Body of work

Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.

~ Robert Collier

I was recently listening to a podcast about the art and history of notetaking. Something in the conversation made me think about bodies of work. Sometimes I think we forget that it takes a long time for a body to grow. I’ve got a daily journal that I love reading back through – but I’ve been writing in it for over 7 years. My four year old is still quite wee. The 5-week old is… even smaller! They both have a lot of growing to look forward to. Similarly, a body of creative work isn’t created in a season. A series, sure! But not a body.

  • This week’s artist is –  Thomas Aquinas Daly – whose name sounds familiar – but I was recently chatting with a friend and was discussing his work – and I realized that I hadn’t yet shared it! To see even more, check out his website!
  • Anthony Caro would have been 100 on Friday!
  • Here are some tips on using pan pastels (from the people who make the stuff.)
  • Here’s an article on fabric painting with acrylics and GAC 900 (again, from the people who make the stuff.)
  • Here’s a video about this house built around a 12,000 year old boulder in the Catskills designed by Christian Wassmann. The longer you watch the video the more you see just how much thought was put into every aspect of the house. (Just wait until you get to the handrail part 🤯)
  • Some pretty impressive origami
  • Here are the 2023 IPP award winning photos.
  • If you see a book that I’m currently reading, it is currently littered with mini post-it notes. I read non-fiction books and flag quotes and concepts that catch my attention. Then I type most of them into a notes file when I’m done. I’ve been asked why. Sometimes I refer back to those notes. Often, however, it’s through the act of typing them up and organizing the notes where I really learn new concepts.
  • Heather Freeman has a show at Create Art & Tea: She Packs a Punch in celebration of Women’s Month.
  • Here are the winners from the 25th annual Pastel 100 competition.
  • On Thursday, February 22, 2024, the Intuitive Machines’ Odysseus spacecraft successfully landed on the moon’s southern hemisphere.  On board the Odysseus is the Lunar Codex, a time capsule that contains the work of thousands of contemporary artists. This was the first U.S. moon landing since 1972 and the first commercial spacecraft to ever land on the moon.
  • 😎 Fun Fact: The use of art as a healing therapy began in the 1940s, both in Europe and North America.
  • Why was the artist late to their art show? They got stuck in brush hour traffic!
  • Head to the Hive this evening from 6-7:30, (1150 Main Ave) for the free Word Honey Poetry Workshop! Meet in the skatepark and bring a friend! Open to all!
  • Curious about 3D printing? Head to the Center for Innovation ( 2nd floor Main Mall) for an Intro to 3D Printing session tomorrow (Thurs) from 12-1.Reach out to Elizabeth for more info.
  • The Friends of the Durango Public Library will hold a 2-day book sale this weekend (Friday and Saturday) from 10-4 at the library. Huge selection of hardback and paperback books, CDs, DVDs and vintage books.
  • The Fort Lewis College Art Gallery is excited to host its 63rd Annual Juried Exhibition. This year, the FLC Art Gallery is honored to welcome Emily Grace King as the guest juror. This exhibition will run from March 7 – April 3, Monday – Thursday 1:00 – 4:00. Visiting the Art Gallery and all events are free and open to all ages.
  • There are classes/workshops/projects available at the 4 Corners Gem and Mineral Club, the Bayfield Library, Create Art and Tea, the Dancing Spirit Center for the ArtsDurango Sustainable GoodsLet’s Letter Together, the MakerLab, the Scrapbook NookSeed Studio, and the Durango Arts Center. There are a lot more things happening that I don’t include – so if you’re ever looking for something to do, start at
  • If you know Kristen, you probably know she drools over shiny, metallic art supplies. Especially if they’re watercolor. Even more so if they’re hand-made! Well, we brought in a new batch of Beam paints (ecofriendly handmade watercolors) and some Skrim handmade metallic watercolors. If you’re also into such things (and enjoy color-shift paints) then swing by to check them out!

It can be frustrating to think about our creative pursuits. One project finished…. but that’s not a body of work. We might not even know what our style is! I literally have a foot-tall stack of art – of sketches and doodles and drawings and paintings, sitting at home. Of course, that’s a decade of work. One piece at a time, repeated over enough time, leads to quite a collection. I don’t have a series, or a cohesive focus in my work – but I can look back and see tangible results that it wasn’t a decade wasted.

Don’t fret, you have time. Keep on keeping on. Over time, your creative stack will grow. The world needs your art, one piece at a time!

Matthew & the Art Supply House crew

P.S. – It’s not too late! I launched a short, daily email a few days ago. If you’re interested in getting a small, tiny bite of art-spiration in your morning email, check out Morning Muse.

P.P.S – March has 5 Saturdays, so Customer Appreciation day is drawing closer! Do you have your bag ready?