It’s time for Featuring Studio Spaces! Each week we will feature an artist and his or her creative space. We’ll gather lots of juicy tidbits ranging from inspiration to design and functionality.
Tell us a little bit about what you do in the studio.
Painting with Fire Artwear functions as a bead making studio; a supply store for Thompson Enamels, enameling equipment, and other fun stuff; and a jewelry-making studio for me.
Did you have a specific inspiration when organizing your space?
[ enamel weighing and labeling ]
I need to effectively use as many square feet in the studio as possible. I love to look through the pages of “Where Women Create” and am more than a little envious of most of the studios that grace their pages, but PWF has a more utilitarian look … for better or worse. My goal is, “A place for everything and everything in its place.”
Name one or more things that especially work for you.
What really works for us is to have different work stations dedicated to specific functions … like a place to weigh, label and store enamel; a shipping area; places to create torch-fired enamel beads; a soldering area; a place for metalworking; a place for wet work (working with patinas and liquid enamels); and another place for beading.
What’s your biggest issue with storage/organization/design?
I would love to have a display area so that we could invite customers to our studio, but it’s not who we are … right now. When I’m in Maryland, I live in the country and the customers would be few and far between. When I’m in St. Petersburg, I live in the city but don’t have nearly the room that I do in Maryland. Woe is me!
Level of important: design aesthetic or functionality?
We are definitely about functionality!
Is there something that you’re constantly having to work on overcoming and what have you done/do you do to rectify this situation? [ beading area ]
The thing I’m constantly having to overcome is me! I have a terrible case of ADD when I get into the studio. I start a project, then I see something over there that looks enticing, then something else catches my eye over there … before long I have stuff out all over the place. Someone, please put me in a straightjacket!
Do you use/prefer/need artificial or natural light? [ packaging & shipping area ] I love natural light that is assisted by task lighting.
Interesting tidbits about your studio.
Our primary torch-firing station has an outstanding ventilation hood, plus the triple tub sink is a holdover from my pottery days. Several stainless steel tables were practically given to me and are sturdy and easy to clean.
[ wet work area ]
How has having your own creative space affected your work?
Our studio is housed in a detached over-sized garage. The size of the space, about 650 sq. ft., has allowed for diversification and helpers in the studio. Last year we splurged and got air conditioning. Wow … did that make a difference in our outlook and cordiality!