Monday, January 18, 2016

The Bedroom Studio

Bedroom studio with desk replacing the bed

Desk with Ikea "Alex" drawers and "Billy" bookcase

Cardboard boxes used for organizing things

Cardboard boxes slide away under the shelf

Brush organizers made from paper towel tubes

Shoe box of framing tools

As part of the workshop I taught yesterday on building a regular painting practice on a time budget, we talked about how to minimize the obstacles that get in the way of painting regularly. See the list we discussed at the bottom of this post.

I showed the above photos of my "bedroom" studio. For years I painted in this small bedroom, setting up my still life on a cooler sitting on the double bed which took up most of the floor space! Eventually we needed fewer bedrooms and I was able to move out the bed, install an old desk set up that was headed for the dump, and over time added a couple of Ikea items. But I'm still heavily invested in cardboard, as you can see by the organizers in the photos above. Note that even the taboret is a big cardboard box, and there are others around the room, taped shut, which are used to make stands for still life set ups. The fancy easel is new, for a long time I used either an aluminum Stanrite easel or my plein air box and tripod.

Make it easy to paint - get rid of the obstacles

Minimize set up and clean up

·      Studio in a bedroom

·      Easel

·      Masterson box for palette

·      Big flat box under the bed )to hold your supplies when not in use)

·      Cardboard boxes are great

·      Ikea is great

·      Ziplock bags are great

·      Paper towel tubes are great

·      Glass and plexiglass make good palettes

Be prepared

·      Decide what you’re going to paint the day before, anticipation motivates

·      Set up your still life the day before

·      Crop your photo the night before


·      Paint before you start doing anything else, especially before you get in the car…

·      Tell yourself you only have to do step x this session

·      Tell yourself you only have to paint for one hour


·      Paint small and finish in one session – achievement is a great motivator!

Disclaimer: Some of these ideas are mine, but many come from artist friends and teachers. Thanks to everyone for sharing!

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