6 Tips for Creating a Daily Art Habit

Creating art every day can seem like a daunting task, but with a few simple steps you can be well on your way to making the art that you love! Would you like to learn how to get and stay inspired to create art every day? Here are 5 tips for creating a daily art habit. Let’s get started!

1.Create a Travel Art Kit

One way to get started is putting together a travel art kit. First, you’ll need a small container or bag that fits in your purse or backpack. It can also be a larger bag that is ready-to-go whenever you go to an appointment, going to the coffee shop, or are doing any traveling. Travel tip: if you are traveling by plane, be sure that your liquid media follows all guidelines (3 ounces or less and can all fit in a quart-sized baggie). Think about what are the absolute necessary materials and how to miniaturize them. Love to embroider? Think small spools of thread in a particular color palette versus whole skeins of every color! Maybe watercolors are your thing? Make or buy an altoid tin watercolor set, mini watercolor journal and waterbrush. Is your art journal your world? Pack a travel-size journal and a small bag with a few of your favorite pens, washi tape, color pencils, and paint pens. Having this bag already packed and ready to go will take the stress out of art. Even if you don’t create art every day, the simple act of bringing the supplies with you can be helpful for catching those unexpected moments when creative inspiration arrives!

2. Set Up a Small Art Space

Sometimes all it takes to create a daily art habit is to have the right space! If you are always having to clear a space and drag out supplies and clean up after every art making session, then chances are you will be less likely to want to begin in the first place. Having a dedicated space can help alleviate the stress that sometimes comes with making art. Whether it’s a full-on art studio, or a small nook in the corner, having that space all set up can get you that much closer to your daily art-making goal! Add the added bonus that organizing your art supplies can often lead to creating a desire to use them, and you’ve got plenty of good reasons to get that space set up today. Making your supplies more accessible and organized can have a relaxing effect on you that makes creating a daily art routine that much easier and more enjoyable.

3. Keep An Art Journal

Another great way to get into the habit of making art every day is keeping an art journal. This can be any kind of creative journal you’d like! What’s great about art journaling is that you don’t have to worry about making it “pretty” or perfect. Art journaling is all about the process and getting into good, creative habits. An art journal is like a visual diary or real-life Pinterest board where you can keep all of your ideas, sketches, experiments and more! You can collage your favorite color palettes for the next painting you want to work on, or you can keep notes on a particular process that you are experimenting with, or you can just test out your favorite pens! The sky is the limit with an art journal and it pairs well with a traveling art kit. You never know when inspiration will arrive, and it’s always better to be prepared!

4. Take One Small Action

Sometimes we can feel stuck in our creative process and what used to bring us joy can suddenly feel overwhelming and full of “shoulds” and guilt! It’s always a good idea to take a break if you’re not feeling inspired. But for those moments when you are ready to create again but don’t feel fully in the creative mood, sometimes just taking a small action can help build that momentum and get us back in the creative flow. Let’s say you love to paint but you haven’t touched a canvas in a long time. You can try a new medium and make a few marks on your canvas to give it life and create some interest again. Or you can pick up your pencil and open up a sketchbook. Even if that’s all you do, it’s better than doing nothing and feeling stuck. Maybe that’s all you do–pick up the pencil and put it back down. But once you have the pencil in hand, what if you just made a few scribbles in your sketchbook? Then, what if you just did a quick 5 minute sketch? Then…you get the idea! Soon, you might find yourself lost in your sketchbook for hours, all because you decided to simply start with a little scribble. This can be done in almost any medium. Organizing your materials can also start that creative spark. Simply being around your materials and touching them again might be all that’s needed to get you back in the groove!

5. Take an Online Art Course

Maybe you bought some supplies but never figured out what to do with them. Or maybe you took a workshop a while ago, but forgot the process and can’t find your notes. Sometimes just trying a new technique or refreshing some old skills is enough to get inspired again. What better way to take the stress and guilt out of art-making than to take an online art class? Create Arts Online has a variety of different classes to choose from taught by expert artist instructors. An online art class can keep you on track as you create a little each day. The best part about an online art class is that you can create on your own time and fit it around your busy schedule. Sometimes just hoping that you’ll create something isn’t quite enough–but committing to learning something new can be just what you need to jump start your creativity!

6. Track your Daily Art Practice

A habit tracker can help you see that you are getting further along in your goal than you thought! You choose a goal for the month and then track each day that you attempt or complete that goal. Your goal could be as simple as sketching for 5 minutes each day or taking time to work on a painting. It’s ok if you skip a couple days or even weeks. As long as you keep at it a little bit each month, you’ll see that you’ve created a good habit over the course of an entire year.

