Friday, March 15, 2019

Strange times for an Artist


It has gotten to tough to try and predict what will happen to the art world but with social media there is more censorship than ever. I keep seeing artists I like getting their work shut down on Instagram. Most often it’s for nudity. So much shaming goes on in our country. They are finding out ways of criminalizing nudity in art. If it’s drawn out what harm is it?  I don’t feel cartoons need censorship.
We are still focused and ruled by the sports world and the military. Well, ultimately the team they want you on is USA so mostly just military everything. I am greatful for our military don’t get me wrong. They keep our freedom to draw whatever we want and I know how great this country is.
Making a living at art will only get more challenging. Everyone on the planet can make art and post it on Instagram. I loved Instagram when I first got on there... no ads, no sponsored ads just show your work... and early on all the work was amazing! The trend now is lots and lots of ads and Tons of really awful art. Lots of people just draw characters they know and call it pop culture. It would be nice to see more people make a effort to draw their own characters at least. Don’t draw Star Wars or Disney is what I mean... be your own George Lucas or a Walt. If you see an artist selling work online look into buying real art! So much affordable great art is out there... skip that movie or high ticket arena show save up and buy work for your home! Or check out designer con and get hand made toys, original art or a print maybe? You will never know how good it feels as an artist when you make a sale. When someone buys your work it’s so motivating and inspiring. Most artists suffer from depression. It’s where the emotion in our work comes from. If you see art and it speaks to you the reason is that artist is showing you something and most often they are trying to express love and beauty in this harsh world. Even dark art has much beauty if done right. Jean-Michel Basquiat and Howard Finster make powerful abstract work. So many... the list goes on... I pray galleries will survive as they are the last outlets for culture. The recent Instagram outage was a good sign that the digital world may fall one day. Save your canvas and paint supplies in case we lose power. After all they made some great work during the dark ages. Thanks for reading this if you did. This is just how I feel. Does not mean I am right. Support your favorite artist! They appreciate it more than Gene Simmons... Paul Stanley paints too if you want to give him more dough. Ciao for now!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Modern Art Life early 2019

I just read a great interview on a podcast with Jeff Soto. (You can look Jeff up on Instagram) He made great sense of the current fine art gallery world. Galleries are closing. I had my own personal physical gallery art shop I ran at a craft market here in San Pedro for four years. Things slowed due to people wanting to save money in this uncertain economy. I still sold small things like my tshirts and greeting cards but people were much less likely to buy a painting for $300 or more. Most people would spend no more than $40 on a painting so I had to fill my shop with many small works. After a a very successful three years my last year I was only making enough to pay rent on my space and buy more supplies. I have since move to Etsy online and I am back working in my home studio. Still working in what worked in my physical store and sales remain seasonal. Holidays being when sales happen especially November thru January. The Gallery I showed at (El Cuervo in El Segundo, CA) has closed but from people I met when I showed there I have other shows coming up. It’s important to attend art shows if you want to sell your work in galleries. Make contacts and especially treat your friends and colleagues with love and respect as that is where the majority of your opportunities for other shows happen. Don’t worry about artists that seem out for themselves.... the kind that would step over another artist to be the center of the show. Focus on the ones you can share ideas and techniques with. That’s how you grow as an artist. I have found every time I worried about having sales at one of my shows it would not happen. Sales were always a surprise. You just can’t predict sales. The most important thing is to keep inspired by learning about other artists. Like my gallery owners motto was, “more art, less bullshit”. Keep working and don’t stop. Work like you don’t have enough time left in the day. That’s what gallery shows take. I have many bad paintings I never showed. Work everyday you can. Well... just have fun most important. Paint like you are 10 years old...it keeps your work energized. I love to paint with other artists any chance I get to share the energy connection. That’s why taking classes and school are good. Make mistakes as much as you can... thats how you form your style and find your voice.

I plan to blog more here. I hope you enjoy it. If you do leave a comment on my Instagram page (I am on there as popkustomshoppe). Maybe we will hang on the same walls someday.
Until next time, Happy Trails! -Scott Aicher

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Solo art show coming up this summer 2018


I have all kinds of triggers to my depression. It starts most times with paranoia. Self doubt is always looming over me like a rain cloud, but lately I just worry about things that are out of my control. Like are we going to get blown up? Most of us are wondering that. It's beyond my depression now. My art for my upcoming solo show has elements of my concern for the world. Social media has further brought me down and taken me away from making art and feeling happy completing a painting. It's not enough just to finish a painting, now I need approval from everyone on Instagram? What have I become? I was listening to a podcast about how likes release dopamine in the brain and we get addicted to the praise from the "likes".

