Organize the Studio Update

Yay! This week’s update on the month-long art studio makeover challenge is both disappointing and celebratory. There is still a lot to be done.  post 1 wide view





This “quick” over haul includes:

  • the landmark de-cluttering exercise of 2014;
  • the functional re-arrange of furniture whereby we can paint, glue, keyboard AND nap in comfort;
  • the massive art supplies sorting and putting away;
  • finding  storage solutions for finished work;
  • honest-to-goodness cobweb clearing/elbow-grease cleaning;
  • removing the non-art stuff that accumulated we-know-not-how;
  • maybe we can make the window view more pleasant;
  • and — last but by no means least — can we access the sink!

Whew. I don’t know about you, but I find these things take time.

Meanwhile, things have been stacking up because the walls are not conducive to hanging paintings. Too cluttered and no long open spans.

post 2 stack & dry

Slap-dash instant gratification fix of the day: Remove the goofy little shelf!

post 2 goofy shelf

Now I can hang wet paintings and use the easel for *painting* instead of *propping*.

Next, the inspiration line needs to be reconfigured so I don’t have to duck under it to get to the sofa.

post 2 uninspiration wall

Imponderable of the week:  Studio lighting seems to be every artist’s favorite gripe and I’m debating the situation here.  The room is naturally dark (despite a sliding glass door) so I need supplemental light to work by.  The overhead lights are high- wattage fluorescent fixtures, but from the artist’s perspective, fluorescent bulbs put out an odd color of light compared to actual daylight.

Both the studio walls and ceiling are authentic solid knotty pine paneling.  It’s aged to a rich warm cinnamon-orange and I love how it makes the room seem cozy and warm during the dull, cloudy Oregon winter.  But, between the reflected orange cast from the paneling and the green fluorescent lights,  all the colors in my art look wonky. I am learning to adjust my color mixing and color choices to compensate, but this isn’t exactly ideal.

For now I’ve brought in a better, adjustable table lamp to supplement the ceiling lights, but in the long run solving this issue will take some thought. Obviously, replacing the lights and painting the room — walls and ceiling — all white would be the thing to do, but I am not willing to go there. Yet.

The cat, bless her heart, has been enjoying this project. She helps me me peer where no-one dares — no clue what all is hidden in there but we’ll be finding out soon! post 2 cat in

In the meantime, there is hope. VOILA THE SINK!!! post 2 olook a sink


You can see the progress I’ve made so far by looking at my previous art studio re-organization post. Also be sure to check out everyone’s progress over at Jean Wilkey’s site — she is the instigating host of the art studio makeover challenge.

If you have any ideas about the lighting thing, please share them!

Author: Barbara Martin

6 thoughts on “Organize the Studio Update”

  1. Wow, that’s a clean sink and counter. Congrats!

    Lighting is most challenging when it is mixed temperature. Have you replaced the fluorescent bulbs with the daylight ones? Might also consider making a truer color corner by hanging white paper of the walls and ceiling (or perhaps using a photo paper drop down for when you need the most color accuracy.)

    1. Thanks!! I have a canvas tarp I might put on a Roman shade or on a roller like a photo paper drop… or I guess a plain white sheet would be even brighter. There is just SO much reflection going on though. In dry weather I take things outside to look at the colors.

  2. Wow! I’m jealous of your sink. I don’t have a sink in my studio and would love to have one, Your’s is so clean and de-cluttered. For the walls you could also try installing an old fashioned roller-shade that you can pull down when painting and leave up for display when you want the beautiful wood to show. A full length curtain could do the same. Enjoyed your post.

    1. It seems the sink and cabinetry were put in by the previous, original owner of the house so the room could eventually be used as part of a mother-in-law apartment but it was used as family room. There is also a brick hearth/chimney that originally housed a wood stove — gone now. Oregon passed stricter emissions laws so the older wood-burning stoves became illegal.The chimney is closed off, but it could be redone. There is a gas line coming into the room by the sink, but that’s the opposite end from the brickwork…. I kind of like the “feel” of the room now and always like to keep options open, hence my indecision. Painting it white would make it seem so…. cold for lack of a better word. It is the only room in this house that really seems cozy to me — but maybe that’s just because it’s ALL MINE!!!!! lol

  3. Oh, the lights are killing me. I am finally working to improve my lighting but also without much luck.

    The goofy shelf removal made me laugh. Did you just feel like you accomplished something big when you took that out? I have a bunch of those little things to do – plus a set of five shelves that are going out – need more wall space.

    1. Amantha, it did seem like a big deal — after a whole year of thinking oh I should just take that thing off. And I FINALLY asked my (tall and very sweet) husband to help me take it down, which he did in about two seconds. The silliest part was it turned out I could have easily done it myself because the horizontal shelf was a separate piece from the two brackets…. ezpeesey as they say.

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