International Art Materials Association

 
June 9, 2021



Savannah Davis


The Millennial View






It’s been a little bit since I came to you in an eNews article because I have been busy, busy, busy working on something behind the scenes that I am finally able to share with you all! ......

.....At nearly 27 weeks pregnant, a type of “nesting” has kicked in (with my work life, at least) and there is nothing I crave more than organization. This timing has paralleled perfectly with the launch of the project I have been working on for the last few months. I am so excited to share with you that Namta has a new member benefit for you all. A Learning Management System to house all of the Namta Connect content that has quickly accumulated over the last year. While we tested the waters with the receptiveness of virtual demonstrations and education sessions through Zoom, items were stored on Vimeo. Now that it is clear Namta Connect programing will be a permanent staple, we have developed a new system that ties into our database to better store and sort content- so it’s easier to find exactly what you’re looking for......

READ ARTICLE

 





As we move forward to Orlando Art Materials World 2022, we are requesting your input to help us ensure that we have the most successful show possible. We received overwhelmingly positive feedback on several features of the virtual show and would appreciate your participation in a 5 question survey to help us determine which of those features (if any) we should consider implementing into our physical show.

The survey should only take a few minutes and concludes with an opportunity for general comments. Any feedback you are able to provide is encouraged and appreciated.

This survey is open to all members, even if you did not attend the virtual show.



Let us know what you think about making show appointments and future virtual shows.


Please select the survey that bests describes you.

 

BUYER/ATTENDEE

Buyer/Attendee Survey

OR

SUPPLIER/EXHIBITOR

Supplier/Exhibitor Survey

 

Thank you!
We are so excited to safely gather together again in Orlando for Art Materials World 2022.








How A 4th Generation Entrepreneur Took A Beloved Brick-And-Mortar To Online Success!


Lonny Morris is the fourth generation owner of RexArt, and is bravely taking this beloved family-centered business forward into the digital future.

Miami, Florida is home to RexArt.com – the original online art supplier since 1995, and South Florida’s oldest art supply superstore......Founded in 1950, Rex Art has long been a pioneer in the art supplies community. In 1995, Rex Art launched the first online art supply store offering artists from all over the world access to a fantastic selection of quality brand name art supplies.........

READ MORE
 

Art Outfitters in Little Rock, Arkansas Celebrating 140 Years!

It is 1881, the year President James Garfield is assassinated, Kansas becomes the first state to ban alcoholic beverages, Barnum & Bailey Circus debuts at Madison Square Garden......

In Little Rock, John A. Jungkind opens a pharmacy at 714 Main St., selling medicines and sundries, baking supplies, seeds and photography supplies. He eventually begins selling paints, brushes and other art materials.


One hundred and forty years later, the business, now known as Art Outfitters and owned by Kerry Kemp, is still keeping Arkansas artists equipped with materials they need to create.......

READ MORE
N A M T A   A R T   A D V O C A C Y   N E W S
The International Art Materials Association believes that advocating for the Arts enhances every community and makes good business sense. Get the Details and see Past Recipients

Grant Applications accepted until July 31

Thank You 2021 Grant Supporters

 

 

Would you like to donate to the 2021 Namta Art Advocacy Grant Fund?

Every dollar donated goes to the Grant recipients.

You can donate by form or
contact Sue Cohen - Namta Finance.



Looking for good
Art Advocacy stories?


@namtartadvocacy

Proposed Substantial Budget Increase to the NEA



The Biden Administration submitted its first detailed budget proposal to Congress for FY 2022. There are several proposed increases to the nation’s federal arts and culture grantmaking agencies, including raising the annual budget of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to $201 million. President Biden's proposed FY 2022 budget increase would bring the NEA to its highest funding level in the agency's 56-year history.
READ MORE


 

“Arts and creativity make us stronger-as individuals, families, communities, states and as a country. They are a backbone of innovation, prosperity, and thriving people and places. Public funding for arts and creativity is a high-return investment that benefits every American in every city, town and rural community nationwide." 
- nasaa-arts.org
 

DO YOU HAVE ART ADVOCACY NEWS?
PLEASE SEND TO SUE COHEN

 

WHAT'S COMING UP?

