Monday, September 6, 2010

Studio sneak peeks ...

Like most artists, designers, imagineers and daydreamers, I find sanctuary in a studio. It's my cocoon where I'm most compelled to manifest my visions and allow new ideas to emerge. (Not to mention that it provides a spot to stash my growing inventory of tools and supplies far away from the order in the rest of the household.)

I love looking at the studios artists inhabit and the soulful variety of expressions that take form from each owners' personality. So, over the next few months, I'm going to take Alamodeus readers on a little tour of creative spaces near and far, starting with my own creative refuge shown below. Welcome to my world!

I designed the 16' x 20' studio that is situated just
beyond several gardens on our property.
Follow the sandstone pathway, pass the rose gardens and fountain ... then, the pergola garden of plumbago, salvia, esperanza and Pride of Barbados ... and, finally the cottage garden to reach the steps to the studio.

In the spring, the cottage garden outside the studio windows is abloom with 'Siskiyou Pink' gaura, irises in shades of violet and royal blue, and cheery yellow yarrow. The garden's affect was intentional. The moment I walk out to work in the studio, I'm greeted with the sweetest welcome!

My studio has a decidedly country French feel, with vintage finds, including my beloved antique workbench from the Czech Republic. It serves double duty as a wine-tasting table when we entertain.

The stained concrete floors are perfect for easy clean-up and the cream colored walls have just the slightest nuance of color that changes with the light. The mood is very serene, almost spa-like. This visual tranquility keeps distraction to a minimum and allows my soul to speak through color on canvas. While the walls whisper quietly, the music will likely be the enthusiastic Spanish guitars of the Gypsy Kings or compelling operas from Andrea Bocelli.  

I generally paint in fall and winter, when the temperatures are cooler in Texas, and work in other media as the mercury rises. I chose not to install air conditioning or heating in the studio, so I could actually experience the seasons! But, I designed it with windows facing every direction but North, allowing great cross-ventilation, and making it tolerable even in the extreme summer heat or coldest days of winter.

The best way to experience the studio is when friends gather for my little soirees. There is so much cheer and laughter (it could be the wine, but let's just say everyone is having fun), that the positive energy saturates the space. It is an enveloping, lingering energy that is at once therapeutic, healing and spiritually deepening for months afterward ... then, it's time for another soiree.

Mood: zen. Clutter: minimal. Sounds: mostly world music or jazz. Art media: various. Favorites: (1) great light, (2) storage capacity/space, and (3) large, multi-tasking workbench 

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