Studio Protector Blog

COMING SOON: Two Become One

It's been a while since we've posted, because we're ramping up to launch our new website!

That's right, and will become one new mega-site.

What changes will you see?

  • More instructional videos to help you prepare for emergencies
  • More interviews with artists
  • Easier, quicker ways to find the information you need to protect your career
  • A cleaner, visually compelling style: more graphics, less text
  • More ways to connect and network with other artists

Stay tuned for more updates!

Jenifer Simon
Director of Programs and Comminications

Author: Created: Monday, May 16, 2011 RssIcon
Preparedness tips for artists from the Studio Protector: The Artist's Guide to Emergencies
By Tip of the Month on Friday, October 21, 2016

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) recently reported that nearly half of Americans are exposed to potentially damaging earthquakes. This is up from approximately a quarter of Americans estimated by USGS in 2006. The change is primarily due to population shifts and more accurate estimates of earthquake hazards.

Even if you live in state with little risk of earthquake, there is still a possibility that you could be traveling in an area with higher risk when an earthquake strikes. If you are, remember to...(more)

By Tip of the Month on Tuesday, September 20, 2016
Chip Greenberg

7 Water Damage Prevention Tips from CERF+

Even relatively small amounts of water can cause a lot of damage. As artists in Louisiana and other states are cleaning up and rebuilding after recent floods, and an active hurricane season continues, we are reminded that disasters--big and small--involve water. A broken pipe, a damaged roof, or the water from putting out even a small fire can have similar devastating consequences for your artwork..

Here are a few steps to help protect your artwork from water and moisture damage: Read more.
By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Volunteer labor is a critical part of clean-up and salvage after a disaster and a few useful tips will help you make the most of them. 

Whether the volunteers are from an established emergency response agency that trains their volunteers or are friends and family members, or strangers who show up spontaneously, it will be important for you to be organized so you can make effective and efficient use ...more

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Myths may lie dormant as if made of stone, but when disaster erupts, they’ll come down on you like a ton of bricks! Knowledge is power and it can help you keep your monster at bay.


Myth: Damage, losses, or injuries related to my show booth will be covered by the show producer’s insurance policy.

Event insurance purchased by an art show or festival’s producer protects them (not the exhibitors) against lawsuits, claims made related to injury to others, and property damage to the premises...more

By Tip of the Month on Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Criminals have struck again

Last month California jewelry artists lost their inventories in two separate thefts. Deborah and Kevin Healy of Healy Designs had their jewelry stolen from their van when they stopped at a restaurant after a show. In a separate incident, Laurie Lehman of Floral Jewels lost her jewelry while she packed her car after a show. These are devastating losses, and it will take many months for the artists to create a new inventory base for their shows.

“We, jewelry artists, need to remember that traveling to shows is inherently dangerous. We must be very mindful as we move our work about.” -- Deborah and Kevin Healy...more

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Emergencies are traumatic for animals as well as humans. If you are responsible for any animals in your life, take steps now to keep them safe during an emergency.

Use the resource listing below for more complete pet preparedness tips from organizations such as the Humane Society, American Red Cross, and, but here are the basic steps for including animals in your emergency planning...more

By Tip of the Month on Monday, April 18, 2016

MayDay is the day of preparedness in the cultural community!

To celebrate, CERF+ urges every artist and arts organization to cook up at least one thing to do now through May to be better prepared for an emergency. To make it easy, here are some suggestions:...more


By Tip of the Month on Thursday, February 25, 2016

Good business and art records are a better way to go.

Are your business and art records well organized? Are they stored in a safe place? Relying on your memory or a haphazard system for storing records may create problems at any time, but when an emergency occurs, it can be especially problematic....more

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Now that we are into the new year, it’s a good time to review your business insurance. Make sure you understand the scope of your coverage. Is it only liability coverage or only property coverage, or is it a business owner’s plan with both? If there are known gaps in coverage due to cost, understand what they are and make an alternate plan...more

By Tip of the Month on Thursday, November 19, 2015 photo

December is FEMA Winter Weather Preparedness Month. Whether it's an easy winter or a hard one, there always seems to be at least one big storm--or a long stretch of frigid temperatures. With a bit of advance preparation, you can reduce the risk of damage or loss from winter storms and/or a power outage at your studio and home. But don't worry! We'll tell you how.

To begin preparing, you should have: 

  • A home emergency supplies kit.

