So, recently I took a couple of months away from art in order to pick up and move to a different state. Part of that involved moving my studio into a different, much smaller space. Those of you who know me know that I am the kind of an artist who hoards a fair amount of stuff, so you can appreciate the challenge I faced. I mean honestly, where am I going to put my five sewing machines? What will I do with the fabric? And that says nothing about the jewelry supplies, paints, pots of glue, bottles of ink, boxes of interesting tidbits, etc., etc.
I have found that having studio space helps me to make time for art in my life. That said, I have never before had an entire room devoted to being a studio. It always seems like I’m cordoning off a corner of the living room in order to make something. In the last iteration of a studio I had, I had a corner of my very large living space in my three-room apartment devoted to art, a large highboy dresser, storage in the furnace room, and a large closet as well. Whenever I was working on a larger body of work, I would modify the rest of my space in order to make it work, so the dining table became a layout space, the corner by the fridge was where I propped up pieces to finish the edges and so on. (If you are interested, here is a photo set of my work space changing over the years)
Well, suddenly, I have a three bedroom house. This means a studio. This also means a purge, since I’m no longer using my entire home as work-space. The never ending artist dilemma of what to purge! I wound up cutting through a fair amount of my fabrics, a few projects, and some out-dated patterns that I will probably never use. These were posted up online and sent out to some lucky Facebook fans.
Then came the packing. Endless, endless packing. Followed by endless unpacking. I told Kyle my plan was to make it half studio/half office in there so that he could work while I was designing jewelery or working on a piece of art, and his disbelief that we would both fit in that one room was palpable. Looking back on the photos, I understand.
Previously, I had a highboy dresser containing most of my fabric along with some supplies such as specialty papers, yarns, etc. Unfortunately, that didn’t really work in the space I had. Just about every piece of furniture needed to have a surface I could work on, considering that the dining room table was going to be on a different floor of the house. And then Ikea to the rescue! I’m still organizing drawers, and the closet is a bit more full than I’d like. (only three totes I don’t want in there, which is not so big of a challenge in the grand scheme of things, right?)
Honestly, I think the takeaway is USE WHAT YOU HAVE BEFORE BUYING MORE FABRIC/PAINT/WHATEVER. Which is what I have been working on with projects like curtain making for the house. Also, super fab bonus is basement storage for things like spraypaint, large pieces of wood and the like.
I have already been in there working, and I have to say it is IMMENSELY satisfying!