Time Zone Converter

3 pm EDT =

12 Noon Pacific Daylight Time 
1 pm Mountain Daylight Time
2 pm Central Daylight Time


Today
Wednesday -June 9
3 pm EDT

SIGN UP

Namta Member Roundtable

We're getting together again to talk about the co-location of Namta and AFCI in Orlando in April 2022.




Tomorrow
Thursday -June 10
3 pm EDT

SIGN UP


Kizer & Bender
6 Month Retail Check -Up:
How are you doing so far? 

It’s been 15 months since Covid-19 turned the world upside down. During that time you have had to swerve and pivot and work harder than ever before. How is your store doing right now? This Zoominar takes a look at what is happening at retail right now, plus a plan for your store for summer selling and beyond.

 


Next Week

Thursday - June 17
3 pm EDT

SIGN UP

Presented by Brian King, CRO of Rain Retail Software.

Post Pandemic: Website Strategies for the New Normal

What are the latest web strategies for art supply shops? Rain analyzed artist's and crafter's buying behavior through and after the pandemic and we'll share our findings as well as helpful tactics to grow your sales, plus discuss how innovative software tools are leveling the playing field between large chains and small retailers. If you’re looking to increase revenue this year, you won’t want to miss this class.

 





 



COMING SOON


from David Pyle

The Trusted Guide

Sales Skills for the Creative Products Staff


A 4-Part Series



Session 1

Tuesday - June 29
3 pm Eastern Daylight Time

The Trusted Advisor
SIGN UP

 


Session 2

Tuesday - July 13

3 pm Eastern Daylight Time
Communication Breakdown
SIGN UP



Session 3

Tuesday - July 20

3 pm Eastern Daylight Time
The Insights & Solution Dialog
SIGN UP



Session 4

Tuesday - July 27

3 pm Eastern Daylight Time
The Invisible Close
SIGN UP

 
Watch this Video


Schedule a HealthCare Advisor one-on-one meeting

NEW Product Page

Why are these suppliers on this list?

Ampersand
ArtVenture

Fredrix Artist Canvas
Star Products
Logan Graphic Products, Inc.
Grafix
Itoya ProFolio
Jacquard Products
GoEasel
Uchida of America, Corp.
colart - Winsor & Newton and Liquitex
Hahnemühle USA

Because they listed their new products on the New Product page on Namta.org. 
In April 2020 we opened this page up for free listings. But that could change in 2022.

Take advantage of this free benefit and put your NEW 2021 PRODUCTS on this page today!

FILL OUT THIS FORM
  • New Product page is promoted and open to anyone visiting namta.org.
  • At the end of each year, New Products are put on an open archive page for one year.

Partnership Shipping Program


"We help our customers save time and money in all facets of shipping and logistics, including LTL freight, truckload, tradeshow, expedited, and small package shipping. We also provide invoice consolidation, inbound shipping management, claim filing and resolution assistance, and can help you with warehousing and order fulfillment, storage, and other transportation challenges."

 


The Turnover Tsunami Is on The Way. How Can Your Business Avoid It?

It is being widely reported that a turnover tsunami is on the horizon. With vaccines becoming easily accessible across the nation it will soon be time for employees to return to the office. However, they may not be returning to the same office that they left in March 2020. 27% of employees are planning to change jobs in 2021.....

READ ARTICLE



How to Remember 2020

2021 promises to be better: People are being vaccinated, jobs are returning and a degree of congregant life is returning. Social injustice remains a scourge, but there is an awakening and renewed need for and action with diversity, equity and inclusion.


READ ARTICLE

                



Namta eNews is sent to Namta Members every other Wednesday.

If you have comments, suggestions or questions about eNews, we look forward to hearing from you. Please contact Namta at [email protected]


If you have news, or want to be In The Spotlightplease fill out this form
for consideration in an upcoming issue.


www.namta.org  Contact Us


Save the Date

 



