Blog

Why There is a Heart in the ArtResin Logo?

Posted on 09 Jan 22:13 , 0 comments

 

The good thing about Rebecca and I being in the creative materials industry is that we are our target market, so we just design and market authentically, and make stuff the way we would like to see it.

 

Some very basic psychology went into our brand.

Pink makes us happy, we love lots of color and a heart represents love.

 

 

In my past life as in advertising, over time, I began to think of new projects in terms of the base emotion that I was trying to effect.  People rely on emotion more then they rely on information to make decisions. 

The perfect video will get a strong emotional response, show a logo and connect it to the emotional experience, and then get out of there!

You can sell with fear, happiness, sadness, love, comfort, longing, envy, sex, anger, disgust...  make the viewer FEEL something.

I would usually lean towards a combination of happy and envy with a bit of passive sex.

To do this can be very basic.

Create an atmosphere that is unattainably perfect with smiling kids and a pretty face with the right music and you can sell anything - even if it has absolutely nothing to do with what you are selling.

This is a demo reel of mine from 2014 when I was in the industry:

 

Just get right at that basic emotion you want to target as directly as possible with cliche typical visuals, words and sounds that are linked to those emotions.

 

So why the heart?

Well, we looked at ourselves.

Who are we?

What gets us?

We want to live for a purpose. We want to leave the world in a better shape then when we arrived.  We want to make other people happy and to give more than we receive.  We want to love and be surrounded by love.

 

We believe that many artists have this longing to make a difference.  

 

Infact, we think that is kind of the job of the artist - to challenge the status quo.  To shine a light on injustices and make the world a better place :)

A heart just seemed obvious, and with a quick scribbled single line, Rebecca drew a heart with a resin drop in it.

Funny enough, it looks exactly like the Air B+B logo upside down!  We did it first!  2008 :)

 

 

 


My Resin Didn't Cure .... Now What??

Posted on 05 Jan 15:38 , 2 comments



You’ve heard us say how easy it is to use ArtResin epoxy resin.
And it IS easy … but it’s not foolproof :)

Every now and again, you might find soft, sticky areas in your resin application that don’t seem to be curing properly, or the entire thing still feels "tacky" after a few days .....

WHY?
And what can I do about it?

Well, the first thing to know is that epoxy resin comes in 2 parts: 
a resin and a hardener.
When these two parts are mixed according to directions, a chemical reaction occurs which causes the liquid mixture to catalyze.
If this chemical reaction is somehow prevented or disrupted, a perfect cure is no longer possible, and the result is a sticky mess!

The following are some of the common reasons epoxy resin might not cure properly:

1. Not Measuring Accurately
Some people think that adding more hardener will make the cure harder, or cause it to cure faster.  Unfortunately, deviating from the 1:1 mixing ratio does the exact opposite!
ArtResin is a 1:1 mixing ratio and ensuring this delicate balance is imperative.  If the parts are not equal, the resin will not catalyze properly and will remain uncured and sticky.  

2.  Under Mixing
Once you've ensured your mixing ratio is accurate and equal, it's important to mix
both parts together thoroughly.  Again, if any material cannot catalyze properly by
any means, including not being blended well enough, it will not be able to cure
fully.  Mixing vigorously for three to four solid minutes, scraping the sides and
bottom of the container, should ensure everything can thoroughly catalyze.

3.  Dirty or Wet Utensils
Water and Resin are not friends :(
Even the tiniest drop of water or other contaminant can cause a host of problems, including cloudiness, bubbles and an improper cure.  Ensure your measuring cups, mixing cups, stirring spatulas and spreaders are all completely clean and dry for best results!

4.  Temperature
Cure time is affected by temperature. 
Warmer temps accelerate cure time and colder temperatures slow down cure time. 
The ideal room temperature for mixing ArtResin epoxy resin is between 72 and 77 degrees F. 
If it’s colder than that, the resin will be thicker and harder to mix, will have more bubbles and will take longer to cure until it’s dry to the touch.
We have a couple of space heaters at ArtResin HQ and we turn them
them on the day before we plan on resining to ensure the room, and the resin, is warm enough.

5.  Mixing Brands
Don't replace the ArtResin resin or hardener with another brand of resin or hardener
thinking it will be the same.  Every paired resin and hardener within a brand's kit 
work together as a system and cannot be reliably interchanged. 

Don’t learn the hard way :)
Follow our simple how-to instructions, measure and mix properly, and you’ll have no difficulty using and applying ArtResin to your project!  