  • Some emergency cash on hand. Stores may not be able to accept anything else and nearby ATMs may not be functioning ... more

By Tip of the Month on Friday, October 23, 2015
Photo by Gunjan Karun

Cyber criminals want to hold your art business files for ransom.

"Ransomware continues to spread and is infecting devices around the globe." FBI Public Service Announcement June 23, 2015

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a malicious type of software that restricts access to your computer files or your smartphone or tablet until you pay a ransom (usually around $300). The FBI reports that individuals and businesses lose millions of dollars every year to this type of malware, either by paying the ransoms and/or dealing with lost files and other technical clean-up...more

By Tip of the Month on Monday, September 28, 2015

California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington have seen a large number of fires this summer, including the Valley and Butte fires that caused loss of life and destroyed over a thousand homes in California.

Even if you don’t live in a wildfire prone area, it’s important to have emergency plans for quickly exiting your home and studio.

“The day the fire started, we had only minutes to escape.” Dave Warren, ceramic artist, reported following the 2011 Bastrop, TX fire.

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Myth monsters don’t just lurk in the shadows or under the cover of darkness, too grotesque for the light of day. Sometimes they’re hidden in plain sight, disguised as an average Joe or Josephine. Learn how to protect yourself from the monsters in your midst.  

Myth: My artwork is too unique for a thief to resell

What makes it a Monster:

  • Any artwork and any artist can be a thief’s target.

  • If you use precious gems and metals, then reselling the artwork is not an issue for the thief. The metal will likely be melted down and the gems sold separately...more

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Myths may lie dormant on Monster Island, but when disaster rears its ugly head, they will come down on you like Godzilla’s foot on Tokyo! Knowledge is power and can help you keep your monster under control.

Myth: My studio is covered by my homeowner’s (or renter’s policy)

What Makes it a Monster:

  • The same policy that would cover your studio and its contents if you had a hobby no longer covers it if you use it for business purposes. You are in business if you offer goods or services for sale. It does not matter if you have a business license, either. A web site is enough proof for the insurance adjusters...more

By Tip of the Month on Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Now that you have a weather radio app on your smartphone (you do, don’t you?), it is time to expand your emergency toolkit. All of these apps are available for both iPhone and Android:

The American Red Cross has a suite of well-designed apps to cover a wide range of emergencies. Each app covers what to do if you are in the middle of an emergency, next steps, and preparedness tips. Short videos illustrate things like first aid steps. The apps are also available in Spanish...more

By Tip of the Month on Thursday, April 23, 2015

April 30 is America’s PrepareAthon! Commit to taking at least one concrete step to prepare for a hazard you and others in your community might face. The America’s PrepareAthon! website provides Day of Action guides, How to Prepare guides, and other materials designed to help you take action and join your neighbors in preparing for disasters.

MayDay is the day of preparedness in the cultural community!...more

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mobile technology brings important emergency alerts to you any time and any place. Be ready to respond when a severe weather disaster or other emergency hits your area.

Severe Weather Alert more
By Tip of the Month on Friday, February 20, 2015

Floods are the #1 natural disaster in the United States. With snowmelt a big concern in the East this year, and spring storms always a concern in many parts of the country, now is the time to get prepared for floods.

Consider taking these flood preparedness steps:
  • Flood insurance. Homeowner's and business insurance does not cover any damage from floods, or "rising water." The official web site of the National Flood Insurance Program is

  • Assess your flood risk. The chances of your home or studio being flooded...more

By Tip of the Month on Friday, January 16, 2015
A fireman inspects the remains of Jode Hillman's woodshop.

It’s January. You have likely made great resolutions to advance your art career in 2015, but here’s one resolution every artist can quickly check off the to-do list in less than an hour!

Resolve to visually record your art business inventory. Let's get started!

“I would recommend to any artist to do a yearly inventory of tools and materials. The time you will save and peace of mind earned will be well worth it,” says New Jersey wood carver Jode Hillman regarding his insurance claim after a 2013 woodshop fire.

By Tip of the Month on Friday, November 21, 2014
FEMA News Photo

This month’s epic snow storms in the Northeast serve as a sudden and severe reminder that winter is here, and with it, winter storms that can be powerful and unexpected. Power outages are a primary result of winter storms. It's important to prepare now for an extended period without power at your home and studio.

