Art by Rebecca Barkley
I love the opportunity to sticky beak into other artist’s work spaces, to peek inside the room or space where all the magic happens, see what inspires, how their studio reflects them and their art and how they manage work flow.
There’s 2 main types of studios I have noticed. The neat spaces that are minimal and incredibly organised, and the overcrowded ones. Mine is definitely the overcrowded type. I don’t have time to tidy, I’d rather spend it creating!
I have taken over the dining are of the house, right next to the kitchen. This is where the magic happens.
Zooming into the area above my amazing chest of drawers that I got for my 30th. The drawers are from Ishka and are made from recycled boats in Asia. Inside the drawers is all my stationary items! I love stationary.. you’ll find everything in here – pens, paper, sticky tape, hole punches, staplers, blue tac.. all kinds of paper, twine, tags, cards.. you get the idea.
On top of the drawers (not that you can really see, sorry for the dodgy camera phone pictures) is a treasure chest containing all my acrylic paints. My CD player is pictured and a few random books. Framed on the chest is an original painting by Shirley Barber (my biggest inspiration growing up!) which is a picture of instructions to help me paint hair!!! In front of that is a dish of ‘earth’s treasures’ and random things that inspire me. Aaand above that is a canvas I painted of Kurt Cobain.
This is my ‘earthly treasures’ dish.. all sorts of things here including sea shells I have found, coral, seed pods, leather, flowers, crystals etc.
To the right of the drawers is a cupboard that came with the house we rent. It contains folders of artworks, items for sale, framed work and odd frames, fabric and blank canvases. On top is my new printer/scanner, the butterfly box homes my jewelry making supplies, there’s a chunk of wood covered in candles and the Bimo tin has rubber stamps in it.
Onto the table.. I have this small easel that I unintentionally use as a mood board. I tend to put things on it the need to be worked on, but it often ends up covered with interesting finds, pictures, paper, whatever fits on it. Currently there is some sketches ready to be painted, a note book, metallic tattoos, page of a book I found outside our house, coffee stained ribbon and an off cut of watercolour paper put aside to use again.
There’s a sewing machine tucked behind everything.. I’m a pretty bad sewer to be honest! But it’s fun and I just need more practice. The machine doesn’t have a home so it stays on the table for now. I have lots of pencil/paint brush containers with my most used brushes. A dish for random items such as bobby pins, jewelry and dead insects.
Close up picture of my desktop during a recent painting frenzy!
It appears that I have a collection of jars and bottles. I do reuse all my coffee jars, they’re great! Here I have used them for washing brushes, beads and bones. I also like to display any interesting wine bottles just because. I’m not sure of the history behind that amazing hand carved box.. but it used to be mum and dads and they used it for their cassette tapes back in the day! I always loved it, and now I keep all my watercolour paints in it.
My desktop today, this is about as tidy as it gets! Two recent paintings are there ready to be scanned. I’m usually too lazy to get my cutting mat out and I put scratches in the table, so now I just leave it there so I have no excuse not to use it.
Me in action! A selfie from a week or so ago while working away painting toadstools.