The Millennial View - from Savannah Davis


Hello Namta Members,


It’s been a little bit since I came to you in an eNews article because I have been busy, busy, busy working on something behind the scenes that I am finally able to share with you all! I will get to that shortly. You know when you have a job interview, and you get asked about your strengths and weaknesses? Naturally that question makes me think of my strengths and weaknesses outside of the working world, too. My strengths at work are almost identical to my weaknesses in my everyday life. At work, ongoing projects lingering on my to-do list fill me with anxiety, and will literally keep me up at night. I would rather finish a work project at midnight, than think about it being on my to-do list. At home, my husband and I have projects that we have neglected for almost four years, and I can sleep like a baby knowing they’re still undone. I am type A with my work and a master procrastinator with my non-work obligations. Where I am similar in work and in life, is that I really appreciate a deadline. I thrive with an absolute end point of when something needs to be entirely completed by. Is that a certain enneagram number trait? I have been meaning to look into those better but haven’t quite tackled that off my list, yet (shocking). Anyway, all of my personal life projects have been kicked into overdrive because ideas and tasks that have lingered for years now have a very set deadline. The impending deadline or rather, due date, is September 5th (give or take a week or two) because I am having a baby. I joke often with my co-workers that I never would have imagined I would have a baby before I went to an in-person Art Materials World.

Namta Connect The Studio
The Learning Management System (LMS)

At nearly 27 weeks pregnant, a type of “nesting” has kicked in (with my work life, at least) and there is nothing I crave more than organization. This timing has paralleled perfectly with the launch of the project I have been working on for the last few months. I am so excited to share with you that Namta has a new member benefit for you all. A Learning Management System to house all of the Namta Connect content that has quickly accumulated over the last year. While we tested the waters with the receptiveness of virtual demonstrations and education sessions through Zoom, items were stored on Vimeo. Now that it is clear Namta Connect programing will be a permanent staple, we have developed a new system that ties into our database to better store and sort content- so it’s easier to find exactly what you’re looking for.

  1. Click here to watch the launch video for a better introduction and tour of the LMS.

  2. Then go to this page for more instructions and the link to proceed to the LMS.

This is just the beginning phase of the LMS and we are so excited to see what it can become in the future. If you have any questions or suggestions, my inbox is always open.

- Savannah, [email protected]

 


An e-commerce Success Story


RexArt.com  

How A 4th Generation Entrepreneur Took a Beloved Brick-And-Mortar to Online Success!
  by Scott Brandley

The following excerpt is taken from an article interview with Lonny Morris on Shopper Approved.

Lonny Morris is the fourth-generation owner of RexArt, and is bravely taking this beloved family-centered business forward into the digital future. This is a great article that really highlights some of the unique challenges and opportunities of working in a family-run business.  It also discusses how to grow beyond a local brick-and-mortar business model, and redefine and expand your brand into the online eCommerce world.


Miami, Florida is home to RexArt.com – the original online art supplier since 1995, and South Florida’s oldest art supply superstore. Our fourth-generation family-owned and operated business offers customers 21st-century convenience and technology, along with old fashioned, knowledgeable, fast, and friendly personal service. Founded in 1950, Rex Art has long been a pioneer in the art supplies community. In 1995, Rex Art launched the first online art supply store offering artists from all over the world access to a fantastic selection of quality brand name art supplies at discount prices. Today, our family-owned company’s mission is to continue to offer our customers the most convenient and secure means of purchasing brand name art supplies at an excellent value, while providing superior product information and individual support – just as if they were shopping in our store.

We pride ourselves on old fashioned, family-run, face-to-face service, but with a 21st-century twist. We take our history, knowledge, and service mantra to the web. Our website is only a tool to help our clients, but we mainly rely on our experience and direct contact to take it to the next level. It is impossible to beat Amazon at what they do – they are breaking the digital and traditional retail landscape for a reason.  So we go where they cannot. Our legacy, product knowledge, and ability to speak directly to the customer cannot be duplicated by Amazon or any other major commodity broker for that matter.

We were lucky enough to get into the web game very early on and have been in business since 1950. We have some extremely good partnerships that cannot be easily reproduced, and we have a strong organic presence. Google advertising works well when managed effectively. Shopper Approved via reviews is a very important aspect of our overall marketing campaign, and really helps build trust with new clients. My wife does all of our web development in-house, and that is huge as it keeps our site fresh, consistent and extremely durable. Instagram is definitely starting to play a role in our marketing and we will put more emphasis on this in the future. Email is still an effective way to reach clients even though the returns have diminished over the years.

Our greatest source of marketing is word of mouth. Having clients that refer their friends and associates to us is huge. My wife does an amazing job of presenting a consistent web presence that is inviting to our clients, filled with inspiration, great products, and good values. We try to make a pleasant and happy work environment. Whether that is employees having their dogs around, listening to music they like, relaxed attire, etc. If our employees are happy that is likely to relate well to our clients and that is good for them and our business.