I have decided to try to stay off social media, but what about my art business? I have to stay on to get people to buy my art. I would prefer to put a flyer on windshields like the old days but that's not how it's done anymore. If I put my art out too soon before the art show it gets copied. The one thing i have going is this weird brain of mine comes up with good surreal content for art. I should be used to getting my ideas copied by now. I should not let it get to me but now and then it does.

I am thankful anyone is paying attention to my work at this point in my life. Grateful to be showing my art at El Cuervo Gallery in El Segundo, CA. and that my friends still support my dreams. I put my friends through a lot with my paranoia and depression. I am often so self absorbed I miss the bigger picture. I talk my self out of participating in shows or going out in public to see art or bands.
I get feelings of insecurity in public but if I let it go and try just to have fun most times everything is fine.

I have been nervous about this upcoming solo show. Will people show up? Are people still looking at what I am making? This current work I am making has been very hard to make. Much of it I made just for me. I put in a lot of my fears and a lot of my hope that things can still change and get better.
So many talented artists out there now. So much great new art that pushes me even harder.

I have done my best over the years to make the best art I could. With this show I hope to entertain the viewers as much as possible. I realize I need to just let go of all this self imposed doubt I have put on my shoulders. I am sure it will be fine. Most shows I am usually amazed at the turn out of people. I hope that you will all come out and see my show this summer. It means everything to me. After closing down my shop at crafted I have been focused on painting as much as I can.

I still keep dreaming of a day that I won't have to worry so much. I guess the best i can do right now is just focus on making the art and taking care of my health. Many thanks go out to my friends in the art world and most of all thanks to my teacher wife who works endlessly to support my dreams. it's all we have is love and dreams and each other. I don't want to let her down. I also love my studio mate dog who is right by my side everyday.

I will have the dates for the show very soon. I hope you can make it to the show!

Thanks, sincerely, Scott Aicher
www.popkustomshoppe.com
email: popkustomshoppe@gmail.com

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

January Blues 2018

So my last post was pretty negative and angry. I hope I can move on from this depression. I just have to let things go and live each day as it comes. I have not taken good care of myself. Letting Myself get lost and not caring. It affects my friendships and relationships and then I find myself hiding out and not socializing much with others. I keep on burring my head in the sand. I look at other peoples art and instead of being inspired I get jealous and envious that it was not my idea.

Being unhealthy with my diet really has brought me spiraling downward and now I am trying to get back to a happy place. I closed my shop as it was making me more depressed. My own art no longer looked good to me. I had been looking at the same art every weekend for four years and now it is time to make new different art. In my last post I blamed Crafted some and that's not fair. It's my own fault. This depression often wins with me. My apologies to the old ladies who enjoy Crafted. I hope you continue to enjoy shopping there.

Most days are a challenge for me to get going. It's hard just putting on my shoes. I have all this love inside though that is waiting to spill out onto the canvas but when I sit down to paint the old art is still there. I think it's time for a painting class or trying new ideas. I never really know how successful I am or if anyone is following me for sure. Were my four years at my shop all in vein? I don't have many Instagram followers compared to most people (there I go comparing again...) This is why I need to stay off social media. It brings me down and fills me with self doubt. When I get working on art and new ideas i get too busy and in the zone to worry about what's happening around me. It can be addictive but it can also be isolating if I work too much.

sometimes I take time out to reward myself now and then with something non food related. Maybe I will go comic book shopping or to a flea market. Most times I shop online but it is never as much fun as hunting down a good small treasure and it just prolongs my isolation and keeps me from facing the world.

I have lots of anxiety when I am out in the world. People stare at me so I often have to take steps to build up to going out in public. I meditate or count numbers in my mind before I get out of my car most times. I have very low self esteem and I am hyper body conscious and it leads to self loathing and most often fear of being seen in public.

People can be rotten so I have let go of a few recently who are toxic to me. Supportive positive friends can often help bring back my happy place so I hold on to them hopefully without leaning on them too much. My father moved back east last month and that is good. He never supported my art dreams. He turned into and angry man with the help of lots of booze. He stopped loving and caring back in the 70's somewhere. He supports other peoples kids often but his own family he gave up on.
So he is in the freezing cold now. Which is fitting. I still love him but I can no longer be around him. Too toxic.

So I am eating off smaller sized plates now and making better choices but I do need to start documenting victories and achievements which is why I am blogging. Getting out my thoughts and feelings all typed out helps me solve depression problems. Talking about it helps. My mom taught me to communicate my feelings to break though depression and survive being bullied by others and most of all being bullied by my own dad.

Next week I will have lots of improvements to report on my progress. I will also have lots of new art getting made up. so stay tuned to my website: www.scottaicher.com or www.popkustomshoppe.com.
Make today and everyday great. Keep trying. Keep on trucking. Keep the faith. Keep hope alive....

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

2018... Let's make it better! My goals for the year...