Okay, great. 
But I already have soft, sticky areas that didn't cure properly.
NOW WHAT DO I DO?

Don't worry - all is not lost!

Resin that remains sticky days after being poured will stay sticky indefinitely unless the following measures are taken to fix the situation.

1. Scrape 
You’ll have to scrape off the wet material as best you can and discard.   
( Don’t worry - your artwork underneath will not be disturbed. )
Be sure all the liquidy resin is removed ( tacky is ok ) because if you pour fresh resin on top, the liquid could eventually leak out from under the new resin coat.

2.  Fill
If after scraping, you're left with a deep divot or crater, patch in some new thoroughly mixed resin just in that spot.

3.  Sand
Next, lightly sand the entire piece (including the cured patch, if you needed a patch)
Be sure to wipe the entire surface to remove any dust from sanding.  The sanding provides some tooth to the first coat so the second layer will adhere properly.  
Don’t be scared if it looks like a mess at this point - when you pour the second layer, it will look great!

4.  Pour A Second Coat
Obviously you need to wait until the first layer and patch are 100% cured before adding more resin on top.


Do you have any other tips on how to avoid improperly cured resin spots?
Comment below - we'd love to hear from you!


Watch Dave's video on applying a second coat of ArtResin!


Happy New Year!

Posted on 03 Jan 15:20 , 0 comments

Follow us on Snapchat!

Get behind-the-scenes Live Stories,
exciting news, and your daily dose of ArtResin inspiration.

It's like being here in person at the studio with us :)

Find us on Snapchat at @artresin





We're So Excited For 2017!

365 more days to spend having fun,
chatting with even more incredible artists and 
expanding our ArtResin product line to help 
inspire even more creativity in the world.  

How blessed are we?

Jeff put together some highlights from 2016.
Thank you for the best year ever!
Please watch and enjoy :)






Are You Following Us On Instagram?

If not, now is the perfect time to start!
Every single day we feature the most gorgeous works of art
from amazing and talented ArtResin customers all over the world.

It's a great chance to share testimonials, ideas
and have conversations with both the ArtResin staff and other artists!

We post informative and instructional videos, share amazing tips,
and of course, there are always plenty of pics
of the daily shenanigans here at the ArtResin studio :) 

It's also the perfect way to share your ArtResin art with us!
Want to be featured on our Instagram page?
Just tag #artresin in your post so we can find it
and we'll share with our followers!
We love seeing your art!

Find us on Instagram at @art_resin



It's The ArtResin Coaster Challenge!

Posted on 14 Dec 12:29 , 2 comments
There's nothing we love more here at ArtResin World HQ than to keep a little FUN in our workday!
So in the spirit of fun ( and who's kidding who, a little healthy competition too ) we decided to have an ArtResin Coaster Challenge!



Coasters are such a popular way of showing off ArtResin's crystal clear and heat resistant properties so it seemed like the perfect choice for our challenge.

We were all given wooden slices and free reign to to create the design of our choice on our coaster, which will look even better finished off a coat of glossy ArtResin!

Check out our entries, below, and don't forget to submit your vote in the comments!



Whose coaster will reign supreme??

Stay tuned to our YouTube channel, Facebook and Instagram pages to find out!!!

How to Draw the Flower of Life

Posted on 08 Dec 21:29 , 0 comments

Here is a diagram I made to outline a step by step way to draw a flower of life.  One that is this size anyways.  I draw it this size because this is a good amount of circles to me.

You can always make it bigger or smaller.

Have fun!

how to draw the flower of life 


How To ArtResin in 4 Simple Steps ... and some helpful tips :)

Posted on 07 Dec 12:35 , 0 comments

So.

You’ve painted your painting.
Printed your photo.
Sculpted your sculpture.
Wrapped up your woodwork.
Completed your craft.

… and you’re ready to coat your piece in ArtResin, the clearest, most durable, glossy epoxy resin on the planet!

Now what??

Well, first of all:

check out our massive FAQ section at ArtResin.com for lots of really helpful tips, advice and tutorials to set you up for success!

visit our handy dandy Usage Calculator to figure out exactly how much resin you’ll need ( ~ EXCITING NEWS ~ our Usage Calculator now has a metric option! )

practice on a non-masterpiece first :)

follow our 4 Simple Steps below



1. MEASURE - 
ArtResin epoxy resin comes in 2 parts ( a resin and a hardener ) and is a 1:1 mixing ratio.

- With gloves on, pour equal amounts of resin and hardener into a mixing cup. 
Measure equally and accurately!  Adding too much of either the resin or hardener will alter the chemical reaction and the mixture will not cure properly.

