Art Supply Insiders Podcast

ASI 61 "Special Edition" - NAMTA Trade Show Part 3

April 23, 2023 Jeff Morrow
ASI 61 "Special Edition" - NAMTA Trade Show Part 3
Art Supply Insiders Podcast
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Art Supply Insiders Podcast
ASI 61 "Special Edition" - NAMTA Trade Show Part 3
Apr 23, 2023
Jeff Morrow

We are on the trade show floor of the 2023 National Art Materials Trade Association convention. In this special Part 3 and final edition we talk to:

  • Cranfield
  • Silver Brush
  • Alexander Cruz - Artist
  • Arkon Mounts
  • OLO Markers
  • Today is Art Day
  • Tomorrow's Artist

Take a listen to what is new in art and craft supplies for 2023!

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Show Notes Transcript

We are on the trade show floor of the 2023 National Art Materials Trade Association convention. In this special Part 3 and final edition we talk to:

  • Cranfield
  • Silver Brush
  • Alexander Cruz - Artist
  • Arkon Mounts
  • OLO Markers
  • Today is Art Day
  • Tomorrow's Artist

Take a listen to what is new in art and craft supplies for 2023!

Art Supply Insiders
Click here to subscribe & follow (and be notified of every new podcast): Subscribe & Follow
Please leave a comment (we love feedback!): Comments

Support the Show.

Welcome back to Art Supply Insiders. My name is Jeff Morrow, and today we have a very special edition for you. We're on the floor of the 2023 National Art Materials Trade Association Convention called Ation. We'll be talking to the vendors. We'll be bringing all the new products to you into the arts and crafts.


But first, if you'd like to hear more of these podcasts, please hit the subscribe button on your preferred podcast platform and we'd appreciate it. If you tell a friend. If you'd like to show your support, please consider going to our website and hitting the support supply


Now let's get to the good stuff. 


So we've just walked into a booth called Cranfield and I'm seeing a huge glob of yellow paint on a pallet, and I have no idea what I'm looking at, but we're talking with Michael. Michael, how you doing today? Fine, thank you Jeff. Good to be with you. And I'll tell you the, the yellow is a a lemon-yellow artist on oil.


Paint and a number of people think it's resin and they insist on sticking their finger in to prove it. I've heard somebody say the most often disobeyed sign ever is wet paint. Do not touch. And uh, I think it's, we've written wet paint and people still insist on, uh, dry out. So tell me a little bit about Cranfield.


Who are you and what is it that you do? Yeah, so we are a, a color house, a traditional color house based in the uk, in Wales. And my father before me was a color man and my grandfather too. And, um, there's two distinct product ranges. Um, the first is, uh, printmaking. We do a number of inks for the printmaking market, and that's relief and etching and litho.


Printmaking has had a tremendous time recently, um, through C O V I D. It was a discipline that many people tried for the first time at home. And of course, if you paint, you can only please one person at a time with the finished article. One hopes, uh, with printmaking, if you make a good lino plate, you can make 50 prints.


So printmaking is a very big sector for us, and that is in terms of development, uh, lots of things are being discovered. So people are rediscovering printmaking and we make it easy for them because we give an oil-based product, which was. With soap and water, as well as our traditional inks as well. And then the other side of the business is just a beautiful, strong artist, oil paints.


Um, I always dread the question, what's new in artists oil paints? Because it's a bit like saying what's new in Egyptology. You know, it's, it's, it works. It has, and, and so in a sense is what, what's not new? You know, why traditional, um, formulations make such sense. That's what we do, the two lines. Artist paints and printmaking inks.


So if our audience would like to see more of your product, I'm assuming that you have a website they can go to? Yes, indeed. So Cranfield, so this the, and that's with the British spelling of c o l o u r If they wanted to, uh, buy the. You could go to somebody like, um, BLIC Art materials, where you'd find both the inks and the paints and many other, uh, um, distributors, retailers here in the, in the states.


So that's Cranfield, that's c r a n f i e L d - colors, c o l o u r s .c That's it. Quickly said, well, you need to go see this, uh, this product. It's very impressive. If you are in the booth, you'd be as impressed as I am. Thank you. Um, Michael, thank you very much for the time and we're gonna be doing a longer podcast. Uh, so stay tuned. Thank you. Thanks Michael. 


