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9 Best Art Supply Stores in Toronto

9 Best Art Supply Stores in Toronto


If you are looking for the best art supply stores in Toronto, you have a great variety to choose from!

From canvas and paint to easels and pens – you can be sure to find the resources you need for creativity and inspiration. Whether you are a novice artist or a seasoned professional, each location has something special to offer the inspired creators of our city.


Spread over 20+ locations, here are the best 9 art supply stores in Toronto:

1. ABOVE GROUND ART SUPPLIES

  • 74 McCaul St. | Downtown (OCADU/AGO)
  • 2868 Dundas St. W | The Junction
  • 1842 Queen St. E | The Beach

Serving artists for over 30 years, Above Ground Art Supplies offer 3 locations in the Beaches, Junction and OCADU areas. From painting supplies and brush pens to book binding and airbrush equipment, their staff are well-equipped to meet the needs of the average art-school student and more.

 

2. ARTICULATIONS

  • 2928 Dundas St. W | The Junction

With their own semi-enclosed gallery space, back studio and variety of educational workshops – ARTiculations has created a great platform for the Toronto Art community. Artists have the ability to network, learn and exhibit their work in a rotational fashion. Added perks? Eco-friendly materials!

 

3. CURRY’S ARTISTS’ MATERIALS

  • 1153 Queen St. W | West Queen West
  • 283 Dundas St. W | Downtown Core

From how-to-paint manuals to elaborate loyalty programs – Curry’s has become an incredible staple for artists of all skill levels. Feel free to browse their vast variety of supplies, educational materials and studio furnishings to fit your personal needs. Into gift cards and sales? GREAT – Curry’s has you covered!


4. DESERRES

  • 130 Spadina Avenue | Downtown Core
  • 124 Eglinton Avenue W | Yonge and Eglinton
  • 1556 Danforth Avenue | East York

With 3 major locations across Toronto, Deserres has a great reputation for having a wide range of creative supplies including foam core, framing and screen printing materials! Recognized for its bright red sign in the shape of a palette, Deserres offers a wide range of children’s toys and games as well.


5. DOLLARAMA

  • 20+ Locations

Although not quite an “art supply store”, do not underestimate the power of Dollarama! From craft supplies to interesting odds-and-ends, there is no way a creative mind can leave this place empty-handed. With over 20 stores in Toronto, there is a great chance you can find a convenient location nearby! You may not be able to find your favourite brand of oil pastels here, but you can certainly feed your creativity with some fun and affordable supplies.


6.
GWARTZMAN’S ART SUPPLIES

  • 448 Spadina Avenue | Kensington Market

Stacked from floor to ceiling with stationary and supplies, Gwartzman’s has been a reliable resource to artists in the city for over 60 years. With worn, hardwood floors and huge slabs of canvas, this beloved shop offers great variety and deals on their supplies.


7. MICHAELS

  • 142 John St. | Scotiabank Theatre

Michael’s has become a major brand in the Arts and Crafts world. From home decor and framing to scrapbooking and fine arts supplies – you can find just about anything you could possibly need. With this three-storey location at John and Richmond (attached to the Scotiabank Theatre), you can also find a variety of creative classes to help keep you inspired.


8. MIDOCO ART AND OFFICE SUPPLIES

  • 555 Bloor Street W | Annex
  • 146 Danforth Avenue | The Danforth
  • 1964 Queen St E | The Beaches

Serving Toronto artists since 1977, Midoco Art and Office Supplies can be found in three different locations across the city. Although this may not be the first choice for fine art supplies, Midoco holds more than it’s fair share in whimsical items such as jewelry, board games, birthday cards, stackable wine glasses and adult colouring books. With a focus on general art supplies, you can be sure to find items such as stationary, pens and pencils as well.


9. TOOSE ART SUPPLIES

  • 229 College Street

Located across the street from U of T’s bookstore on College, Toose Art Supplies offers frequent specials catering to the needs of Toronto art students. Shoppers can find everything from canvas, easels and erasers to specialized equipment for model building, film studies and media art.

