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View Full Version : A room of one's own!


diamondbird
01-11-2004, 09:01 PM
Hi! I'm a a new member! Who has just finally after many years moved into a spare bedroom to use as a studio....this is just bliss after so many years of working in an odd corner, or on the kitchen table...it feels great!
But I was wondering how other artists feel about this?
Is it neccassary to have your own room to be creative? or does it cut off from people?
Am trying to find out..
:angel:

princess buttercup
01-12-2004, 06:23 AM
I would love and adore having my own room. Somewhere I could shut the door and listen to music I want to listen to, instead of the sounds of a busy household... a place where I could spread out my work on the table without having to shoo anywhere from one to three cats off of it... a place where I wouldn't have to worry about other people spilling their drink or piling junk on top of something I've just spent all afternoon working on.

Cut me off from people? Oh, h*ll yeah! :D For a few hours a day, anyway, it would be heavenly. Doesn't happen very often though. Luckily, I have the ability to tune out a whole lot of chaos when I really get into a creative headspace. I also keep a set of headphones handy for blocking out teenage music and hubby's TV.

I think you CAN be creative without having a space of your own... it just takes a lot of adjustment. For instance, I work on smaller pieces that can be finished quicker or stored more easily between work periods, because I just don't have the space to keep a large work in progress sitting out.

I hope you enjoy your new space! :)

Ron van den Boogaard
01-12-2004, 04:07 PM
At one point I was about to convert the bedroom into a studio, but then i figured that my art was the most important thing in the world. So I emptied out the living room, turned that into a studio and am now living in the bedroom.

yes, it is awkward to receive people, but they seem to adjust quickly.

Well, it's all about priorities, ain't it?

busy91
01-12-2004, 04:36 PM
*sigh* don't have my own room. My apartment is small. I don't even have a 'corner' of a room. I set up in the middle of the livingroom and push things out the way when i am done. I don't have a choice, so creativity comes to me whether or not I have a space of my own.

Having my own room wouldn't cut me off from my 5 year old anyway, she'd barge right in.

diamondbird
01-12-2004, 06:43 PM
Dear Ron: sounds like you just got your priorities right: wish that I could do this too...But alas, family and visitors forbade this...
Busy and Princess Buttercup...Yes.. I had this situation for many years, as my family grew up...and we moved many times.... but I managed to keep on painting....
I found that the hard thing as having visitors
......espacially with those who either ignored the work totally... or commented on a painting with only the underlayer done:
as in: "SNIFF! Did you really mean to paint that bird black and blue, the leaves purple, and and sky red....
How do you cope with that?
:angel: :angel:

Eugene Veszely
01-13-2004, 08:38 AM
I wish I had a room just for painting...it would make it easier to start!! Ihave to make do in my small bedroom :(

jez_barracude
01-13-2004, 09:04 AM
Interesting topic!

I live in a house with several rooms, all small and poky, but the advantage is that they can be designated for different things. I used to work long hours in an office and rented my two spare bedrooms for a bit of company in the evenings and some extra money.

Now I am setting up my own business and started painting six months ago. I finally made the decision to stop sharing my house but use the rooms for office and studio space instead. I have some 3am panics about how on earth I am going to pay the mortgage on this place in the near future, but on the plus side I know I have spent far more time painting since not having to pack things away at the end of a session. Having the space frees me to potter around and work on many things at once. Living alone I do not have to worry about the house smelling of turps.

From my own experience I would definitely say that to reserve an area somewhere even if it is part of a room is a great help in fixing in your mind that you are a painter (or sculptor or whatever) and you need space to paint in all senses (physical, but also emotional, and your own self-respect!)

Jez

cunparis
01-13-2004, 12:21 PM
Hi! I'm a a new member! Who has just finally after many years moved into a spare bedroom to use as a studio....this is just bliss after so many years of working in an odd corner, or on the kitchen table...it feels great!
But I was wondering how other artists feel about this?
Is it neccassary to have your own room to be creative? or does it cut off from people?
Am trying to find out..
:angel:

I got really lucky with my setup. The apartment next door became empty and the landlord (my wife's mother) started using it for her painting. So I started painting there too. Now she quit painting but I still use it. They've mentioned renting it out but they're not very serious about it so I'm taking advantage of having a really nice studio!