- ArtResin is very sticky so gloves will protect the user from a mess as well as possible skin irritation.  Clean skin promptly with soap and water if it does come in contact with ArtResin - Dave does a great video here on how to clean your hands.
NOTE - If ArtResin somehow comes in contact with your eyes, flush with water repeatedly and do not rub. Promptly seek medical attention

TIPS

* ArtResin is certified safe for home use.  It is considered a non-hazardous material and non-toxic when used as directed.  However, if working in a poorly ventilated area, a respirator is recommended.
* Mix up a little more than you think you’ll need ... you want to completely cover your work in one shot and not have to mix more last minute.
* Sometimes people think they can speed up the 24 hr cure time by adding more hardener to the mixture.  However this will throw off the delicate 1:1 mixing ratio and your resin will not cure properly.  The best way to encourage curing is to increase the room temperature, since curing is accelerated by heat.  Check out Dave's video for more benefits of resining in a warm space.  

2. MIX for at least 3 minutes

- Once you’ve measured equally and accurately, it’s imperative to mix both parts together thoroughly for at least 3 minutes and then just a bit more to be sure!
- After you’ve mixed, you’ll have about 45 minutes of working time ( also known as pot time ) before the resin thickens and cures.

TIPS
* Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the container as you mix - improperly mixed resin on the sides and bottom will not be able to catalyze and will not cure properly, leaving you with sticky spots that just won’t harden. 
* If bubbles appear, don’t worry - we will address these after the pour :)

3. POUR and spread

- After making sure your piece is level, go ahead and pour ArtResin over your work. Don’t be scared! 
- ArtResin is self-levelling so it will start to level on its own, but you can spread it around into place using a flat semi-strong object.  Our reusable jagged spreaders are the perfect thing to spread the ArtResin evenly and efficiently. 
- Edges can be dealt with in several different ways:  some artists like to tape off the edges entirely and only allow the ArtResin to sit domed on top of their piece. 
Others like to mask off the underside of the piece and allow the resin to drip over the sides, spreading it smooth with a brush or a gloved finger.  Check out our video here on a few different ways to finish the edges of your work.
- You’ll notice bubbles will begin to rise to the surface. Many of these will pop on their own, but if you want a flawless, glass like surface, a blowtorch like our Artist Torch is great for this ( see our how-to video for more info on how to get rid of bubbles. )

TIPS
* Make sure your artwork is dry and dustfree before you pour on the ArtResin.  Dave explains why here.
* It’s a good idea to have your piece raised off of your work surface on support blocks. 
We like to use large pieces of Lego here at ArtResin! This allows the resin to spill down the edges without pooling at the base, which would cause your piece to stick to your work surface.
* You’ll also want to set a dropcloth over your work surface.  Fabric and paper dropcloths soak up the resin so it's best to use ArtResin’s dropcloth of choice:  a vinyl shower curtain or a large silicon mat.  ArtResin doesn't stick to plastic so clean up is as simple as peeling off the cured resin after it's dried!
* After you torch the bubbles, keep a toothpick on hand to pick out any bits of dust or hair that may have settled onto your resined piece.  
* Looking at your spread out surface in the reflection of a light really helps you see any imperfections.  Your smartphone flashlight is great for this purpose!  Dave demonstrates how in this video.
* Dave has lots of great tips to achieve a dust free environment in this video.
* Drips can be wiped away with a gloved finger while they’re still wet, but if there are any drips that dry, they can easily be sanded off.
* Wooden panels work best for large pieces rather than canvas because the wood won’t sag under the weight of the resin.


4. WAIT - ArtResin needs to sit for 24 hours in a dust-free space while it cures. 

- Put a protective covering over your resined piece ( a big cardboard box is perfect for this! ) It helps to have the covering made prior to starting to resin so it's available as soon as you finish.
- In about 8 hours it will be tacky but you will be able to pour a second coat if necessary.  In about 12 hours it will be dry to the touch.  Within 24 hours it will be 95% cured, and fully cured within 72 hours.

TIPS
- In the meantime, CLEAN UP!  Silicon mats are great to have on hand for easy clean up.  Simply wipe down all reusable tools with paper towel before the resin dries and set them on the mat for use next time.
- Tip your mixing cup upside down on the mat so the extra ArtResin will drip out.  It will leave a super thin layer on the inside of the cup that you can pull off, revealing a good-as-new mixing cup!
The silicone mat can also be used many times as the cured resin can easily be peeled off.  Try it!  :)

We hope you find these tips useful!
And don't forget ... the FAQ section of the website and our YouTube channel both have a wealth of information!  So many topics covered there including how to's, experimenting, troubleshooting and so much more!  All the information you need for a great ArtResin experience :)

Do you have a helpful tip to share?  
Or want to show off your own ArtResin'ed masterpiece?  