So we're in the silver brush booth and we're talking with Dee Silver and Warren Flax. D Warren. How you doing? We're doing really well. We're very excited to be at the NATA show. I've seen a lot of people that have been buying from us for a long time and new people also that we've just met here, so that's always exciting to get people to know our product and to learn about it.


We've got a bunch of new things, and the last time I spoke to you, so we've got lots that we're introducing, including scrubbers. Uh, beautiful watercolor sets and, uh, all kinds of things for the fine artist. And the, the response has been exceptional. Let Warren take them there. Well, and I think what is so interesting, and, and many of your listeners, Jeff, are familiar with, uh, our black velvet series, which is, uh, the premier brush in the world for watercolor and gush and inks and dyes, and we now have that in new sets.


So many folks who maybe have one or two but would like to save some money, uh, we now have it in beautiful new packaging. And these sets are very popular. They've become best sellers for us across the board. And so, uh, it's definitely something to look for in your, your best fine art stores. And you also have the, uh, the black velvet in travel sets too, right?


Yes, we do. We do. Those are travel sets. Uh, that's our, uh, voyage series and that is the, the brush that comes apart and you can put the, the cap on the head so the head doesn't get damaged, so you can take it out for plain air painting. Um, real, it's a real, uh, wonderful accessory to plain air painting for I'm so sorry.


Go ahead. No, no. I just, sorry, I'm switching topics, but something else new to consider right now is, uh, we have, uh, Monza in the long handle and that's a synthetic mongoose. Now we're switching from, uh, the Watercolorist over to, uh, oil and acrylic painters. Uh, but that is something that we have launched just this year and, uh, it's extremely popular.


It's, it mimics the old natural mongoose hair. Um, you designed it based on some lines you used to sell mom many, many years ago. It, it, many years ago. It, it also replicates a lot of the old fashioned shapes that used to be extremely popular, including dagger, uh, a short, uh, Filbert and a short, bright, so that you can get right into your artwork and do very, very tight painting.


Of course, the traditional rounds. Um, filberts that I've got fans in there. So it's a, it's a real traditional fine art brush, so somebody that is doing fine art and appreciates something that, you know, will really do the work for them. The Monza is a very good, so you had the Monza in a short brush for for a long time.


And you just brought it out, you say, in a long-handled brush? Yes. Why long handled? It's for the professional artist. Well, I say professional, it's for people that stand it in easel and like to paint standing up. So you have that reach with the long handle and short handle is typically for somebody who sits and paints.


Yep. And that's, and that's the definition of. But, uh, you know, rules are broken all the time. We see people who stand in easel use a short handle and people who sit at a, at a table and they use long handles. So that's, that's the way that is. But this is a very fine art. It's a traditional series. So, um, somebody that's interested in the, the shapes that they used to be able to get, they can get them now from Silver Brush and on Monza series.


And as, as you know, Jeff, we have in a very robust line of synthetics for the oil and acrylic painter. So, Our stiffest is the Bristol on Series, which is our second bestselling series. After Black Velvet in the company, Ruby Satin is a little less stiff, a little more snappy, and now the MOnza long handle comes in.


It's a little less stiff than the Ruby Satin. Each has a different unique use, so that's why we have them in the line. Um, and this really helps round out. Again, fine art offering. So if our audience wants to go and see all of these different brushes, I know you've got a website, what website would they go do to see all of this?


Silver So just silver Yeah. Now they can't buy anything on our website, but they can get educated about what's there and then they can find their low. Gold fine art retailer there. Yeah. I gotta tell you, I, I, I know of your, your website in it is an absolute wonderful site. If you need additional knowledge about brushes, how to care for your brushes, how to clean your brushes, uh, there is no website out.


There that's better than this. So with respect to brush care, you could go to silver brush specifically, and that'll take you right to the videos. Uh,Dee founder of Silver Brush and world renowned expert on these sorts of things teaches you how to care for your brushes, how to clean them. A secret trick for how you can get even the most caked on hardened paint out of a brush, as long as it's less than a year since you caked it on there.