We hope this list has helped you get a little closer to creating art everyday and cultivating your own daily art habit. You can download our FREE simple Daily Art Practice Habit Tracker HERE to help you keep a visual record of your progress. The creative process isn’t always a linear one–it can take many turns along the way. Wherever your creative path takes you, today is the best day to begin!

9 Dec 2021

Top Five Art Journaling Supplies

Are you new to art journaling or have you been at it for a while? Art journaling can be such a great way to get started in mixed media. Art journals are a safe space for us to explore our inner life, share our dreams and hopes and just have fun playing with our art supplies. Getting started with art journaling can seem like a daunting task, but we think this top five list of art journaling supplies will help create or maintain that creative spark!

  1. Art Journal

What’s the most important supply when you’re getting started with art journaling? A journal, of course! The type of art journal you choose really depends on what kind of art you’ll most likely be making. If you tend toward more messy, painterly layers, then an art journal with mixed media weight paper or even watercolor paper will do the trick! If you are layering on paint, collage, spray ink, and more, these heavier papers will keep those layers from seeping through onto the other side, and keep your pages from warping with any water-based media. Look for art journals that are specifically made for mixed media such as Ranger’s Dylusion journal (it has smooth cardstock which is great for adding thick layers!) If you are going to be doing a lot of collage, then we recommend that you use a smoother surface. Hot press watercolor paper does well with both collage and water-based mediums. If you want something more portable and simple, try a cahier-style journal. Moleskine is a great brand of journal, but you can also find a more budget-friendly style on sites like Amazon or Blick. These journals have thinner papers that are perfect for adding collage paper and ephemera with adhesive tape or glue stick.

  1. Collage Paper

Collage paper doesn’t have to get too complicated here. It can be anything from old junk mail and wrapping paper to handmade or scrapbook paper. Really, anything that catches your attention and inspires you to create is your best bet. You can try searching your stash for interesting patterns, colors, and textures or you can even host a swap online or with other artsy friends. You know what they say about one artist’s trash being another artist’s treasure! Look for old, vintage paper at garage sales or on Etsy. You can find unique, handmade paper at your local art store or online. Try searching for paper from different cultures such as Japanese chiyogami paper, Nepalese Lokta paper, Italian Florentine paper, or Mexican papel picado paper. The variety in pattern, texture, and color is sure to inspire you and enhance your artwork. When working with collage paper, you can use a variety of adhesives such as matte medium, Mod Podge, or even a simple glue stick. The thinner and more delicate the paper, the more fluid your adhesive medium should be to avoid tears, rips or bubbles in your layers.

  1. Washi Tape

Washi tape can be used as an adhesive and a decorative element. Plus, it’s just so colorful and fun to collect and display! You can try starting off with a few of your favorite colors or adding in some fun patterns or images. Try varying the widths for a visually pleasing effect. You can find washi tape in any craft store, art store, or stationery store. And an online search will definitely bring up endless possibilities. Try a page in your art journal where you just use washi tape as a design element. Sometimes it’s fun to limit our supplies to really stretch our creative brains!

  1. Paint Pens

Paint pens are a great way to travel with acrylic paint but without the mess! These pens come in a variety of colors and tip widths. We recommend that you try every point from extra fine to extra bold! They are perfect for journaling, mark-making, and adding spontaneous drips and splatters. You can find them online or in your art or craft stores. Some popular brands for art journaling are Liquitex, Posca, and Sharpie water-based paint pens. You can always start with a lower-budget craft-store version if you are just getting started with art journaling. Or you can just go all-in with the top-of-the-line products! What’s more important is that you are trying something new and getting a feel for these art supplies.

  1. Ephemera

This can be anything from receipts, ticket stubs, stamps, labels, photos--you name it! If you’re having a hard time finding ephemera for your art journal, try buying a pre-made assortment of scrapbook cut-out images or labels. These can add interesting focal points and spaces for documenting your ideas, the date, an interesting quote, poem, or even last night’s dream! The great thing about art journaling is that you can decide to make it all visual or add in some elements of writing. It’s all up to you!

Whether you are brand new to art journaling or have been at it for a while, we hope this top five art journaling supply list will help create or maintain that creative spark!

Ready to Get Started with Art Journaling?

We have a variety of art journaling classes that you can get started with today! You can try “Learning to See--Drawing in Journals,” and “Poetic Watercolor Journals” with Helen Shafer Garcia. Both courses are great for beginners and pros alike who are looking for a fresh take on watercolor painting, drawing, and art journaling! We also have recently added “Altered Journals” with Nicole Austin. She shows you how to take old books, and new journals and turn them into stunning-yet-simple works of art that you can take with you on-the-go, or create in the comfort of your own home studio. Or there’s “Book Building and Daily Art Practices” with Katherine England, where she shows you how to build your own journals and develop a creative habit and exercise your art brain!

