I was well aware for years that I needed my own space, but my husband and I moved so often that I never had a chance to realize that dream. I work primarily as a digital photographer and graphic designer, so I have been able to function as long as I have had a computer, but finding the space to indulge my other creative outlets such as painting and scrapbooking had been difficult. So when we went house hunting last year, having an extra bedroom that would be dedicated to my studio was a requirement. We found the perfect home, and I painted the rooms one by one and then moved into each. I was measuring the extra bedroom that would function as my studio, when I became worried the furniture I had chosen (my grandmother's dining room table which still resides with my parents many states away) wouldn't fit. My husband suggested then that I take the master bedroom for my studio. It WAS a large bedroom, and was bigger than we needed, but I was a little hesitant. After some thinking, I realized I would be cramped in the room I had chosen, so we moved our bedroom to the guest room and then I moved my studio into the master bedroom. It was such a good decision. After all, how much room do you really need to sleep?
While I still haven't had grandma's table shipped to me, I have another dining room table as a placeholder, and it gives me all the room I need to spread out. I love to leave projects out on the table so I can walk away from them and come back later. When I walk back into the room, I often can decide right away if I like what I have, or if I need to rearrange. I also used the table to frame up ten prints for a show, and it was nice to finally enough surface area to do that. It also helped when I spread my prints out to select them for the show - I could see the groupings at full size and rearrange them easily. In this larger room I also had room for two wardrobes we were no longer using. They have amazing pull-out drawers that store all my goods in the best way possible. A shallow drawer is great for all my beads, and others store my yarn and painting supplies. Even the pants hanger is good for storing fabric. In fact it was not until I had moved all the art supplies I own into one space that I had any real idea just how much I owned. As I became interested in new things over the years - beading or scrapbooking or knitting - I amassed more and more stuff. I feel so lucky to have it all in one place now. Just being able to find what I need at any given moment increases my productivity so much. It sounds like such a simple thing, but it is so important.
I love to surround myself with things that make me happy and supply inspiration. I have plenty of wall space for my bulletin boards and I also tack up concert posters and even hung the first thing my mom and I sewed together, a blue sequined prom dress. I have little 'clotheslines' that I hang some of my favorite art on, too. Some may find all the things displayed to be cluttered, but I like to be enveloped with things that make me happy when I am working. As long as my table is free of clutter, it feels like a productive space.