March Meet the Maker: Days: 15-21 blog cover
About Artist

March Meet the Maker (Part 3)

Today we’re continuing with week 3 of the March Meet the Maker.  If you’ve missed any of the previous weeks, you can catch up here:
Part 1
Part 2

Focus & Priorities

Focus and priorities are things that I’ve learned to be very intentional about.  I have a tendency to be easily distracted by new things, so I depend heavily on a planner to keep myself on track.  This year I decided to design my own planner so that it works better for me than generic store bought ones – and it’s helped a lot so far!  

Every month I review the past month and set goals for the upcoming month.  I break down monthly goals into weekly tasks, which I review at the end of the week to modify as needed.  Daily, I have a list of possible task choices to work on and a space to write down what I accomplished during the day.  There’s an area to write appointments, as well as an area for tasks that need to be done that day, and space to brainstorm ideas.  At the end of the week, I review how the week went and plan out the coming week.

Finding the balance for all the different aspects of an art business can be tricky sometimes.  Being a one person operation, I have to leave time for more than just creating art.  I also do the accounting, social media/marketing, photography, listings, website, blog, framing, and business admin (I feel like I may have left out a couple things).  

While I have a general plan of things I want to accomplish, I’m always adapting with upcoming events that pop up.  One of the hardest parts is determining which opportunities and projects I’m going to pursue, and which I’m going to pass on.  Most often, if it requires an entry fee or if it’s a project that requires a lot of supplies I don’t have on hand, it’s something I automatically pass on right now.  

From the Archive

Photo of Laura Jaen Smith in front of "Red" pastel steer drawing framed at Wyoming Works gallery in Laramie, Wyoming.

Pulling out this one from the Archive.  This is Red – he is a pastel drawing that I completed live while looking at a taxidermy steer.  This was one of the first pieces that I showed during my first gallery show in 2013 and it was the first piece that I sold.


I recently made an interactive post about my art process – you can experience it below to get a better understanding of how I create my acrylic paintings.  And below that is a timelapse video that shows a portion of painting Eagle Cliff Falls.


Close up picture of acrylic Winsor Newton paint tubes hanging upside down on the bottom of a bulletin board

I like to work from a very limited palette of colors.  These are all the colors of paint I own – but I will usually only use five to six tubes of color in most of my paintings and custom mix the colors I need as I go.  It’s very rare that I use the color as it is straight out of the tube.  

Silver Linings

One of the silver linings of the pandemic this past year has been that there are an increased amount of art and cultural events that have been available online that would have previously only been available as in-person events.  I’ve been able to listen to several lectures and concerts from across the country (and sometimes from other countries across the world).  I’ve also gotten to attend opening nights, studio tours, and artist talks locally, regionally, and from farther away places.  

Do you have a question or want to know more about a topic?  Let me know!  I’m starting a list for an upcoming Q&A.

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