We are a hands-on company. We contact over 50% of our clients when they place their orders on-line sometimes just to say “Hi” and “thank you”, or maybe we notice something is missing in their order, or something was different than the last time they ordered. Some clients are caught off guard when we call, and they are like, “who is this, and why are you calling – aren’t you a web company?” It is true that it is odd, and getting even rarer to have phone conversations with customers when shopping on-line, but it is the only way we know how to do business. Our customers love it and we love our customers!
 
Our most important customer is the one we have. It doesn’t matter the value of their order, or the time it takes us. We do whatever we have to do to create an exceptional shopping experience, and our customers know it. We are a 4th generation family business. We run it like a family and we treat our customers like family. We do not try to be something we are not. We treat our customers with respect and the way we would want to be treated. It is not just words for us, or a slogan, but our way of life. No one likes to have something go wrong, but when a customer has a less than perfect shopping experience that is our opportunity to take it to the next level and not only make it right but leave an indelible positive lasting impression.

Running a small business is not for the faint of heart, and just about every day you are going to run into some kind of obstacle. It seems kind of obvious that the pandemic was probably one of the toughest periods of time any of us will face in life let alone business over the last year, and we were lucky enough to be a web company to weather it better than other businesses. You have to be prepared to have an incredible willingness to adapt to ever-changing environments, keep an open mind, and an eye out for new opportunities, and never stop learning. The world is not going to stop evolving and it is going faster and faster. Plan for change and try to anticipate it the best you can, set goals, mind your financials and look for people and partnerships aligned with your ethos to allow you to grow together. And a little luck doesn’t hurt either!

I always say find a way to enjoy what you are doing because life is a gift, and even when I am cleaning the floor at my office or doing a forecast that is less than fun, I always feel lucky to be alive, healthy, and happy. If you start there everything else is just gravy. Enjoy the ride!

READ THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE IN ITS ENTIRETY HERE

 


Little Rock Art Supply Store Celebrates

140 Years!

 
Art Outfitters

by Sean Clancy

The Arkansas Democrat Gazette - www.arkansasonline.com

It is 1881, the year President James Garfield is assassinated, Kansas becomes the first state to ban alcoholic beverages, Barnum & Bailey Circus debuts at Madison Square Garden, and the American Red Cross is founded by Clara Barton.

In Little Rock, John A. Jungkind opens a pharmacy at 714 Main St., selling medicines and sundries, baking supplies, seeds and photography supplies. He eventually begins selling paints, brushes and other art materials.

One hundred and forty years later, the business, now known as Art Outfitters and owned by Kerry Kemp, is still keeping Arkansas artists equipped with materials they need to create.

It has been a circuitous route, with name changes and relocations, a couple of world wars, the Depression, recessions, two pandemics, a fire, the rise of big box stores and internet shopping.

By the 1890s, with the popularity of photography rising, the pharmacy transitioned to Jungkind Photo Supply, selling not just camera equipment but surveying tools and, yes, art supplies, Kemp says. Over the years there were several moves, mostly to different spots on Main Street.

In the 1960s, the Jungkind family sold the business to Dale Gordon of Kansas, who owned of a chain of camera shops.

Under manager Robert Bumgardner, the store also started selling printing supplies as Jungkind Photo-Graphic and grew to nine locations across the South.

Kerry Kemp (pictured) was a 19-year-old student studying art and journalism at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock when she went to work as a clerk in Jungkind's art department in August 1979. The store's home at the time was at 12th and Main streets.

"I loved the job more than I did college," she says.

In late 1996, Gordon and Bumgardner decided to sell the printing and graphic business and asked Kemp if she was interested in buying Jungkind's art department.

Of course she was.

"Our official changeover was June 1997," Kemp says.

In 1999, she moved to 900 W. Seventh, and in 2003 bought the two-story building catty-corner from the store at 917 W. Seventh, where she planned to live on the second floor.

A fire at 917 W. Seventh in February 2005 threw a wrench in that plan, and in the aftermath, Kemp decided to salvage the building, move Art Outfitters over to the ground floor and live upstairs. The store has occupied this spot since 2006.

"It was just too charming to let it die," she says of the space, which is open and bright and highlighted by its high ceilings and exposed brick walls.