Whichever tools you choose to begin with, we are just excited that you have decided to begin! We hope Create Arts Online opens a whole world of learning new and exciting art journaling techniques.

21 Oct 2021

Online Art Class VS Art Retreat: Which is Best?

So, you’re ready to start venturing into the world of mixed media art classes! You might be thinking about which is right for you: an online art class or an in-person art retreat. Both are great options, but for many different reasons. Here, we’ll talk about the main differences between each and help you decide which is best for you. Let’s get started!

Online Art Class VS Art Retreat

The common thread between online art classes and art retreats is, obviously, the art! But the two couldn’t be more different in the delivery of content and overall experience. What it really comes down to is the type of experience you’re looking for and your budget. Both can be wonderful ways to immerse yourself in a newfound love of mixed media art, and both can be a way to become part of an ever-growing art community, but both have their pros and cons, depending on what it is you’re looking for.

An online art class and a workshop at an art retreat are going to offer some of the same features: Both have a lot of valuable information to offer, knowledgeable instructors, and a built-in creative community of artists. The differences come down to the overall cost and the type of experience offered. Let’s go over some of these similarities and differences next!

Online Art Class: Pros and Cons

If you’re looking for an experience where you can take on a new mixed media art obsession all from the comfort of your own home and at your own pace, then an online art class might be for you! The pros to an online art class are that you can log in and learn anytime, anywhere! Do you have a busy life and a lot going on? No problem! You can pause the course and

come back when you have the time to absorb and dive back in. Do you have a lot of art supplies but are not sure what to do with them? An online art class would be a great place to start figuring out what to do with these supplies that are just sitting on the shelf! Also, with an online art class, you can have a busy life AND follow your dream of learning and creating beautiful art!

You can take your time with an online art class. If you need to watch a technique again or didn’t catch what the instructor said the first time you can easily pause and re-watch. There’s also something really immersive about watching a professional artist create and talk about the “why” behind their choices in real-time. Yes, that also happens in an in-person workshop, but often, you are watching the artist from an awkward angle or you are trying to see through the crowd--not the best view. With an online art class, you can see from the instructor’s perspective. It puts you in the driver’s seat and helps you see exactly what steps are being done, and what choices are being made--and more importantly, why. However, if you are looking for an in-person, immersive experience, love the thrill and adventure of travel, and have only a limited time to schedule in your art, then these could be considered downsides for you.

Mixed Media Art Retreat: Pros and Cons

The main difference between an online art class and an in-person art retreat is the location and the experience. If you love gathering in large groups of other creative, like-minded folks, then an in-person art retreat might be for you! There’s something for everyone at an in-person retreat--you can take as many or as few classes as you want. There is that creative buzz in the air, and often a sense of adventure, as most folks travel far and wide to attend an art retreat. If you like to mingle, meet other artsy folks, talk about art and life, and take group excursions to dinner or to an art store, then this could be your jam!

An in-person art retreat is perfect for someone who would like to create in the moment in a group environment. There is a lot of inspiration and creative energy at an art retreat. Possible downsides: often the excitement and momentum fade when you return to your “normal life.” It can be hard to set up your space, get back into that creative mode, and remember what exactly it was your instructor said the steps were or what techniques work best. You’ll have to be an expert note-taker, as most instructors don’t allow filming of their live classes. Sometimes, instructors will include supplies in the cost of the workshop, but often you have to pack the supplies with you--and that can get a little costly, especially if you’re flying. Also, with the ups and downs of the pandemic, travel plans, as well as the retreats themselves, may be cancelled or postponed for a later date that may not work for you.

Online Art Class VS Art Retreat: Price Difference

Online art classes can vary in range from a few dozen to several hundred dollars, depending on the course and instructor. The upside is that often, there is tiered pricing, which means that there is a price point that fits any budget. Here at Create Arts Online, we have courses that are as little as $25! You can get creating from the comfort of your own home for very little money to start. An in-person art retreat is going to cost upwards of several hundred to a few thousand dollars--when you factor in travel, food, and lodging in addition to the courses. If you are just starting out and aren’t sure you want to commit to that kind of budget, you can easily get a taste of the mixed media art world with an online art class.

Online Art Class VS Art Retreat: The Bottom Line

If you’re still not sure which is right for you, starting with an online art class could be your best bet. It’s low risk and at the same time, very rewarding. If you have the time and the money, a sense of adventure and would just like to take a little break from “the real world,” an art retreat could be just the thing for you! However, if you are looking for an immersive experience that you can jump in and out of at your own pace and fit in between your day-to-day life, then an online art class could be just the thing you need!

