View Full Version : New Studio construction and tour

11-23-2009, 01:03 PM

After my retirement as an elementary teacher, I started moving from just graphite drawing to painting in watercolor and pastel. Without a studio, I worked on the dining room table for a short period. Then I started using an old desk in one end of my music studio. I added an easel and my pastels and watercolor materials started taking over more space in that end and the walk way in the room. :eek:

With mobility issues related to arthritis and lingering effects of polio, it seemed that I could not use any options that involved stairs etc.
What to do? All my solutions seemed only temporary.
By this past summer, the studio overflow reached a point that I could not really use that area any longer.
I had the blessing of my mobility becoming better, muscles improving etc. and now I can go up an down stairs carefully.

We have a room in our basement that was used as a "family room" by former owners, but as a storage room by us. It had some grubby old cabinets and dark "barn-board" walls. All this did not shout "perfect studio" in the making. :rolleyes:

Pushed on by necessity and determination, I started sorting out stored items, getting rid of stuff and repacking others to clear an area to make a studio. Working alone and overwhelmed by the mess, I was about to give up when an "angel" appeared, in the form of my dear hubby, Bob.
Together we took on the big clearing job.

Next, we installed four ceiling light fixtures with Phillips Daylight tubes.
The barnboards came off and we replaced them with melamine/whiteboard paneling.

We took out the old cabinets, repaired them and I painted them with white enamel.

Bob constructed a wonderful long shelf/table along one side for my "pastel palette".

We finished the construction and then had to carry all the art stuff down stairs. Many muscle aches later, the transformation had be made!:clap:

I could not have done this a couple of years ago and certainly could not have done it without my very supportive hubby and family.

At the encouragement of my buddies on the Goal Post Thread, I took photos of the process and the finial new studio.
Out of a silly mistake by me, I do not have the "before" pix! Forgot to put the card into the camera!:p

So, you are all invited to come on a photo tour of my dream studio!:wave: :heart: :clap:

11-23-2009, 01:10 PM

Here are some photos of the beginning of the construction.

11-23-2009, 01:15 PM
looking forward to seeing your new oasis but how do we get their? - 'blue'

11-23-2009, 01:18 PM

Dark barnboard walls and lack of light. New light fixtures

11-23-2009, 01:25 PM
:wave: Painting, paneling, progressing!

11-23-2009, 01:34 PM

I will try to get the next stage's photos posted this afternoon!

11-23-2009, 04:32 PM
Wow Elsie,
Your studio looks wonderful! I'm glad to hear that you are feeling well enough to use the stairs again. Enjoy that beautiful space - I'm sure its going to be a joy to paint there.

11-23-2009, 04:44 PM

Now for the "virtual tour" of the finished studio!
From the dirty, dark, storage room to studio, proves you can have a new studio....just add work, paint, work, paint, work....:lol:
It is wonderful to have out all my pastels at once! Even my trays of pastels that are spares and less used ones!:heart: The panpastels are in drawers under the easel and can be pulled out to use with the sticks or by themselves.
Also, to have a watercolor area where I can work on a painting, and get up and work on a pastel painting, not having to choose!:thumbsup:
These first two photos are of the watercolor area.

11-23-2009, 04:50 PM

These photos are of the pastel area of the studio.
Thanks for joining me on this tour. If you're ever near Madison (Fitchburg) Wisconsin, stop by for a real tour and a cup of coffee or tea!:cat:

11-23-2009, 05:45 PM
This looks great, Elsie. I am so happy for you, now that you have your own space. Now its time to let the dust fly.:D


11-23-2009, 05:51 PM
Congrats! It's light, bright, and spacious.

Here's to many productive hours in your new place.

11-23-2009, 06:38 PM
Wow, Elsie, it is fantastic -- so light and airy! Thank you for showing them, we see a bit of before and after in the cupboard thingy. And after hearing so much about how this grew into a family project, it is a delight to see the finished result hand 'hear' your joy! Hey, you can even paint on two paintings at the same time, a pastel and a watercolour, just scooting between the stations! :-)


11-23-2009, 06:44 PM
elsie....LUV IT! Looks so lite n brite! What a wonderful workspace you (and hubby) have created ! Now ENJOY!
I was just down in my basement area today, thinking how I can brighten it up... need to get some shelves made, that's for sure ....

Deborah Secor
11-23-2009, 07:04 PM
Oh, Elsie, how nice! Congratulations on a lovely workspace! I always find that so inspiring.

And I'm so pleased to see the Rules Cards right there, too. I have a fifth one now on trees that I'd love to send you for the new studio. PM me, will you? :D

Have fun dirtying up the place!

11-23-2009, 08:12 PM

What an awesome space! Have fun using it. I will be moving into a new studio space in Dec. I hope to get pics and show all of you guys too! It is so fun to see others working spaces/studios!


11-23-2009, 08:50 PM

Thanks everyone for the comments! I am so delighted. I just go down and stand there and have to realize it is for real!

I really want to go right down and start working! But, with Thanksgiving (here in USA) this Thursday, company coming and dirty house, I'll be cleaning and cookin'! :p

Deborah: Oh, yes, you picked out your "rules cards" right on the wall above my palette shelf! Important things go up first! :heart: OOOOO! I'd love to get the new "trees" rules card! I'll PM you!

Deborah's Rules Cards: The best thing since sliced bread!:lol:
These are the little cards mounted on the wall just above the pastels on the palette shelf. I got a set from Deborah last year! They have one of her paintings at the top to illustrate and then "rules"/tips for various painting situations. I laminated mine and have them in clear view for reminders.:heart:

Note that is the is last time you will see my studio so neat and tidy!:p
Now to make the dust fly!:clap:

pastel lover
11-24-2009, 12:26 AM
Hi Elsie,

This is wonderful. I am sooooo jealous. You are sure to create some lovely work here.


11-24-2009, 09:51 AM

Wonderful space. Now you got me thinking about that spare room in my home that I use as a study/library/computer room. Now that I'm getting back into art again I'm thinking of making some adjustments and adding "art studio" to the mix.:lol:
Oh yea, I forgot my wife's stationary bike, so it's an exercise room too. Oh man, I think I'm going to need to break down a wall. :lol:

11-24-2009, 01:15 PM

Hi, Mike,
Great! Hope you get inspired to get that room as a studio...among other uses! Have fun! Hey, you can exercise, then paint, then check into WC all from the same studio!:wink2: :thumbsup:

11-24-2009, 01:23 PM

The only problem is that I will need to take a class in time management just to keep up with everything.:lol: :lol: :lol:

11-25-2009, 10:46 PM
Elsie, this looks like a wonderful setup! I love it when space is converted from barely useable to extremely valuable and functional. And light is very important and you've got that with the white paint and the newly hung lighting. Congrats on this very positive transformation!