Ah, so she'll show you that secret. Silver brush The trick, let's make them go to that website. So Warren D, thank you very much for all of your time today. I appreciate it. Thank you. You bet. And you have perfect timing because he's my customer. 


I'm looking at some artwork and the artist is Alexander Cruz and he has a line of product that I think we should talk about.So let me introduce. Alexander, how are you Alexander? Hi. Hi. How are you? How is everybody doing? Good. So tell me why are you in this booth? What's going on? Well, I'm in this booth because I'm showing my artwork and at the same time, um, silver Brush Company is making my brush sets. So we are promoting both, you know, me as an artist and, and the brush.


And so right now you've got, uh, brush sets. You've got some sets that, uh, that come with a brush holder. And so do you do classes and do you teach people also? I am an artist from Puerto Rico. Yes. I teach classes in Puerto Rico. Like for a lot of, you know, It's been like, uh, wow. More than 30 years doing this business, you know?


No kidding. And any, yes. And so now, you know, I'm with Silver Brush and we are promoting the brushes. Yeah. So if our audience would like to see some of the artwork that I'm looking at right now, and I gotta tell you guys, it's stunning. No, thank you. Uh, where would, where would they go if they wanted to see some of this and find out more about you and what you.


Well, you can go to my homepage. It's That's in Spanish Galeria with one L galeria Yes. So let's spell that out for them. So that's G of course. L E R I a. Cruz C r U Dot com. That's correct, yes. And what, when they go there, what are they gonna see? Oh, they're gonna see my, the.


Galleries are gonna see, you know, my school, everything. They're, I have everything there. And you do, uh, you teach them also. Do you have, do you do, uh, videos that teach also? I used to have videos with the Martin of Forever Company. Not anymore, but, but yes, I used to have videos and, uh, I still have some at, at home that I can send, you know.


But, um, I do mostly teaching, um, um, with, with you. Face to face. Yeah. Face. Face-to-face. Yes. So tell me a little bit about, what was your INS inspiration? How did you become a painter? Who did, who did you look up to? Well, my first teacher was Bob Ross. No kidding. Yeah. So I became a certified Ross instructor when I was, um, I'm 17 years old, and that was back, um, in 1992.


Bob Ross died in 95. So after that I continued my studies in art and, uh, I became, uh, my, I have my, my art education in, in, in Sacred Heart University in Puerto Rico. Oh, wonderful. And um, And, and my degree is visual arts, so I learned different other techniques with other artists like Daniel Green, Dana Jester, and so on, you know, in this, in the United States.


So I learned a lot of other techniques, and here we are showing a few of those techniques that, that, that I, I do. All the different brushes that we use from Silver Brush. Well, I've gotta tell the audience out there that you would be doing yourself a disservice if you didn't go and thank you and see what Alexander has done and what his products are.


Uh, we are gonna do a longer podcast in the upcoming months, a. Forward to that. Alexander, thanks for taking the time to talk with us today. Thank you my dear friend. Thank you very much. 


So we just dropped into Akron Mounts. Did I say that right? Akron? You said it beautifully and, and we're talking with Urim.


How are you? Hello. I'm doing great, Jeff. How are you? Fabulous. So, What is Akron Mounts? Okay, let me tell you real quick. So we specialize in mounting solutions. So everything for content creation, teaching online classes, everything nowadays is going online, um, for podcasting, for video creation, teaching classes, and also crafting and drawing art.


We supply and make mounts for overhead views. We've been in the industry for 35. So we specialize in heavy duty mounts, uh, fitting phones, cameras, microphones. Wow, you got it. We're located in California. Beautiful. Sunny California. Where your phone from? Uh, yes sir. And we have our headquarters here. We work directly with our factory.


We stock everything in California. Um, we have great warranty about lifetime warranties, so if anything happens to your items, we will. So, um, so you're talking about tablet phone. Nowadays, if you are a creative and you are, um, trying to create content, you wanna mirror your devices from your phone to your tablet so you are able to visualize and see everything.


Uh, we make everything from little stance to tripods to holders. Um, but that's who we are. Wow. So I'm, I'm looking at your booth here and you've got a tabletop mount. You've got a little small tripod. You've got stuff that attached to the side of a desk or a table, and you literally can mount anything to these things as, as it, as it records, right?