Are you ready to get started in your online art class adventure! You can check out all of the various online art classes that Create Arts Online has to offer!

26 Sep 2021

How to Get Started in Mixed Media Art

Welcome to the Create Arts Online blog! Each week, we will share helpful tips and tricks related to everything mixed media. This week, we’ll start with how to get started in mixed media art. If you’re new to mixed media art, it can be kind of intimidating to know where to start. First, there are all kinds of different categories of mixed media art, not to mention the various supplies, techniques, and instructors to choose from! Don’t despair, you are already on the right track with the first step: Just begin where you are. Here is a simple guide to help you continue on your journey into the world of mixed media.

What Kind of Mixed Media Art Should I Try First?

First, ask yourself what kind of art really interests and inspires you. Are you more drawn to layers of colorful paper, textures, and mark-making? Maybe you should try collage! Do you love the look of dreamy, see-through layers of painted color? Maybe you should try watercolor. Or maybe you used to sew a little and you’d like to get out that old sewing machine and have fun again! Choosing one general type of mixed media art to begin with can help you get started quickly. Creating an inspiration board of colors, textures, and even your favorite art images can really get you excited and inspired to start a new project. Once you’ve narrowed down your choice to the type of media you’d like to try, then you can start thinking about everyone’s favorite topic: art supplies!

What Mixed Media Art Supplies Do I Need?

If you’ve narrowed down your first choice, take a look at the supply list for an online art class that teaches in that medium--here at Create Arts Online we have plenty of courses in a variety of mediums that are perfect for beginners and pros alike. Maybe you already have some of the supplies at home collecting dust on a shelf or in a drawer. It would be a good idea to take inventory of what you already have before you go out and buy more. Knowing what supplies you already have might help you decide which mixed media art class to choose first. If you’re starting fresh, set a budget and then decide what are the essential art supplies you’ll need to begin. The most important thing is to just begin! Don’t let the supply list be the step that gets in the way of you just getting started in mixed media art. Even if you have just a few colors of paint, or fabric, or pastels, just gathering the supplies can be a way to set the intention of beginning a new artistic journey. Once you have collected the materials, you can begin to organize them and think about your space.

How Much Space Do I Need to Create Mixed Media Art?

You’ve seen the studios of your friends on social media or maybe artists you admire in magazines--they are spacious, perfect, dreamy, and FULL of all the art supplies you could ever dream of. Maybe what’s stopping you from starting is the thought that you don’t have the perfect space. If you have the desire to begin creating mixed media art, then you can create enough space for yourself and your art. If you have an extra spare room that is not being used, great! Use it as a dedicated space for when you are creating your mixed media art. Or maybe you are working within a smaller space, that’s ok, too. All you need is a small section of a table that has a few containers of your favorite supplies. No space at the table? Don’t let that stop you from getting started in mixed media art! You can always store your art supplies in a bag that is convenient for taking with you when you are on-the-go. Also, almost any type of mixed media art can be converted into a smaller, compact version that you can take with you anywhere!

In-Person VS Online Mixed Media Art Workshops

Once you’ve decided what medium you’d like to start with, and you’ve gathered your supplies and created a space, you can now choose an online mixed media workshop to start learning and getting inspired! The beauty of taking an online art workshop at Create Arts Online versus an in-person workshop is that you can begin learning from the comfort of your own home right now! You don’t have to factor in any travel costs and you can start creating "in your own space, and at your own pace."™ You can watch the videos as many times as you need to understand and practice the techniques. It’s like having your own instructor at your side 24/7! And because you’re at home, you can also leave your supplies and projects out to keep you inspired and motivated to continue creating! What’s great about in-person workshops is that you can travel and create in a vacation-like atmosphere, BUT sometimes there is a danger in the loss of momentum once you return to “real life!” When you create from home, you can stop and start the workshop whenever it is convenient for you. You can weave art and creativity into your everyday life.

Ready to Get Started in Mixed Media Art?

We have a lot of amazing and talented instructors who are experts in their medium. You can find everything from polymer clay to freehand stitching to book making and acrylic painting! This week, we are excited to be launching two new courses with Helen Shafer Garcia: “Learning to See--Drawing in Journals,” and “Poetic Watercolor Journals.” Both courses are great for beginners and pros alike who are looking for a fresh take on watercolor painting, drawing, and art journaling!

Whichever medium you choose to begin with, we are just excited that you have decided to begin! We hope Create Arts Online opens a whole world of learning new and exciting mixed media art techniques.