Archive for November, 2012

Industry News

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Super Storm Sandy Devastates the East Coast

Mantoloking, NJ

We have received many reports of the impact Super Storm Sandy had on our customers in the New York and New Jersey areas. There are no art supply store personnel casualties that we are aware of, but here is a brief recap of what we’ve heard so far. In New York City, Lee’s Art ShopDaVinci Art SupplyFashion Books, and Art Student’s League were closed for the week of November 22nd. AI Friedman in Port Chester, NY suffered connectivity problems after power was restored. Allegheny Art in Newtown, PA was closed thru last Thursday. Art Leaque in Alexandria, VA was closed for three days. Merion Art in Ardmore, PA and Sullivan’s in Washington DC were closed for two days.  Storm destruction in Red Bank, NJ has kept Colorest closed as of this posting. Michaels’ New York area stores were hit hard. Up to 200 were temporarily closed and one store in Queens had extensive water damage. General Pencil’s Weissenborn family’s home on the Jersey shore in Mantoloking, NJ built in the 1800’s was miraculously left intact in a neighborhood that suffered near total destruction. As usual after a natural disaster, we at MacPherson’s are matching our employees’ Red Cross donations up to a total  $2,500.

Rachel Nee

It is with sadness that we report Rachel Nee is leaving MacPherson’s after a successful ten year career in Purchasing. She will be moving to Taiwan to help out with
a family medical need. Rachel’s most recent role has been as our Inventory Planning Manager where she set an industry standard with a company-wide 95% fill rate. We will miss your positive spirit, top quality contribution and can-do attitude, Rachel! Interested candidates should respond to our Linkedin posting at: Linkedin Classified.

ColArt Americas‘, Sandi Dinehart, a chain accounts manager based in the Dallas, TX area, will be leaving to start a new entrepreneurial chapter in her life. Barry Davis will be taking over her responsibilities. For now Barry’s current job as Field Sales Director will be filled by Doug Ahrens.

John Irwin

In related news, independent rep John Irwin has announced he will be retiring at the end of December. John’s non-Caribbean Florida and Georgia ColArt customers will be served by Denver-based sales pro Craig Schottenstein.

We recently fielded a request from Montana in Germany for some spray cans needed by the world famous urban artist duo (and members of the renowned Montana Writer’s Team) Herakut. This talented team planned to paint a mural on a school’s 30’x 80′ wall in the Mission District of San Francisco. Last week while reading our Facebook feed, we noticed the mural was  featured on Flax SF’s page. It turns out the school’s wall adorns Flax’s back parking lot. File that one under “it’s a small world”!



Speedball Art Products has acquired the Akua line of professional printmaking inks and accessories. Created by New York-based master printer Susan Rostow and William Jung, Akua is a line of water-based non-toxic of printmaking inks uniquely formulated to always stay wet on the printing plate, allowing for maximum flexibility in working time. Susan Rostow will join Speedball as a consultant focused on product development, artist relations, development of instructional videos and guides, and demonstrations representing the Akua and Speedball brands.

The popular Google Doodle feature on the Google homepage got an artsy twist on October 29th in honor of what would have been Bob Ross’ 70th birthday (The beloved painter and TV personality passed away in 1995).

Newell Rubbermaid, parent of Sanford, maker of Sharpie and Prismacolor, plans to cut more than 1,900 jobs, or about 10 percent of its worldwide workforce, over the next two and a half years. The consumer products company said in late October that all savings from the job cuts will be reinvested into growing its brands globally and adding new sales capabilities in emerging markets. Newell Rubbermaid also said that its business will be restructured under two groups, a development organization and a delivery organization. For a more nuanced and detailed explanation of Newell Rubbermaid’s reorganization click here: Newell Rubbermaid Plan

In a move to  reinforce its market position in Germany, Daler-Rowney has announce the acquisition of the  Lukas and Nerchau brands from the shareholding of a Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld in Dusseldorf and Nerchau, Germany.

After a long fight, Debbie Eichen, sister of Plaza Art’s Steve Kaplan, passed away on October 22nd. Our sincere condolences to the Kaplan and Fischer families. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Manetto Hill Jewish Center c/o Debbie Eichen Memorial Fund,  244 Manetto Hill Road, Plainview, NY 11803.