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Are you interested in joining a collaborative community of like-minded individuals? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

 

Call to Artists – 10 Places to Submit Art in Toronto (2019)

March 2019 – Call to Artists - 10 Places to Submit Art in Toronto

The art season is in bloom for the city of Toronto!

With the first wave of submission dates flooding across the internet, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved this year.

To help keep you organized, here are 10 upcoming opportunities with artist submission deadlines in the month of March.

It’s time to dust off your workspace and get organized!

 

CALL FOR ARTIST SUBMISSIONS IN TORONTO [Sorted by March 2019 Deadlines]


1. Public Artwork for Don Mills Trail Revitalization

Deadline for Submissions: Thursday March 7, 2019 | 4:00 pm

The City of Toronto is inviting professional artists (and teams) to submit their Expression of Interest to the first stage of a National, open, two-stage public art competition! This will be for a permanent public artwork for the Don Mills Trail Revitalization Project. In addition, this project has a net budget of $200,000.00 (+HST).

2. Spartanburg Art Museum Exhibitions for 2019-2020

Deadline for Submissions: Thursday March 7, 2019

Interested in all types of work that address contemporary issues and concerns. Artists are encouraged to use traditional materials in unusual ways. Any individual, collective, or group of artists (18+) who reside in the US or Canada may apply. All media and themes will be considered for exhibition.

 

3. Beaches Foodland Mural

Deadline for Submissions: Friday March 8th, 2019 | 5:00 pm

Mural Routes and Sobeys Inc. Invite experienced mural artists and/or artist teams to submit a proposal to design and produce a mural on the east-facing wall on Foodland, at 2040 Queen St. E in the Beaches. The new mural will replace the badly deteriorating mural which was covered in 2018, so there is a lot of room for creativity!

 

4. Climate Action – International Artist Call

Deadline for Submissions: Sunday March 10, 2019

Artists are encouraged to respond to the topic of Climate Change. Looking for responsive, expressive artwork that explore opinion, urgency and solution to this global crisis. Interested in artists creating responsive, challenging work that address the direct causes and the push/pull factors at hand. 

 

5. Art Gallery of St. Albert 2020

Deadline for Submissions: Tuesday March 12, 2019 | 5:00 pm

The Art Gallery of St. Albert (AGSA) is a contemporary, non-profit, public art gallery is seeking submissions from artists or artist groups of all artistic and cultural backgrounds working in all styles and mediums for exhibition in the 2020 calendar year.


6. Online Show “Still Life”

Deadline for Submissions: Wednesday March 13th, 2019

Gallery Ring invites artists worldwide to submit to “Still Life”, an Online Juried Show dedicated to art works featuring all expressions of the genre. In addition, there will be many awards available including a cash prize for “Best in Show”. 2D work including photography/digital are also welcome.

 

7. St. Lawrence Market presents Arts at The Market 

Deadline for Submissions: Friday March 15, 2019

The exciting Arts at the Market program provides local artists and makers with a unique opportunity to exhibit their high-quality handmade items at this popular destination for locals and tourists, animating the St. Lawrence Market’s outdoor areas with evolving product offerings for the duration of the redevelopment.

 

8. Queen Gallery

Deadline for Submissions: Saturday March 30, 2019

Queen Gallery is seeking submissions for upcoming group show titled Alefba. This multidisciplinary exhibition celebrates poetry month by exploring the interconnections between poetry, calligraphy and other visual elements on contemporary art.

 

9. Cabbagetown Festival

Deadline for Submissions: Earlybird Rates End March 31st (Final deadline August 2019)

Founded over 40 years ago, Cabbagetown Festival is one of Toronto’s longest running street festivals! If you are interested in participating as a vendor, be sure to apply before the early bird rates go up!

