How the Petite Canvas collection came to be thanks to YOU

We made it.
It feels like years since my last shop release. And this time I decided to give you a little insight behind the process. This collection (the Petite Canvas collection, of course) is unique in particular because it was driven by my traditional style and fueled by each of you.
Let me explain.

The Petite Canvas collection was inspired by the idea of taking my traditionally large-scale paintings and shrinking them down for the beginning collector and everyday home. I realized after doing this professionally now for two years not everyone has a 30-foot wall in need of a massively bold painting. Weird, I know. And not that I’m here to say I make work for the people. I make work for myself first and foremost (and you should be doing this too!) But it’s also important to extend some market research, ask questions, put yourself out there, try new things and fill the voids within your niche if possible.

So.
One day over the summer I threw out some questions on social media asking about sizes, surface, and what my collectors wanted to see more of. To my surprise, the answer was not more paper but canvas! And tiny canvases… yikes. You guys know me, I love to paint large-scale. It literally makes my heart leap out of my chest. Maybe it’s because I’m tall (5’10” and still growing like a weed) or maybe it’s the grandeur of it all… but I wasn’t completely thrilled with the poll’s outcome. Yes, you heard me. I was dreading fulfilling your dreams of these small paintings.

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Fun fact: I did not paint on stretched canvas until this year. I’ve tried 1,000 times and always loathed it. Why? Because of the bounce and the grit. And yes, I tried everything under the sun to combat these two driving factors of my resentment. But I was a wood panel gal, tried and true, for years. And paper of course. So after my glorious market research (aka a few slides of polls on my Instagram story) I am now hit with a double whammy — small scale AND canvas. But hell, I couldn’t be mad at any of you! I put the questions out there on purpose because I wanted the truth, not just my version of the truth. Does that make sense?

So now it was time to get to work! It’s funny, I actually had bags of small canvases tucked around the studio for months and I tried to give them away multiple times. But the universe had other plans in store…

One August day in the thick of my commission season, just settling in to my new studio, I stopped to take a quick break. It was time to refuel on some coffee, take a little walk around the room, stretch, all of that ‘get the blood and brain flowing again’ kind of stuff. From my previous post on commissions, you guys know where I stand. It’s a total love-hate. And this day in particular was leaning sliiiiiiiightly more towards hate. So I take a look around the studio and this little bag from Sam Flax catches my eye — the white bag full of mini canvases. I quickly walked over to the bag, ripped off all of the plastic from the canvases methodically one-by-one, cleared off my work table of everything commission related and began to paint these small canvases. And I couldn’t stop painting. It was like this bizarre, tranquil trance that took on like wildfire.

But truly, I was just having fun painting small canvases and didn’t realize it at the time.

I painted on these small canvases for days straight, arranging and rearranging them in different groupings. I adored them! I went to Sam Flax and bought bags more of tiny canvases. I still have these bags sitting in my studio for the next ah-ha! moment like this. I finished this collection with so much gratitude and growth. It was so interesting. I made a complete 180 on my feelings towards these paintings. What previously had symbolized defeat and negativity quickly shifted in adoration towards the concept of translating a big idea into something so small, so intimate.

I think that’s what I love about the Petite Canvas collection so much is that it was never about the final product… it was always about the process.
It is ALWAYS about the process.
I cherish this collection because it taught me patience and triumph over stubbornness. These 20 paintings taught me I am still growing and learning and all the while I was creating something of value for the cherished collectors in my life. It was a total win-win-win.


So to sum things up the Petite Canvas collection is dedicated to:

The nursing student with a 500 sq. ft. apartment starting their first round of rotations.
The fresh graduate who just moved to the city, new apartment, new possibilities, and an eagerness to fill their space with beautiful things.
The mom-of-4 who has a tightish budget and amazing taste in art.
The best friend who is trying to find that perfect ‘thank you’ gift for her new boss at the office.
The stepdad who really wants to get his daughter something special for the holidays because she’s going off to college and this is all just so new to him.

This collection was called for and inspired by YOU. Real people. My only hope is that each of you who receive this work in your home create a fond memory around it. I want these tiny canvases of joy to greet you like an old friend when you walk in the door. I want you to feel the love and care that was put in to each and every one of them and know how very special you are for owning a part of this journey!
Phew. It’s a wild ride my friends. Thank you for tagging along.

Xx, Allison