The 2012 Prismacolor Merchandising Contest winners have been chosen! Retailers had to create a Prismacolor products display as an end-cap, front of store stack out, window display or other creative merchandising arrangement that prominently displays the brand and makes a big statement to the consumer. The merchandising effort had to remain in place throughout the BTS selling season.  The top three submissions receive gift cards; $1,000 to the winner, $750 for the runner up and $500 to the third place finisher.  The winners are:

1st Place:  The Prismacolor Factory “Fresh from the Factory to the Store”, submitted by Jerry’s Artarama, Houston, TX

2nd Place: Dare to be Different, submitted by Jerry’s Artarama, Deerfield Beach, FL

3rd Place: King Kong, submitted by Blick Art Materials, Beverly, CA


1st place winner

2nd place winner

3rd place winner

Arnold Grummer, Crafting industry pioneer and creator of a line of papermaking kits at Greg Markim, Inc. passed away in early October. He was 89 years old.

Wet Paint Art Supplies in Tempe, AZ will be closing at the end of November after 11 years in business. Their lease is ending and owner Jessica Jordan and family decided not to renew.

Check out this very cool new “Ultra Wide” Montana Cans Spray. Make a note that it will be in stock in all the MacPherson’s DC’s by mid December:

Grumbacher Academy Oil Reintroduction

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Announcing the reintroduction of Grumbacher Academy Oil paints. 

  • 45 colors in 37 ml tubes 18 colors in 150 ml – a wide spectrum of colors with a minimum number of SKUs
  • 17 exciting new colors (dropped 2 colors, so total is now 45)
  • A new contemporary look for the tubes and display
  • All colors have an ASTM lightfast rating of 1 Excellent – students and professionals alike can use Academy oils with confidence, knowing they will stand the test of time
  • The colors in the Academy oil line have been crafted to maintain their Chroma better than other student brands when diluted, providing predictable and more stunning colors when mixed

The System

Virtually every color in the Academy Oil line is a collegiate version of a Pretested color (though not necessarily the same pigments.) Grumbacher’s system of color and product numbering allows a student to graduate to a professional grade with a full understanding of their color palette. For example,  T168 (Academy Prussian Blue) is the same  hue as P168G (Pretested Prussian Blue) in mass tone.  Artists tend to evolve to professional colors a color at a time.  They don’t just throw out the student color and buy a whole new line.  This system helps them with the transition.
Note that, with the exception of the colors which contain heavy metal pigments, all Academy numbers follow this system. Also, note that Pretested has a significantly higher pigment load and superior tinting strength.

Price Points and important 150ml size

  • Value is important, as long as the product does not exceed key price points
  • Grumbacher offers 45 colors in 37ml tubes at a price point of $6.75
  • Grumbacher offers 18 colors in 150ml tubes at a price point of $15.10 while still providing a value savings on a per milliliter basis of 25% to 35%
  • Competitive products have, or will soon exceed, a $20.00 price point with their value tubes (And Grumbacher’s research suggests that at $20.00/tube, students have a significant resistance to buying)
  • “New” Academy Oil assortments are offered at 50/35%, with free rack and free freight

Ignite a Life Long Love of Art with Strathmore® 100 Series Youth

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Strathmore® believes providing artist-quality materials to kids is the best way to nurture talent and ignite a life long love of art. 100 Series Youth is now part of the Strathmore quality series of fine art papers. Designed for ages 5 and up, 100 Series Youth paper types and product features have been selected to enhance the creative process.

Specially marked 100 Series Youth pads and packages include two project ideas printed on the inside front cover. These educational, inspirational projects were created by Art Projects for Kids: “Classroom Tested Art Projects for K-5 and Beyond” and include:
• easy to follow instructions
• step-by-step images that appeal to a variety of ages
• materials needed
• appropriate age range
• project time

Colorful new packaging features inspiring artwork and QR codes allow instant access to product information and project ideas. An online gallery displays twenty different  project ideas. Visit 100 Series Project Gallery to learn more.

Exciting new merchandising display options include recommended assortments and cross-merchandising opportunities, displays and signage. See Strathmore Displays Site for complete information.

New 100 Series Youth begins shipping from MacPherson’s in early December as part of the Winter Back to School promotion. Learn how to increase the productivity of your retail space by contacting your MacPherson’s sales representative today.

Sanford Product News

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Announcing the Prismacolor 2012 Consumer Holiday Rebate! Offer good on purchases made between November 23, 2012 and January 26, 2013. Consumer will print rebate coupon from or Dealer website and mail completed form in order to claim rebate. Tiered rebate levels are listed below.  Please contact your MacPherson’s sales representative for access to web assets.

Sharpie Brush Tip

Sharpie launched its brush tip in June of this year and this new and exciting product has been a fantastic addition to the Sharpie product portfolio. Here’s an example of how Enrico Miguel Thomas uses the new Sharpie brush tip markers to create magnificent works of art on maps. Based in Brooklyn, Enrico uses subway maps as his primary canvas, and in doing so, he creates a style — a genre, even — all his own. Maps become the drawing paper that allows him to express his unique perspective, including the incredible and inspiring views of cities that capture his imagination.