In Kickstart Art, step four I want you to start to think about where you are going to do your art (this is a BIG step on from ‘if’ you are going to do something creative for you)
There is one thing that everyone seems to have a problem with – WHERE to find the space for your art. Strangely, this seems to be problem whether you have a mansion, or a room you share with others.
I am sure that it’s not about the space, but about taking the step towards making time and space for yourself.
Approach this step by step. You don’t have to have an all singing, all dancing, north facing studio to make space for you and your equipment.
I do a lot of cooking, and I enjoy it, so it is not a burden. In many ways it is very similar to my art practise. I could cook with just a knife, a bowl, a saucepan and a spoon. They wouldn’t take up much room. The more I cook the more bits of equipment, herbs and spices, recipes, bits and bobs I seem to acquire. Some I know I want/need, some I buy as an adventure. I manage to find space for most things and edit as I go along.
I think art equipment is very similar. You don’t have to buy/make space for everything at once.
If you can find a space, a shelf in a cupboard, a spare room no longer occupied full time by offspring, a shed, an area in a garage, or simply a space under the bed for a plastic storage box…grab it for yourself. Lay claim to it so others don’t spread into YOUR space.
My space feels like home. I have bits of rejected furniture, old drawers, old IKEA shelves full of books, a sofa (finally; I claimed it 3 weeks ago) and various storage containers from wine boxes to plastic storage boxes. Broken jugs and mugs get reused for brushes. I have a table and an easel, so I am lucky enough to have a very welcoming space.
Of all those pieces mentioned the easel was the only thing bought specifically for painting. I particularly enjoy reusing the jugs and mugs, rather than throwing them out. They all have stories to tell.
If you truly want to make art and creativity a part of your life, you can find a space for it.
It is a question of priorities – where, on your list of priorities, does a creative space, for you, belong? There is no reason why your space, whatever the size be as welcoming to you as I find mine.
Stop waiting for the ideal art studio. Find a spot, claim it as yours, and make art.
Kickstart Art step four – MAKE IT HAPPEN
You need to think about how you work best and create a concrete plan for turning this plan into a happy reality. Break your plan into small, manageable steps and do one step per day for a week. Set aside a morning, or afternoon, at the weekend and complete each task on the list one by one.
- I want to do it
- I am going to get the basic equipment
- I am going to play around with the equipment for up to 10 mins every day (if I can’t do it one day I WON”T give up, I just continue the next day)
- I am going to find a space for me and my equipment. Don’t share your sketchbook with a child, or partner – you wouldn’t share a diary. Your sketchbook is your visual ‘safe space’ in the same way as a diary.
- Remember your equipment is YOURS. It is important to you. You do not have to share it.
- Enjoy the process.
How about a quick, creative exercise?
Sometimes my mind AND my page are a total blank. What am I going to do? HELP!!!
Firstly, do not panic. This is your Art Diary Sketchbook…your rules.
When I have no ideas I look to someone else to give me a nudge. There are all sorts of magazines lying around in my house, many of them older than I would like to admit. I’m sure you can lay your hands on a printed picture from a magazine, or a bit of old wrapping paper, maybe a postcard or a flyer from a shop…anything really.
For this exercise you will need the Pritt Stick and your pen.
Find a couple of pages of the magazine that catches your eye. Don’t over think this. I went for page 2 and 3 of a Vogue magazine from 2018. I have no idea how it got here.
Next I want you to start ripping out bits that interest you. I have no idea where I am going with these when I start.
My only rule is to rip, not cut. There is an element of chance, or luck with a rip. You find things you weren’t expecting with a rip that you would have cut out if you were being careful with scissors.
Start to glue bits to a page in your sketchbook. Keep adding until you don’t want to add.
Stop. Look. Draw, doodle, connect, repeat the process.
Sometimes a narrative appears. Sometimes text from the magazine add a new perspective. Keep going until you feel you want to stop.
You have just done a mixed media piece. Well done you.
Enjoy creating a space for yourself
Have a look at Kickstart Art – Step Five for more creative ideas, and for where to go next.