Sunday, February 20, 2011

First, The Good News

On November 16th I wrote a post titled "The End of the Relationship". It was about leaving Ariana Gallery. The gallery owner rented one of my paintings to the ABC television show, "Detroit 1-8-7". She chose not to share the income from art rentals with the artists who created the work. The 50/50 split went out the window. She kept all of the $600 rental fee from my painting for herself.

I left the gallery.

Now here's the good news. You've heard the phrase "When one door closes another door opens". In December another door opened. 

An entrepreneur, who started a business representing artists to Detroit's blooming film industry, added me to her stable of artists. I haven't written about this before at her request. She has all the artists she can handle for the time being. 

I'm very lucky to have found an honest, enthusiastic, hard-working, creative woman to promote my work. She's also a painter, so she can relate to artists' struggles.  We've talked about all the excitement in town; one hundred films scheduled to be filmed in Michigan this summer.

In January she rented two of my paintings to "Detroit 1-8-7". They used the paintings on the set. A week later I got paid. Isn't that awesome!

Now the Bad News

Our new governor, Rick Snyder plans to eliminate the tax incentives for the film industry. The governor's reasoning is: why should one industry have more advantages than the others?

Within hours of Snyder's State of the State speech productions that were scheduled to come here this summer left us and headed for Louisiana. "Avengers", a film with one of the biggest budgets to come to Michigan, has pulled out.  The one hundred anticipated films has dwindled drastically.

Michigan is in financial trouble. However, the film industry doesn't cost us, it brings in money.

The governor should be looking at the film industry as tourists. Film making is a vagabond business. They can go anywhere.

They come into town and spend loads of money. They eat out, stay at hotels, shop in our stores. The set designers rent all kinds of things, including fine art from local people. The hotels, restaurants, shops, artists and many many more local people earn income from films.

Then they pay taxes on those earnings to the State of Michigan. 

Films also advertise to the world our beautiful, diverse, gritty, lush and serene State. The tax incentives are a bargain for us. Tourism? Who wouldn't want to visit the newest film capitol of the midwest. You might have lunch next to George Clooney or Clint Eastwood.

The Other Good News

The fat lady hasn't sung yet. There's supposed to be a town hall meeting March 3. We have until May for the state legislative vote. Snyder's proposal is not a done deal. 

Please, if you want films to be made in Michigan, please call your state representative and the governor. Send emails. Write letters. Share this blog post with your friends and encourage them to call, write and email. Please.

Thank you.

To find your districts State Senator:

Governor Rick Snyder
P.O. Box 30013
Lansing, Michigan 48909
Phone: 517-373-3400
Phone: 517-335-7858 - Constituent Services
Fax: 517-335-6863


  1. Congratulations!!! Please tell us which episodes your paintings have been placed in so we don't have to watch them all :-)

  2. Hi Margarete, actually I really like the show, so I watch all the episodes. I'm not sure when my paintings will be on. They can be on the set, but that doesn't mean that the camera's will catch them. The artists still get paid.

  3. How great that you are not only an Artist but an activist too! It strikes me as incredibly short sided of Gov. Snyder to set in motion the movement to drive the film industry out of Michigan.


  4. Lynn, congratulations. I hope that the film industry prevails here in Michigan and you are able to place your artwork in loads of films. I am very disturbes by the removal of the fillm tax incentives. Michigan, and more interestingly, Detroit, has reallly gained some great publicity here and abroad because of the exposure fromm the film industry. I will definitely email everyone, but given the Michigan legislature, I think that campaign is doomed from the beginning. How short sighted!

  5. Thanks for emailing everyone, Mary. Maybe if enough people let their wishes be known, it would help. Maybe. But NOTHING will happen if we don't try.

  6. Dear Ann, Thank you for your comment. You are someone who knows for sure that a big chunk of my brain is political. I hope there is enough reaction to Snyder's plans to make him change his stance.


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