Then get in touch!!  We LOVE to hear from our customers!
Message us via the website's Contact page.

Until next time ...
stay creative :)


How to Get Less Emails

Posted on 24 Nov 15:23 , 0 comments

Hi. My name is David Zak and I have a problem.  

 

I have found myself stuck in a life where most of my work life is on my smartphone, desktop computer or a laptop dealing with emails. I am in a permanent exercise of trying to stay on top of emails.   It is nuts.  And it has to stop.  

 

For some background, I am an entrepreneur and artist running an online business where we sell a product that we invented direct to the end consumer, to retailers and wholesalers internationally.   I get a lot of emails!  Everyone does!  You do.  This is nuts.

Why do we want less emails?

So we can live fulfilled lives.   Self actualization.   I want more time to help others. I want to paint more, make music more, make videos just for fun.  Love my wife harder, be with my kids, work the garden properly, join a sports team, swim every day... unschool my kids!  But I seem to spend so much of life emailing.  

We are made to do so much more.

I did a lot of research, asked my business mentor during our biweekly phone call and talked with my 2 web developers about how I can spend less time emailing. This is the number 1 problem in my business life, and it effects our personal life.  

__________________

Before I get into the details, I wanted to shout out 3 people who talked with me about my email problem.

Ugur Gundogmus and Jake Bailey work with us at ArtResin on all web developing and online marketing.  They have a solution for everything.

Chris Wiersma is a longtime friend, mentor and now, bi-weekly mastermind partner. Chris married Rebecca and I barefoot on a dock.

Thank you Ugur, Jake and Chris for offering practical advise and suggestions on escaping my trap.

__________________

My mentors and the web developers both had the same answer: define the problem:

'What type of emails do you get?'

Obvious question. 

My examples may not relate directly to your inbox, but you will get the idea.

Before we begin, it is important to know that there is no single software or solution that will fix your email problem quickly.  So give up that idea.  Trust me. I searched and tested! To properly reduce your email volume, you will need to follow the process I outline below.   It is simple: Identify emails that you get In a list and then apply one of the six solutions to each one.

I use gmail but this process can be used with any email platform as they use basic tools.  

 

STEP 1:
Collect Data  (3-5 days)

For about a week, I kept a text document open on my desktop.   

On the first day I went through my current unread emails, recent archived and sent emails, spam, promotions and social.  In the text doc I started a list of types of emails.  

Examples from my list:

- Customer order confirmations
- notifications from websites or apps about updates
- reports about broken links and new content on the web
- family related emails
- billing notifications
- rotary club info
- purchase orders that the factory received
- youtube comments on videos
- payments from our online store to the bank
- personal finance summaries 
- customer reviews
- .....  and many more.  

Every day I would take just 1 or 2 minutes and review all the latest emails I got and add anything new to the text document list.  

The list turned out to have 27 line items after I was done. This list is short for me already. I am obsessed with automation.  Customer service, shipping emails and many other aspects of my business have already been handed off to capable people and process documents have been created for training.

The next step is to print off this list.  Keep a line or two between each line item for notes.   Mine printed on 3 pages.  Pick a good coffee shop,  and go out to assign one of 6 possible solution to each item. 

  

 

STEP 2:
Give each item on your list a solution that makes sense for it. 

 

Here are the 6 POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS that I came up with to choose from:

 

SOLUTION 1:

Use labels and auto filters 

If you get lots of emails that you want to have in your email archive, but don't need to actually look at, then you can easily set up a filter to give the email a label, mark it as read and archive it automatically.  When you use a label, you can use the search function in your email to pull up all emails with that label if you do need to access them.  

It's really not complicated.  Seriously.

 

This is from the Gmail website:

"Labels work like folders, but you can add more than one label to a message.

You can manage your incoming mail using Gmail’s filters to send email to a label, or archive, delete, star, or automatically forward your mail."

From my list, I got rid of a ton of inbox filler with labels and filters while not losing any emails. For example:

For Artresin (one business of mine) orders I set this up:

If the email included the subject words 'new artresin Canada order from' then the email gets labelled as 'Canadian shopify orders' marked as read and archived.  

Here is a step by step example:

 

STEP 1: Create a new filter in your settings and identify words that will be in the subject line of every email that you want to put automation rules onto

STEP 2: Make a new label that will get applied to these emails automatically when they come it.