I've thought of moving my painting stuff to my apartment, we have an extra room upstairs. But it doesn't have a window and plus I prefer not to clean my brushes in our sinks. So it's great to have an empty apartment next door. I feel sorry for whoever ever moves in there, they've got one heck of a job cleaning the kitchen sink!! ;)

diamondbird
01-13-2004, 05:54 PM
I got really lucky with my setup. The apartment next door became empty and the landlord (my wife's mother) started using it for her painting. So I started painting there too. Now she quit painting but I still use it. They've mentioned renting it out but they're not very serious about it so I'm taking advantage of having a really nice studio!

I've thought of moving my painting stuff to my apartment, we have an extra room upstairs. But it doesn't have a window and plus I prefer not to clean my brushes in our sinks. So it's great to have an empty apartment next door. I feel sorry for whoever ever moves in there, they've got one heck of a job cleaning the kitchen sink!! ;)

WOW! what luck..and I hope that it remains vacant for years...
My most unusual studio was many years ago...when I lived in Christchurch, New Zealand, and got a huge classroom complete with blackboard, teacher's table, and many desks from the local Arts centre!

salart
01-14-2004, 09:08 PM
I have had many studios -a factory space, my basement, an old chicken coop,converted attic, neigbors garage,my kitchen(still do my watercolor there) and now again I am renting space in an old shoe factory building. I do need my own space because i CREATE A LOT OF CLUTTER and people can get a little ticked off at me (go figure!) My current space costs me $150. a month but it is ALL MINE and I love it. I have to work hard to justify the expense but I figure it's cheaper than a shrink! I am a bit isolated at times and yet there are now over 100 artists in the building so I'm never really alone- I actually relish my solitude. My tunes-and I can do a REALLY bad painting and NO-ONE will know!
But there are also times when i love to have a painting going on my kitchen counter and amidst the chaos of kids, dog, husband ,football on t.v., I can happily create.
So yes, a studio is good, but truly an artist can create anywhere if they want to bad enough.I know an artist who's studio was at the bottom of a flight of stairs( she paints really small!)
Of course, it is ssssssssssssssso cold I am barely making out to the studio so it has it's drawbacks, and being home is cozy and nice.

Yokovich
01-14-2004, 10:34 PM
For me having a space of my own has really made the difference. I used to be set up in the front room and many visitors liked that--"interesting" and all---the light was pretty good in there--but I have so many supplies I had to find ways to store them all--they were stored in closets, under the couch, in drawers in different rooms--it was wacky and so ineffective. so this summer I cleaned out the basement and spent weeks cleaning and painting it-- It came out great--well, it has a bit of a "bunker" feeling but not bad really. I put EVERYTHING art supply-wise in my basement studio and whoa!! what a difference for me emotionally--I can find everything everytime I look for it. I feel like a "real" painter in this space. it's a "daylight" basement so I do have a window and I invested in two spendy ott lights. I am going to save my $$$ and try to get a big window cut into the concrete in the future. My work has already gotten alot better--all I have to worry about is my kitty walking through my gesso-ed panels on the floor.

Bendaini
01-15-2004, 01:41 AM
I'd absolutly LOVE some space of my own, even if it was a corner of the living room, or my bedroom. As it is there really is no place for such a thing.

I've thought about making a closet into an out of the way study, but that idea has flown the coop as we need another bedroom more (it's a BIG closet).

I don't think it's NESSESARY to have an art room, I think it just frees time and space. For one you don't have to clean up when your done every time and put things away. You aren't worried about getting out of the way of other things. You're not wondering where you left some brush or paint. You aren't listening to people complain about fumes or anything like that. It really would be nice just for that reason alone.

If anyone knows a way to make a studio out of a small corner, I'm all ears.

cunparis
01-15-2004, 02:14 AM
Here in Paris the going price for a studio, judging from the ads that people put at the art stores, seems to be around 200 Euros/month. Most apartments here are very small so people usually don't have extra space at all. But I think you'd have to be semi-pro to justify the expense.

