This is part 2 of my interview with Texas artist Mary Beth Martin. Mary Beth lives in Georgetown, Texas and is an amazingly creative individual. Her work has been shown across the South and as far away as France. Part one of the interview is found here.
4. After you created the pop up books for your grandsons, you got inspired to make a video? Tell me about that. Why? What did you do? How long did it take? Did you shoot and edit the video solely on the iPad?
I had been working on our grandson’s Christmas presents before Christmas. I made the two older boys a scrapbook of the time they spent with us this past summer. I made the two little ones popup books on the True Gift of Christmas. I had surgery at the end of November and a week later had to return to the hospital for a weeks stay because I had gotten a staph infection, I had to have a wound VAC for a month and my knee is just finished healing after five months. With all of that I was late with my gifts.
As I was looking at the apps I saw iMovie. I decided to document the popup books for Presley and Kennedy. I had never even taken a video let a lone edit one! I downloaded iMovie and started to work. I first filmed it trying to turn the pages, read and film all at the same time. I decided I needed a little help so Mike turned the pages as I filmed and read the books. After that I began putting it all together with music, my reading, video clips and still shots. It took me about two days with the first book -. I had finished my very first movie all done on the iPad in two days! Don’t forget, I didn’t know how the iPad worked, I didn’t know anything about video taping, I wasn’t familiar with I Movie and I knew nothing about editing a movie! My second video only took me a day.
5. How has your use of the iPad changed since you first got the iPad. What accessories, if any, have you used?
I have a case for my iPad that has a built in easel. I was at a Meet the Teacher Day at Sun City Visual Arts Club. I used the easel with my iPad to put on a table and display a slideshow of my paintings. Everyone was impressed. Instead of having a few paintings to show them they could look at my whole portfolio, which I put together with an app.
I just got a device that clamps onto my painting easel in my studio so I can now have a photo of what I am painting next to my painting as a reference. The colors are so much better than a photo and I can zoom in to get all the detail. It is great!
I also got a camera connector to upload my photos from my camera to the iPad. Now as long as I have my iPad I will never run out of space on my compact flash cards. I can just empty it onto the iPad and erase those photos from the card and start taking more photos again.
I just got a Square Credit Card reader. I haven’t used it yet, but all my friends have said it has been a lifesaver when someone wants to purchase a painting and they don’t have cash or a check.
Another accessory I have is a Nomad brush but I will explain that later (further down this post).
6. Tell us a little bit about the apps that you use regularly. What is it about them that helps you?
I keep adding more and more apps. I love discovering things that the iPad can do. It amazes me! I started adding some art apps like Art Rage, Procreate, and Brushes. My husband, Mike got me a Nomad brush to use with the iPad. It has bristles like a real brush.
I was amazed at the detail you could get while “painting” on the iPad. I found that beside painting I could use the iPad like a sketchbook drawing sketches of what I wanted to paint. With undo features I could quickly change my design. I even found some apps for artist. One is Artwork Tracker. It is great helping me keep up with all my paintings.
I have paintings coming and going from different places from Georgetown to Austin, Round Rock, Temple, Dallas, and all the way to France. It’s amazing how helpful that app is. You put in the photo of a painting then you can track where it is and where it has been. Information about the artwork can be included like the painting medium, the price, availability of the painting, list of clients and shows.
I found others that help when I am designing a painting to get a good composition (Golden Ratio ) and there is even one that helps me match colors (Palettes) in a photo or an object. I work in pastels and I found an app by one of the pastel manufacturers (Art Spectrum) that lets you take a photo of the color you need and it tells you the name of their pastel that matches that color. There is an app called Color Mixing Challenge that helps you develop your skills in mixing colors. There are other apps that show facial and body proportions. I received a commission from Seton Hospital in Harker Heights and I needed to send them an invoice. I have no idea how to make an invoice so I looked up different apps until I found one that would work for me.
I use some other apps that are not art specific. I like Awesome Notebook and Evernote. I take notes in these and they sink with each other. I am able to write notes in workshops I take, also adding photos of the demonstrations of the paintings. I keep my scheduled and tasks in HD Informant. It helps me remember things I would have forgotten.
I just found a great web site called Instructables. From it I learned how to insert a magnet into my iPad cover to allow the iPad to automatically turn off when I close the cover. This feature is available on the Apple Smart Cover (but mine was misplaced somewhere so I replaced it with a cheaper cover).
Mary Beth’s art is available for purchase from her website.