 

10. Toronto Digital Projects - Online Showcase for Emerging Artists

Deadline for Submissions: Ongoing

Toronto Digital Projects is a new curated virtual gallery for emerging artists creating digital paintings, animations, videos, GIFs and other forms of Post-Internet art. This program is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and Angell Gallery.

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We will be checking back regularly with upcoming calls for submission, so don't forget to check back!

Are you interested in joining a collaborative community of like-minded individuals? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

 

Top 5 Social Media Tips for Artists

Social Media Advice for Artists in 2019

Social Media Advice for Artists in 2019

 

Social Media has become an invaluable resource for artists.

From inspiration and networking to collaborations and sales – creatives all around the world have benefitted from the accessibility of online communities.

By building an online audience, artists have been able to elevate their “brands” into sustainable businesses while truly living out their dreams!

To create a platform as an art-preneur, however, it is essential to understand the formula for success.

Here are the top 5 social media tips to growing your art business online:

 

 

TIP #1. GET PERSONAL

Social media research has proven that posts written in first person with actual people in the photos generate a significantly higher amount of likes and shares.

To put things simply, people WANT to learn about the “who” and not just the “what”!

Don’t be afraid to share your story, your background and your ongoing journey online.

As people want to connect with each other, the simple things that make you “you” are the things that will deepen your relationship with your audience!

From behind-the-scenes footage to rough sketches of your ideas, start sharing the “process” and not just the finished product.


TIP #2. DEVELOP A STRATEGY

Posting for the sake of posting is one thing, but is your strategy contributing to your goal?

Whether you are looking to grow your audience or generate sales, it is important to identify your intentions and develop a game-plan around it.

Take some time to research those who are successfully navigating your niche. What tools are they using to reach their target audiences?

From ideal posting times and photo quality to hashtags and interaction, there are a number of ways to optimize your use of social media.

Once your strategy is clear, you can use the “tried and tested’ tricks to further grow your audience.


TIP #3. KEEP IT CONSISTENT

Although “consistency” may seem like an overwhelming commitment at first, it is just a matter of building a routine.

Think about it in terms of brand awareness: the more often you post, the more frequently your audience can engage with likes, shares and comments!

There are a variety of tools and apps that you can use to help keep you organized. Consider apps like “Later” to schedule your posts in advance, so that it doesn’t cut into your workflow!

It is important to note that some social algorithms (such as facebook) do favour consistency. By keeping a regular posting schedule, these algorithms can help expose your content to a broader range of people!

 


TIP #4. WATCH YOUR ANALYTICS

Social media analytics offer valuable insight when it comes to measuring your efforts.

As these measuring tools are built into pretty well every social media outlet there is, these insights can help you understand which strategies are successful and which could use some tweaking.

You can learn exactly what time of day your audience is checking their feed, which countries you are reaching and how each post performs in real time.

Taking some time to consult your analytics can help you identify what works best and how to present your art going forward.


TIP #5. BUILD COMMUNITY

The greatest advantage to social media is the ability to actually BE social!

Whether you are responding to comments, commenting on other people’s posts, retweeting and/or sharing, you are actively joining the conversation.

Share your opinions, ask questions and have fun!

This form of communication will help you develop relationships, increase trust and of course, improve sales for your art.

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mural

5 Steps to Painting a Mural in Toronto

5 Steps to Painting a Mural in Toronto

The winters are long and harsh for the average Toronto artist. After a number of ice storms, TTC delays and snow days, many of us are already daydreaming about the hot summer days to come!

From Kensington Market to Underpass Park and Graffiti Alley, the warm weather also brings the promise of beautiful new street art to bond and honour our city.

With programs such as StreetART Toronto (StART) (partnership applications open until Friday February 15th), local artists can start preparing their colourful, vibrant and inspiring mural contributions for 2019!

Offering support, mentorship and funding to large-scale projects, StART aims to reduce graffiti vandalism by showcasing local artists and their innovative designs, deliveries and messages.

With street art season just around the corner, here are 5 helpful steps to painting a mural in Toronto:

 


Step 1: Preparing For Your Mural

Before you start planning, take some time to evaluate your space!

