Creating Art in the Cold: Tips for Staying Productive in Winter

The winter months can be a difficult time for artists, as the chill of the cold weather keeps us inside. However, the colder months can be a great opportunity to get creative and make some beautiful art prints. With a few helpful tips, you can make the most of your winter season and stay productive while creating art. In this blog post, we’ll explore how to use the cold winter days to your advantage and make some amazing art prints.

Get a Good Space Heater

Cold winter days can make creating art a challenging task. To keep warm and productive, invest in a good space heater. This small investment will keep your workspace comfortable, allowing you to focus on the creative process without having to worry about shivering. Make sure to get a space heater that’s designed for the size of the room you are working in. Choose one with adjustable settings so you can keep your workspace at an optimal temperature for creating art.

Layer Your Clothing

When creating art in the winter, it is important to layer your clothing. Keeping yourself warm while creating original art and art prints is essential for productivity. Layering your clothing allows you to adjust your body temperature as needed, giving you more control over how comfortable you are while working. Start by wearing a long-sleeve undershirt and then add a sweater or light jacket over that. Finish off with a coat or heavier jacket for the extra warmth. Accessories such as scarves and hats can also be useful in helping to keep your body temperature regulated. With the right combination of layers, you can stay warm and productive while creating your original art and art prints.

Drink Lots of Hot Drinks

In the winter, staying warm can be a challenge. However, one of the best ways to keep your body temperature regulated is by drinking lots of hot drinks. Hot coffee, tea, or even soup are great options. You can also spice up your hot drinks with ingredients like cinnamon, honey, and ginger. Not only do these drinks help keep your body warm, but they also provide you with extra energy to get through long days of creating original art, illustrations, or cartoon art. Whether you’re selling art or just creating it for yourself, drinking hot drinks during the cold winter days is key to staying productive.

Take Frequent Breaks

As a winter artist, you need to take frequent breaks to help keep your motivation up. Working in cold temperatures can be draining on your creativity, so it’s important to step away from your work and find ways to refresh yourself. Try taking a short walk outside to get some fresh air, or listen to your favorite music while you draw or paint. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, try sketching some illustrations or cartoon art that is completely different from your original art. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, taking a break helps clear your mind and refocus your energy on creating something new.

If you’re selling art online, take a break to read through customer reviews or promote your art on social media. This will help to remind you of your passion for art, and can be a great motivator as you work through the cold winter days.

Set a Realistic Goal

When it comes to creating art during the cold winter days, it’s important to set a realistic goal for yourself. This helps to keep you motivated and on track with your work. For example, if you want to create your own original art, consider how long it will take you to complete a painting or drawing, and then decide how many of these pieces you want to finish in a month. By setting a realistic goal for yourself, you can ensure that you will be able to achieve it in the time frame that you have allotted. You may also want to plan ahead and decide what kind of artwork you would like to produce, such as cartoon art or original art. Planning ahead also helps make sure that when it comes time to start selling your art online, you’ll be prepared with an inventory of high-quality work that customers are sure to love. Additionally, taking regular breaks throughout the day is essential in staying productive while creating artwork in the colder months. Giving yourself some breathing room allows you to stay energized and creative, so that each piece is as well crafted as possible. Finally, don’t forget to check out other artist’s work as well. Observing their techniques may help spark new ideas for your own work and serve as great inspiration.

To see some of my latest art (and yes – I create a lot during the winter since I am stuck inside!) , visit my art gallery on eBay at:

What is the Christmas Spirit?

Here is a link to a video showing my Christmas Prose Poetry which I wrote and read in my church a week last Sunday. It was also published in the Arthur Graphic Clarion – the local community newspaper in my town. Sadly, I will not be present to read it at this year’s Christmas eve worship service as it will be too cold for me and my asthma to get out in…. So I am glad that I was able to read it last Sunday. I hope you enjoy listening to my message. The words to my prose poetry also are below.

Merry Christmas to you all!

Christmas Prose Poetry
"What is the Christmas Spirit?"      

My friends,
It is that “most wonderful time of year,” that everyone talks about…
And the main question that escapes their lips is…

“Are you in the Christmas spirit…?”

And so, you think for a moment…
“Am I?”

You remember listening to some Christmas music,
You’ve shopped for all the gifts on your Christmas list.
The Christmas tree is put up and all decorated… 
The bright twinkling lights are shining and everyone’s Christmas stockings are hung.
And don’t forget, you’ve also been watching all of your favorite Christmas movies
And reading all those classic Christmas tales…

So, you nod knowingly and reply,
“Well of course, I am in the Christmas spirit! Merry Christmas to you!”

