View Full Version : Where You Work (or Have Fun)

Mike L
05-31-2015, 08:09 AM
This thread was suggested in May's WOYE thread and it was suggested I start it , so here it is. My studio is in my office which is half of a finished one car garage. My table is a steel roll around tool cabinet. One drawer holds acrylics supplies, one oils, one brushes, knives, pencils, etc. The bottom two hold miscellaneous stuff like empty jars, pallet plates, rubber gloves and the like.

The easel is a super inexpensive French Easel that has never been outside but which works perfectly on top of the tool cabinet.

I took a drawing/painting class in 1999, then stopped. I've piddled at drawing from time to time, but now I have the time and want to make use of it in a creative manner. If you haven't noticed I am a messy kind of person. :lol:

I'm eagerly anticipating seeing other folks' studios. Maybe I can learn something from them. :thumbsup:

So, without further ado:


Charlie's Mum
05-31-2015, 08:13 AM
Lol Mike, I think this is quite tidy!
The tool cabinet is an excellent idea - I just wonder how you'll cope as you acquire more and more 'stuff' :lol: ... now that you've picked up painting again:D ...... it's an ever-expanding hobby!!!!

Thanks for starting the thread and will hunt out (or re-photo) my space and join in :)

05-31-2015, 12:16 PM
I love seeing other people's creative spaces.

Here's mine as it is right now. This is where I also visit wetcanvas every morning. When I paint I slide the swivel chair to the easel and move the little cart to the side. I've seen nice carts from Ikea but don't have one here but managed with a cheap bathroom organizer from Canadian Tire. Love having everything on there instead having to take it off a shelf.

Beside that is my crafting table where I keep my polymer stuff and some jewelry and beading supplies. Also some sewing stuff up on the shelf.

And a cardboard box on the floor where I spray paint things. That should be tucked away under the little desk lol.


And the other side with more stuff. I have too many interests! And a low budget. So I got a shoe rack to store all my containers of beads so that I don't have to stack them. Digging through piles of containers slows down the creative process. lol

And my son has a little table too, though he just uses it enough to make a mess on it. lol

There is also a closet full of stuff that you can't see.


I need a bigger room.

05-31-2015, 02:24 PM
The spare bedroom in the duplex I rent is my studio. These photos were taken last year but nothing significant has changed;


Charlie's Mum
06-01-2015, 11:36 AM
Nice space Michelle! That little cart looks useful:) It's a bear having to find storage for so many different interests isn't it - I'm like that too!:lol:

David - I can't believe how meticulously clean, tidy and organised your studio is! Nice peaceful space:)

My area is one end of a large room - the other end in my husband's music area with piano, electric organ and guitar - plus music cabinet. In between we have a nice sitting area that is always tidy and comfortable ...... unlike my work space which, however often I sort, rearrange and tidy, never looks anything other than cluttered!
The drawback is I have no access to water in here:(
My sewing stuff is in another room!



06-01-2015, 11:48 AM
Maureen, sometimes I envy people who only do one thing, they have such tidy spaces. Yours looks quite organized. And David's as well. But you know, if it's really clean that means you're not producing anything.

06-02-2015, 04:27 AM
Geez Im glad I only paint... Reposting my workplace photos to join the crew. I dont have water in my downstairs studio either, I even bought a little TV to use down there, but its gets darn hot in summer and cold in winter. This is why I tend to paint on the dining room table. I never use it to eat at so its got to be good for something.

I usually grab a selection of the paints I want from downstairs and throw them in a box to use.. My palette has become the top of icecream containers. :lol:



Charlie's Mum
06-02-2015, 05:51 AM
Well Meryl, we have to be comfortable when painting, so wherever that is, is the place to paint!:lol:

Snippet on tv yesterday -

Boredom - is a prelude to creative ideas, so being bored, or sitting doing nothing is OK:)

An untidy workspace leads to creativity ........ so I'm OK then!!!!! :lol::lol:

06-02-2015, 08:24 AM
I'm joining in, I love to see where artists create.
My 3rd bedroom is my studio, it's small maybe 10x11, but it's near the kitchen...water...and has a huge south window so lots of light.
I'm not neat, and I need shelving, I have two large easels and a table one, right now one easel is in the Kit and one in my studio.
My Grand daughter and I have been painting together so we do it in the Kit, works better more room and sink is closer and she's messy.





