100 episodes

Savvy Painter is a weekly podcast for artists who mean business.

Antrese Wood talks to experts in the field about the business of art and how it gets created. Want to know how leaders in the fine art world of plein-air and landscape painting got their start? What habits do top artists have in common? Every week, we talk about representational painting, abstract art, alla prima painting, art competitions, art materials, watercolor, oil painting, how to get into an art gallery, how to succeed with your art business and so much more!

Savvy Painter Podcast with Antrese Wood Conversations about the business of art, inside the artist studio, and plei

    • Visual Arts

Savvy Painter is a weekly podcast for artists who mean business.

Antrese Wood talks to experts in the field about the business of art and how it gets created. Want to know how leaders in the fine art world of plein-air and landscape painting got their start? What habits do top artists have in common? Every week, we talk about representational painting, abstract art, alla prima painting, art competitions, art materials, watercolor, oil painting, how to get into an art gallery, how to succeed with your art business and so much more!

    Building Businesses and Visual Memory: An Interview with Artist, Lucy Kalian 

    Building Businesses and Visual Memory: An Interview with Artist, Lucy Kalian 

    What does it take to hone your visual memory skills as an artist? Can you really build a successful business by selling your artwork? Isn’t (insert any age here) too old to get started as an artist? What am I supposed to do with all this time at home caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)? 
    Thankfully, my guest, Lucy Kalian was kind enough to take the time to discuss her answers to these questions and so many more. Lucy is a brilliant and talented artist who started honing her skills at 40 years old. She’s built two successful businesses and she’s an absolute joy - I can’t wait for you to get to know Lucy and her fascinating perspective on a wide range of topics! 
    Building your visual memory  What comes to mind when you hear the term, “Visual memory?” 
    Visual memory is the ability to remember or recall information such as activities, pictures or words that have been viewed in the past. 
    Is your visual memory game strong or could it use some strengthening? Like all muscles, if you want to increase your capacity, you need to exercise! Over many years of practice both in the studio and in her everyday life, Lucy has managed to hone her visual memory skills like a precision laser. According to Lucy, the secret to her success is nurturing curiosity and taking the time to study the world around you. 
    Delegating and working smarter  You’ve heard the old phrase, “Work smarter, not harder!” 
    While it might sound like a phrase that works best in the board room the truth is, it applies to businesses big and small. When it comes to the growth of your business as an artist, you are the bottleneck. You can’t do all of the things, all of the time if you want to grow - sooner or later, you are going to need some help. If you can handle the business side of things, great! If you can’t, no problem - just find someone to help you in that critical area. Do yourself a favor and learn from Lucy’s inspiring story of delegation, growth, and success!
    There is no substitute for time in the saddle  Do you ever find yourself wondering what it will take to unlock the potential you know you have within you? What do you feel like you are missing in your art career? While many artists find themselves looking for that one key tip or insight that will help them flip the switch, the hard reality is, “There is no substitute for time in the saddle.” Speaking with Lucy the message is clear, she is a firm believer in putting in the time and honing your craft. Don’t lull yourself into a false sense of complacency - keep striving!
    Lucy’s creativity challenge I wanted to try something a little different and I thought that now, while we are all stuck at home doing our part to “Flaten the curve” that it would be a good time to introduce it. I asked Lucy to take a minute and think of a creative challenge she could offer our community. 
    Lucy’s challenge: 
    Even when you can’t sit down to produce a finished piece of art - don’t put all that pressure on yourself. Use all of your observational skills all of the time. Really look at things. Something happens when you give yourself permission to think outside of the box and use your imagination. Wherever you are, take a minute to really look and think about how you would mix that color or arrange that composition. What do you have to lose? 
    Outline of This Episode [0:50] I introduce my guest, Lucy Kalian.  [2:40] Lucy talks about how she got started as an artist.  [6:30] What age is too late to become an artist?  [8:00] It’s not about the money.  [13:20] Lucy describes her artwork.  [20:00] The power of visual memory.  [25:00] Delegating responsibilities and freeing up more time for your art.  [36:00] Defeating the inner critic.  [41:45] How Lucy discovered that she was colorblind. [51:00] There is no substitute for time in the saddle.  [54:15] Lucy’s