Later though, you think back,
“But am I REALLY in the Christmas spirit?
What exactly is the Christmas spirit and what does it mean?

Sometimes, we find ourselves just doing the motions of Christmas-
Which can involve - decorating, singing, buying gifts, watching movies, or meeting with family and friends or doing gift exchanges. 
I mean, that is how you “do Christmas,” right? 

Then there are those of us who seem to find the Christmas spirit 
barely making it through the cracks of our own being…
Getting into the spirit is just difficult, because of our own past experiences, 
Or because we’ve lost loved ones, family and friends may be sick, 
Or our personal lives have just gotten complicated with financial stress…
Then, for some, it's just that the commercialism of the holiday 
has began to weigh us down,
Because in our hearts, we know, there is more to Christmas…

So, if getting into the Christmas spirit isn’t about all of the shopping, decorating, movies and music… 
What is it?

If we look at Christmas through the eyes of one very special baby, 
whose birth we celebrate,
Perhaps the spirit can mean something else, as it is that baby, who grew up to teach us
about the power of unconditional love…

The Christmas spirit is about showing kindness through love or special acts of giving, and spreading joy to those around you…

During the holiday season, you may donate to the less fortunate, give hugs to those who are hurting and pray for those who call on you for help.
Perhaps you might smile at a stranger, hold open a door, or pay for someone’s purchase that is behind you - just because… 

The giving of the Christmas spirit isn’t buying the latest product off the store shelf
And wrapping it in fancy paper.
It is about the giving of one’s heart and sharing the love that Jesus has given unto us.

Sometimes though, “being in the spirit,” can be complicated…
Especially when life gets tough and the world seems to be an unkind place.
But it is through the spirit, that we must shine a light 
when there is darkness in the world.
Through that darkness, 
we shine the light of love, the light of the Christmas spirit… 

Even when our hearts are hurting, or feel numb, 
We light our torch, and carry it through those rough narrow dark valleys,
And reach our hands out to those who can’t see the steps ahead.
The spirit inside our hearts leads us to keep on, to move forward with love.

When we make it through those rocky valleys,
The love from Christmas spirit is the great reward,
And it is better than any gift found under the tree…

Although, please remember, even when it is days 
after the Christmas season, keep your torch lit,
Because love and light should be spread all year long…
And that my friends, is the Christmas spirit.

Remember the “Thank-LESS”

During the day, that we give thanks,
We surround ourselves with families and friends,
And gather around the table.

The dining area is filled with echoes of laughter,
shining smiles, and happy conversation.
Before taking part in the spread of food and breaking bread,
We all pray and remember all the things we are thankful for. 

Many phrases are the ones we’ve heard before,
Repeated year after year, and may go something like this…

“I am thankful for my family.”
“I am thankful for my home.”
“I am thankful for the food that we have before us today.”
“We are thankful to be alive, to be able to breathe, and to have
woken up to live another day.”

But…have you heard about the thankless?
Did you remember the thankless?

When I say “The thankless,” I am not talking about those who are not thankful.
Or those who are foolish and may take life for granted…
I’m not talking about the people who are greedy,
Nor am I speaking about those who are evil.

I am speaking of “the thank-less.”
The ones who have LESS.
Who may wish for the very things that we are thankful for.

…Such as, the cold homeless man who 
slept outdoors under the overpass last night.
The single mother and her hungry children, 
who can’t make enough to feed her hungry children,
Who worries what she will feed them tomorrow.
Or the little girl who slept on a cot 
among many other homeless people in a shelter,
With her old well-loved ratty teddy bear, the only toy she owns… 

But - even though it may be the only toy she owns, she is thankful for it.
That little homeless girl is thankful to have a bed and warm blankets tonight.

And that cold homeless man who slept under the overpass, 
he was able to keep dry from the evening and morning mist.
For that, he was thankful for some type of shelter once again.

The single mother with her hungry children, was given a sack of groceries
from her local food pantry…
Now she will be able to feed her family for a few days.
That single mom is so thankful for the smiles on her childrens’ faces.

This season, and all year, I remember the thankless.
I will pray for the thankless.
For they may have less,
But are thankful for the little that they have.

Pray for the thankless.
They are still thankful even in their tough times.
Perhaps even we can learn a few lessons from the thankless…
… Maybe instead of being thankFUL, we could be more thankLESS…
It’s the little things in life that mean the most.  

*When you come across someone who could be “Thank-less” please remember 
Hebrews 13:16: “Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have.”

