Category Archives: Blog


Our fantastic board of directors steers our nonprofit, and we are currently seeking to fill empty positions.  No matter your skill set or trade, if you have a passion for community and the arts, we would love to have you sit at the table with us.

• Up to 8 hours of your time a month (includes monthly meeting)
• Ability to afford the JAM VIP Membership ($25/month, or $250 one-time annually)

Drop off or email us an APPLICATION at We can’t wait to hear from you!


Mixed media journaling is a great way to stay busy (and creative) while school is out.

Looking for a low cost, easy way to promote creativity in your child over the summer months? Mixed media art journaling is a great, low-pressure and therapeutic option that allows your child to find his or her own voice, document memories, express ideas, spur dialogue, even tune fine motor skills.

Building the base of your child’s journal can be as simple as picking up a notebook or book with blank pages from the bookstore, or as in-depth as binding your own using repurposed paper materials. If you are feeling ambitious, Pinterest has a lot of ways to build and bind your own journal.

The fun part about mixed media journaling is that there are no rules! So, how your child chooses to keep their journal is up to them. It can be as minimal as writing a sentence or quote, drawing a picture or cutting and pasting. The site is a fun place to find writing prompts, or a question-of-the-day to get them started. These can also provide great dinnertime conversation.

Use of various writing/drawing materials can increase a variety of sensory experiences, as well as allow them to creatively explore. From crayons to pencils to markers, even watercolors, pastels and chalk; the sky is the limit. Do note, if you choose to use materials like Sharpies or paints that have a tendency to bleed through, make sure the paper stock is more heavy duty.

Let them get creative with their materials. Encourage them to think outside the box by using photos, cutting pictures or words from magazines, adding found items like pressed flowers or leaves, or incorporating stickers or stamps.

Recap the day with some journal time before or after dinner, document summer travels, fill waiting time…whatever it may be, an art journal is easy to transport, cheap to make, and fun to look back on together.

CFA: RFP for Downtown Yankton Art Alleyway Project

Calling all Artists!

The Meridian District Board of Directors  and the Art Alleyway committee is seeking proposals for the design and installation of a mural in the alleyway located in the Meridian District in Downtown Yankton, South Dakota, located between the blocks of Walnut and Douglas Street on the Northside of 3rdStreet.

Please see the attached RFP for additional details.

RFP for Merdian District Artwork


5PM | August 1, 2018

Ashli Danilko | 605-660-9821

CFA: 42nd Annual Fine Arts Exhibit

42nd Annual Fine Arts Exhibit and Deadline Announced


The Brookings Arts Council is excited to release the Call for Art for the 42nd Annual Fine Arts Exhibit in early August. The rules and entry forms for Fine Arts Exhibit and Competition are now available online and at the Brookings Arts Council. We always look forward to seeing the art submitted to this exhibit as it is always amazing!

This annual exhibit is open to residents of South Dakota, 18 and older. All media, with the exception of photography, are eligible. There is a limit of two pieces per artist and the work must have been completed within the past two years. The entry fee is $20.00 per piece with cash prizes awarded to the top four pieces.

The deadline for entering is Friday, July 27th at 5 pm and the exhibit will officially open August 1st. The artists’ reception will be held Thursday, August 2nd from 4:30 to 6:30pm with awards being presented starting at 5pm.

The Brookings Arts Council is open Tuesdays through Saturdays, Noon to 5. There is no admission charge. For more information or copies of the form, contact 605-692-4177, email at , stop in at 524 4th Street in Brookings or check the website at

June Life Drawing Sessions

Downtown Figure Drawing
(Corner of 6th & Main)

6:30-9:00 pm
Easels provided
Limited space—send a reply to RSVP!
6/12 – TBD
6/19 – Nude Figure (Haley)
6/26 – Nude Figure (Marcus)


by Lucy Chambers
JAM Contributing Writer

Pablo Picasso once said: “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” Art is one of life’s greatest gifts and becomes an even greater blessing when it can be shared with others. South Dakota is known for its rich art history, and given the fact that it was, until recently, home to renowned US artist Terry Redlin, it is no surprise that the state’s annual calendar is filled with a host of popular arts and culture-related events and festivals. An art event that is well organized will leave a lasting impression, potentially turning visitors into lifelong customers. The following guidelines will help you plan an event of your own that is bound to be remembered by everyone who attended for a very long time.