    • 1 hr 1 min
    A Look Inside The Artist’s Studio

    A Look Inside The Artist’s Studio

    What type of magic happens in the artist’s studio? Is there some special formula that “Successful” artists use that helps them maximize their creativity and studio time? 
    I wanted to take this opportunity to explore this critical topic with the vast spectrum of artists we have represented in the Savvy Painter community. From all over the country and the world, artists like you have shared their struggles, successes, and helpful tips when it comes to making the most of their time at the canvas. 
    Make sure you have a pen and paper close by, you don’t want to miss a minute of this powerful exploration of the artist’s studio! 
    Recognizing when resistance shows up Let’s face it, at some point in your career, you’ll face resistance. I focused a whole episode dedicated to this important topic: How to Beat Resistance (Advice for Painters)
    “If you’ve read Steven Pressfield’s book, the War of Art, you’re familiar with Resistance. Even if you have not read his book, I’ll wager you are familiar with Resistance, you just didn’t know it had a name, a proper name with a capital “R.” It’s real. It’s powerful. It’s a sneaky little bastard who’s not always easy to spot.
    Pressfield uses a lot of war analogies in his descriptions of Resistance, and he’s right to do so because it’s serious business. Resistance is at war with you, it can destroy you. Resistance wants to take you out, so I do see Resistance as an enemy. If I let him have his way, I’d stop showing up for you. Don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere – I want to help artists like you find your way to beat Resistance and do the work that matters most to you!”
    After that episode, I heard from a ton of artists like you who were eager to share similar challenges and helpful strategies they’ve deployed to help them beat Resistance in their lives. As I stressed on that episode, the first step to beating Resistance is recognizing how it shows up - and for many of you, Resistance shows up before you even step into the studio. From surges of anxiety to even building a physical wall of objects that prevent you from getting your studio, we all face Resistance differently. 
    The one thing that will help you combat Resistance in your personal and professional life is by setting an intention, it doesn’t have to be big but it does have to move you in the right direction. What have you found work for you as you combat Resistance in your career? 
    The artist’s studio, sanctuary or soul-crushing?  When you think of your studio, do you consider it a sanctuary or somewhere that is fraught with pain and anxiety? To say it another way, do you have a healthy relationship with your studio right now or is it a bit more complicated? 
    Cody, an artist from Indianapolis, described his studio space as a “Refuge where stressful things can sometimes happen.” This description speaks to the struggle of facing deadlines or starting shakily on a new project but that it always happens in the confines of a creative space.
    Remember, your space is your own. There is no “right way” to set up your studio - if it works for you and spurs your creativity then go with it! 
    My challenge to you  If you find yourself struggling to create the artist’s studio you’ve always dreamed about, here are some helpful tips from me and other fellow artists. 
    I challenge you to re-frame your thoughts when you think about your studio. Don’t let your thoughts automatically go to the stressful or frustrating aspects of your task at hand, instead think of what you get to do in your creative space. 
    A helpful practice I’ve picked up over the years is to center myself as I cross the threshold into my studio. When I cross that physical threshold into my studio, I take a deep breath and say “This is for me, I am here and I have something to say.” 
    If you d