-michael

angecald
01-15-2004, 03:33 AM
Hi! I'm a a new member! Who has just finally after many years moved into a spare bedroom to use as a studio....this is just bliss after so many years of working in an odd corner, or on the kitchen table...it feels great!
But I was wondering how other artists feel about this?
Is it neccassary to have your own room to be creative? or does it cut off from people?
Am trying to find out..
:angel:
Years ago I got tired of being in the dark basement, so I moved up to the dining room (really not a separate room, just one end of the living room), which was a much nicer space, but with a few disadvantages, such as (1) no privacy at all (2) too close to the "relaxation" part of the house and the sirene call of the sofa and tv (3) had to dismantle the studio every time we had company for dinner (4) necessity to be careful not to ruin the good furniture. The light wasn't very good because of an overhanging porch, and oh, yes, there was the clutter! Nevertheless, when an upstairs bedroom finally became available I wasn't certain I would like it any better because it's very small and poky, and I will now have to cart my pastel paintings all the way downstairs and outdoors to spray them, and I'm far away from the kitchen sink. I wasn't worried about being lonesome - I knew I'd love that. And I must say, so far it's absolute heaven. If I leave the door open, I can see it as soon as I wake up, and it gets me interested in painting right away before any distractions arise. I pop my head in whenever I'm passing in the hall, and it looks so inviting. When I go in and close the door behind me it feels like a weight falling from my shoulders. Of course, I still fantasize about a bigger space, where I can try really big paintings, and a building separate from the house where I can paint in oils without guilt. Also, I honestly don't think an art studio is the safest thing to have in your home with so many toxic and flammable substances. Still, it's amazing how much satisfaction can be got from this very modest room. A room of one's own may not be an absolute necessity, since some people manage to make art without it, but I do believe it's a very basic convenience, much like a washing machine or a vacuum cleaner, and that people who lack it are obliged to waste a lot of their creative energy. Finding the best space that your circumstances allow shows respect for yourself and your work, and that increases your confidence in yourself as an artist.

paintergirl
01-22-2004, 02:26 PM
I can relate to these posts...:D
I have taken over many rooms of the house, usually a spare bedroom, dining room, or a part of the living room. Currently I am in the (former)dining room, a reasonably sized room and it bears no resemblance to a dining room now, lol- I also have an easel and tray perched by the livingroom window...the best light during these short daylight winter hours.
It hasn't been bad but the heavy traffic at times can be intrusive. Being 'out there' in my living/dining room has been great for my sales however, as people drop in and enjoy watching a piece develop, but also distracting if I am immersed in a tricky stage of a canvas and don't actually want anyone veiwing/commenting on it till it has progressed.

Ultimately, my goal is to have a studio outside of the home. "Going to work" is a better system for me. I just get far more done if not dealing with the phone and doorbell ringing, people dropping in...

brrice
01-22-2004, 05:10 PM
Hi! I'm a a new member! Who has just finally after many years moved into a spare bedroom to use as a studio....this is just bliss after so many years of working in an odd corner, or on the kitchen table...it feels great!
But I was wondering how other artists feel about this?
Is it neccassary to have your own room to be creative? or does it cut off from people?
Am trying to find out..
:angel:
:)

I have been painting for over 20 years and most of that time I didn't have my own painting room. My oldest child moved out about 3 yrs ago and now I have a little room near a family recroom. The rest of my family hang out there and I am in close contact. I am not totaly isolated, but, it is my own space and I love it. Since I have my own seperate space my output has increased 100% and I feel much more creative. I spend a lot of time there thinking listening to music and staring at my works in progress or ideas. I have a lot of my photos on the wall and if a subject seems to keep my intrest
over time it may lead to a painting.I love the creative process.

Brian ( new member)

Bendaini
01-22-2004, 08:14 PM
After reading this thread the last time I decided I needed a little space of my own one way or another.

So I rearanged my bedroom, pushing the bed over and adjusting the shelves and other furniture so that I have a little corner of the room where I can sort and store all of my things. I have an old changing table that I keep in there and use for a shelf. It now has a hanging file cabinet sort of thing under it where I can sort out my papers, and my meterial and other sewing things beside it. On top of it I keep several of my clay sculptres that I want to do a mold with, just waiting safe up there, and a few other things to large or unsorted for the shelf. Then beside the changing table is a large shelf where I've stacked and sorted a lot of my differant craft/art things.

On the other side of my bed I have my favorite piece of furniture. I think it might have been built for records because it's a kind of night stand or end table, and on the bottom it has slots for holding papers or things upright. I use it for all my painting supplies and books. It's perfect, all the books and canvases fit right inside the slots and I love it.