So I have left Crafted where for four years I had my shop where you could come down and tell me what you thought of my art. At first I had so much positive response from all you who supported me and I was hoping that being the odd ball shop I was it would build and get better. Hoping other odd ball shops would pop up too. Well, one or two did. Eventually my friends bands played there but more than anything it became a shop for old ladies. It literally became like selling my art to my mom. (I love my mom, but she does not get my style of art) As time went on more and more of the shops became women's jewelry and Crafted things rather than the art crowd I needed to get by.

 They had raised my rent about 100 dollars which honestly was about what kind of profit I made if any after awhile. I had no money left to make new shirts or merch but I spent my own money to make more hoping it would sell and work out in the end. I made expensive high quality canvas prints of my work that people loved and complimented but did not buy. (Most of them are still on sale on my aicher.bigcartel.com site)

 I started to lose track of myself. I gained back lots of the weight I had worked so hard to lose. Went back to old eating habits and became depressed again. Here's the thing... I have always suffered from bad depression coupled with mental illness. It's up to me to keep myself healthy mentally. That is why I quit drinking and smoking years ago. I found other things to occupy my time like painting and collecting for inspiration in my art. My wife helped me see the beauty of life by watching her maintain her garden and achieve excellence at becoming one of the best teachers in this state. Mostly what she expects from me is to work hard at the art I make and be happy and enjoy life.

 For Four years I enjoyed having my little shop. I loved being in charge of how it went each weekend, I put all I had into it. My best work. My best shirt and poster designs. I really was just after smiles from people and sometimes my own smile. We had a community where we all talked at meetings and shared ideas on how to improve things. It was exciting and there was usually a great positive energy all day long to get you through the day.

 After awhile things got gossipy and then came girl power. Fewer and fewer men had booths there.I love powerful women. I love all women. All the guys were at the brewery next door. I got more depressed and wondered if it was my art? I knew I was just in the wrong place for too long. I made lifelong friends there that I love dearly but that was just not enough to keep my shop open. As I said I am now back at an unhealthy weight. I tried to explain my illness to people but they did not understand me and said I seem fine. That's because I manage my depression. It was getting worse being there and it was no longer fun listening to grouchy old housewives pick apart my hard work.
It was time for change so in December 2017 I packed it up.

As I type now I have an uphill battle. I have to take this weight off first. Get back into going on walks and walking my dog. I have begun looking into new business ideas too. One of my new online sites is Threadless (popkustomshoppe.threadless.com). I have all kinds of new merch available there. Different kinds of shirts for men and women in your own custom color, Mugs, Cell phone covers, Bathmats, Pillows and on and on.... it was really fun to get that site going at the beginning of this year. My other site (aicher.bigcartel.com) has all of my available prints for sale as well as some of my original art paintings too. You can reach the links for both of those sites (and this blog too) at my main website: popkustomshoppe,com (or: scottaicher.com). I set up all of my Crafted paints and canvases at my mom's garage and I hope to paint with her once a week too. She is such a great painter and I want to get her painting more. If I am not painting I will be selling off my toy collection, guitars and record albums on ebay in my ebay shop (potroastboy)

I have many more art shows coming up at El Cuervo Gallery in El Segundo, CA which is the main home for my fine art. I plan on getting involved with a few new galleries this year as well. If you have a gallery and would like me to show with you please send me an email:(popkustomshoppe@gmail.com).

I am so excited to get back to painting again full time at home. My wife and I are hard at work cleaning up my studio at home to get it back to being a functioning place to work in again. I tend to be a bit of a pack rat hoarder at times. On the plus side I am healthy (exctept for the extra weight) at the moment. The house is in okay condition. My wife and dog are healthy and they still love me so I feel pretty lucky. I am glad I decided to change my path again this year. Hopefully it will be much more rewarding down the line.

 The choice I have made to get in shape is over eaters anonymous plus cook at home to eat healthier. My first meeting is this Saturday. I have gained and lost so many times I need to deal with my emotions as they are why I over eat. I know I need some help and support too.

Love to you all, and Thanks- Scott

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Bitchin California year round summer!




Another year is closing out. New art show coming up this month at El Cuervo Gallery called Bitchin the art of So Cal. This one dedicated to the lifestyle and vibe of Southern California living which is pretty much all I know. I used to work for a surf wear company (for many years) making action sports art. It has been many years since I have painted in this style. Kind of fun to get back into it after all this time. Can't wait to see what turns up from the talented artists featured in this show.

 I hope you all stop by and "shop small" this Saturday (small business Saturday) down at Crafted where I have my shop called Pop Kustom Shoppe located in space 151a 112 E,22nd Street, San Pedro, CA 90731. I am there Friday (Okay, sometimes I miss Friday or I am late that day...) Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 6pm. We have a raffle going on at our isle "candy cane lane" going on until December with gift basket give-a-ways. You could win one! I have many small affordable hand painted and drawn things down at my shop that make perfect gifts that come from the heart with feeling.