Absolutely. We work on a universal platform. You want something? We have it. We have ring lights for the perfect optimal lighting. We have camera. For dslr, little cameras, phones. Um, nowadays people are using their iPhones for everything, just like we are recording this podcast. Absolutely. Um, so for phones, we have everything.


We're universal, so you don't need to buy a different device holders every, you buy one. It'll fit every device, any brand, any size. Wow. Uh, you know, you are gonna have to go to their website. So what is your website? So, Side is and that's A kro Yes, sir. Well, if you are looking to get something that's gonna hold your recording device, I'm looking at stuff here that is absolutely first class and first rate.


Uh, I can tell. Gonna be, uh, dis disappointed with anything that you see. So yore, thank you very, very much for talking with us today. You're so welcome, Jeff. Thank you so much. And don't forget to follow us on Instagram. We are Akron mounts. Uh, follow us and check out us. Check us out. Fantastic. Thanks. Thank you.


We've just walked into Global Creative Inc. And I'm talking with John Darlin. John, how you doing today? I'm doing great, thanks. How are you doing, Jeff? Great. So I've seen. And stuff in your booth and they look great. Can you tell us a little bit about what's new and, and why you're here? Yeah. We, um, you know, I've been, uh, in the marker business for about 25 years or so, and, uh, we, uh, we know markers really well and we've gotten lots of feedback from, uh, end users over the years about what they like.


What they don't like about alcohol markers. And, uh, we took all that information and, uh, and created a brand-new marker, uh, that helped solve a lot of issues people had with, with alcohol markers. So, tell me a little bit about what, what's so new about this that's different than other markers? So, the, the, the.


Key thing that's different is the technology inside. We use a free ink flow system. A free ink flow system. Yeah. So, so if you, if you could see into the marker, you'd see the ink, uh, moving around inside. Okay. All other alcohol-based markers have a, a felt wadding inside that traps the ink. Oh. And so, uh, what, what our technology does allows me to put more ink inside the marker.


It also allows me, um, to use more of the ink. We can use up over 92% of the ink in our markers. Other markers. It's gonna be 65 to 70%. Wow. Now that's something I'm sure our audience never knew. So, you're getting, getting, get more value for your buck. Absolutely. Yep. Yep. So if our audience wanted to see more about.


This the, what the product is called. What? Olo Marker. Yeah, it's called Olo Marker. And if they wanted to go and see more about this, where, do you have a website? We do, uh, our website is olo That's O L O M A R K E And, and how many, how many colors do you have in this line? Uh, we've, uh, got 128 colors right now.


Wow. Anything else about this line that, that, that makes it stand out indifferent than other markers out there? Actually, um, Jeff, there are, um, there's a couple different things in the design. We, um, but the most important one is that this marker's customizable. So if, if you're just a brush user or you're just a chisel user, um, you actually can build this marker to have, uh, brushes on both sides or, uh, um, you can do two different colors on each side as well.


So if you travel with markers, for example, you, uh, you, you can take half as many with you. So I'm kind of looking at the, at the picture here on the wall and it unscrews right in the middle. Yep. Yep. It unscrews in the middle and there's a little ring that attaches both ends. So you just go and, and you pick a half a marker.


That's how you purchase Olo, is you, you buy a half marker. And a brush or a chisel, whatever color you want. Then you buy the second half, and you connect it in the middle. And the, the great thing is our marker half actually has as much usable ink as our competitor's. Full marker. Well, John, it's, it's clear that we have a whole lot more to talk about with this product, cuz as I look around your booth, I can see a lot of other wonderful products.


Uh, we'd love for you to come on and do a full podcast. Is that something you'd be happy with? Sure. Yeah, that sounds great. John, thank you very much. I really appreciate it. And again, they go to, what is this, the website, um, Thank you, John. 

So we're in, today is Art Day, and today we're talking with David.

David, how you doing today? Pretty good. Yourself? I'm doing great. So tell us a little bit about what's new in your booth. So one of the preview we're making here at Namta is, Museum Kids Collection. So it's a collection we made with an artist called Rizzo Erta. He's based in Turkey and he was doing those very cute, uh, uh, pictures of famous masterpieces, but with a childish look, with a red nose.