These were taken a while ago, but it's pretty well the same, except for some different paintings in the works...some places,
As you can see, I need some shelving, too many books, I love books, and hate to get rid of them.....drives my kids crazy when they move me hehehe...
my favorite easel is in the Kit right now not a French one more sturdy, I love it.
Michelle I've a paint box like you do LOL and would love that drawer system for tools like Mike has for all my paints etc.
and I'm messier than you Maureen....I like the look of your easel, haven't seen one like that before.
I'll take a pic of my kit stuff if I get a chance...I've got to get my screens off the windows, the strata is washing windows today....be back later:wave:

06-02-2015, 09:06 AM
Here is mine:


I actually have water, which is great, but no window.

Mrs B
06-02-2015, 09:28 AM
This is such a fascinating thread and so good to see how others work. I'm away from home at the moment, so will have to post my workspace another time, but whenever I'm away I always bring my pochade box. I thought I could share that with you instead! (how do you pronounce pochade anyway?!):lol:

A couple of Christmases ago, my dad bought me a painting set that came in this strong wooden box.
I used some of my left over floor trim and some wood glue to create a bracket on the back to stop the box opening too far. This means the lid rests on the bracket so I can use the inside like an easel.
I added more floor trim to the inside to create compartments for my paints, brushes and pencils, and a little bit in the lid to hold the canvas.
I then carved a small channel in the wood to allow an a4 piece of glass to fit on top of the compartments, which also keeps all the bits in place when the box is closed and being transported!

(yes, that is the baby's hand trying to take a tube of paint!)

Will post my cluttered desk another time, when I'm back home! :)

06-02-2015, 09:39 AM
^ Love this. May I copy your idea to make a similar box of my own? :)

Mrs B
06-02-2015, 09:44 AM
^ Love this. May I copy your idea to make a similar box of my own? :)

Thank you, and please feel free!! It's a bit rough and ready, but it does the job. The box is from Windsor and Newton. The piece of a4 glass I use as a pallet was from a cheap picture frame - just make sure the edges and are rounded off:wink2:

06-02-2015, 10:00 AM
Great! Thanks, Gemma!
I have on hand all the items necessary to build a similar box and it is now on my weekend "To Do" list.
Cheers! :)

Mike L
06-02-2015, 10:17 AM
(yes, that is the baby's hand trying to take a tube of paint!)

Starting 'em young, eh? :lol:

What a marvelous idea - using the quarter round concave molding for a lid stop and as combination dividers/palette supports. Bravo Zulu (Navy talk for Well Done!) :clap: :thumbsup:

Mrs B
06-02-2015, 11:42 AM
Great! Thanks, Gemma!
I have on hand all the items necessary to build a similar box and it is now on my weekend "To Do" list.
Cheers! :)

Sounds great Donna, you'll have to show us the results when it's done :)

Mrs B
06-02-2015, 11:46 AM
Starting 'em young, eh? :lol:

What a marvelous idea - using the quarter round concave molding for a lid stop and as combination dividers/palette supports. Bravo Zulu (Navy talk for Well Done!) :clap: :thumbsup:

Thanks Mike!:) Yes, the baby is always trying to play with my brushes and paints! :lol:

06-02-2015, 11:59 AM
Oh man I love this thread. It is fascinating to see behind the curtain. Thanks to all of the brave who have posted!

Currently I am not deep into anything due to a busy weekend and one day with a sick kiddo. But I promise to snap a photo later today when things are in progress and a little more real (messy). I am pretty new to this, but am hoping I attached these correctly, right now it just looks like links, apologies if incorrect!



Mike L
06-02-2015, 12:11 PM
... I am pretty new to this, but am hoping I attached these correctly, right now it just looks like links, apologies if incorrect!

Images are right where the belong. :thumbsup:

You've got the most important items that belongs in every studio - a comfortable chair, a foot rest, and a good book! Yowza!:clap:


Charlie's Mum
06-02-2015, 12:48 PM
Shar - love the light you seem to have there! Thanks for joining us:)

Colin - I like your furniture! - and all that shelving!:envy:

Gem - what a resourceful lady you are! Very clever!:)

Ani - welcome to the forum and we'd love to see your work produced in this pristine place!:)
I've enlarged the images so we can appreciate them better - sorry they're not a sharp ....... next time, make your images to around 700 or 800 pixels for older eyes!!!;)

Thanks all for joining Mike's thread - great to see and share these spaces.

06-02-2015, 01:07 PM
My studio, take the city dump, blow it up, make into disorganized pile, that would be my studio.