STEP 3: Check of all other automation rules that you would like to apply to these types of email.

Another example:

Notifications of automatic website or application updates. 

If the email included the subject words 'automatically updated' then the email gets labelled as 'Updated' marked as read and archived.  

get it?  For all those emails you should keep just in case, but don't actually have to look at, try this!

 

SOLUTION 2:

Emails that you 'Need'

Mark and list items that you wouldn't want to miss as 'NEED'. 

Break down emails from people that you do need to hear from into further categories.   

On my NEED list, I get emails from my executive team, immediate family and employees, to mention a few.

Start a new text doc.   Go through each line item that you marked as NEED and write them in a text document.   Now, one by one, search each persons email and quickly scan the last 20+ emails.   You can categorize them further into types of email from each person.

This exercise will identify types of emails within your NEED category that you do not necessarily need to get.   

This next part may be awkward, but it doesn't have to be.   Reply back to the latest emails from your new list that you have identified as unnecessary.   Email back something like this:

 

"Hey, I am getting flooded with emails.  Moving forward, I don't need to be CCd on this type of email :)"

 

 

SOLUTION 3:

Adjust settings of automated reports

I get weekly summaries of new content that has certain keywords.  I also get real time notifications if a URL on a website returns with an error message for someone.   I also get summaries of our customer service response performance and many more.   

After identifying all of these reports it was clear that I would be fine with a monthly summary of many reports. 

I went into the settings one by one and changed them to monthly reports, tweaked the settings so that the data was useful, redirected the reports to someone else's email who would enjoy the data, or cancelled the reports all together.  

Why didn't I do this years ago?

 

 

SOLUTION 4:

Delegate replies and create a system for saving common replies

I have 2 ways to deal with questions from customers that reach me:

The first option is to create customer service macros that my team can access for tough questions from customers or partners and show the team the new macro.  

A macro is a saved templates answer that can be applied to repeat and common questions with one click.   We use ZenDesk for customer service, and the macro tools is fantastic!

So, when a customer issues gets raised to my email, I answer it well, and then COPY and paste my email into our customer service software as a new macro.  We also add this text to our online FAQ so that people can find info without having to email or call us.

The second option is to copy and paste a generic email message that will direct the customer to someone else that can help them just as well!

'I am no longer using this email address, please email support@ artresin.com to speak directly with an artist!'

That is just an example.  But you get the idea.

 

 

SOLUTION 5:

Label, archive and auto forward to someone else. 

I like to keep our product reviews and youtube video comments, sometimes they are nice to see!

But I just no longer have time to reply to every social media comment or enjoy every glowing review!

For example, if a youtube comment comes in, it can get labelled, marker as read, forwarded to a helper on my team and archived in my email automatically. 

Any email that has 'new youtube comment' in the subject line gets this filter applied automatically and I don't lose the message. 

Another example is anything that says 'billing notification' goes to our CFO and book keeper.  Each of these emails get labelled and archived in my own email should I even need to access them.

 

 

SOLUTION 6:

Continue to unsubscribe from things! EVERYTHING!

I only want a very small selection of newsletters.  I unsubscribe like a maniac, but time to turn the unsubscribe action into high gear.  

 

 

So those were the 6 options I had at my disposal for identifying a possible solution for each of the email types on my list.

 

 

STEP 3:

The final step is about self control and priorities.

You need to train the people around you how to treat you.   

I try to turn off my phone when I get home with my daughter if I know my wife doesn't need to reach me if she is out.   I also turn my phone off on Friday night and try to keep it off. 

This is hard to do.  But wow, you can do a lot of cool things without the ability to refresh your email.  I also refuse to get a laptop.

I could elaborate here, but this article was about reducing email volume, not lifestyle priorities.  

If you have any other idea or suggestions for how to have less email, please call me at 905 999 9941.  I really don't want your email!  Please.  

And I might not answer my phone.  

Hope this helps someone else who is feeling like I am.  It IS possible to transition into a life of less email!  

 

_______________

UPDATE #1:

Since writing this blog and working through all my emails, I am definitely noticing a change in my inbox.  I am almost nervous that I am missing something because I don't have as many things to click on!  But, everything seems to be under control.

 

Here are a few additional thoughts and updates

1) This whole process took me about 3 months.  Rebecca and I identified that we were spending all our time emailing and not doing what we were best at for our business.  And we were not happy.  So be patience and know that it takes time to change things.

