Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
I thought you artist friends who, like me, produce and sell our work, might be interested in a look at my studio. Warning: it might get ugly.
I've heard it said by artists in discussing their future dreams: "I just want a small house and a big studio!"
And why is it important to us artists to have that place to make art? So important, in fact, that a big studio is preferred over a big house. When my husband David got finished with art school in the '70's, he built a studio space in the pole shed at the farm. He enclosed a space, added a wood floor, put in insulation, a chimney and a Jotul wood stove.
Then he met me, married me, and embarked with me on an adventure that has taken 36 years to bring full circle. Now we are literally right back where we started. (Our first date was at the studio!)
So we are older, wiser, and all that. And very much still needing a place to make art. Our art is varied;it requires supplies, time, and a lot of tools. And cats. Our art includes painting, jewelry making, mixed media collage, leather craft, decorative painting, and wood working. Our future art will include ceramics. There is no end in sight of the need we both have to make art.
The need to sell our art goes hand in hand with the need to make it. Neither one of us is cut from the fabric of making art to just give it away. It's the selling it, the finding the right client for the work , that scratches the itch and completes the cycle.
Of course all this comes at a price. When I think about the length I have gone to to get in the right shows so I can meet my ideal client, well, it makes me shudder. And if we were to count up the actual hours David has spent on his art that he would not, could not, get paid for, it's pretty insane. And yet there is this need to make art. So we keep figuring it out. How to make it, how to sell it , and how to have that big studio next to the small house.
So we're doing a little bit of renovations. Like a new floor, insulation, rain gutters, varmint proofing, and lighting. Hopefully we will get it done before the weather turns freezing.
I have to keep my vision up of the big studio, because, as you can see, it's little more than a dirt hole right now. Our cats love it, they think it's a huge sand box/ litter box. My work area is the table in the upper right of the photo. Pretty primitive, huh?
But you should see the view from here.
So what does your studio look like? Do you have a big studio and a small house?
Thanks, Sandy...you've got me thinking about this and I can't wait to see the "after" shots. As a fiber artist (knitter/felter), I don't need a lot of space to work, any comfortable couch will suffice, but I do need storage space for the yarn I can't seem to stop accumulating...it's a sickness, really. I may take some photos of creative yarn storage and post them, hope others will do the same.
Sandy, thanks for the interesting and intriguing post. Now, you really have me dreaming because there are things I want to do, and would do, if I had room to spread out.
Currently I am using our 4th bedroom as my studio. It's roughly almost 11'x11'. Dh had me some custom cabinets built to store stuff. I got a new work table, custom built table base sturdy enough to hold a slab of granite. I have another storage piece that has a surface where I can take photos.
Dh would like a full room to himself. Right now dd has one bedroom for herself and we have a spare bedroom for guests. Dh is using the desk in the sparebedroom for his desktop & ham radio. I told him if he built me a studio in the back yard I would let him have the bedroom I currently use. He is not convinced yet, not even close. However, he is going to build a small storage building outside for lawn equipment (mower, trimmer, etc.) and a 1/2 bath for pool use. I would love to make it big enough to have a place for me. ;D