I thought, today I’d share a bit about my creative space…..a bedroom, turned studio. Whenever other artists come to play, they always comment on how organised things are & how amazing it all is. My ‘trade secret’ is all about measuring the space that you have, then choose an appropriate type of storage for each of your supplies. For myself, I prefer open shelving, with clear containers to ‘behind doors’ storage or containers that hide the contents. Having said that, however, my studio is actually a ‘bedroom’ so it has a combination of open shelving (that could be removed to make it more ‘bedroom’ like if we ever wanted to sell our home) AND full depth wardrobes. The wardrobes are a bit of a challenge to keep organised, as they are deep (as you would expect), & the space between shelving just becomes a big ‘black hole’ that things disappear in. The robes are most adjacent to my work table have all my main everyday supplies in them. Paints, more Moon Glow, Adhesives, Punches, Drawing supplies, etc so when I am working at the table, I can open the doors, fold them back & pull out one of these drawers & use the supplies straight from the drawer. I must admit – I frequently get myself in a mess & the state of my studio table (despite me prefering it otherwise) is constantly in a state of shambles & I hate how messy & untidy it becomes. In fact, the reason there are not pics of my studio worktable is that you’d struggle to see the tabletop right now!!! LOL!!!! I figure if I keep my supplies ordered, & I know where everything is when I need it, I don’t care that my work top gets a bit unmanagable.
I have a varity of storage shelving & methods & assess where something is stored according to how much I use it. This is something that only you can assess & work out – what do you use the most? What do you need EVERYTIME you art? What do you use frequently? What do you use only every now & then? It’s something that I encounter all the time in my work as an interior designer. People don’t put things away because their most convenient storage is filled with things that they want to keep, but don’t frequently use.
The supplies & tools that I use everytime I am in the studio are in a 3 tiered fruit stand I have in the middle of the table. This includes blades, scissors, bradle, toothpicks, paddlesticks, some paint brushes, spray bottles of Moon Glow & Walnut Ink, distressing sponges, SO the everyday, every session things – right at my finger tips. Not things you even use weekly, they can be at arm’s length or within view, but not right on your table. I have had 180 degree hinges fitted to my wardrobe drawers so that the doors fold completely flat & I can have them open without them getting in the way. I use a round work table in the middle of the room & a long workbench that has my computer on it & where I sew. Apart from that I have a kind of modern adaptation of the old tea trolleys that I have put on castors which serves as my cutting bench & I have my dremel on a stand there. (I have to say though, I haven’t found my Dremel stand that wonderful & I often just use the Dremel at my work table)
A question often posed to me, being an interior designer, is ‘HOW DO I DESIGN AN IDEAL STUDIO…….then usually they list/tell me about all of the ‘design constraits (‘design challenges’) I think you could boil it down to a few simple headlines, & sort the details as per your personal preference. They would be:
1. Good lighting, can’t stress it enough
2. Easy clean floor including floorboards, vinyl flooring, tiles (though these are hard on your legs & cold underfoot)
3. Temperature control – good heating & cooling particularly when you have extremes of weather for long periods (days at a time)
4. Varied work surface heights if possible. I often like to stand when I work – especially when I am painting, I often sit to sort or assemble, but even then I often like to stand. I have my cutting bench at a higher height to stand at, my central table at table height for sitting at, & to work over & my computer/sewing bench at desk height to sit and work at.
5. Storage with adjustable shelving
6. Storage containers SUITED to your supplies
NICE TO HAVE:
1. Adjustable height chair
3. BIGGIE – still on my wish list – A sink & water supply
4. Old wine rack for paper storage
5. Drawers with FULL EXTENSION runners (sliding mechanism on the sides that opens the drawers) if possible.
6. Places that are purely inspirational – not necessarily just functional (Fairies live on my window sill!)
7. Elves to clean up after you each morning!!! LOL!!!