 My teacher wife is relaxing this week for a change. I can't tell you how much work it is now to be a teacher and how much time they put into it and how much of our own money is spent on supplies. She is in the garden today listening to the new Ted Leo cd I bought her for our anniversary. (25 Years). Time keeps moving on. Even our beloved dog is 8 human years old now. Thankfully I still have them both. They constantly inspire me to do my best.

 Been listening to the new Father John Misty Pure Comedy lp a lot lately and I will say this in advance I hope he stays healthy and alive to write more music. He writes some scary deep music that vents his depression. Stay healthy Joshua! All of these rock and roll deaths are really sad. We need smart thinkers like him. Too much dumbness going around these days.

 I am no longer on facebook (for awhile now) it took too much time away from my work. I sarted calling my friends on the phone instead. I still use instagram and on very rarely I will Tweet but it's mostly for business or if I have something to sell.

 The time has come of me to get back into shape once again and I plan on taking more walks around town. Maybe get back to playing guitar soon too. My left hand has had some nerve problems for the last year or so that kept me from playing but it has got better lately.

 Thinking also about starting to make a graphic novel of my own. I recently did a full color comic for a book that is being put out by the band Electric Frankenstein soon (It will be everywhere....Barnes and noble, amazon etc...) and it was fun so I am thinking about writing a story and illustrating it.. Which brings me to why I am back to blogging to help with my writing and help with my expressing things into words. I have a few other small book projects already set to go if I decide to print them up too.

 I am also looking into showing my art at different galleries so if you have an art show coming up please think of considering having me in your show. I have a studio that is overflowing with art that needs to get sold (I am literally out of room in my studio and have to store many paintings at my mom's house) I keep buying loads of canvas when they are on sale and before I know it they are all filled up. Many of my sketch pads are filling up as well. I may publish a sketchbook journal chapbook sometime.

 It's a great time to be an artist. So many great artists doing great work these days. Impending doom can inspire great art and bring great change. Hopefully there is enough love left in the world to keep us safe. Please men, treat women with respect. Be good to each other. Until the next blog may peace and love and good health be with you. -Scott

Monday, February 13, 2017

"New" Gallery I have been showing at...



El Cuervo Gallery in El Segundo. 417 Main Street (310)335-9928 is where you can now find my art hanging at most of their shows. The folks that once brought you Gasoline Gallery have opened this new Gallery a few doors down from where the old spot was. There is a 10 foot Crow (or, El Cuervo...) in front of the gallery. The focus on this gallery is on street art, zine style inked art, Assemblage, Collague, Outsider and of course some Low Brow and Kustom Culture thrown in/

They also sell art books, art toys, clothing and much more. I had a solo show last year called "Space Truckin' the art of Scott Aicher" that was made up of art of mine done in the past 4 or 5 years. It was a big success and we had a great turn out for the show.

They had a nice tribute show to the late lord of low brow The Pizz. I did a tribute piece that sold in that show. They still have a few enamel pizz pins left from that show for sale on their website.

The Annual New Years Nuisance Art Show was full of great art and some of the new up and coming artists are raising the bar pretty high. It is great to see all the fresh new art they are getting in and I am glad to have been part of this show as well.

The next show this February is Against the Grain 3 a skateboarding themed show featuring a huge roster of big talent and once again I will be on board for this one which is this Saturday. They usually have Sapporo Beer on hand for everyone and this one will be very Rad!

I have been getting nice gicle canvas prints of my work made and I have the first batch for sale now on my Esty Shop and you can pick them up down at Pop Kustom Shoppe at Crafted 110 e.22nd street, in warehouse 10 space 151a, in San Pedro, CA where my shop is located. I am open friday thru Sunday from 11am to 6 pm. They are $100.00 each. Each one is 16x20 inches. One inch thick gallery wrapped canvas and they come ready to hang on your wall. They are color matched to look as clean and clear as the original acrylic painting and they cost a fraction of what you would spend on an original.

I have been working on new paintings to make new prints of that will fill my shop space soon. Also planned are new homemade comic zines I am getting ready to print up soon. I still have San Pedro and Palos Verdes shirts for sale on my Esty shop page and the next design will be a south bay shrit which I am currently working on perfecting.

My Esty shop is located here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/PopKustomShoppe

I look forward to seeing you at the shows and down at my shop this year. I am very grateful for all the love and support I have received in the past and especially recently. It has made my life much fuller knowing people like my art. I am doing all I acn to stay healthy and keep delivering my best work for all of you out there. Thank you and I will see you at the shops and galleries!

Stay Inspired! Play Vinyl! Read Art Books and Zines! Support your favorite artist!