Make it easy

Reduce the complexity of life by eliminating the needless wants of life, and the labors of life reduce themselves.

~ Edwin Way Teale

A common bit of advice for habit building is “remove the friction.” If you want to practice the guitar more, like a friend of mine, set it on a stand in the middle of the living room. Then, whenever you’re sitting there it’s easy to see the guitar, be reminded that you want to play, pick it up and start playing. Maybe you want to get more writing done – at the end of each writing session set up everything so that can sit down and write without distractions. Close the browser on your computer and leave a blank page pulled up and ready to go or clear your desk and leave your notebook open and ready with pen at hand. Keep a clean water cup next to your palette, canvas on the easel, and apron hanging over your chair so you can squeeze out your paints and start painting. Make it easy to start making your art!

  • This week’s artist  – Dan Groth – often has work shown at Studio & if you want to check out some work in person. Dan has a very distinct style that subtly shows his humor, whether working in pen-and-ink, watercolor, collage, or any of the other various art mediums that he works in! Explore his instagram and website for more info.

  • The Scrapbook Nook has a few classes to look forward to: Saturday at 10 you can join the girls as they work with a combination of watercolors and colored pencils. Tuesday at 1 they will be working with a new stamp series that features everything from dragons to llamas to sea shells! and on Thursday at 1 you can make 2 layouts with papers showing all things camping and nature exploring.
  • Looking for a different kind of art class? Deborah Kelroy will be teaching Floral Oil Painting at the DAC this Saturday. Get more information on her website and reserve your spot here.
  • Life advice: Make an enemy of envy.
  • On a related note, a bit of life advice from a 90-year-old: “If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.”
  • Stop motion cooking “tutorials”.

  • I love this thought, from Ryder over at – “In some ways, your notebook is a suitcase. But rather than stuff, you’re packing thoughts. Your ideas, observations, feelings, and experiences are arguably much more valuable souvenirs than any bauble, yet we often end up leaving them behind. What we don’t write down, we’re likely to forget.”
  • Feeling stuck? Maybe it’s not inside you trying to get out, but outside you trying to get in. (I really enjoyed the book Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert.)
  • Still feeling stuck? Maybe you need to help from a 4 year old.
  • Ready for a movie? Head over to Three Springs for a free outdoor movie night tonight. Hotel Transylvania 3 starts at 7:30. As someone who grew up with a drive-in theater nearby, this sounds like a treat!
  • Ever been curious about botanical printing? Tricia is teaching a workshop in Telluride over the first weekend in August! Learn more and reserve your spot here.
  • We’re in the middle of our art contest. The theme is colors of the rainbow. Don’t over-think it! Use the colors found in the rainbow to make some art (no mixing) and send us a picture of your finished piece! More details are available here.
  • This week’s featured item is a new collection. Kristen has been making the case for liquid watercolors since before she started working here – and her perseverance has finally paid off! We have a new display full of Ecoline liquid watercolors. They’re a dye-based, transparent watercolor and they sure are vibrant! 

Here’s a quick colorwheel test that I did with some Daniel Smith watercolors on the top and Ecoline on bottom. This is a poor reproduction – they’re so much brighter in person!

“Removing the friction” is why I carry a travel watercolor kit with me most of the time. Whenever the mood strikes I can pull it out of my bag and play with some color. Or just sketch with a pen. Likewise, my easel is almost always set up with a canvas, just waiting for me to sit down and start painting. I don’t want the fun things to be hard to do – it’s so easy to come up with excuses and to find myself always too busy – instead, bring on the art!


Matthew & the Art Supply House crew

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