February Wrap-Up: Goals, Faves, and What’s To Come

Much like January, this last week of February was a tough one! It flew by, and while I got lots done, I still have more I wished I’d gotten to. And in spite of a lot of productivity, February wasn’t really a great month for goals either, in terms of fully completing them.

#1. Attempt the #weeklyfive. Definitely didn’t happen. Overall, it was more like a weekly three, meaning I completed roughly three pieces of art in some form each week. I’m happy with that, but I do need to be stepping it up with the shop opening looming ahead in April.

#2. Water consumption. I definitely improved, but I’m still short of my goal which was 16 ounces a day. I tracked my water drinking for every day of the week, added them up and averaged them. I averaged 10 ounces a day for the month of February. (And yes, I know, there’s still tomorrow, but it’s not going to change my average drastically.) Honestly, that’s still a huge improvement from my previous lack of water drinking, but I’d like to see it increase for March!

#3. Read three books. Aha!! Finally, a goal I dominated! I read SIX books in February! Well, five novels and one graphic novel but they count. I was so excited to read five novels though, yeehoo! Full reviews are coming up in early March.

#4. Figure out & finalize where Iā€™m getting prints made. This is actually the goal I am most depressed about. I did SO much research about having art prints made, and I still don’t have an answer.Ā  (Warning, mini rant coming.) Basically, I found out what I can’t do because of affordability. Ordering prints through an online source is quite expensive. Most average at $5 or more per print, and that’s without shipping cost. To be making any kind of profit, I’d have to be charging way more than I want to for prints. The other option is to drop money I don’t have on a nice printer. Not only can I not afford said nice printer, the ink for it is also outrageously expensive and we’re back to the problem of sinking a ton of money into something that may yield no return. So basically, I don’t have a clue how I’m going to make prints, and it’s stressing me out. I need a solution if I’m going to offer more than just original artwork in my shop. (End rant.)

Blech. Not exactly the best month for goals. I did focus in and make progress on them, but didn’t actually complete most of them. I feel like I have a ton I want to get done in March, so here’s hoping I can continue being productive, focused, and get things done!

Onto a happier note: My favorites of the month!

february fave - deadpool

  • I think my first favorite is one we can all agree on as a fave: DEADPOOL
  • New art YouTubers to follow! Check out Sluggie and Art by Karen E Haley for some eyegasms. (Especially Karen Haley’s latest…stunning!)

  • Outdoor hikes. Thanks to an abnormally warm winter, the little and I have gotten in many winter hikes in the woods this month!
  • The card swap + gift exchange I participated in with my fellow Geek Girl Bloggers.
  • Lake Street Dive’s new album ‘Side Pony’. (Affiliate Link!)

february fave - lake street dive side pony

Despite being lackluster in the goal department, February was a good month. I really worked out my time management in terms of balancing blogging, art, side stuff (D&D, sleepover’s with the bestie), and of course mum/wife life. For March, I now need to work on making the most OF that time. I have a lot I need to get done before my shop opens up in April, and March is the last month to do it. I see lots of list making in my future!

How did your February shape up?

 

  • B.

    WOW! Six books is AWESOME! Congrats on kicking that goal in the ass!

    • Kay

      Thanks! At least I nailed one! šŸ˜€

  • Congrats on reading so much!!! Have you thought about going the Society6 route for selling prints online?

    • Kay

      Thanks! It felt great. šŸ˜€ And I will definitely be having either a Society6 shop or a RedBubble shop (or both) for prints and other items. But I would like to be able to also offer prints in my shop, mainly because they are a more affordable option for people than original art. However, if it I don’t find an affordable route, then I will just be using the other places!

  • I managed to read as much as I wanted too! It was overall a good month for me, but I didn’t manage to go to the movies once and it makes me sad, since I missed a bunch of great movies I really wanted to watch!

    • Kay

      Ah, that stinks! Hopefully you can see some in March! I agree that it was a good month overall too, even if my goals weren’t quite met. šŸ™‚

  • Nichole

    Looks to me like you got a lot accomplished! Awesome job my dear! I can’t wait to see what goodies I can get in your store!

    • Kay

      Thanks! It was a pretty good month!

  • 6 books?! I think I managed not quite 2. I wish I had more time for reading…there are just so many things I love to do though! Haha

    • Kay

      It’s true! I only read 2 in January. My reading definitely fluctuates.

  • Woot, six books!! That’s awesome! And I wish I had some advice on the prints thing because man, I want your shop to be super super successful<3 Why the heck is it SO expensive per print?! Good luck, friend. I'm crossing my fingers that you don't have to stress over that goal much longer!

    • Kay

      Thanks! Working on it for sure! The cost has to do with the inks they use and the paper they print on – archival inks (sun fade resistant, super high quality and such) and same with paper. I do understand the cost, I just don’t have the money I can put into it. But I do want to be able to offer something other than original art in my shop so there are options for the buyer.

      • Definitely, I know what you mean! And okay, the cost makes more sense to me now. But geez, now I’m wondering how some of my favorite Etsy shops offset that cost when they’re only charging $5 or so per print! Ay yi yi, business stuff is too grown-up for me:P

        • Kay

          It’s a learning process that’s for sure! I assume a lot use home printers…they really are worth the investment, I just can’t justify putting such a huge chunk of money into this venture at this current point in our lives. But in the future, if business is good, I definitely want to invest in one! As long as you are selling things steadily, it’d make up the cost. Also places like Staples offer decent quality printing which is probably the route I will end up going for now!