06-02-2015, 01:17 PM
I like to paint in my garage. I think it is mostly because of the high ceiling, but also I don't have to worry about being neat! I use a large easel that I built from 2x4's. The vertical pieces are hinged so it can be folded or expanded. On the far wall I put some drying shelves. I usually work on a number of paintings at the same time. The glass palette is on a rolling metal table that also doubles as a workbench. Unfortunately in the summer it gets pretty hot in the garage and I move upstairs to a room over the garage that is air conditioned.


06-02-2015, 02:52 PM
Compared to my space, everyone else is so neat and organized! I have way too much stuff for the space I have...10x11 bedroom. Embarrassed but here is mine. Not showing the closet which is overflowing with fabric.825665easel, microwave cart for palette and brushes.

825666Adjustable drafting table.

825667Light table my s-i-l made for me but stays piled up.

825668Sewing table.

825669Bookcase over loaded with sewing and painting books along with misc. including thread in the drawers.

06-02-2015, 07:15 PM
Charlie's Mum, thank you for the welcome, and I agree, much easier to see a bit larger.

Oldmnartist, I am loving the exuberant sketch on your easel.

Cem, my pastels, sewing, beading, and other supplies are tucked away haphazardly in the closet, it's great that you have them out and available!

This is my assistant and what things look like in progress, but usually with much more stuff accumulated on the floor.

Charlie's Mum
06-03-2015, 12:17 PM
That's more like it Ani!:thumbsup: ...... lovely assistant!:)

Mrs B
06-03-2015, 01:31 PM
It's also interesting to see how everyone edges, or doesn't edge their canvases!:D

Bob in Florida
06-03-2015, 11:21 PM
It is interesting to see others "space". I see a commonality in almost all of them.

Here's mine, 3rd bedroom. It's my man cave. Computer, guitar and painting. Pretty primitive. Small desktop easel on a box on a table with paint strewn everywhere. The lighting sucks. I try to be neat, but it's a lost cause. Sometimes I'm in this room for hours and hours, till my wife comes looking for me. She wants to know if I'm still alive.

One thing I cannot do is sit down and paint. I've tried but invariably will be standing up before I even know it. Thus I cannot paint more that a two hour stretch without taking a break.



06-04-2015, 12:15 AM
I really like Mike L's tool box idea. Im forever hunting in my chest of drawers for the right green blue etc... I hate working on a messy work space. I need something with wide shallow trays or drawers.

06-04-2015, 01:23 AM
This thread looks fun! Everyone's art spaces look so awesome, I have some studio envy going on over here!! :lol: :D

Well, I've only really started painting again this past year. There isn't really anywhere in the house for me to claim as my own and set up as a studio, but like Meryl, we have a dining table that is never used as such, and so gradually that has become my art space. It started out that I would pull out my sketchbooks and work at the dining table, putting my stuff away after or at the end of the day - fast forward to now, and I have two table easels, one of which is in permanent residence on the little dining table, and the paints and brushes I use the most also reside there. In addition, towards the end of last year I saved up and splashed out on my very own studio easel. Wasn't going to let the lack of a studio hold me back :lol: My parents visited from the UK over Easter so my step-dad helped me assemble the easel, and now that resides next to the dining table. So far, I haven't had a chance / or the courage to use it, but I have to admit it gives me a great deal of pleasure just to look at it :D :heart:

The downside, our dining area is part of a big open plan living space - to the right of the dining table is the kitchen, to the left the playroom, and behind is the living room (where the sofas and TV are and where we actually eat :lol:) Having all my art stuff there drives hubby nuts, so I have to keep it as tidy as possible (for his sake, and for mine!) On the upside, being next to the kitchen gives me easy access to water (and drinks and snacks :rolleyes:), and having the playroom and living room right next to means that when my son's not at school I can (occasionally) get some painting done whilst still being able to keep an eye on him.



All the things I don't need to have out where I work, get stored in our guest room - my canvases are stored in the wardrobe in there and the unit next to the bed stores all my sketchbooks, pencils, watercolours, and just any art stuff in general that I'm not currently using.



06-04-2015, 12:35 PM
Jess, at least you have a playroom. My dream is to convert our garage into a craft room and playroom.

lol Bob, I think of my room as my craft cave and my husband always seems surprised to find me in there.

anikavo, nice window! All I see out of mine is my neighbours roof.

Cindy, I am jealous of the drafting table and light table. Just a little more organization and you can use them! lol

oldnmartist, you just need to get the air conditioning in there and you don't have to move. lol

That's nice Gemma. A studio on the go.

Colin, as long as you have good lighting I guess, but I would miss having a window.

Sharrm, my space is slightly smaller than yours. Shelves help a lot.