    • 47 min
    Using Art To Tell Stories, with Rob Rey 

    Using Art To Tell Stories, with Rob Rey 

    When you approach the canvas do you find yourself trying to tell a story with your artwork? Do you think you are telling a story with your art whether you like it or not? Here to explore these questions and many more is my guest and fellow artist, Rob Rey. 
    Rob’s artwork is often inspired by his interests in both natural sciences like astronomy and physics as well as social sciences like psychology and sociology. These interests commonly influence his work, as do a multitude of inspiring artists from classical art to golden age illustration and contemporary representational art.
    In our conversation, you’ll hear how Rob approaches his creative process, what he has learned from his career over the years, which artists have made the most impact on him, and so much more. I can’t wait for artists like you to learn from Rob’s fascinating journey!
    Telling a story Have you ever watched a scene in a movie that said a thousand words without using a single line of dialogue? What about an instrumental song that evokes feelings of joy or dread without using any words? From paintings and sculptures to music and movies, artists have been using their medium to tell stories since the beginning of time. What are the resonant, positive, and awe-inspiring stories of today? How can our expanding scientific knowledge drive our enchantment with the natural world and grow our empathic interests toward our fellow humans? Exploring these questions visually, Rob Rey hopes to promote or create the stories that best help us to achieve these goals. Make sure to check out images of Rob’s artwork located at the end of this post. 
    Chaos vs. Order Do you ever find yourself struggling with the tension between chaos and order on your creative journey? What do you do to cut through all of the noise and focus on what really matters? According to Rob Rey, he found a good balance between chaos and order in his artwork through trial and error. After years of practice and persistence, Rob feels like he has a good handle on the balancing act required to navigate chaos and order. What do you think of Rob’s response? What has worked well for you on your creative journey?
    Advice for fellow artists Listening to Rob describe his approach to the creative process and how stories have captured his imagination gets me thinking about what I love about my life as an artist. If you’ve been around the Savvy Painter community for very long, you know that I am always looking for ways to improve as an artist and I hope you never stop learning either. I wanted to get Rob’s take on what advice he would pass on to fellow artists. Rob is a huge fan of taking time to practice your craft - log in the hours! Let’s face it, the only way to learn how to avoid making the same mistakes is by practicing a new approach. What can you learn from Rob’s story? 
    Outline of This Episode [0:40] I introduce my guest, Rob Rey. [2:30] What led Rob to his career as an artist?  [6:15] Rob talks about his interest in stories and storytelling.  [13:15] Telling a story with an image.  [15:30] Resolving chaos vs. order.  [20:00] Rob talks about reactions to his artwork.  [31:15] Rob’s dream project.  [38:00] Relating science to our daily lives.  [40:00] Rob opens up about his creative process.  [49:00] Advice for fellow artists.  Other artists mentioned on this episode John William Waterhouse Alphonse Mucha J. C. Leyendecker Jeffery Catherine Jones  Frank Frazetta Resources Mentioned on this episode Rob Rey’s website Book: The Power of Myth Podcast: Radiolab Connect With Antrese On Facebook On Pinterest On Instagram On Twitter

    • 52 min
    Identifying and Overcoming Resistance in Your Creative Journey 

    Identifying and Overcoming Resistance in Your Creative Journey 

    Webster’s Dictionary defines Resistance as, “an act or instance of resisting: opposition. b: a means of resisting. 2: the power or capacity to resist.” 
    What comes to mind when you think about resistance? Do you start thinking about all the things that are giving your resistance in your life? Do you have a resistant family member? What about that project that keeps giving you a headache? Imagine what it would be like to clearly identify and manage the resistance you face both personally and professionally. I’d like you to join me as I share some insights about my journey with resistance and some tips I’ve picked up along the way. If you are ready to make 2020 a more productive year - you’ll want to pay close attention! 
    Identifying resistance  I first learned about resistance when I read Steven Pressfield’s book, “The War of Art” in 2005. Before then, I had a hard time understanding why painting, writing, or any other creative endeavor was so hard. 
    Since then, I’ve re-read that book at least once every single year. Each time I read it, I have a different insight. If you’ve read Steven Pressfield’s book, the War of Art, you’re familiar with resistance. Even if you have not read his book, I’ll wager you are familiar with resistance, you just didn’t know it had a name, a proper name with a capital “R.” It’s real. It’s powerful. It’s a sneaky little bastard who’s not always easy to spot.
    Pressfield uses a lot of war analogies in his descriptions of Resistance, and he’s right to do so because it’s serious business. Resistance is at war with you, it can destroy you. Resistance wants to take you out, so I do see Resistance as an enemy. If I let him have his way, I’d stop showing up for you. Don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere - I want to help artists like you kick this jerk to the curb!
    Antrese’s rules for overcoming resistance  Resistance will encourage you to overthink, over analyze and over research to the point that your mind is so filled with data, you’re immobilized. I am the queen of overthinking and self-inflicted analysis paralysis. Since I know that is my tendency, I’m learning to make action my default. Over the years, I found a few helpful ways to combat and even overcome Resistance’s influence in my life.
    Here are a few rules I’ve made for myself, in time I may adjust them but for now, they’re working for me:
    Given the choice between consuming and making, I will always choose making. I can only research for 20 minutes at a time. After I research I ALWAYS take action. That means if I’m researching a technique, I can only spend 20 minutes before I try the technique. I only need to know enough to take my next step. Most of the time, that baby step is enough to get me going. So there are a few examples of rules I have created for myself and I’d like to challenge you to make your own. You may not be prone to analysis paralysis, but you’re prone to something, and Resistance will find it and use it against you. Take the time to identify Resistance’s power in your life and plot steps to mitigate and even remove its power. Trust me, I know it’s hard work but it’s worth it! 
    Outline of This Episode [0:01] My introduction to this episode.  [3:00] Some awesome feedback from artists like you!  [5:00] Let other people inspire you.  [7:00] How resistance shows up in my life. [9:30] Helpful rules that I’ve come up with to combat resistance.  [12:30] Using resistance to your advantage.  [17:30] How artists like you are dealing with resistance.  [21:00] Closing thoughts and helpful tips.  Resources Mentioned on this episode Steven Pressfield - The War of Art Carol Dweck - Mindset: The New Psychology of Success Seth Godin

