High School Art Class

I’ve not taken many Art classes past my high school days, but I loved walking into the Art room way back when. It had a smell to it, kind of earthy like clay and crayons. It was always kind of dirty in a cool way and finding an unbroken crayon, pastel or piece of charcoal was rare. I vaguely remember the funny little square Conte Crayons and have to admit, back then a paint brush interested me far more.

I bought some a while back and thought they’d be good for on the go sketching in my Moleskine journal so the other day I had a few minutes to play in my journal and I pulled them out. They were laying in the box, pristine and unbroken, each one nestled in its little compartment. I started to sketch and was quickly engaged, surprised at how smoothly they laid down on the page. I was even more impressed with the detail I was able to get with them. These pages took only a few moments, some Conte Crayons and a blending stump.

This medium will be perfect for working outside in the sunshine. I love to sneak out for a few minutes of solitude and vitamin D every chance I get. I’m liking these crayons so much I went back and ordered a box of colored ones. Sometimes the overlooked, simple supplies can be just the thing to inspire you to go back to the basics.

A Studio Face Lift

I am a Fall Cleaner.  When summer draws to an end I feel the need for that one last garage sale, purging the excess that accumulates and simplifying my homelife before school begins.  My goal was to not buy anything new, but to reinvent, repurpose, and reuse.
I have a lot of studio work with deadlines looming, so the first order of business was to clean out my studio, completely.  Inspired by the latest issue of Where Women Create, I decided to move my packing supplies to the guest bedroom.  I don’t know why I always feel compelled to keep everything ‘art’ in my studio.  I have an empty dresser in the guest bedroom, so all of the packing supplies are stored away, out of sight.  This left room for an office area in my studio which I desperately needed.  I moved my grandmother’s secretary desk up and completely love my cozy little writing station.
I repositioned my art table to the middle of the room.  This opened up the flow and feel of the space.  I also added the black checked border to the table, inspired by Teresa McFayden’s lovely workspace.  This added touch of black worked in the same way I use it on a journal page, tying together the hints of black around the room, giving it visual flow. 
I left my curtain rods up as I love to be able to hang up artwork on the little hooks, changing it out whenever I like.  It is also another black element and the line draws the eye around the room.  The simple cream walls, (the color is called Latte, how can you go wrong with that?) are warm and restful to the eye.  The only thing I bought for the room was this little upholstered chair.  I wanted a little journaling nook, so I moved my bookshelf, added the chair, and filled the little end table with journaling supplies.  On top is a tray filled with altered books I have made in the past.
I so love this little display case for 12×12 papers that I snagged at a going out of business sale some time ago.  The papers are too beautiful to hide away in a drawer.  Along this wall I hung prints of artwork from the Masters that inspire me.  On the stairs I keep rolls of watercolor paper handy as well as some of my finished work.  The frame is one my dad made years ago from barn boards off the farm he lived on as a child.  I have ideas for it later.
Around the door I wrote the title from my first article.  It was a defining moment in my art life and describes to a ‘T’ my creative state of being.  It is how I live.
I feel so much less cramped in my newly arranged space.  The moment I step down those three steps, I feel the outside world slip away and I enter the creative place inside of me that I cannot deny.
All of these pretty depression glass pieces have been hidden away in a cupboard.  Now they are filled with beautiful trinkets that inspire me just by looking at them.  I hope this inspires you to reinvent your space, fill it with things you love that you already have.  I was so encouraged to be able to makeover my space with one gallon of paint and my splurge of the little chair.