ArtProfiler CoLab is our chance to produce art works with other artists both locally and afar. In many instances we’ve never met each other in person, but we share a passion for creating thought-provoking, emotional responses in the viewer.
James Blanchard is an upstate NY artist influenced by subjects ranging from politics to the mysteries of the natural world. He is currently a senior studying the arts at Suny Plattsburgh, specializing in Graphic Design and Printmaking. His goal is to convey his ideas and viewpoints with viewers from all backgrounds to spread a message of protest and progress. Creating art is something he views as a way to inspire the viewer to help change the world. With all that is going on in the world right now James feels it is his duty to take a stand for those who may not be able to stand for themselves.
Randi is the owner of I Need a Clone! Concierge, a small business that provides assistance in business & personal management, creative services and event planning. She opened Clone in February 2012, and with a stroke of luck, or perhaps destiny, she met Nicole shortly thereafter. Randi manages the ArtProfiler website, marketing, and business administration, and works closely with Nicole to choose which exhibits, galleries and contests are a good fit with her work as well as what contributors are a good fit with ArtProfiler. She is ArtProfiler’s senior editor and the mastermind behind the memes and political and promotional videos. Randi has been dancing since she was two years old – it is her primary passion – so, in her free time she performs with and choreographs for various Austin dance companies. But since free time is rare as a single mother, Randi puts her choreographic skills to use in her video work for ArtProfiler. Composing the score, timing the imagery with the music, dreaming up the material – these are all the tedious things a choreographer revels in! ArtProfiler is one of her best creative outlets and her favorite way to RESIST the Trump administration.
Together, editors and writers Nicole Jeffords and Randi Turkin keep ArtProfiler running. They both contribute to the site’s blog, Talking Smack, and create the political memes featured here. It takes two to keep up with the momentum of our roller coaster news cycle, so while Nicole paints the portraits at record speed, together they come up with the meme’s headline which Randi then designs and authors.
Nicole Jeffords has had two careers, one as a portrait painter and one as a writer of both fiction and non-fiction. In college she studied comparative literature but simultaneously managed to rack up hours in art school. She earned an MFA in Creative Writing from Boston University in 1979 after an eight-year marriage that took place in London and ended in divorce. By then she was a single mom and also a serious drunk who eked out a living writing annual reports for a New York PR firm. In 1981 Nicole got sober and life began all over again. Her first novel, “Hearts of Glass,” about four women getting sober in AA, was published by Crown in 1992. Over the following years she focused on short stories, novellas and screenplays, and co-authored “High Frequency,” a spoof on new age Austin. In 2006 she opened her ArtProfiler studio and spent the next decade working as a portrait painter. Her sister’s death in 2015 spurred her to write an online illustrated series of family stories under the title “The World of Franyo,” about her parent’s escape from Nazi Germany, her teenage years as the daughter of wealthy art collectors in 1960s New York, her high drama first marriage to well-known Czech photographer Werner Forman, and the miracle of getting sober in AA. Nicole’s current project, a serialized novel entitled “A Secret Grave,” is about an art-related murder that takes place in Austin and is published four times a week in the form of an artist’s blog on ArtProfiler.com. Nicole is very happy to have reached a point in her career where she can combine fiction and oil portraiture, revealing bold and dangerous truths about people in different but complementary ways.
I’m going to list my credentials right here so you know who you’re dealing with. First off, I write anonymously as most of us in the advice business do. Doesn’t matter if I’m male or female, especially these days when gender is so fluid. You can picture me as you wish, with or without a penis or vagina or anything in between.
I was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1955, received a BA from Harvard College in philology, went on to study journalism and psychology at the University of Texas, Austin. I’ve written ten novels, all under pseudonyms, the most well-known, “Betty’s Journal,” reviewed in the New York Times in June, 1997. The work I’ve been most proud of, however, has been my lonely hearts column, published in the now defunct private newsletter, Heartthrob. Some of you may be too highbrow for that sort of thing, but let me tell you its effect was better than say Celexa, Prozac or any other good antidepressant. For years it brought happiness to dozens of miserable people. Alright, that’s enough. All you really need to know about me is: 1) I SAY IT LIKE IT IS and 2) I DON’T SUFFER FOOLS LIGHTLY. If you want to be stroked or have your hand held through difficult times, go to Ask Amy at the Chicago Tribune, Dear Prudence at Slate, or Carolyn Hax at the Washington Post. In some ways I’m your worst nightmare. But I’m honest.