It’s Flashback Friday and we’re feeling nostalgic for the series of comics we used to run, Wonton’s Art Lessons! Created by a former employee, the very talented artist, Lisa Kash. This comic is called, “Lesson 13: Types of Ink”. Enjoy!
As the Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to have an increased impact on our communities, we feel it important to share the steps we’re taking in our store to help keep you, our employees, and our communities safe and healthy.
Our hearts go out to all those who have been affected. The safety and well-being of our employees and customers is our top priority at Raw Materials Art Supplies, and this is a rapidly evolving situation that we’ll continue to monitor. Our store is cleaned and sanitized daily as part of our normal course of business. We’ve increased the frequency and extent of these cleanings, in addition to adding resources like hand sanitizer for employees and customers. Our employees have the information they need to stay healthy. We employ practices and make business decisions informed by guidance from the CDC, WHO, and local US government and public health agencies.
Based on the information and guidance we’ve received, our own preparedness, and current state of operations, we are confident our store continues to be safe and we remain open for business during regular hours to meet the needs of our customers. As always, our hope is to make it easy for you to shop when and how you’d like. In addition to our clean, spacious, and well-ventilated store, our team is ready to serve you online at www.rawmaterialsla.com. If we become aware of any condition that would make it unsafe, please rest assured that we’ll close the store until those conditions have been addressed and impacted associates will be compensated for their missed work hours.
Again, the health and safety of our customers and employees are our top priority and we’re committed to doing our part to help keep you safe. Thank you for being a loyal customer.
Lucius Hudson, Inc. has been making fine art stretcher bars and wood panels for artists since 1966. Their dedication to detail and the quality of their products is legendary, and you may have heard of some of their clients. (Does Takashi Murakami ring a bell?)
These aren’t your every-day cradled wood panels: these are made using torsion box construction: a matrix of 4″ × 4″ inch boxes glued between two plywood sheets produces greater strength and stability over traditional cradled wood panel designs. For acid and moisture protection all panels are sealed with shellac. Each panel has a full cleat, allowing it to be hung from any side. Panels that are wrapped in canvas or linen are cut with notches in the corners so the fold doesn’t protrude.
Let’s talk a little more about that notch, because this is one of those design details that just demonstrates the commitment to quality that Lucius Hudson, Inc. has. When you stretch a canvas (either on stretcher bars or over a panel like these), you have probably noticed the bulges on the corner where the canvas has to be folded. (Or, worse, had a canvas eventually fall apart because someone had the bright idea to cut the overlapping fabric.) They’ve solved that problem by engineering the panel with small notches, so the fold naturally tucks in and no longer causes that unsightly bulge.
So dig deep into your wallet and prepare to pay highly-inflated prices for these highly-engineered surfaces, right? Wrong. Lucius Hudson really wants to get these into the hands of artists, so they’ve worked with us to offer special pricing on a curated selection of sizes and varieties. We have started with a couple of sizes of panels wrapped with PVA-sized linen, and we would love to hear from artists what other varieties they would like to see us have on hand.
(And they don’t just make wrapped wood panels, stay tuned for more exciting products in the future!)
It has been a rough start to the fall in the art materials industry. The Los Angeles area lost an institution with the closing of Swain’s HQ Art Supplies, which has been supporting artists and selling art supplies in Glendale for seventy years, and we are very sad to see them go.
The imminent closure of C2F, one of the few distributors of art materials was also announced. They were the primary source for a few of our favorite brands (such as M. Graham, Bee Paper, Pentalic, and Cheep!), but it looks like most of those will find new homes so we plan to continue stocking them as long as we’re able!
We live in interesting times for retailers and the art materials industry. Sometimes we feel like we’re mice scampering beneath the feet of giants with names like Amazon, Blick Art Materials, and Artist & Craftsman Supply, and it’s tough to lose friends and allies like C2F and Swain’s.
We, and our employees, thank all of you who have stuck with us, are just discovering, us, and hope to feed your artistic endeavors for years to come.
Five years ago these guys went shopping at Raw Materials with help from our then-mascot and head of security, Wonton. Good times. And today, we open for business at our new location at 645 S. Los Angeles Street. Will you be there?
That’s right, we said it – ALL IN-STOCK PAPER PADS, ROLLS, AND SHEETS from your favorite paper brands are ON SALE. Bristol Pads, Mi-Teintes, Tracing Paper, Foundation Sketch Rolls, XL Mix Media Pads, Montval Watercolor Pads, Toned Mix Media Pads, Canvas Pads, Charcoal Paper Pads, Visual Journals, Gray Scale Pads, Manga Paper, Marker Paper, Field Sketch Watercolor, Printmaking Paper – it’s all ON SALE! We really don’t want to move this stuff to our new location.