 

2) Inbox PAUSE plugin works with Gmail and instals on Google Chrome.  It 'holds' incoming emails until the times that you designate it to let them all go into your inbox.  This keeps you from constantly hitting refresh. It was okay but it doesn't work on mobile so I cheated and eventually got rid of it. 

 

3) Book: Unsubscribe by Jocelyn K. Glei

This book was useful.  It mostly helps with email behaviour.  Things like being really clear and concise in your emails.  Ways to email to get the job done with as little dialog as possible while still being very human and likeable!  Worth a read if you are serious about getting out of your inbox for a while.

 

4) Analog solution for a written to do list.

This pause button folded paper goes on most evenings and on the weekend.  I have a nervous twitch that makes me reach for my to-do list the moment I feel an uncomfortable moment of inaction.  

This pause button reminds me that it is okay to stop for a while. :)  

We are a sick, sick people!

This solution will only work for a while and then change will be needed.  Solutions always need to be recreated as we adapt and bypass our own safe-guards.  Never stop changing!

 

5) Growing up, I loved seeking advise from older people.  I still do.  Experience teaching so much and can save you years of learning.  I am amazed at how many older people say something like this:

"I wish I didnt worry so much when I was younger."

The best parts of life, the ones where we truly feel alive, are the ones when we are doing things not because we have to, but just because we can.  Doing for no reason is when we all truly feel alive!

 

Onward,

 


Why ArtResin will NOT get a patent

Posted on 19 Nov 21:02 , 2 comments

We have made our firm decision. 

 

The arguments are strong from both sides.  
 
PRO-PATENT 'if we patent ArtResin, we will increase our valuation 2X and any buyer would run away if we didn't have one because we would leave them vulnerable.'
'Also, a patent protects you for 20 years until it is open for use.'
ANTI-PATENT logic says: "We don't want to show our exact formulation to anyone, with precise mixing percentages and details about the details... why would we do that?
We worked hard for it.  ArtResin is the best because we worked really hard on it.  Furthermore, this is how the chemical industry works!   You don't get a patent or you expose yourself!"
PRO-PATENT:
'But it will protect you.  That is the point of a patent'.  Someone could just copy it.  Reverse engineer it. Figure it out.' 
ANTI-PATENT:
"Go ahead and try."  
____________________________________
Rebecca and I created ArtResin because no one else had.
No one had solved the problems we solved.   
  • A WAY safer epoxy resin.  
  • A hardener that is clearer then the resin- like water! 
  • A hardener that doesn't yellow in the bottle for a very long time.
  • A cured clear epoxy resin that doesn't yellow in the knowable future under normal circumstances! - tests are ongoing.  
So if we don't have a patent for it.   That is fine.  I want to see someone else make a product like ours - so we can compete, and all push to keep improving.  
We do not live in fear of being copied because at the end of the day, when someone steals from us, we only get better.
Dreamers, Inventors, Creators and Artists!  Solve the unsolvable.  Do what other said cannot be done.  Throw off all limitations and just do it!
Make things better. And work hard to do that!   
There is no better feeling.

Is ArtResin Environmentally Responsible?

Posted on 18 Nov 09:23 , 0 comments

 

I'll be honest, I am a bit of a hippie.


My wife and I have a huge vegetable garden and we love the soil.  I am usually barefoot, and think I can communicate telepathically with my cats,  Nature is amazing and the idea that we are making and selling a product that can be damaging the planet is something that deeply disturbs our souls!



In this blog I'll share:

1) My honest, informed explanation about the epoxy resin industry and Eco friendly marketing (and also some 'greenwashing' that goes on in the industry.

2) The efforts we go to to minimize our footprint and also our best advice for proper and responsible disposal.

_______________________________________________


ArtResin is made from Petroleum. 

Period end of story.

"The word petroleum comes from the Latin petra, meaning “rock,” andoleum, meaning “oil.”  

Let's not fool ourselves.  There are all sorts of problems with petroleum extraction.  Petroleum spills and seeps into our oceans and water supplies while contaminating our soils and polluting our air.  It is at the root of many wars and keeps developed countries depending on foreign supplies.  It is essential to the production of Epoxy Resin.

Unfortunately the chemical industry is rampant with 'greenwashing' (using environmental claims as a marketing tool when they are having a net-negative impact on the planets well-being).

What can we do as a company to act responsibly?

ArtResin epoxy resin is fully reactive.   Meaning, that there is no non-reactive material in our product. 

Why is this important?  Well, if we were to go cheap, and buy materials that have fillers or diluents to stretch our materials further and make more money, there would be 'non-reactive' material in our product that evaporates into the air.