Ariana R Cherry (Nov) 2022

Do you still remember?

It has been awhile since I visited and wrote in my blog. I need to get back at it again. So I thought today would be a good time to start with so much going through my mind…

After reading so many posts about remembering 9/11 today online and watching a few ceremonies that were streaming, I’ve had some thoughts cross my mind…

1) What indeed was a tragic event and always will be remembered as one, the unity that followed is something that is dearly missed. That day, we learned life was indeed short. We must stop hating one another, and we must come together to help others… During that time, Americans came together to ease each others’ grief, we shared stories, we sang together – our nation felt like we were all on the same team…

I wish we could find that same spirit again without such a horrible tragedy. You would think that after everything that has happened since 2020, we would be tighter as a nation, but sometimes, I feel like we are falling apart. I found myself not only remembering the lives that were lost on 9/11, but remembering the unity that has been lost, and mourning what we once were as a nation. As I grow older, I find myself “missing the good ole days.”

2). I also realized all of the different tragedies that have taken place in the last 21 years – from increased violence, school shootings, political parties unable to have discussions without tearing one another apart…. new viruses and diseases … Time may have passed quickly, but there has been so much hatred and sadness growing… EVery day I wake up, I try to find the positive in this shaken world.

3)… also – I am getting old. It is hard to believe that the events of Sept. 11, 2001 was 21 years ago. That day is still so fresh in my memory and I can never forget. So I ask you – Have you forgotten? I wonder how many others possibly could have forgotten?

4). Our nation is in need of love…. It needs to learn to love others and to stop hating… Why do we need a tragic event such as 9/11 to shake everyone up to learn how to love one another again? Why can’t we just stop the hate? I feel like that sometimes, so many lives have to be lost and worlds turned upside down for people to appreciate life and what they have….

I guess sometimes, I miss the innocence I had as a child. I wish there were times when I didn’t realize all of the trauma our nation/world has been through… Sometimes, it is easy to feel our world hurting when you stop “living life” for a second. We all need our world to be able to breathe again so that it will stop hurting.

……this is what was on my mind today, as I stopped to remember the day of September 11, 2001.

Poet & Podcast Host, Ariana R Cherry speaks with National Slam Poet Winner Gayle Danley

In this episode of Spoken Word Poetry, Ariana sits down and talks with poet Gayle Danley. She is a slam poet who has been writing and sharing poetry with the world for most of her life. Her electrifying live performances have garnered critical appraise. She has been a frequent guest on NPR and has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and on CBS’ 60 Minutes. Her TED-Ed Talk, “Five Steps to Becoming a Slam Poet” has received upwards 600K views to date. In addition to being one of the nation’s most sought after inspirational writers and speakers, Ms. Danley is also an acclaimed teaching artist who’s been working with young people for over 15 years. 

Sit down and listen as these two converse about life, poetry and our gifts. 

Spoken Word Poetry Interviews: Life and Poetry with National Slam Poet Winner, Gayle Danley

In this episode of Spoken Word Poetry, Ariana sits down and talks with poet Gayle Danley. She is a slam poet who has been writing and sharing poetry with the world for most of her life. Her electrifying live performances have garnered critical appraise. She has been a frequent guest on NPR and has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and on CBS’ 60 Minutes. Her TED-Ed Talk, “Five Steps to Becoming a Slam Poet” has received upwards 600K views to date. In addition to being one of the nation’s most sought after inspirational writers and speakers, Ms. Danley is also an acclaimed teaching artist who’s been working with young people for over 15 years. 

Sit down and listen as these two converse about life, poetry and our gifts. 

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

If you didn’t know this already, October is domestic violence awareness month. I myself left an emotional, verbal, psychological and financially abusive relationship back in late 2014. Today, I try to spread awareness in hopes to help others leave such kind of relationships. In light of it being October and to spread awareness, I designed a little art trading card. I am selling it with 50% of the profits going to local organizations who help victims. I hope to have a necklace design too.

Another thing you might not have been aware of is that I have a program titled, “A Normal Kind of Love,” in which I tell my own story and read poetry along with it. If you would like to help support victims of domestic violence, you can give donations to local organizations in your area, or feel free to purchase a copy of my book, “A Normal Kind of Love,” on Amazon. 50% of the profits will be going to local organizations who help victims. You can also buy an art trading card with a purple ribbon drawn on it – representing domestic violence awareness.

Click here to purchase the miniature artwork below.

Click here to purchase ” A Normal Kind of Love.”

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