How long have you been in this studio?
I moved into this studio quite happily in January 2010, a mere five months ago.
Did you have a plan for the layout of your studio or did it develop organically?
I had a list of things I wanted in a studio: plenty of light, space to spread out paintings to work flat, an easel painting area, paperwork area, a storage area, bathroom access, and a view of the mountains. This one meets all but the tiny inclusive rent price I was naively after.
I had a loose plan of where things would go when I moved in, but it changed and it seems to be evolving all the time. Recently gaining full and private access to the bathroom opened up a door and changed the dynamic of the main room. I'm still getting used to that and am very thankful for it.
I would say yes it has influenced my work. Now I have more room to lay paintings flat to work on them and let them dry flat when I'm working with mediums, gels, and pastes, and I have room to work on more than one at a time.
Having my studio in California versus Colorado has definitely influenced my work. It would never have occurred to me to work on a series based on the Diamond Lane in rural Dolores, CO. It is part of the Southern California/big city experience. The diamond symbol has grown to encompass a variety of symbolic meanings to me, such as the togetherness journey, treasure, heritage, sparkle, and grace. However, it came to mind the other day that in Colorado much of my imagery involved hearts, a symbol of love, and here in Los Angeles it is the diamond, a symbol of wealth.
Another thing about the physical location of my studio is that it is in a retail area. I have had to struggle with myself about that. I like to be available to anyone who chooses to inquire yet I truly want a space in which to work freely. Whereas I enjoy having visitors to my studio and welcome sales, 98% of the time my studio is not presentable to anyone walking in off the street. I have artwork everywhere, all over the walls, leaning against walls and furniture. The artwork is not particularly presented in the best way for first time viewing. Plus I usually have paints, brushes, palette knives, paper towels, papers, and books everywhere! I feel I need a place to work and a place to show, and the two combined in one studio will take still more thought and effort on my part. Effort I am willing to make slowly but surely.