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Painting Progress

finished acrylic paintings on canvas hung up on wall | image © Charm Design Studio, LLC.


I have a lot of things started for Charm Design Studio that aren’t ready to debut yet as I’ve been neck-deep in client work for a bit. However, a few months ago I finally finished the last of some canvases I’d started a while back for my munchkin’s room. (Hooray!) Usually I do more watercolor or (lately) digital painting, but I thought I’d branch out. If nothing else it’s good to wrap my head around a medium I use less often.

If you’ve been intimidated to try acrylic (or it’s been a while), sometimes seeing more of the behind-the-scenes of something can help to demystify the process.


Repainting Your Nativity

Repainting Your Nativity - Eclectic Affinity

If you haven’t noticed, there are a LOT of nativity sets where the people are portrayed as having white skin, some even having blonde hair and blue eyes. It might continue to take a while to undo years of ignorant, unthinking, or even hateful representations of people in art and design. However, here are some tips on painting over existing sets in case anyone feels too unfamiliar with painting mediums to feel comfortable painting over their set.

What Happened When I Tracked my Project Hours to the Minute

What Happened When I Tracked my Freelance Hours to the Minute / Eclectic Affinity / small business advice

If you do a lot of flat-fee projects, it can be easy to let tracking your hours go by the wayside. It can seem like just one more thing to do. Except, in thinking that way, you’re missing out on some crucial data that can inform whether or not you need to periodically reassess your workflow, your pricing, and your hours.

Most projects I do are flat fee with add-on fees for things outside the scope of that and then hourly as needed. For an on-going project that was done exclusively by the hour, I started recording my time with a handy timer app. It got me back into the mindset of how much time goes into design. Out of habit—or curiosity—I then began tracking nearly EVERYTHING.

Why No One Wants a Naked Cupcake

Why No One Wants a Naked Cupcake // Eclectic Affinity

Long before I started my own business or even had a degree in design, I noticed something interesting. People (in general) like art and design, but they often don’t value it enough to feel it ought to be a paid service. To them, it’s “extra.” It’s like the frosting on a cupcake. Sometimes even, people are put off that you’d even think you ought to be paid. Some haggle over it, considering that neither art nor design requires energy or effort. In that sense, occupations within that spectrum sometimes get treated like a novelty public service you’re obligated to perform, rather than a legitimate occupation that takes time, skill, and decision-making.