Other bloggers, illustrators and friends have asked over the last couple of weeks about my schedule and work space. Just the other day a client asked, “So where do you go to do your work? What inspires you? Is it hard to work at home when you have children?”
I have been blessed to have a space just for me where it is easy to be creative. For me, my art studio is a little creative haven that is full of inspiration and things that I love. It is full of pictures of friends and family, notes from loved ones, quotes, my many art supplies, collections and artwork from my kiddos. What is showcased has deep meaning and makes this space extra special for me.
My husband and I are both fortunate to be able to work from home and have our own rooms to call our own. When we first moved into our home we discussed sharing a workspace. I thought it would be cool to be able to draw beside him everyday while watching him do what he loves to do. This idea was short lived while we were reminded of the amount of art supplies I had, the amount of conference calls he made everyday and that we had different ideal working environments. Where he liked his workspace quiet, I always had to have either my television or radio on. Thankfully, we have enough space within our house where we could create a corner for each of us. 🙂
Did I tell you that I have a lot of supplies?! No, seriously… it’s a problem. LOL! Every year I take some time and weed out what isn’t being used, has gone bad or just is taking up the most room. That being said, everything IS organized and has its own place. Where my hubby can work in a cluttered room, I CAN NOT! I often find myself focussed on the mess rather than the work that needs to be done and any inspiration that I had often gets lost in the mix. No bueno!
It’s the little things ya’ll that brings me joy. I have a stack of children’s books that I have collected over the years of favorite authors and illustrators. These have been so helpful for the days I sit down to work and have no idea what to draw. Yes, it does happen… sometimes more than I would like to admit. Sometimes just the style in which they create something will inspire me to try something new or something within the storyline will spark a memory that is just screaming to be illustrated.
I also am a Van Gogh groupie. From as long as I can remember I have felt inspired by his work, passionate heart and love for his craft. I have Van Gogh quotes sprayed around the room, knick knacks and pictures of his that bring me joy.
I also have a space where I have placed notes that I have received over the years from friends, family and clients. These little gems remind me why I do what I do, and the importance to continue to strive, challenge myself and grow as an illustrator.
And what illustrator doesn’t have toys in their art studio!? 🙂 For me, it is Pooh all the way. I have always loved this bear’s simple outlook on life, friendships and love for little things. Sometimes when I am having a hard time drawing from a child’s point of view I take some time to look through the books or play with the toys that I have collected. It is amazing how much this helps me to step outside of my adult head and begin seeing things from a child’s point of view.
To answer my client’s question there are obstacles working from home. My biggest challenge since I started as an illustrator is balancing my time. I feel that this year I am closer to finding that balance as I have carved out certain times in the day to create. After the birth of our third son and figuring out his routine I began finding mine. I feel blessed to be able to be home, be with our boys and be available when things come up; like sick days. My time is very flexible and I have the ability to move around my schedule when needed. A great thing to have when you have little ones!
That is my art studio in a nutshell. For days that I need to mix it up a bit I work in the family room or in a favorite coffee shop. The majority of my time however is spent here and has truly become one of my favorite places to be. And to think that this room hadn’t existed in the original floor plan of our house… The former owners added two additional rooms, this being one of them. When I remember this, I am tempted to find them and kiss their face. 🙂