    • 23 min
    The Growth Of An Artist, with Shana Levenson

    The Growth Of An Artist, with Shana Levenson

    As you look at your career as an artist, do you notice how much you’ve grown and changed over the years? What led to the big moments of growth and change for you? It was a joy to sit down with my guest and fellow artist, Shana Levenson. In our conversation, Shana opens up about her experience as an art instructor, how her children have influenced her art, how she’s grown over the years, and much more. I know that artists like you will get a lot out of Shana’s helpful and unique perspective! 
    Empowering others Who was it that helped you along in your growth as an artist? Did you have a family member who took special interest in your creative development? Were others in your family supportive of your creative and artistic pursuits? Following in her brother’s footsteps, Shana Levenson had wanted to pursue a career as an artist from a young age. As she slowly carved out time to go to art school over the years - Shana fell in love not only with art but also with teaching. Shana got into teaching as a necessity but found that she really enjoys empowering others as they develop creatively. 
    Parenting and painting  As she finished her Master’s degree, Shana was also dealing with the end of her marriage. Not only did Shana have to navigate the challenges of life as an artist, but she also had to figure out parenting and life as a single mother. Juggling both parenting and painting wasn’t easy for Shana - especially when her ex-husband said that she could not continue using their children in her artwork. I couldn’t imagine facing the challenges that Shana has faced as an artist and a parent - I hope artists who navigate both find Shana’s story inspiring!
    Dealing with criticism  How do you respond to criticism and critique? Let’s face it, criticism and less than positive feedback are the worst part of putting something out there for the public to consume. In spite of the challenge that facing criticism can cause - doing so confidently is a key area of growth for most artists. Shana is the first to admit that she has had to strengthen her muscles over the years when it comes to dealing with criticism. Don’t assume that criticism won’t come - it will! You need to decide right now, how you plan to respond when negative feedback comes your way. What can you learn from Shana’s story? 
    Push yourself Do you have a habit of pushing yourself creatively? Does a new challenge thrill and excite you or do you find yourself running in the opposite direction? As I got to know Shana over the course of our conversation, I really wanted to get to the heart of what makes her tick. Considering my question about her positive habits, Shana was quick to point out the fact that she loves to push herself beyond her limits. A good example of Shana’s desire to push herself is her desire to work with lace in her paintings - something she had never done before. You can find images of Shana’s artwork located in the resources section at the end of this post. 
    Outline of This Episode [0:40] I introduce my guest, Shana Levenson.  [9:00] Shana talks about her experience as a teacher.  [13:00] How Shana’s art changed after her divorce.  [19:00] Pushing through difficulty and finding a new way forward.  [23:00] Dealing with rejection.  [28:00] Shana’s criteria for entering art competitions.  [32:30] Negative and positive reactions to Shana’s artwork.  [38:45] Shana talks about pushing herself beyond her limits.  [49:00] How does Shana approach the canvas?  [55:30] Closing thoughts.  Other artists mentioned on this episode Pablo Picasso Henri Matisse Jodie Herrera David Kassan Resources Mentioned on this episode Shana Levenson - Fine Art www.savvypainter.com/faso Daily Rituals: How Artists Work Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise Connect With Antrese On Facebook On Pinterest On Instagram On Twitter