Whether your mural will be on the side of a building, a concrete barrier or a traffic signal box, get a good feel for the canvas you will be working with.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Who will be seeing your mural?
  • What do you want them to feel?
  • What message do you have to share?

The project will be a lengthy one, so take a deep breath and enjoy the process of creating!


Step 2: Gather The Appropriate Tools

As a mural artist, you will need a very specific set of tools.

From paint, primer, varnish and brushes to paint rollers, sponges, ladders and stencils – consider the colours and textures you would like to achieve so that you have all of the necessary tools ahead of time.
If your mural is going to be exposed to direct sunlight, you might want to check the lighfastness (UV) qualities of your paint as well. Where quality acrylic mural paints may be ideal, traditional household paints are also a great way to handle blocking and/or under layers while being a bit more cost-efficient.

Be sure to bring along some protective tarps, aprons and goggles as well.


Step 3: Sketch Out Your Idea

Take off the pressure by having a plan in advance. This visual reference will help you transfer your ideas right onto your mural wall!

One easy technique is to divide your reference image and your wall into proportional grids.

Painting the image one square at a time will be much more straightforward than transferring a large image to scale all at once.


Step 4: Scan Your Mural Canvas For Imperfections

Take a careful look for mold, decay, old paint, warpage and/or imperfections before starting your project.

Once the area is cleaned, spackled and sanded, you should have a sufficiently smooth surface to finally start painting!


Step 5: Painting Your Mural

The background is always the best place to start. Feel free to cover large areas with large brushes and/or paint rollers! The faster the bottom layer goes up, the faster it can dry.

One helpful tip is to apply each layer and/or colour with periods of rest in between. This will allow for the paint to dry without the risk of smears and/or bleeding! Take a moment to step back and review your work from different angles as you go.

While you work your way to your final layer, you will find the opportunity to clean up your lines and cover up any accidents that may have popped up along the way.

Once you are happy, you can apply a layer of varnish sealant to protect the paint for years to come!

Interested in joining a collaborative community with like-minded people? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

5 Great Steps to Photographing Your Art for Social Media

5 Steps to Photographing Your Art for Social Media

5 Steps to Photographing Your Art for Social Media

As artists, we spend a great deal of time learning, practicing, exploring and perfecting our craft.

One skill that we can always sharpen, however, is the art of sales.

With social media platforms at our finger tips, artists all over Toronto are in a great position to advertise and sell their creations online!

With a love for all things visual, we know how important it is to portray your artwork in the best way possible. This means taking photographs that will do justice for the colours, textures and aesthetic you have created!

Knowing how to properly photograph your art for social media can make a world of a difference in exposing your style to potential customers, galleries, grants and/or art competitions.

Here are 5 great steps to help you photograph your art like a pro:

 

 

Step #1. Show Off Your Artwork

Many artists like to hang their artwork on a neutral coloured wall or shelf for their photographs. This technique provides a nice, clean background that doesn’t take away from the artwork itself.

If this is not possible, an easy solution is to invest in some affordable white foam core to create the same sleek backdrop effect!

 

Step #2. Focus On Your Lighting

The lighting for your photographs should be soft and evenly-distributed.

While a blurry, dimly-lit photo is difficult to see, overexposure and too much light can also compromise the hues and saturation of your masterpiece.

If you are shooting your work indoors, try to find a space with plenty of natural, indirect sunlight.

If you are shooting outdoors, cloudy/overcast skies will provide some great lighting without appearing too harsh!

 

Step #3. Play with Your Camera Settings

Feel free to take advantage of all the helpful features that your cameras have to offer!

From grids to help with framing to timers to help with shake, don’t be afraid to experiment and see what works best with your workflow.

For DSLRs, your ISO and aperture will be very important in capturing bright, clear images of your artwork.

As you increase the ISO, your camera sensor will become more sensitive to light. This means that the higher the number the more coarse your image will appear. To keep a clean, crisp shot of your art, try to keep your ISO low around 100.

