5 Things To Change for a Greener Studio

5 Things To Change for a Greener Studio

Earth Day arrives every year on April 22nd, inspiring mindfulness and gratitude for our precious Earth! There are many simple ways that you can celebrate Earth Day in your own home, workspace, or art studio and make a small change that has a large impact!

Here's a list of 5 things you can change in your art studio to eliminate toxins in the environment and your body, to reduce waste, and bring healing to the Earth.

1. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle!

These three actions are crucial to protecting Mother Earth in your art studio - reduce your ecological footprint by:

Before throwing out scraps, take a step back and see what you can create with them; trash can be turned into treasure! By re-using fabrics (any sturdy fabric - even bed sheets - can be primed and painted on, not just canvas) or priming and painting over old paintings, you can start fresh without wasting new materials. Reduce waste by purchasing materials conservatively, getting just enough material to complete each project. 

If you do need to dispose of toxic supplies, it's important to dispose of them correctly; improperly disposed materials can harm our water supply and soil. Call your local recycling center for tips on how to dispose of hazardous paints and solvents without introducing harmful chemicals into the environment. Every town has a hazardous waste collection site, and a quick Google search will help you find it.

2. Switch to Eco-Solve and Keep Re-cycling it!

The most hazardous oil painting supply to your health is Odorless Mineral Spirits and most artist solvents. It releases carcinogens like benzene into the air which is absorbed into your bloodstream through your skin, eyeballs and lungs and can cause major health issues including cancer and death. We highly recommend ridding your studio of toxic solvents as soon as you can, since they're likely the most dangerous material you own. As an alternative, use can use vegetable oils to wash brushes, thin paints, and clean skin or switch to Eco-Solve for paint thinning (under-paintings, washes, drips, brush cleaning, and brush restoring), Refined Walnut Oil for paint thinning and brush cleaning, and Pinerite Natural Hand Cleaner.

To re-cycle your Eco-solve: after jar of ecosolve is muddy with paint sediment, let it sit with the lid on for a few days to a week. The paint sediment will fall to the bottom. Pour the clean Ecosolve carefully into another jar to re-use. Wipe out the sediment with a paper towel and through in trash.

3. Reduce Energy Costs in Your Studio

Lighting is central to artists' creative processes. Using natural lighting is the most environmentally-friendly choice, so try painting outside for a change, or en plein aire! If you're feeling crafty, you can also install an affordable solar tube skylight in your studio, which takes about an hour (but is so worth your time!). If you can't work with natural light, swap your lightbulbs for halogen bulbs, CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) or LEDs (light emitting diodes), which are more energy-efficient than standard bulbs. 

And, of course, we can't forget sustainable energy sources; if you're able to install solar panels, you can receive credits and rebates, and if you want an eco-friendly heating and cooling system, you can install ductless heat pumps, which is the most energy-efficient method available today. Natural Earth Paint's facilities run exclusively off of solar-power!

4. Switch Out Toxic Art Supplies

Not sure how to start? Switch to toxin-free, natural supplies to keep both yourself and the planet safe.

If you're an oil painter, try The Complete Eco-friendly Oil Paint Kit

Watercolorist? Try our Natural Watercolor Kit

Acrylic Painter try out our new Natural Acrylik Paints

Gouache Painter? Natural Watercolor Kit + Natural Impasto Medium

And if you're a multimedia artist looking for all kinds of supplies, we carry everything you need, from natural adhesive to versatile earth and mineral pigments to eco-friendly glitter. There's no limit to what you can create naturally! 

5. Do Away with Petrochemicals

Lastly, petrochemicals, or chemicals obtained from petroleum and natural gas, are extremely damaging to the environment. Did you know that acrylic paint is essentially liquid plastic, made from petroleum and carcinogenic additives? Swap your conventional acrylics for our Natural Acrylik Medium or Natural Acrylik Paints to cut plastic out of your painting process. Glues often contain plastics, too; try our Methyl Cellulose (Natural Adhesive) for a plastic-free adhesive. 

Our planet is an outstanding place to live, and the reality is, there is no Planet B. As Earth Day approaches, let's give back however we can to protect our one-and-only Mother Earth; even the simplest actions add up to make a huge difference. Happy Earth Day!

Interested in more Natural Earth Paint tips, tutorials, and techniques? Visit our Tips page!
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