Get your team together

One thing every event organizer needs is a good team. The size of your team will be determined by the scope of your event and can consist of colleagues, friends, family members and even members of your local community. Brainstorm as many ideas as possible with your team, bouncing concepts off each other. Turning to your community for assistance could be of great benefit to you. Not only are people more likely to support an event that values their input, but you might come across some extremely talented creatives that could add potential value to your event.

Choose your venue

The venue you ultimately choose will depend on what type of event you are wanting to host. A gallery space will be ideal for an intimate art exhibition, while a larger area such as a community hall or even an outdoor space will be more suited to a large-scale arts and crafts festival. If your budget doesn’t allow for you to rent an upmarket space, don’t be disheartened. A storage unit, garage or even your local pub can, with some creativity and effort, easily be transformed into a mesmerizing setting that will do your event justice.

Source some talent

Every event needs a well-known artist to draw people in. If you are not planning on being the anchor artist yourself, reach out to someone who will be able to attract a crowd. Even if you are planning a large event with numerous contributors, you still need a ‘big name’ that will garner interest. If people see a list of unknown names on a flyer, they will more than likely toss it in the bin. If they see a well-known person’s name, though, chances are good that they will make a concerted effort to support your event. If your town/city does not feature any artists that you believe will draw a large crowd, start searching further afield, but remember to compensate for the added expenses in your budget.

Advertise, advertise, advertise

Unless you are planning to hold an ‘invite only’ event, you are going to have to do extensive advertising to ensure that your event is well-attended and that you make a profit at the end of it. Sending personal invites to key players in your community is a nice gesture and is bound to raise their opinion of you. As for the general public, make sure you come up with a creative and super-effective advertising campaign that fits the feel of your event. Apart from the actual event itself, marketing and promotion is usually the most fun-filled aspect as you can really let your creativity shine through. Design posters and flyers, place ads in your local newspaper and don’t ever forget the power of social media marketing. Cleverly-worded Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram posts can go a long way in attracting attention to your event and you should utilize its power as much as you possibly can.

While all of the above guidelines are extremely important when organizing an arts event, the most important thing to remember is to have fun.  Allow yourself enough time to plan your event to the best of your ability, making provision for last-minute hiccups. With a solid plan and industrious preparation, your event is bound to be a huge success, even if a few last-minute gremlins do creep in.

Lucy Chambers is a professional freelance writer with many years experience across a variety of sectors. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job, and loves the work-life balance it offers her.

How to Create Your Ideal Artist Space

by Lucy Chambers
JAM Contributing Writer

Whether you have just moved into a new home or just want to make some renovations in your existing one, an artist space is a priority. While it may seem that any desk or hard surface that can be placed at an angle will work, that’s not usually the truth. In order to really get your creative juices going, you need a space that caters to artistic freedom and creativity. That usually means a space that has your supplies organized and is inspiring, comfortable and provides lots of wonderful light. Read on to learn more.

Organize and Inspire

It’s hard to get in the groove and be creative when you have to keep stopping to search for needed supplies. It’s frustrating and saps away your energy.  Get rid of any clutter and bring in shelves, cabinets, and other storage solutions to organize your desk stationery, paper, drawing tools and other art supplies. Your space should also be inspiring and make you happy. Paint the walls your favorite colors, put your favorite photos and artworks on the wall, and add any other personal touches that you love, such as a small plant or some inspirational quotes. The happier you are in your space, the more your creative juices will flow.

Your space also needs to be comfortable. Make sure your desk is at a comfortable level and can be adjusted as needed. A drafting desk would be ideal. Don’t skim on your chair either; you’ll be spending a lot of time in it, so make sure it’s comfortable and supportive. Buy the best you can afford. You’ll also want to make sure your space is warm in the winter and cool in the summer. If it’s not, you’ll avoid using it, and that limits your creativity.


There are few things more important to making good art than light. If your space is dark and dreary, it’ll be difficult to come up with creative ideas and they may not look right when you get them down on paper. Your space should have a good source of natural light from more than one direction. North and south exposures are best as they’ll give you consistent light all day. If you need to supplement, use lamps like Ott Lights, which simulate natural day light. Florescent lighting is too harsh and incandescent too yellow.

