The Art of Loving Art

Every artist was first an amateur.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

The term ‘amateur’ often gets a bad rap, but it’s rooted in something quite beautiful. Derived from the Latin word ‘amare’, which means to love. To do things for the love of it. This origin means that an amateur is someone who engages in a pursuit purely for the joy and love of it, not for rewards or accolades.

  • This week’s artist is – Abbie Ragozzino– who’s a local-ish artist (the business card I have says Durango/Alaska). I have no idea where I ran across her work, but I’ve saved her card so I could share. To see even more, check out her instagram!
  • Georgia O’Keeffe would have been 136 today!
  • This book explains science (all of it) in 3 questions.
  • I enjoyed looking through this collection of book plates.
  • Quilt Bot: you upload a photo or an image and it’ll generate a pattern for a patchwork quilt.
  • Illustrator Christoph Niemann shares 10 Things I Remind Myself Before I Draw. I especially liked his 10th rule.
  • Here are two more artists manifestos.
  • A falcon lost his ability to fly. Now the bird is an artist in Vermont.
  • A forgotten vault where Michelangelo hid and sketched for months opens for the first time.
  • Artisans Cooperative is a member-owned marketplace for handmade goods. Looks like they are trying to be what Etsy was back in the day.
  • It’s time for the 2023 comedy wildlife photography finalists. I liked “Dispute.”
  • These are the least trafficked roads in the US. I’ve been on at least 3 of them…
  • Here are some thoughts on a third place away from home and work where people can find creativity and community.
  • The above article lead me to read how one person loves malls. And this author writes in a tire shop.
  • 😎 Fun Fact: The world’s first photograph, taken in 1826, required an exposure time of (at least) eight hours. It was taken by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce.
  • It’s time for the DAC’s Annual Gift Gallery! Grand opening is Friday from 5-7 at the DAC. Negin your Holiday Shopping at the Gift Gallery with artistic gifts provided to you by our talented local artists! It will be an incredibly festive, artsy gallery grand opening!
  • The Harvest Market is Saturday at the TBK Bank parking lot from 9-1. Rain, Snow, or Shine! Featuring locally grown fresh veggies, meats, cheeses, and more for your Harvest celebration meal! Plus, get a jump on your holiday shopping with unique and useful items from local Artisans.
  • Also Saturday from 9-4 is the Artisans Holiday Gift Show and Sale at the Strater Hotel Oak Room. An eclectic blend of hand-crafted work by local artisans. Mixed metals jewelry, enhanced fiber art, handcrafted bee products, hand painted eggs, handmade bags, fine gourd art, Cartwheel Studio, pottery, jewelry, mixed media art, water colors, baskets, and wood turned pens. I hear there will also be door prizes.
  • Animas Chocolate & Coffee Co’s Gingerbread Homes Contest begins Monday at 8am. Here’s more info.
  • If you’re a beginner/intermediate acoustic music player looking to play more – head to the General Palmer on Tuesday from 5:30-7:30 for the Slow Bluegrass Jam. This weekly jam is welcoming to all players, with a focus on slower tempo improvisation solos and chord changes. If you can play the I, IV and V chords in G, D and A then you know enough to play at this jam!
  • There are classes/workshops/projects available at the Dancing Spirit Center for the ArtsLet’s Letter Together, the Scrapbook NookCreate Art and Tea, Durango Sustainable Goods the 4 Corners Gem and Mineral Club, Seed 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
  • Last week we had a box of new TWSBI fountain pens and ink arrive. A new design, some new colors… lots of oohing and aahhing happened. (And no little amount of drool.) If you’re also into such things, swing by and check out the new options!

The next time you hear ‘amateur’, remember it signifies a deep, heartfelt connection to the craft. Embrace it as a badge of honor, a reflection of genuine passion and enthusiasm. After all, every great artist started as an amateur, driven by love and a simple desire to create. Wherever you fall on the amateur -> professional spectrum, the world needs your art!

Matthew & the Art Supply House crew

P.S. – We’re going to do something fun for Noel Night this year!