Why is non reactive material a bad thing?

Well, because when you mix the two parts together, all the non reactive stuff is either released as VOCs during the chemical reaction, or they would leech out over time.  If you put cheap epoxy resin in water, chemicals would leech out into the water.  This is not only bad for your health, but also for the air.

Once cured, ArtResin is food safe and nothing leeches out into our environment.   When mixed, no non reactive material is expelled into the air!

So that's a good thing that we pay extra for in our manufacturing process.

Here are a few other things we do to act responsibly in our business:

We clean and recycle our totes and drums.  Which is not huge cost savings and extra work.

We buy our raw materials locally as much as possible.  It is sourced in Texas, where it is mixed packaged and distributed from.  This cuts down in shipping from Taiwan where most companies get their raw materials from in this industry.    We like to support local businesses and have built a great community of hard working local suppliers.   Our packaging and shipping boxes are made just down the road.  Same with our labels and printing materials.

To be clear, epoxy resin companies that say they are environmentally friendly or use post industrial or consumer waste in their resin, really should be examined.  I urge you to call them and ask them if they are actually environmentally friendly.  If you get an honest person on the phone, you will get the truth.   The percentage of down cycled material used is very small and it is probably worse than just sourcing a local fresh supply for many reasons, including clarity and actual impact on the planet.

As a business, we have avoided saying that we are environmentally friendly, because it has never felt right.

ArtResin is made up of amazing people who love the planet and other people (especially artists!).  We are honest and this is a hard conversation to have for us because we wish we had a better answer.

The reality is that epoxy resin is made from petroleum, but we got to extra efforts at higher costs to live responsibly and set an example for our kids and customers. 

This stuff matters

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So, as a consumer and lover of ArtResin (You!), what is the most responsible way to use this product in terms of minimizing your environmental impact?

1) Do not pour the hardener side of unmixed ArtResin into the water supply. Fish don't like it.

2) If you have extra material at the bottom of each bottle, open each bottle and put one bottle upside down on top of the other one.  Have the two openings touching so that you can drain all of the one side into the other side. Wrap tape around the two at this meeting point and let it sit.   This will react all the extra material in the bottom of one bottle and you can then recycle the bottles!  No liquid material can leak out if it is all fully reacted.

3) if you have extra of only one side of the ArtResin, for example, some extra hardener in a bottle but no matching resin, then the best thing to do is take it to your local dump!  Dumps have a spot where you can drop of half empty cans of house paint and other chemicals.   Give this to them. 
 

Now, what they do with it sounds terribly, but on further research, its not as bad as it sounds.    These paint and chemical depots will often incinerate any chemicals that cant be reused in some other product or manufacturing process ( some companies take paint and re mix it for resale ).   The incinerating of chemicals is quite sophisticated and there are many filters that capture impurities so that they are not released into the air.  I am going to take a trip with my local dump to learn more about this process and I will report back!

They are very open to sharing their efforts to be environmentally friendly, so call your local dump if you want to learn more!


That's it!


ArtResin is not marketed as good for the planet because of the obvious negative effects of petroleum extraction and refining.  It would be irresponsible and dare I say 'evil' of us to nit-pick the truth and market this way.


We do our best, and will keep asking 'how can we do better?' Because we actually really do care.


If you have any concerns about anything I said here, or suggestions on ways we can do better, please contact dave@artresin.com


Go make art!


The 12 ArtResin Days of Christmas!

Posted on 17 Nov 12:54 , 0 comments

 

We are so proud to bring you ... The 12 ArtResin Days of Christmas!

Day 1 - Pallet Christmas Tree
Our first video features rustic Christmas trees that ArtResin's Dave upcycled out of old pallets we had lying around the ArtResin studio.  
Painted, distressed, coated in thick, velvety ArtResin and adorned with twinkle lights, they look absolutely magical!



Day 2 - Holiday Stencil Paintings
Today's video features ArtResin's Rebecca creating a set of holiday paintings by stencilling letters onto wooden panels with paper doily stencils.  Using a spray adhesive ( available at any art supply store ) to adhere the doily to the surface allows for easy stencil removal right after painting. 
Create your own custom stencil paintings to lend a fun & festive look to your holiday decor!