As the aperture (f-stop) adjusts how much light is allowed through the lens, higher numbers allow less light to pass through. A great DSLR range for shooting artwork is around f-8 and f-11.

 

Step #4. Consider Composition

Focusing your camera right on the centre of your work will give a great, parallel representation of your artwork. Avoid distortion with unnecessary angles, as potential customers will want to have a clear view of what they are buying.

Position your camera in a way that will fill the frame with your art, but also leave some background that you can crop and adjust in your editing phase.

As different social media outlets accommodate different photograph dimensions, leave some space to customize your crop lines.

 

Step #5. Minimize Your Editing

Although photo editing tools such as Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom are top choices for the pros, there are plenty of free and inexpensive options out there! 

While many smartphones actually offer editing tools right in the phone's features, you can also take a peek at your app store or online reviews for more options!

Essentially, you want to enhance the presentation of your artwork without compromising the integrity of the colours or appearance.

Stay true to the authentic feel of your work and allow your audience to fall in love with your style!

 

Interested in joining a collaborative community with like-minded ideas? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

 

 

Rehearsal

Top 5 Rehearsal Spaces for Musicians in Toronto 

Top 5 Rehearsal Spaces for Musicians in Toronto 

 

One of the more difficult aspects of being a musician in Toronto is finding a space to rehearse.

With neighbours and noise complaints being a very common issue for those trying to hone their craft, having access to a space with a pass to be as loud as you want can be a blessing.

Lucky for you, the city of Toronto is ripe with rehearsal spaces at prices that suit a working musician’s budget.

We’ve compiled a list of some of the best and most affordable spots in the GTA according to some of our favourite musicians in the city.

Whether you are a solo musician, a DJ or a band- these spots will provide you with more than enough room (and gear) to get loud before your next gig:


1. DC Music

Location: 360 Munster Avenue (Bloor & Kipling)
Contact: 416-234-0222
Price: Starting at $15/hr (2 hour minimum)

 

 

With fully outfitted and spacious practice rooms, complete with sound treatment and Marshall stacks - DC Music is much more than just a rehearsal space.

Housing a professional recording studio, artist development program, touring pre-production resources as well as custom merchandise services - DC Music prides itself on being a one-stop shop for musicians and their various needs.

For a full list of specifications and room resources, click here


2. The Groove Room

Location: 15 Towns Road (Kipling & Horner)
Contact: 416-259-3325
Price: Starting at $20/hr (2 hour minimum) // Solo Musician Rate: $10/hr (2 hour minimum)

 

 

The Groove Room is a fantastic hideaway for musicians who are looking to get loud.

Tucked away on Towns Road, this gem of a spot will suit the needs of just about any musician (and free parking is a huge bonus).

On top of their standard rehearsal room rates, Groove Room provides a discounted rate for solo musicians looking to rehearse.

For a full list of room specifications, click here.


3. LYNX Music

Location: 260 Emerson Avenue (Emerson & Dupont)
Contact: 416-485-9999
Price: Starting at $20/hr

 

 

Lynx Music sports a colourful set of rooms, each with their own unique theme.

Whether you want to shoe-gaze in the Half-Baked Room, or write the next 6ix banger in the Toronto Room, Lynx Music has got you covered with a variety of spaces that will inspire your creative mind.

Each room comes equipped with an HD projector and iPad control for those looking for a more immersive rehearsal session.

For a complete list of rooms & equipment, click here:


4. The Jam Space

Location: 500 Keele Street (Dundas West & Keele)
Contact: 416-722-7363
Price: Starting at $15/hr

 

 

The Jam Space certainly lives up to its name.

With a 1,000 square foot main room, space is not an issue in the slightest for this place.

Located on the second floor of a Junction warehouse, this space will fulfill all your vibey needs for a great rehearsal.

The Jam Space also provides photo and video services to artists looking to improve their online image.