  • 6 books in a month? I’m impressed!

    • Kay

      Thanks! Sometimes you just get in the zone with books hehe.

  • What type of prints did you have in mind? I moonlight in the Staples print center! Depending what kind of paper you have in mind maybe I can throw out a few suggestions. Do you have a Staples close by?

    • Kay

      I do! And I was planning on looking into that this week! Basically I want something on decently thick paper with good color (ideally printing with 6 ink cartridges vs. the standard 3 like a home printer.) Any advice you have is welcome! Thanks so much Natalie!

      • I have a customer that comes in every few weeks to make prints of her paintings! We did samples of a handful of options and she settled on the matte business card paper. It’s thick like a cardstock with a tiny bit of shine (but not in a glossy kind of way). Colors show up really well on it! It’s not a paper we usually offer to people unless they’re actually doing business cards, so you’ll have to ask for it specifically. There’s also a glossy business card paper if that’s more your style, but personally I think colors look nicer on the matte. Each 8.5×11″ sheet will cost a dollar and some change. If they’re not too busy when you go in they can print different samples! If they have an order queue then I recommend going back later.

        If you bring your image on a flash drive saved as a jpeg they can also print multiple copies of the image on the same sheet. The two paintings I have from you are a little bigger than 5×7’s (idk what sizes you were planning to print so I just used those sizes for now), so two prints for almost $2 isn’t tooooo bad.

        ALSO another idea is to just buy your own ream of paper (there’s a lot to choose from on the store shelves). The nice reams can be a little pricey, but if you plan to use the whole thing then it’ll save you money in the long run. Most stores have samples of the paper out…but if they don’t, at my store we’ll often just open it up to show someone if they’re nice, hahah. Just make sure the paper is compatible with laser printers!! So if you supply your own paper they can print your stuff on it for 49 cents a page (black and white is 12 cents). The color printer behind the counter has 6 ink cartridges, but the one in self serve won’t (you don’t want to use that one anyway).

        Oh and just FYI these are just the prices here in California…I’ve heard some stores are more expensive and some stores are way cheaper. Hopefully this helps a bit, though!! Sorry for the wall of text lol. I was just assuming you weren’t making big poster size prints, but if you are we can talk about that too XD

        • Kay

          Ahhh Natalie that is perfect!! Exactly what I was looking for! Thank you so, so much! To start, I probably wouldn’t buy a ream of paper but if I ever get to the point of attending a con, I’d probably go that route to stock up on prints. I will definitely be hitting up Staples to get prints made!

  • Tip about drinking water in case you haven’t tried this already: Use a tumbler with a straw!! It has made drinking water so much better and I find I drink TONS more water because of the straw! šŸ™‚
    Graphic novels totally count as books! Yay Deadpool!
    ~Sara

    • Kay

      Thanks Sara, I’ll try it out!

  • Danielle Knapp

    Keeping my fingers crossed you find a good affordable printing solution <3

    • Kay

      Thanks Danielle! Got something in the works I’m quite hopeful about!

  • christine

    SIX BOOKS! Yay! Also, I can’t believe the prints are that expensive?! How the heck can Etsy artists afford to offer them? Good luck finding a solution. Even just original artwork will be awesome though!

    • Kay

      Thanks! And yeah, the print situation. Ugh. I think often Etsy artists have the nice printers…they are honestly worth the investment. I just can’t feel okay about dumping about $1000 (printer + ink…ugh) into this venture at this point in our lives. Luckily, I’ve come up with a few possibilities that won’t cost an arm and a leg (which I’m sure many of the Etsy artists use as well!) and will hopefully give me what I’m looking for!

  • I didn’t get much done because of being sick. šŸ™ But way to go on reading all those books! I’m jealous! šŸ™‚ <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

    • Kay

      Ugh, being sick stinks. šŸ™

  • Sonya

    Are they are any local print places nearby? (I feel like I should know that, but I really can’t remember and am sure things have changed since I lived up there, anyway.) I know for a 8.5×11 print on our best paper–heavier card stock, glossy on one side–we’d probably charge about a dollar apiece where I work. That will pretty much definitely differ from any local places you might have, but maybe it’s helpful? Like it might help ballpark it a bit.

    • Kay

      Thanks, I definitely will look into it more! I’ve looked into print shops in Plymouth since I figured a college town probably has one, but it’s specifically for fine art printing (not like a copy shop) so the prices are more than I’d like. I haven’t looked about places south of me yet, but it’s on my list too. Staples actually offers pretty good prices so I’m going to look into there as well.

  • Superfavorite of the month too: DEADPOOL!!!! I am here with you! Also, taking the right quantity of water is paramount. In fact, since I do it, I got thinner. It’s amazing what water can do! šŸ™‚ So, all my support for you during this March šŸ˜‰ You’ll make it happen!

    • Kay

      Thanks Pepi! And yes, upping water intake is so good for all parts of the body! Skin too! So far I’m doing great! šŸ˜€

  • Just keep drinking!! I used to not be able to drink ONE water bottle per day (I remember drinking like, one Gatorade bottle the entire day, and a glass of lemonade at night… no water!! wow!!!) But now I drink 5-6 water bottles every day. Trust me, just chug the water down even if it’s gross (i know that’s kind of weird, but in the beginning I thought water tasted gross!) but now I LOVE water! if I can do it, you can do it! šŸ˜‰

    • Kay

      I’ve definitely been chugging haha! I find it easeir to chug a big amount in the morning, then sip throughout the day, and chug more at night. It’s been working great!