Day 3 - Snowflake Door Decor 
Today we are making a resin snowflake door decor piece!
These snowflakes will last forever! Memory saved successfully :)
Joanne is even sweet enough to teach us how to make a snowflake (incase you forgot how!)
You can hang them on the wall or in a window! Waterproof and weather proof so you can hang them outside :)

 

Day 4 - Stocking Holder Wall Piece
Do you have a fireplace Mantle? Me neither!
We screwed this old piece of barn-board (actually part of an old Ikea futon that was left outside) to the wall with hooks in it over our modern fireplace! But first, we painted it with initials of our family, and then coated it in ArtResin obviously! Careful not to light your stockings on fire. :)

 

Day 5 - Peppermint Candy Bowls
These bowls are super easy to make and with the top coat of ArtResin, should last for years and years! They are food safe and can even go in the dishwasher :) How cool is that.

 

Day 6 - Candy Serving Tray
Todays ArtResin craft is a Christmas Candy Serving Tray!
Patty saw this candy and thought: 'Those colors look like a cool winter night!'. And don't worry, ArtResin is food safe so you can put food on it and eat it and not die because the plastic leeched! So, this holiday season, poor a glass of Beaver wine, cut some cheese and marvel in your creative resin brilliance! :)

 

Day 7 - Melted Crayon Ornaments 
John and Adriana took the whole melted crayon trend to the wonderful world of christmas. With a glue gun, some chunks of crayon, a heat gun and some clear artresin, these ornaments will last forever. The best this about homemade decorations is the memory that is baked into them. Start a new tradition with your own melted crayons Christmas tree ornament collection :)

 

Day 8 - Tasty Gingerbread House
What a good idea Tracey :)  This will last forever now!  No one actually like eating it anyways :P  ArtResin is a great way to preserve special memories and lock them in time.  A new tradition will be to bring this gingerbread house out every year at Christmas.  ArtResin keep oxygen away from the food so that is will not decompose or break down.  It is waterproof, food safe and turned this craft into a ‘product’!

 
Day 9 - Reusable Christmas Gift Tags

In today's video, Tracey shows us how to make the coolest gift tags out of upcycled Christmas cards coated in a thin layer of crystal clear ArtResin! What I love most is that these tags are reusable and use old recycled Christmas cards ... or be creative and create your own - either way, you'll be reducing waste at the same time!   
Also love that a dry erase marker lets you make an easy change in case someone ends up on your naughty list at the last minute ;)



Day 10 - Glass Mosaic Trivet

Looks like Dave has finally succumbed to the holiday spirit ... or was it the holiday spirits? :)

Today, ArtResin's Rebecca shows us how to create the most beautiful Christmas trivet out of glass mosaic pieces and a mirror tile.
Use our holly design for inspiration or create your own for a beautiful family keepsake and a custom touch to your holiday home decor!

ArtResin is not only the most super crystal clear, super glossy, super hard finish to coat your art with, but did you know ... it's also the strongest glue in the world and makes the perfect adhesive for mosaic work!

Because ArtResin is non toxic when used as directed and certified safe for home use, this is a great project for the whole family!



Day 11 - Birch Tree Candle Holder

We're almost there!!
And a good thing too by the looks of it, cause Dave has finally blown his top!

In today's video, Joanne shows us how to make the most beautiful tealight holders out of firewood logs from the garden center.

And why resin them, you ask?

Well, not only does it give the wood a dark, rich holiday lustre, but it also makes these tealight holders weatherproof and perfect for outdoor use!

Using LED tealights will add a gorgeous warmth to your outdoor holiday decor,
and you can use them year after year without any fear of the wood rotting.
In fact, resin is such a good waterproofing agent that it's used commercially to protect the underside of boats from water damage.

How cool is that?

Day 12 - Barnboard Christmas Countdown!

Awwww ... turns out Dave loves Christmas after all

In the last video of our 12 ArtResin Days of Christmas series, Joanne shows us how to make a vintage inspired sign out of old wood, paint and transfer paper.
The BEST part is that by applying a coat of shiny, clear ArtResin, the sign becomes a whiteboard you can use with a dry erase marker to count down the days until Christmas or any other special event ... a birthday, birth of a baby, wedding date etc.

See? ArtResin makes everything better



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 We've had SO much fun creating this 12 part video series featuring fun & easy holiday craft ideas using non-toxic, non-yellowing, non-toxic ArtResin - and we hope you have just as much fun watching them! 

Our hope is for these videos to inspire and spark creativity for you and yours this holiday season ... or at the very least, to make you smile :)

Did you create something based on one of our 12 ArtResin Days of Christmas videos?  Please share with us at gallery@artresin.com ... we LOVE to see our customers' work!!  

Stay tuned to our YouTube channel to catch more fun & inspiring videos from the ArtResin crew:  bit.ly/arytsub