Meggs looks like a nice space you have downstairs. You just need a heater and air conditioner lol.

06-04-2015, 01:53 PM
As I would have kindly explained to the telephone solicitor who hung up after I said, "Tell me about these toilet things again," remember: I'm not the one who initiated this.

Life is a tabouret, old chum
Painter's friend upgraded this very morning with new mixing top at bartender's height, brush care shelf just below. There's another little shelf for odds and ends and a drawer in the base cabinet that opens to the right and a couple of shelves. See also the palette illumination up top. Notice the brush drying system deployed to the right. Secured by clothes pins, the brushes hang bristles down.

The windows face south; I generally keep the blinds closed.

On the left you can see my well-organized (haha) brush collection and color bins along with a few potions. Note the two color bins, one warm colors the other cold.


The corner of struggle.
Note the meticulous :lol: and orderly disposition of stuff. The easel gets an upgrade next time I feel like cutting plywood. Not shown is the heavy stiffener mounted to the two front legs for sturdification.

On the easel you see The World's Worst Painting that Will Not Die. Like Coleridge's old sailor I feel the weight of this thing all the time.


Computer graphics department
Stand up workstation. Apparently Georgia experienced an earthquake at the moment I snapped this picture. Sorry for the fuzziness. Still, I'm sure you can make out the neatness and organization. That multicolored thing leaning against the small cabinet is what I do with palette scrapings.


Let your light shine (a lot)
Auxiliary lights. With everything on I get something like 5000 lumens in here, all pointed at the ceiling. I don't do that often. CFL bulbs, fairly cold IIRC 4500 K color temp. Not north light, but not far from it. More palette scrapings on the light stand. Seriously, I learned a bit about knife work from these silly things.

Room is 11' X 11'.

06-04-2015, 02:11 PM
I have been fascinated by (and envious of) your work spaces. Hope you don't mind me joining in -- I'm a fledgling watercolorist, not an acrylics or oil painter (yet). I began taking classes at a local gallery four months ago and am already an addict! Art galleries are the first place I visit whenever I travel, but I haven't painted or drawn until now. I live in a small, 2-bedroom house so until now, have set up and taken down my work space (the dining room table) every time I wanted to paint.

However, yesterday, I had an epiphany. My master bedroom (I live alone) is large and has a bay window with a "sofa table" with books and photos resting on it -- decorative only and serving no useful purpose. So I bought myself a comfortable office chair, a lamp and repurposed a small shelving unit and voila -- a mini-studio. I prefer to paint sitting down and I've already used it -- works perfectly for me. So happy to be able to leave things out and it's easy to pack things up when I head to class. Thanks for inspiring me!



06-05-2015, 12:03 PM
Cliff, that is a very unique light stand. And the painting doesn't look so bad.

Kate, having a permanent place to paint sure makes things easier.

Charlie's Mum
06-05-2015, 12:35 PM
Lolololol .... I love the contrast of thes last two studios!!!
Kate, when you start acrylics, your work space will be more like those of the rest of us!!:)
Cliff, so meticulous! I love its uniqueness. :).... brilliant lamp stand!

06-05-2015, 03:21 PM
Maureen, Michelle, most of this studio is repurposed furniture, garage detritus and lumber scraps. The lamp stand is no exception. The decoration came about because DW thought the bare plywood unsightly.

Michelle, That painting is like having a badger chained to the ankle. I try to ignore it but every once in a while it gets hungry and gnaws on my achilles tendon. Then I complain, cajole and cudgel it until it leaves me alone. For awhile.

Kate, this is how it starts.

06-05-2015, 03:25 PM
Wow so many really fun workstations here. When I first came back from college I took over my parent's basement and kinda went crazy over the years. What sucks is that I probably won't have this much space again after I move. http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Jun-2015/1393892-studio_banner_2.jpg

06-05-2015, 03:34 PM
Blocko, Impressive set of muse enhancement fluids on the windowsill.

06-05-2015, 03:46 PM
I am having a serious case of 'window envy'. Yes Michelle I do miss the natural light, but last night #2 Son announced his plans to find his own apartment for September return to university :) -- so if he does then I will sneak back into the space he has occupied since he was kicked out of the 2nd Spare Bedroom to make room for out of town company back in March and I was kicked out of the 3rd Spare Bedroom to allow him a bedroom - I will lose the water, but I prefer the natural light. Just having a window helps feel less claustrophobic. With people taking over their dining rooms, master bedrooms etc surely it isn't too much to grab the 3rd-and-least-desireable Spare Bedroom?

