Monday, March 14, 2011

Spring Cleaning

My studio space isn't large. In fact, it's pretty small at 7 feet by 13 feet. It's basically a cubicle in an open floor with many other cubicles. Since I don't have much space, it can easily get cluttered quickly, especially after getting artwork back from a venue (or from a consulting firm as is the case this time). My space was starting to get so cluttered that just being in it made me anxious and not want to paint. Because of this, I decided that it was time for some Spring cleaning. I just can't function surrounded by clutter, whether it's in my studio or at home, in my kitchen.

This is what my studio looked like earlier today:
Underneath the front table (closest one in the picture) were MANY cardboard boxes and packing materials. I try and keep any boxes supplies are shipped in so that later when I have to ship work, I can re-use the boxes. I order a lot of supplies and have a lot of boxes. These boxes were starting to overflow onto the floor. On the table are a bunch of prepped panels waiting to be painted, supplies, and old paintings that I don't know what to do with.

This is the view from my work table, which is also starting to be filled with prepped panels, work, supplies, and boxes. Underneath this table I have a bunch of storage boxes holding god knows what. Across from this table is the rack that my husband built for me so that I can store paintings. It had panels, paintings and cardboard stacked in it. 

I decided that what I needed to do was clear out the space underneath my work table and put all of my prepped panels there, all labeled so that I know what sizes I had by just glancing underneath the table. I pulled out all of the storage containers except for three small ones, one containing small canvases and the other two containing hanging supplies. My bubble wrap also went under there, on top of the container of canvases. 

Next up was the other table. I broke down all the boxes and lined them up against the wall behind the table. I also put all the packaging pillows in a storage tub which fit nicely underneath the table with plenty of leftover space.

The rack was also cleaned and emptied so that only finished paintings now live there. 
I can now see my studio floor and my table tops again. I have space to paint and walk around without running into anything. I feel so much better now that the area is cleaned. I am less anxious and ready to paint again, which is a good thing since I have open studios in April. 

When you don't have much space, it's important to be organized and clean. It's too easy to let the clutter take over though and invade not only your space, but also your mind. Ideally I would have a larger space, but since I don't, I have to make due with what I have and make it a useful, working space. I think I did a good job today. It may seem like a silly thing to write about, cleaning one's studio space, but for me, it's part of my creative process. It signifies that I am ready to start a next wave of creating.


  1. Something I need to do. Spring break---Spring clean!

  2. Feel better? It's a daunting but well worth task.

  3. YES! Much better. Happy Happy now. :-)