How to Hang Your Artwork: 5 Easy Steps

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Most of us spend weeks, months, maybe years searching for the perfect piece of artwork to fill a particular space on our wall. It could be the large canvas over the sofa, the paintings over the bed, or a series of framed watercolors in the hallway. Whatever it is, the search process can be a real investment of both time and resources.

Once you welcome that beautiful painting into your home, the realization sets in that unfortunately you can't just velcro this baby to the wall in five seconds. If you're like me, you've left more than a couple nail holes in the wall trying to eyeball the exact coordinates for a perfectly centered and level hanging piece of art, only to rip out the nail and start all over. 

If that's the case, THIS IS FOR YOU! A step-by-step guide on how to hang your artwork perfectly, on the first try. (Click here for the printable guide!)

Before you start: Gather your materials (tape measure, pencil, hammer, nail)

Step 1: Measure the top of your canvas or frame, and place a small piece of tape with one edge at exactly halfway across to mark the center point. 

Step 2: Position the artwork at the exact location you want it to hang on the wall and hold it steady while using the pencil to mark a small dot on the wall at the top of your artwork at the halfway point, marked by the tape.

Step 3: Measure the vertical distance from the top center point of your canvas or frame to the hook, taut wire, or wherever the painting will be hanging from.

Step 4: Take the distance you just measured ("X inches") and use your pencil to add a second small dot X inches below the first dot you made. This is the dot where you will put the nail into the wall.

Step 5: Hammer the nail into the wall, hang your beautiful artwork, and admire that perfectly-hung painting!

 

**FREEBIE LINK: PRINTABLE 5-STEP HANGING GUIDE

Painting Workshop at Lonesome Valley

Yesterday I got to spend an afternoon at the beautiful Lonesome Valley community leading a landscape painting workshop for a fun group of residents!

The view at LV is absolutely breathtaking - an obvious subject matter. We had some super talented painters and creative kiddos. And we even got an unexpected side-thrill when a nearby chicken started laying eggs (this was a major hit). It was such a fun experience and we're hoping to set up another class of two for adults in the fall (stay tuned)! 

Landscape Painting at Camp Ilahee

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of teaching landscape painting to a few groups of girls just down the road at Camp Illahee. The campers visit from all over the country so we focused on mountain landscapes like the ones surrounding them here in Western North Carolina. I was so impressed with how well their paintings turned out!

Wild Gardens: Reflections on Summertime.

Wild Gardens available June 18th

Summer is a strange bird - always highly anticipated and idealized, and perhaps rightfully so if you were lucky enough to grow up with summer vacations where typical days included running through sprinklers, eating seven ice pops for breakfast, and having your day made when someone's mom ordered a round of Papa Johns delivered to the neighborhood pool for lunch. That was my experience for a few glorious years of early life. But time went on, and eventually we got jobs and schedules, and a summer calendar became indistinguishable from that of Spring, Fall, and Winter. 

Today I find my summer overflowing with activities, responsibilities, deadlines, internal debates, and demands. Only thinking about this now do I remember the multitude of summer mornings spent doing yard work and household chores before I was released to charge barefoot down the hot asphalt of Princeton Corners Lane straight into the deep end of the pool. Yet I still long for that illusive feeling of summer. Of course, seasons look different for each participant, but I'm beginning to think this supposedly light and carefree time of the year can coexist with a little extra work.

The shift I'm trying to make is instead of forcing summer to be a perfect friend filled with only laughter and no strain or anxiety or struggle and being disappointed when she falls short, just accept the season as a reminder that life always returns. After winter, darkness, exhaustion, whatever it is. Life always returns. The sun always rises. And what better reminder than a world bursting with greenery, flowers, afternoon thunderstorms, tomatoes, drenched in hot sunshine, and work that is a gift - good and gratifying. All of these things exist together.

These little paintings embody such a reminder. They are abstracted, not as neat and tidy as our memory tells us things used to be. But they are packed with tiny details - little moments and marks that carry a feeling, an emotion, a story. A slash of color, wildflowers that thrive amongst tangled weeds, and a blue sky.

So whether yours is turning out to be one of hustle and forced energy, or lazy poolside naps, I hope your summer serves as a reminder that life returns. I, for one, will be seeking tiny affirmations tucked in the cracks, that yes, as with every year before and every year to follow, life has followed death, the grass has returned to green, the sun is still burning, afternoon thunderstorms will always make the world feel cozy, and this, too, with all its varied complexities, is a season to embrace. 

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Wild Gardens Coming 6/18!

Painting these garden scapes has been an unexpected source of experimentation and delight for me over the past month or so. I'm always drawn to the intersection of abstraction and representation, and these wild gardens carry the energy of free abstract gestural marks while still holding a sense of place and curiosity.

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, June 19th, when I will have a handful of these gardens available online!