To begin preparing, you should have: 

  • An emergency supplies kit. Some of the basic supplies include:

    • Water: At least three days’ supply at one gallon per person per day

    • Food: at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food

    • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio

    • Flashlight and extra batteries

    • First aid kit

    • Battery backup or an alternative (solar, etc.) charger for your cell phone


By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, October 22, 2014

As temperatures drop during the approaching months of winter, the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning from heating sources increases. That makes it a good time to install carbon monoxide (CO) detectors in your home and studio, and if you already have them, now is the time to make sure they are operating properly.

CERF+’s Development and Events Coordinator Carrie Cleveland can attest that an operational carbon monoxide (CO) detector is a vital safety device for one’s home and studio. A few years ago on New Year’s Eve (also, Carrie’s birthday), she and her husband, Xavier, had just arrived home with provisions for a festive dinner when they heard a loud buzz coming from the neighboring apartment below. Their neighbor was away for the holiday and Carrie was concerned that what they were hearing was a CO detector alerting them to the presence of carbon monoxide. She reached their neighbor by phone and got permission to climb through a window into the apartment. 

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, September 24, 2014

This past June, Patricio and Neena Ferreira arrived at their hotel after a day exhibiting Patricio’s fine jewelry at the American Crafts Festival at Lincoln Center. They had just parked their van a few feet from the hotel's back entrance when they were mugged. As Neena exited the passenger side of the van, she heard thumps coming from the driver’s side. By the time she reached the other side of their van, four masked men were already running to a getaway car. Patricio was on the ground yelling, “They got the jewelry!” 

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

We all like to think we're too smart to fall for an email scam. The truth is that scammers are increasingly sophisticated in their methods and their subterfuge is harder to detect. Artists are finding that they are now targeted professionally. A direct appeal to an artist's need to sell work, and the desire for a stranger to show appreciation for what artists create is very powerful. It can be so seductive as to blindside even the most savvy artist. 

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Good insurance, preparedness, and a rainy-day fund remain the most effective tools for emergency recovery. But many artists are finding online fundraising, or “crowdfunding,” can supplement other sources of recovery funds. Funds raised through crowdfunding of all kinds, including nonprofit causes and business startups, has more than tripled in the past three years, reaching $5.1 billion in 2013. It's not a sure thing but some tips from those who've been there may help increase your chances of success.

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The official Atlantic hurricane season began on June 1 and while most hurricanes in the U.S. only strike states on the Gulf and East Coasts, often they remain powerful as they track hundreds of miles inland. In fact, well over half of the U.S. population resides in states that can be impacted by a hurricane (use this online tool from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [NOAA] to view the track and intensity of hurricanes that have passed through your area). While the 2013 hurricane season was less active than predicted and the 2014 season is expected to be less active than average, it only takes one hurricane to undo much of one’s art career.

Why not be prepared? Here are some resources to help you be ready:

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Recent wildfires in San Diego County have underscored what we already know: that increasing areas of the western and southern U.S. are sitting on a tinderbox. After numerous seasons of drought, the dry hazard zones have expanded well beyond what were previously seen as wildfire areas. But rather than hoping it rains soon, what measures can people take to better protect their homes, studios, tools, and artwork?

By Tip of the Month on Tuesday, April 22, 2014

May Day is the day of preparedness in the cultural community. To celebrate, CERF+ urges every artist and arts organization to pick at least one thing to do in May to make them better prepared for an emergency. And, to make it easy, let's pick some low-hanging fruit! Here are some suggestions:

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, March 19, 2014

We hope we’re all lucky enough to escape a flood or other emergency this year. But, we may have the opportunity to help another artist or “civilian” with clean-up and salvage after an emergency. In fact, most artists have special skills that, with a little planning, can be put to good use after a disaster. Here's how to get ready to help...

By Tip of the Month on Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A few weeks ago, our Twitter account was briefly compromised, resulting in an automatically-generated tweet and a message sent to our followers. Our alert staff immediately changed our password, took preventive measures, and there were no further incursions. But, it did provide a wake-up tweet that none of us is immune to cyber-threats. Here are seven things to do right now to enhance your cyber-security...

By Tip of the Month on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Earlier this year, I lost something I never anticipated: my data. My computer crashed and I lost almost everything on my hard drive. Just like that. Losing 1.5 years' worth of data is heartbreaking. As the owner of a small business, it was devastating. It's so easy to go through life assuming that nothing bad is going to happen to you. I never anticipated that everything could be gone in a blink. Think of computer backups as a kind of business insurance. You make copies of everything – just in case.

This month’s tip is from book artist Elissa Campbell.