• Art Pulse

    Venerable Vintages: Surfaces & The Birth of Mixed Media

    The history of surfaces and supports for art-making starts with the beginning of art itself. From human flesh and cave walls to a sophisticated array of canvases, papers and wood panels, the surface category has transformed in direct response to artistic movements and motivations. (Greenbery, Morriss-Kay). In addition to a diversification of materials (today an art surface may be fabric, wood, metal, slate, found objects, recycled material, cardboard, walls, glass, clothing), our industry has developed sizing techniques, primers, grounds and mediums for even more specialization and experimentation. Deviating From the Plan Over time, painters of all backgrounds have deviated from…

  • #SocialEngagement

    Happy National Pencil Day!

    Above: A framed assortment of antique pencils in the MacPherson’s Emeryville office Ah, the pencil. The original art supply for so many of us, especially those of us who were in first grade before STABILO’s Woody 3 in 1 came out. National Pencil Day is just around the corner, on March 30th! Consider posting some fun facts on social media (or around your store). Fun Facts The word pencil comes from the Latin word pencillus, “little tail.” It can also be derived from the French pincel, meaning “little paintbrush.” Before erasers were gluten-free: back in the day, people used bread…

  • #SocialEngagement

    Check Your Calendar: National Tie-Dye Day

    National Tie-Dye Day is on April 30th. A celebration of color, improvisation, individuality, expression and the fabric arts, tie-dye is so much more than rainbow spirals (though that can be fun, too). Tie-dye was originally popular in the 70s, when counterculture communities utilized funky fashion to push back against mainstream expectations. Tie-dye can show up as starbursts, ombres, wild color combinations, expressive patterns, subtle pastels or a grungy acid wash. Encourage customers to revive a boring t-shirt, add splashes of color to home decor or customize personal accessories. 3 Ways To Celebrate Incorporate this day into your displays, promotions, demonstrations…

  • Art Pulse,  Featured Artists

    Artist Spotlight: Peeta Tinay, Basket-Weaver

    During National Craft Month there is no better time to learn more about the history of craft and celebrate the artists who are continuing traditional crafts, resisting readymade culture by dedicating creative energy to form and function. These makers inspire us to think beyond the label “artist” or “craftsperson” and appreciate the essence of craft: to make something in a skillful way with our hands. Peeta Tinay is an artist based in the Pacific Northwest whose love of weaving grew from her work with wicker furniture restoration. She began to teach basket-making and over the years built up her skills…

  • Art Pulse,  Industry News

    Royal Talens Factory Tour

    Our CEO Dave Schofield received a very special invitation to visit Royal Talens in Apeldoorn, Netherlands following the Frankfurt Creative World show. I was lucky enough to join along with Rich Colletti, Business Development Manager and our tireless hosts, Kyle Richardson and Kirk Gillespie. We traveled by train along with Dave’s wife Lindsay and their son Kai, who for 3 was a very well-behaved and excited first time train traveler! Beautiful Apeldoorn The first day we got a quick tour of Apeldoorn, a town of 160,000 inhabitants and locally known as the summer home and hunting lodge of the Royal…

  • Art Pulse,  In Your Store

    A Focus on Craft

    You should be selling craft supplies. “But, we’re an art store…” “We don’t have the room to dedicate space.” “We don’t have the customer base.” “Crafting is so broad… How do you possibly carry everything someone needs?” I hear you, and I haven’t changed my mind. First, we need to define “craft.” Is it popsicle sticks and googly eyes? Glitter and Chenille Stems? Stickers and appliques? The short answer is yes, and so much more. Traditionally, “Craft” encompasses (and is not limited to): Fabric Design Tile Work Ceramics Furniture Making Metalsmithing and Jewelry Making Book making Stained glass Leatherwork Lacemaking…

  • Art Dog of the Month,  Art Pulse

    Poll: Which Art Dog Makes You Bark?

    The Painter and his Pug, William Hogarth, 1745. From the collection of Tate Britain. Whether you are new to the art supply industry or you’ve been around the block but just never really “got” our name, here’s the scoop. From stunning photographs to iconic sculptures and paintings, dogs have captured the attention of humans since the first known cave paintings. Not only did pooches play a crucial role in our evolutionary process, they are our faithful companions who comfort us in times of need, inspire us with their curiosity and keep us present in the here and now. So when…

  • Art Dog of the Month,  Art Pulse

    Art Dog of the Month: Hope

    Hope is Dragon’s Den Art’s store mascot! She is an eight year old rescue Labrador who joined Dragon’s Den, located in Penticton, British Columbia, three years ago. Her favorite medium is (clearly) chalk pastels. She uses her tail to blur all the blackboard signs for “artistic effect.” When she is not sound asleep on her sofa, she enjoys hiking with her pack: Skye the little Aussie and Milo the dachshund, who also work part-time in Dragon’s Den. Her human, shop owner Jeanette Beaven, elaborates: “Hope walks the staff (me) on my good-for-me walk around the neighborhood every morning before we…