For room and equipment specifications, click here


5. Cherry Jam Rehearsal

Location: 33 Villiers Street & 154 Islington Avenue
Contact: 416-693-1816
Price: $25/hr at both locations

Having been in business since 1997, Cherry Jam Rehearsal has much to offer both the uptown and downtown musician.

With spacious rooms and reliable gear, this spot has played host to many musicians over the years, including Justin Timberlake, Shania Twain and Tommy Lee.

Musicians booking here will be sure to find a space that will cater to their needs and leave no stone unturned.

For room and equipment specifications, click here

 

Interested in joining a collaborative community with like-minded vibes? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

 

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Special thanks to Daniel Goldstein (GURTH- Drums), Julio Chavez (Good Grief/Red Lines/Barrens - Drums), Tiz Macnamara (Singer-Songwriter) & Adam Tobias (Guitarist/Producer) who contributed their favourite spots to rehearse in the city!

5 Success Principles From Freelance Artists in Toronto

5 Success Principles From Freelance Artists in Toronto

Making the decision to become a Freelance Artist is an incredibly exciting experience. From work flexibility and being your own boss, to improving your talents with an unlimited earning potential - there is a definite sense of freedom to freelancing.

However, the personal accountability and lack of routine can feel like a nightmare when you are just starting out. With thousands of freelance artists working in Toronto, we had a chat with 5 talented hustlers to learn their tips for success:

 

 

Tip #1: “Build a Routine ASAP”

- Adam Tobias (Guitarist/Producer), @AdamTobiasMusic

“Get yourself into a rhythm as early as possible” says Adam Tobias, talented Guitarist, Composer and Producer. “Making work feel like a habit can take a while to train”.

The best thing to do is to approach freelancing as if it were a full-time job. Discover the hours that you are most productive and use them to your advantage.

According to Adam, “the sooner you develop a routine, the more time you can spend in a state of productivity”.

 

Tip #2: “Don’t Be Afraid to Promote Your Work”

- MER (Rapper/Producer), @MerHipHop

It is no secret that the freelance world has become incredibly competitive. With the internet at the forefront of our daily routines, it can also be a powerful tool in promoting yourself.

According to Rapper/Producer MER, “You just need to maximize your visibility. Whether you are promoting your work on social media outlets, emails, forums, specialized groups or even direct messaging - the more consistent you are, the more likely someone will take an interest in you”.

Essentially, the more people who KNOW what you do, the more accessible you are to the people who would enjoy and/or benefit from your work.

 

Tip #3: “Know Your Value”

- Vanessa Giorgio (Visual Artist/Photographer), @VGiorgiiiooo

While building your portfolio, you are bound to start off with some free, discounted, and/or collaborative work. However, be careful to not sell yourself short for anything that will not benefit you in the long run!

Visual Artist and Photographer Vanessa Giorgio encourages artists to “recognize not only the value your work provides or the time spent creating it, but also the time and energy spent honing your craft and finding your unique style”.

According to her, “there are plenty of talented artists in the city, but a client will choose you for your individual perspective and execution”.

 

Tip #4: “Invest in a Website”

- Cassandra Goltsis (Director/Photographer), @RoseGoldProdu

“It’s a lot easier to create a portfolio website than you think” shares Cassandra Goltsis, Director/Photographer at Rose Gold Productions.

With platforms such as Pixieset, Wix, WordPress and Squarespace at our fingertips, these user-friendly web builders have helped hundreds of thousands of professional artists claim real-estate online.

As portfolio work is essential to freelancing success, building a website to showcase your creations is an incredibly effective tool.

As Cassandra shares, “your website will be the first place a potential client will look before making the decision to hire you. So take the time to make sure that it is a great reflection of who you are, and what you have to offer!”

 

Tip #5: “Create a Work/Home Balance”

- Robin Wright (Cosmetics/Makeup Artistry), @WACosmeticStore

“It is so easy to fall into burnout” shares Robin Wright, certified MUA and owner of Wright Artistry Cosmetics.