Now I can find all my things without searching, and it feels so great to go in my bedroom because it is orginised and clean. Before it was cluttered with everything cause I didn't know where to stick them. I did end up throwing away a lot of things that I didn't need anymore....

This has really done something for my creativity too. I now know where it is when I want to do something and I only have a few things out in my living room or dining room to work on at any one time. My husband enjoys that.

I still think it would be much better to have a room of my own so I don't have to clean up every day, but this is a step in the right direction.

mazincurvaceous
01-22-2004, 09:52 PM
I have a fairly large bedroom, so I mainly use my study desk for artsy sort of things. Or my easel. It's fairly quiet and...handy. Definately is a good place for completing works that are personal or need particular concerntration.

But sometimes I find I need company whilst completing a particular piece...I'm not sure why. In that case I will sit in the lounge room with my Mum.

nick-50
02-06-2004, 01:11 PM
Hi! I'm a a new member! Who has just finally after many years moved into a spare bedroom to use as a studio....this is just bliss after so many years of working in an odd corner, or on the kitchen table...it feels great!
But I was wondering how other artists feel about this?
Is it neccassary to have your own room to be creative? or does it cut off from people?
Am trying to find out..
:angel:

I spend most of my time alone, being celibate, and all my back room is devoted to three things, the computer, the hi-fi -both connected to each other-- and most important, the art materials. I spent far too much this past six months once the bug came back, and really bit me!! But the satisfaction of having all these things close at hand is beyond question. It is nice to have plenty to do, and not be concerned where everything is.
I find that when I enter the room, it has a definite ambience. i accept that all rooms and all houses attain thieir own atmosphere that has to do with the state of the occupents mind, and when one devotes a particular space to one thing that is creative and peaceful, that area takes on its own life, this has to be experienced. It is a luxury to have space dedicated like this, but i think it speaks for itself, and no worries where all your materials are.

Mag
02-07-2004, 05:02 PM
For me time alone is almost the same as having my own studio.
When my kids are in school I have the house to myself and the kitchen has great light. The only problem is when my family is home.......
and the summer is a nightmare. So, I know the next time we move
the big priority will be studio space (for me) and office space (hubby).
The real problem arises when I want to increase my workload.
I am not sure if I want to set up a separate studio away from home tho.
I love having my music, fridge, kettle etc. nearby.

FriendCarol
02-07-2004, 07:20 PM
If anyone knows a way to make a studio out of a small corner, I'm all ears.

Hi, I'm new here, but just yesterday I posted how I turned a small corner of my small living space (about 12" x 25" total) into a "studio." My setup is for watercolor, though; oils are MUCH messier, I think.

My post is in the forum about finding or using cool things. Basically, I put my Boby taboret under my Integra easel (back leg in the corner), then hung a fold-out baby organizer from the bottom of the easel, covering the blank face of the taboret. This whole thing sits next to one end of my table, so my kneeling chair can swing around to face either the table or the easel. Works in progress can lie flat on the table, if I happen to be working that way -- but I can pick them up and place them on the easel in a moment, at meal time or whatever. The table has one of those 'dollar store' thin white plastic 'tablecloths' over it, btw.

My paint tubes are in the bottom swing-out drawer of the taboret, which opens most of the way without my needing to fold up the easel's back leg (although that's not hard). The Integra has fold-out brush holder, knife holder (good for small brushes, too), & water bucket holder, as well as palette hooks, so once brushes are dry, I store them there. I chose the Jones Round Palette II because it's small enough to fit on top of the taboret -- and its cover fits the palette hooks perfectly.

I've been using watercolor blocks which store in the bin of the taboret, and I'm not sure what I'll do when I start using sheets... But a couple other people in that forum suggested making your own watercolor blocks from cut sheets (much less expensive), and that sounds pretty good to me!

Having everything set up has really increased the amount of time I spend painting most days, too. It could just be the novelty, but I don't think so.

Before I took painting seriously, I was a writer. Having one's own space (or at least solitude) is critical for most writers, but I also used to love writing occasionally in cafes (in Manhattan), with a laptop once they became available. Somedays you need to be alone where no-one can watch you think and try things, other days you want the energy that only comes from being physically with other people. I assume all artists, not just writers, experience these cycles.