The Messy Studio with Rebecca Crowell

The podcast at the intersection of art, travel, business, philosophy, and life in general.

About the show

Artist Rebecca Crowell shares experiences and thoughts from three decades of painting, teaching and traveling, as well as her conversations with other artists. She is joined by her co-host, producer, and son, Ross Ticknor, who brings an entrepreneurial Millennial perspective. The conversations are broad and eclectic, focused on ideas, information and anecdotes that other artists may find helpful in their work and careers. A new episode is uploaded every Saturday!

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  • Episode 101: Influence Vs Copying

    December 7th, 2019  |  39 mins 4 secs
    art, business, copying, influence, rebecca crowell

    No artist is wholly original. We all owe those who came before us for techniques, ideas, theories, and approaches, and we should honor these influences. Each of us references these influences in our own way. Some of us place ourselves firmly in the tradition of a certain approach to art, or even as followers of a particular artist but with our interpretation and expression, while others work from a combination of many influences. These are healthy aspects of influence. Unfortunately, there are also artists who either deliberately plagiarize another artist's work, or use so many of another artist's ideas that they come uncomfortably close to outright copying.

  • Episode 100: The Art Of The Side Hustle

    November 30th, 2019  |  34 mins 3 secs
    art, art income, business, rebecca crowell, self employment, side hustles

    For many artists, some form of outside employment is necessary to make a living. Their day jobs often have little or nothing to do with their creative lives, but some have developed income streams that evolved naturally from their studio practice. This approach leads to a more integrated approach to earning a living. Today we’re focusing on some examples of art related side hustles.

  • Episode 99: Branching Out

    November 24th, 2019  |  36 mins 26 secs
    art, creative process, exploration, medium, rebecca crowell

    While most artists have a way of working that is their main focus, many of us also explore other media or approaches on occasion. In general it is good to have something that you stick with. This helps to develop ideas and master techniques. However, these side trips can be very intriguing, and even helpful feeding new ideas back into your main art practice.

  • Episode 98: Our Studios, Our Sanctuaries

    November 16th, 2019  |  39 mins 28 secs
    art, design, rebecca crowell, studio

    There are few things artists are more passionate or opinionated about than their personal workspaces. In the past we’ve touched on many aspects of individual studio environments including the kind of sounds that artists prefer as they work (Episode #95 of The Messy Studio Podcast) Today we’re going to further explore what makes studio spaces unique and special to those who work in them.

  • Episode 97: Cindy Stapper: Between Realism and Abstraction

    November 9th, 2019  |  30 mins 57 secs
    art, cold wax, interview, landscape, new mexico, rebecca crowell, travel

    New Mexico painter Cindy Stapper discusses her work in which she explores the dichotomy of presence and absence through both realistic and more abstracted approaches to the landscape. Other topics that she and Rebecca talk about include the challenges of change, the pull of the wild Irish landscape, her appreciation of cold wax medium and oil, and the influence of poetry and writing on her work.

  • Episode 96: Dealing With Rejection

    November 2nd, 2019  |  27 mins 4 secs
    art, business, rebecca crowell, rejection, self improvement

    We’ve all suffered through rejections both major and minor. Like the cycle of ebbs and flows that we talked about in episode 94 of The Messy Studio Podcast, rejection in various forms is a part of an art career that we have to deal with on a regular basis. How can we stay positive and motivated when we are being told we didn’t make the cut? What does rejection really mean in the big picture of our lives as artists?

  • Episode 95: What’s On In Your Studio

    October 27th, 2019  |  28 mins 46 secs
    art, music, rebecca crowell, sound, studio

    Artists, as well as other other working professionals, create auditory environments within their work spaces. What enhances their work flow in terms of music, talk, or silence? Some people never consider this question when designing their own studio, and placing careful consideration on how best to optimise a work environment using sound can have a big impact on the quality of work an artist is able to produce.

  • Episode 94: Ebbs and Flows

    October 18th, 2019  |  32 mins 8 secs
    art, business, ebbs and flows, mindset, rebecca crowell, self improvement

    The ebbs and flows of income (and other positive events) are challenges for any self-employed person. But we have to learn to deal with slack times if we want to persist. Once you become discouraged it can be easy to lose your motivation and even think about giving up. Today we’ll cover some strategies and thoughts that can help if you’re in the midst of a downturn, and also ways to take the best advantage of the good times.

  • Episode 93: Considering Commissions

    October 12th, 2019  |  30 mins 51 secs
    art, business, commissions, rebecca crowell

    Many artists work regularly on commission and depend on this arrangement for income. Yet others find their restrictions challenging, accept them with reservations, and may even refuse them completely. Artists may also be confused about how to proceed the first time they are offered a commission. In this episode we’ll consider both the benefits and drawbacks to working on commission as well as what to consider when accepting one.

  • Episode 92: Formal Mentorships

    October 5th, 2019  |  28 mins 19 secs
    art, business, mentorship, rebecca crowell

    We continue our discussion about mentoring, with the emphasis on formal or paid arrangements, how they work for both mentors and mentees, and how they are beneficial.

  • Episode 91: Mentor/Friend Relationships

    September 27th, 2019  |  28 mins 15 secs
    art, friendship, mentorship, rebecca crowell

    Working with a mentor is a long tradition in the art world, in which a less experienced artist looks to one who is more experienced for guidance and training. Is art mentoring still important in the age of instructional videos, books, workshops, and artist groups? What do we gain from having a mentor, or from mentoring other people? Today we will talk about the unique offerings of mentorship, and tips for both mentors and mentees. Our focus today is on the more informal kinds of mentoring as opposed to more formal or paying relationships.

  • Episode 90: Sharing Studio Secrets

    September 21st, 2019  |  31 mins 45 secs
    art, art process, art secrets, business, rebecca crowell, technique

    Rebecca and Ross discuss why sharing your process and techniques with others helps to advance your own work and career.

  • Episode 89: Working On Your Website Part 2

    September 12th, 2019  |  30 mins 52 secs
    art, business, rebecca crowell, website

    Rebecca and Ross continue their discussion on building your artist website.

  • Episode 88: Working On Your Website Part 1

    September 8th, 2019  |  35 mins 59 secs
    art, business, rebecca crowell, websites

    Rebecca and Ross discuss common pitfalls in artist websites and why your website is important.

  • Episode 87: Making Our Video

    September 1st, 2019  |  31 mins 18 secs
    art, italy, jerry mclaughlin, rebecca crowell, squeegee press, travel, video, workshops

    Rebecca and Jerry discuss the process of making their video (Cold Wax Medium: A Video Workshop)--including behind the scenes stories, the challenges of being on camera, and their motivations and intentions for this huge project. This episode includes a discount coupon code if you wish to purchase the video.

  • Episode 86: Meaning in Abstraction

    August 25th, 2019  |  30 mins 32 secs
    abstraction, art, influences, intentions, italy, rebecca crowell, travel

    In a wide-ranging conversation during their recent workshop in Italy, Rebecca talks with Jerry about meaning in abstract painting. They discuss ways to approach abstraction, the desire to find imagery in non-referential art, the work of setting intentions, recognizing influences, and more.