If he doesn't move out for whatever reason I think I will have a window installed in my space. I can't work in a windowless storage room indefinitely without going a bit barmy. (It might already be too late)

06-05-2015, 03:53 PM
Cliff the light stand is a work of art on its own with the palette scrapings. "The Colour of Light" (or 'Color' if you prefer).

Reminds me of Jean-Paul Riopelle but as sculpture. :D

06-05-2015, 06:38 PM
Blocko, Impressive set of muse enhancement fluids on the windowsill.
Haha, thank you. Unfortunately for me the such fluids destroy my musings.

06-06-2015, 02:31 PM
Cliff the light stand is a work of art on its own with the palette scrapings. "The Colour of Light" (or 'Color' if you prefer).

Reminds me of Jean-Paul Riopelle but as sculpture. :D

Went right to Google to look him up. Cool stuff.

06-08-2015, 12:42 PM
Blocko? Is that what we should call you? lol You can't ever move I guess, unless you buy a house with a big room like this. I really would never leave the room if I had a space like that.

06-08-2015, 05:48 PM
Finally got around to taking a few pictures! My 'studio' is actually our spare bedroom (as you may be able to tell by the bed in the room haha). I usually prefer to use my little tabletop easel on top of the drafting board so I have a surface to put my paints and palette on. I remodeled an old TV stand (complete with swivel top) that I found at a tag sale for a dollar into a supply stand. The yellow baskets hold random supplies like painting knives and sponges; paints are stored in the bottom area (and I'm running out of room....). Canvases take up half of the bookcase and the bigger ones are hidden in the closet. Lots of natural sunlight in the afternoon/eve and breezy!



06-08-2015, 06:36 PM
I like to paint in my garage when it is not too hot. Prefer the high ceilings. And I don't have to worry about being neat. The easel I built from 2x4's, hinged at the top so I can fold it up. Crude but it works for me.


06-09-2015, 12:08 AM
Blocko? Is that what we should call you? lol You can't ever move I guess, unless you buy a house with a big room like this. I really would never leave the room if I had a space like that.

Yeah I'm not sure how my username got shortened to that...but it works I suppose. And yes the space is nice, but no space is ever really long term.

06-09-2015, 12:11 PM
Well Blocko, you can thank Cliff for that. lol I almost called you Cinders but then thought, no, that's someone else. If there's no name in the signature I probably won't remember. I have a memory like a sieve with a hole in it.

mellybean, what a bright and cheerful room! I think it would be very inspiring to paint in there. Either that or very nice to nap in. lol I can just imagine the breeze coming through the open windows.

08-27-2015, 11:38 PM
I always am in awe of others' studios. I'm restricted in canvas size to 16 x 20 because of the fluorescent lite. My easel sits on the workbench and when I am making frames, all that stuff goes onto the garage floor. The garage is unheated and not air conditioned. Today it was 95F with a heat index of 110 F. In the winter, I bring some of my more $$$ acrylics inside to keep them from freezing.


08-29-2015, 12:17 PM
I love seeing the creative spaces where people work. Though sometimes I wonder '..if this is what they do in such a messy space, what kind of work would they make in a clean space?' but I understand taste, time constraints, limited living situations etc....

08-29-2015, 01:48 PM
I find this thread very interesting as well. It turns out that MOST artists are as messy and seemingly disorganized as I am (although it looks like a mess, I know where pretty much everything important is). I have a 10' x 10' "office" indoors (ie heated) which is my "winter studio" and an unheated almost outdoor space I use for my "summer studio". Right now my "office" is a disaster because all I gave been doing in there is storing stuff...and it's not getting put away. I'm going to have to move back in there soon.

08-29-2015, 03:23 PM
There's a romanticism attached to that but I'll say, my studio space is and always has been, meticulous organized and clean. I can't stand a messy anything, it's too much mental noise to get anything at all done but I'm also a 'representational' painter...and a lot of us seem to be 'neater' than the rest probably out of necessity.

I got into some great fights when I was working with other artists in a studio during university...I wasn't keen on having tar (don't ask), empty whiskey bottles or encaustic wax all over my spot...the perils of sharing space and flimsy divider walls.

08-29-2015, 09:44 PM
Its very interesting how most of us use shared spaces. I do as well. The paint supplies are in the tool boxes and my fly tying supplies are in the plastic drawers.

08-31-2015, 11:02 AM
Discount coupon + reward card = new sturdy easel for $21.


08-31-2015, 11:39 AM
Cliff, what an awesome deal...thank god I was gifted with my easel or else I never could have afforded it!