Uh, and we just fell in love with that and we decided to turn this collection into, uh, products, uh, for. So we have puzzles, pencil cases, journals, and even a watch collection. A watch collection, okay. Yeah. For kids. So, um, we just find that this, uh, this is a good way to introduce kids to art and art history, but through a visual that they really, uh, they are appealed to.


So, yeah, we, this will be available this summer for the holidays, obviously. So we can't wait to put this, uh, on the market. And I see you still have, uh, paint by numbers. Yes. This is a very good category. We improved our collection in the past few months with, uh, more, uh, more paintbrush with a, uh, canvas mounted on the wooden frame.


So this collection has been very good to us last year and we just decided for the same price to improve the product and something near and dear to. Coloring books. I see you've got coloring books over here. Yes. So art coloring books are for adults, but they're an entry level design. So, um, it's a very cool collection.


You, we have, uh, van Gogh Frida Impressionism, masterpieces and also one of my favorite that's a top seller is Women in Art. So, 12 illustrations by female artists. Uh, and we always promote female, uh, artists cuz they. So little room in artistry. So we had an opportunity to put them forward and we made a coloring book dedicated to female artists.


That's cool. So David, tell us, uh, what's the, uh, web address that they can go to to, they wanted to see all this they can go to today is art and reach out to us You need to go there and see all this cool stuff, David. Thanks a lot. Thank you.


 So we've been walking down the aisle and we've just popped into a really unique, unique product.It's called Tomorrow's Artist, and I'm talking with Steve. Steve, how you doing today? I'm doing great. Great to see you. Great to see you. So this is really different. Kind of give us the 40,000 foot level view of what is this product. Sure. Well, I appreciate. By, we are a fine art acrylic material, and our base chemistry is actually made from post-consumer architectural paint.


So paint that you probably have in your garage as an artist or you know, resident. You've got paint you've used in prior projects left in the garage. That ends up in our facility in multiple states. We. That to manufacture an acrylic base for fine art materials. Whoa. This is the ultimate in sustainability, isn't it?


It it absolutely is. It's really a solving a consumer issue. We have about 75 million gallons of discarded architectural paint a year in this country. Uh, we've decided to target certain categories and utilize that material to create fine art, and we're 70% post-consumer because we need that 30% buffer to then do all the additive required to get the fine artists what they want.


Are we looking at oils and acrylics? Is that what we're looking at? Just acrylic. Just just acrylics. And that's the first step in our sorting process. And that happens at the municipal level, and then we check it when it comes on in from there. And do you have any mediums that go along with it, or is it just the acrylic paint?


Right now? Really it's just acrylics. But we do have a standard body that the muralist community is really loving because of the quality of the base material, because it was originally formulated for an exterior application. So the UV protection and all that is built. Base and then the fine art community.


And we've got videos here playing with the Hugo Rivera out of Laguna Beach, but he uses a real heavy body material because he likes that, you know, that body and that thickness. And so the heavy body and the standard body offer those two distinct characteristics. I don't think, and I've been in the art industry a long time, how this isn't it, I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it.


And you kind of think recycled paint. You think, well, it'll be dull. It won't be really vibrant. Sure. Your paints are quite vibrant, and we appreciate that. Um, we tested with artists for, well, this is our fifth year in the product development cycle. We're just a year now into consumer testing on the sales side of things, and the messaging.


So the chemistry and the, you know, the quality of the product was really given to us through the art relationship or the artist relationship. So like, you know, we got the product in the hand of artists. They would test it, they would give us feedback, then we would create a new iteration. We did that multiple times and, uh, literally three years before we even poked our head over the surface. Well, again, the name of the company is Tomorrow's Artist. And can you tell us where would they go if they wanna see more information about this, your website? They'll go to our website at


So that's You know what we're gonna try to get you on for a full-blown podcast in the future. Is that okay? Oh, I'd love to. Love to. Great. Thank you so much, Steve. You've been listening to a special edition of the Art Supply Insiders. Check back with as often as we talk about the world of art and craft supplies.


If you'd like to hear more of these podcasts, Please hit the subscribe button on your preferred podcast platform and we'd really appreciate it. If you tell a friend, if you'd like to show your support, please consider going to our website and hitting the support button at. Now go out and create something.