Having a drawing space you love to be in will pay off big time. You’ll be happier, more creative and more productive. All you have to do is remember organization, comfort, light and inspiration and you’re on your way to a perfect art space.

Lucy Chambers is a professional freelance writer with many years experience across a variety of sectors. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job, and loves the work-life balance it offers her.





WHAT:  PAve Bar presents “Creations & Libations,” a craft and raffle fundraiser benefitting local arts nonprofit, JAM Art & Supplies. Sorry kids, this is ADULTS  ONLY.

$25 includes admission into the upstairs event, 3 Free Drink Tickets* and 2 Make-and-Take Crafts. Buy Pre-sale admission to receive a free raffle ticket.

Join us at 1:00 p.m. Crafting will begin at 1:15 p.m., with Woven Wall Art. Starting at 3:00 p.m., you’ll have the opportunity to learn how to make a DIY Notebook (or sketchbook, if you’re crafty like that).

Raffle tickets will be for sale throughout the event. Art, prizes, and craft baskets will be raffled off at 3:30 p.m. Must be present to win!

*Free Drink Tickets exclude top-shelf liquors and doubles.

WHEN:  Saturday, June 2, 1 PM – 4:30 PM

WHERE: Pave(Upstairs)
130 S Phillips Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57104



About JAM Art & Supplies
JAM is a 501 (c)(3) art nonprofit in downtown Sioux Falls with the mission to get art and craft supplies into the hands of people who will use them, to create an online community for artists, and to be a source of information for the Sioux Falls arts community.


by Lucy Chambers
JAM Contributing Writer

If you cannot draw, it just means you haven’t learned yet! Learning to draw is about mindset, practice, and joy. It is one of those wonderfully rewarding activities that does not discriminate by age or location. Drawing can be engaged in anywhere, by anyone. There are a few things that you need to get started.

The artistic mindset

The 2.1 million paid artists in the United States all started somewhere. Luckily, in the virtual age that we live in, we have access to online tutorials and blog posts that sole purpose is to help with some aspect of improvement. Anyone can learn to create thoughtful portraits or stunning sunsets. Many people start by accessing a comprehensive site that shows them step by step how to complete a specific task – like a clear tutorial on drawing curly hair. Then they progress on to adding color and creating a design. Following a tutorial shows you that you can achieve when you are drawing; that is the beginning step to building your artistic mindset.

Use your mind differently

One step to learning to draw is to harness the power of your mind to achieve a calm, concentrated state. A creative zone can be created by your mind, and it is what professor Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi calls ‘flow’. He states that a feeling of flow leads to a ‘loss of inner-critic’. When you use your mind to create flow when you are drawing, you can engage more fully in the creative process, and your mind often rewards you by releasing dopamine, which is a chemical that makes you feel good. Therefore, step number one to creating flow is to turn off the mobile phone – or eliminate distractions. Next, you must work on a piece of drawing that is at the right skill level for you. Aiming for something too ambitious too soon will not achieve flow and will, instead, plunge your brain into anxiety, where you may become distracted and even bored.

The creative mind needs a team

Learning to draw sounds like something that needs to be solitary. In actual fact, you may respond better if you are surrounded by like- minded people, building a sense of community and engaging in the same creative task. Drawing with your children, your grandmother and even your date can keep your spirits high, and they can sometimes celebrate success where you are slow to see it yourself. Some people have found that organizing craft or drawing parties softens their entry into the creative scene and makes the experience accessible for all.

Anyone can learn to draw. With a continually developing mindset that sets you up for success, and a community to support you, it can be a truly joyous all-encompassing activity. Why not get started today?

Lucy Chambers is a professional freelance writer with many years experience across a variety of sectors. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job, and loves the work-life balance it offers her.

Federal arts funding spared in budget bill

Once again, federal funding for the arts has been spared.

The $1.3 trillion budget signed Friday by President Donald Trump continues support for the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities and other agencies he sought to eliminate.

It’s the second straight year Congress restored funding in response to Trump’s calls for ending such programs as the NEH, the NEA and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The money is used for everything from scholarly research to local theater productions.

The NEH and NEA each will receive $3 million increases, to just under $153 million per agency. The CPB’s budget was kept the same, at $465 million. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is getting a $9 million increase, to $240 million.

via KSFY. To view more, click here.