is one catch, you cannot apply for this gift yourself, you have to be nominated by someone. This in turn will be a surprise from the applicant to the nominee. The application form is attached here and is due February 15th. Please let me know if you have any questions and thanks as always for your love and support!!

-Ann Marie

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  • Writer's pictureAnn Marie Coolick

Art and food have always been the best of friends. Food has been gracing award-winning canvases for centuries and Michelin-Star restaurants have plates worthy of museums. Keeping with the creative tradition, Buttercream Bakeshop's Tiffany MacIsaac and Alexandra Mudry-Till have launched a new series, Art on Cake, to give way to the artistry of pastry and painting while collaborating with local artists and raising money for charity. I'm super excited that I'll be the first featured artist to collaborate with Buttercream on this playful project!

I will be creating three unique, edible art pieces (cakes!) in collaboration with Buttercream and they will be auctioned off with all proceeds benefiting Project Create, which provides arts education and creative space to children and youth experiencing homelessness and poverty in Washington, D.C. The bidding is now open here (starting bid $100) and will close Friday July 20th at 6pm. Winners will be able to select their preferred flavor of cake and the cake will serve at least 22-24. Learn more about the kids of Project Create in this wonderful video below.

Buttercream's cakes are known for fantastical and innovative designs, often hand painted or sculpted with 3-D elements. It is the perfect complement to my heavily textured, frosting-like painting style. My three cakes will be inspired by my polka daub, cherry blossom, and hydrangea paintings. I will use custom cake knives similar to my painting knives to decorate these cakes in my signature style.

I hope you'll join us in raising money for this important creative charity for local DC kids! Remember, bidding closes at 6pm this Friday! Submit your bids here!

*My work is currently on display and available for purchase in Buttercream’s shop for the duration of the auction.

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  • Writer's pictureAnn Marie Coolick

emerge: to come forth into view or notice, as from concealment or obscurity.

Shortly after graduating from art school in 2003 I was accepted into an Emerging Artists group show in Georgetown. At the time I thought it was something that would garner recognition and allow me to eventually move out of my parents house in the suburbs of DC. I was wrong. Reality was that it wasn't that easy. I did eventually move out, but only after I accepted a steady, well-paying government job. For years I was in the grind, working full-time during the day and going to the studio at night. I felt like I was not really an Emerging Artist, but a Struggling Artist. Fast forward 15 years, and although I'm blessed to have a successful studio practice, it has required extreme dedication and self-reflection on a daily basis.

Being an artist isn't all about recognition though. It's about the desire to always want to create and to find inspiration in something new and unexpected. It's a life-long journey, requiring an incessant desire to make and perfect our craft, and to share it with the world.

The term Emerging Artist came back to me last weekend while serving as a reviewer at a local Portfolio Review (hosted in conjunction with the East Coast Art Collective's group show at Willow Street Gallery). It was my first time sitting on the reviewer side of the table so I was probably just as intimidated as the artists on the other side. The last time I had my portfolio reviewed was for a grad school interview in 2003 and it was intimidating and not inspirational whatsoever.

What I learned being a reviewer is that there are so many artists out there in our community who are starting out and are excited and inspired to make art. All they need is a little encouragement and advice to get them started. Some were young artists who just moved into their first studio space or were searching for their own unique style. Many had been in the gallery scene for years but still hadn't found their audience. I was inspired by these artists and their willingness to put their art out there and receive constructive criticism from relative strangers. I also enjoyed hearing their goals and trying to figure out ideas for how to get them where they want to be. Nothing about being an artist is easy, but encouragement and networking will only make us that much stronger as a creative community.

Below: Emerging Artist Romper, available at the Whitney Shop, $28.

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