The store's shelves are filled with artist materials — paint, brushes, pencils, pens, easels, sketchbooks, paper and more.

There are craft supplies as well, along with materials for book binding and, Kemp's favorite, decorative paper.

Kemp, with lavender streaks in her hair, stands near a display case from the original Jungkind's drugstore on a Friday morning in May. Her husband, Tim Joiner, sits nearby.

In the store this morning is the rest of the staff: Kemp's sister, Beth Darr, who also worked at Jungkind's; Matthew Castellano and Kemp's niece, Anna Warner.

Anna's mixed-breed dog Merle Haggard, one in a long line of Art Outfitters' shop pooches, lounges in a pen nearby (Suki, Darr's Maltese-yorkie mix, is usually here but is being boarded this morning).

The Art Outfitters crew is made up of artists.

Kemp is a calligraphist who often teaches workshops through the store and also creates handmade books; Darr draws with pastels and paints with watercolors; Castellano makes etchings, prints and drawings and has been featured in exhibits like 2019's "Plateau" at the Bookstore at Library Square in Little Rock and Fluke fanzine's "Fluke Life Art Show."

"The people behind the counter actually make art," says mixed media collage artist, art instructor and longtime customer Diane Harper of Little Rock. "I'm an art-supply geek. I just love the stuff you make art with, and they know that. They are very knowledgeable about materials and supplies. If I have a question, they always know. The personal attention they give me is tremendous."

Richard Stephens of Hot Springs is a watercolorist and art teacher who spent 45 years as a commercial artist. He began shopping at Jungkind's in the early '70s.

"As a workshop instructor, I have traveled across the country and visited and taught in several art supply stores, and Art Outfitters is as good or better than any of them," he says.

The store carries good stock, Stephens adds, and, like Harper, he credits the staff for elevating the shopping experience: "They are very, very well educated as per those materials. They can answer questions and give advice. That's extremely important and fairly rare, in my experience."

Robert Bean is the department chairman of painting and drawing at the Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts Windgate Art School and an adjunct instructor of figure drawing at UALR. He's been shopping at Art Outfitters since about 2000.

"I tell my students this," he begins. "It's not just a place where you buy supplies. It's a place where you get expertise. I can go to Art Outfitters and ask really technical questions. If they don't know the answer, they will find an answer. I've learned a lot about the materials I use as an artist just by shopping there."

Harper, who teaches collage classes through the Windgate Art School, recalls a special pencil sharpener she needed for wax crayons.

"The crayons are encased in wood. I had to use a knife to sharpen them because I didn't have a sharpener in that big of a diameter," she says.

She told Kemp about it and, three weeks later, Kemp called with news that one had been found.

"They will look for the unicorn," Harper says.

Bean was introduced to a specific brand of pastels through the store, "and that's all I use now," he says.

During a workshop at the store that featured a brand of acrylic paint, he says he "learned more about acrylic paint in four hours than I did in four years of college."

There is a welcoming atmosphere at Art Outfitters; staff is just as helpful with newbies and customers who aren't full-on fine artists.

"Somebody just left here who paints gaming miniatures," Kemp says. Another customer from the day before was looking for tiny brushes to use specifically for painting miniatures.

The store also makes kits for school art classes -- Mount St. Mary Academy has been a customer for decades.

Workshops and "supplies parties" are regular features. Saturday was the annual ARTstravaganza event of demos, classes and a 140th anniversary celebration.

It's a big difference from 2020, when the pandemic disrupted the gathering and the ARTstravaganza goodie bags were handed out in drive-by fashion to customers in cars.

As covid-19 spread, Kemp spent four months running the shop alone with Joiner there for support.

She credits her customers for keeping the store afloat.

She's grateful to loyal customers who wanted to "shop local,'' she says. "We had several schools that decided to use us for art kits that hadn't used us in the past."

She also notes that during the past year there were more first-time shoppers "than I can remember, ever. People that were looking for something local and discovered us."

A typical day at Art Outfitters is "a wonderful challenge," Kemp says. "There are all sorts of mysteries to solve and fires to put out. We get a lot of phone calls with technical questions. We unload trucks, fill orders, answer questions. It's never the same day twice."

Kemp has been at this for 42 of the store's 140 years. It's obvious she still enjoys her work.

"It's a big responsibility that I don't take lightly," she says. "It hasn't always been easy, but I love this place and I love doing this."