As a freelance artist and business owner, you must also become your own receptionist, marketing strategist, social media expert, contract writer, invoice sender and funds collector. As a result, you might even feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day!

However, the value of “personal time” will be essential to maintaining your mental and physical health.

“Be sure to leave time for friends, family, hobbies and self care” Robin insists. Above all else, your health and happiness will help keep you inspired, motivated and on the road towards continued success. 

 

Interested in joining a collaborative community with positive vibes? Become a Creative Unicorn to participate in profit sharing projects, events and workshops within the city!

artists, toronto artists, creative discipline, art, creativity, creative entrepreneur

5 Great Ways Artists Can Strengthen Creative Discipline

5 Great Ways Artists Can Strengthen Creative Discipline

 

Pursuing your dreams as a Creative Entrepreneur can be a challenge when it comes to consistency.

With a thirst for freedom and imagination, it can be difficult to tame our creative chaos into routine productivity without compromising our health, art, workflow and ability to pursue new opportunities.

As a result, the mere thought of creative discipline can sometimes spark feelings of dread, anxiety or guilt for those struggling to find the right rhythm! With the pressure of time, deadlines and bills, we are always searching for better ways to stream-line our process to its highest potential.

Fortunately, the word “discipline” does not have to be synonymous with an unenjoyable experience. Instead, we can address creative discipline as a commitment to our dreams, intentions and goals!

By exerting routines, boundaries and control over our actions, we can harness the potential to optimize our talents and turn creative blocks into strategic productivity.

With that, here are 5 great ways that artists can strengthen their creative process through the art of self-discipline:

1. Work During Your Most Productive Hours

Whether you identify as a night owl or an early bird, take the time to discover your most productive conditions.

By blocking off specific time frames to devote to productivity, you can train your brain to anticipate a routine and minimize the threat of unwanted distractions.

Alternatively, many creatives find that specific environmental factors can also have a positive impact on their ability to create. Whether it is a particular location, mood or genre of music - the trick is finding what works best for you and weaponizing it.

2. Practice Mindfulness

Let’s face it. Life can be stressful sometimes, causing us to feel distracted, overwhelmed, or even trapped in our heads.

While mindfulness is defined as a mental state achieved through conscious awareness, this therapeutic technique can offer incredible benefits to relieve stress, increase resilience, improve sleep, enhance emotional intelligence and of course, promote creativity.

Take a few moments each day to observe your thought patterns, physical sensations, or even the details around the room.

This healthy habit will not only help you stay on task, but it will help curate a positive mental space for productivity to thrive.

3. Plan Ahead

The benefits of a checklist are severely underrated. With a bit of organization, we have the potential to organize our thoughts, time and energy into a personal system.

From smartphones and calendars to notebooks and post-it notes - there are a variety of options to suit just about any workflow.

Carve out some time at the beginning or end of each day to jot down a list of “to-do” items. This will help you prioritize the most pressing tasks and time-slot them accordingly.

4. Balance Work & Play

The biggest risk for creative burnout is overworking without a healthy balance of leisure and fun.

While the previous tips are incredibly helpful in growing your creative discipline, they can also be applied to your personal life!

Be sure to spend time doing the things you enjoy outside of your creative work. Whether it be spending time with loves ones, nurturing a hobby, cooking a new recipe or just passively relaxing -  taking the time for yourself will give you the mental (and social) break that each of us need.

Not to mention, you will also find better focus when you are ready to create!

5. Build Your Network

Expand your social circle with people who inspire you. By sharing thoughts and ideas with like-minded individuals, we can easily gain fresh perspectives that help fuel our creative approach.

Create friendships with people who have a similar or inspiring vision. Collaborate and support each others goals. Create, celebrate and repeat.

With a few changes, you are bound to witness an improvement to your creative workflow.

Looking for a great place to start? Join our Branding Workshops or become a Member of Creative Unicorns of Toronto and join our vibrant community of artists and creative entrepreneurs. See you soon!