    • 57 min
    Defeating Overwhelm and Finding Clarity 

    Defeating Overwhelm and Finding Clarity 

    If you are anything like me, you find yourself fighting back the feeling of overwhelm from time to time. What do you usually do when you start to feel overwhelmed? How do you cut through the usual complexity that life brings and find clarity? As we start the New Year, I wanted to take some time to go over some helpful tools and insights that I've gained over the years through experience and learning from my peers. I hope that artists like you will find something of value as I share some useful practices and lessons that I've gathered over the years. 
    Beginning with the end in mind  If you want to start finding clarity in your life, it can be helpful to begin with, the end in mind. Too often, people get overwhelmed with the idea of significant change that they give up before they get started. To make big change more manageable, try breaking it down. 
    Author Annie Dillard once wrote, "How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is a net for catching days."
    How do you want your year to look? Why not set some goals and start to work your way backward from there? If you're going to make a trip to another country, start planning out what you need to do each day, week, and month leading up to the trip. What works for trips can work for your art projects as well! 
    Say no to the right things One of the hardest lessons that I've had to learn over the years is to disappoint the right people and to say "No" to the right things. Let's face it, you can't make everyone happy, and you can't do all of the things! Part of ordering your life and your career is learning how to prioritize your time, energy, and relationships. You may want to take every opportunity that comes your way, but the truth is, that is not sustainable. If you're going to keep a healthy work-life balance, you need to decide on your priorities and stick to them. 
    Take action!  One of the worst aspects of getting overwhelmed can be finding yourself frozen with inaction. How do you react when you feel overwhelmed? If you want to make some positive changes in your life, you need to start somewhere. Even if you need to make a small step toward change, take it! I challenge you to write down the one thing that you will do today that will make you feel accomplished. Here are a few examples that you can use: 
    Knock out a small painting like an 8x10 or even a 3x5.  Set your studio up for tomorrow, so you are ready to go.  Open your sketchbook up and sketch for just 15 minutes.  Prepare canvases for the weekend, so you are ready to paint.  Choose one small section of that large painting that you will resolve today.  Write that email that you've been avoiding.  Make that decision that you've been agonizing over.  These examples are just intended to get you started. Pick an action step that makes sense for you - but don't put it off!
    Outline of This Episode [2:30] I give a shoutout to a few listeners.  [6:40] Why you need to figure out your life design.  [9:00] Where are your priorities?  [11:30] I describe my ideal day.  [19:20] Finding clarity and focus.  [22:00] Saying “No” to the right things.  [24:00] Action steps you can take today! [26:00] Closing thoughts. Resources Mentioned on this episode www.savvypainter.com/faso Connect With Antrese On Facebook On Pinterest On Instagram On Twitter

    • 29 min

Customer Reviews

Noticed1683 ,

Really Awesome

So thrilled to have found this podcast! Downloading many many previous episodes and hanging out for new ones. Antrese has a relaxed interviewing style and her choice of guests makes most episodes fascinating.

artistissima ,

More gratitude!

Came across your podcast by chance when looking up Rebecca Cromwell. Much appreciated. I am an 'emerging artist' as they say these days and it is great to be able to hear other artists talk and share a bit of themselves with us. Makes me realize we are all in the same boat but they have been working harder and longer than me. I have a lot to catch up with! Thank you Antrese. Que te vaya muy bien! x

Vcat2 ,

Excellent

Antrese has a gift for connecting with her guests and bring up for discussion important topics I can relate too as an artist. Thanks for the inspiration.

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