Monday, June 6, 2011

Public Speaking and Talking About Myself

I feel like it's been a long time since I have posted anything on my blog...It has actually been only a week... a very long and hectic week. Currently, I am sitting in Robin Luciano Beaty's gorgeous studio, taking a break from helping her get ready for her open studios this Saturday, reflecting on the past couple of days.

We just got back yesterday from the Encaustic Conference in Provincetown, where we were since Friday morning.  I was asked to be a presenter at the conference this year, and I was to talk about making the leap into being a full-time artist and my experiences with that whole process. I am used to speaking in public, since I was a math teacher and have been in front of at least 30 teenagers for the past 13 years, but I have to say, that as I watched the artists start to fill the seats in the room I was presenting in, I started to get nervous. Here I was, getting ready to talk about my career and experiences, with my fellow artists, some of which had more advance careers than mine. What if they thought my methods or advice were bad or faulty? What if they were bored with my presentation? What if they asked me hard questions that I didn't know the answer to? It was pretty nerve-wracking for a few minutes before I started.

Well, it turns out, that people liked what I had to say and thought that I was pretty entertaining (I did refrain from doing my "tap dance" that has been known to make an appearance during random times, like, ahem, while there was a quiet moment during my wedding ceremony). I had some free gifts for everyone who attended (magnets with an image of my work on it) and raffled off three of my books I made of my "Forgotten Memories" series, in addition to a tote bag with one of my paintings on it. And while they were all shameless self-promotional items, people love getting free things and seem to appreciate what I had to offer them. The actual presentation was good, no major flubs, and I answered a lot of great questions. If the comments that I got through-out the rest of the conference were any indication, people really liked my presentation and found it informative. Nice! I was even asked back to present next year by Joanne Mattera, conference director, who sat in on my presentation.

While I don't think I have a future in public speaking, I do think it was a good experience, and I can even say it was that it's all over! PHEW!


  1. Hi Jhina: I think it is fabulous that you were able to share your journey. I wish I could have been able to hear you but, I was in another discussion at the same time. Speaking in public is a great way to reach a lot of people and with your teaching experience it should come easy to you. Cheers to your success!

  2. Hi Jhina,

    I was at your presentation and it was great! You shared a lot of very useful information and I left the room feeling really empowered. Not only did your suggestions make perfect sense, but I also enjoyed hearing about your personal experiences.

    I'm a big fan of your work and when I saw you were presenting I had to sign up! Congratulations and best wishes for lots more success!

    Susan Stayer

  3. Thank you Susan, I appreciate the feedback and the kind words. I'm glad you found the information useful!

    Nancy-It was nice seeing you at the conference. Thank you for the words of encouragement. Perhaps I will see you there again next year!