Thursday, January 23, 2014

Rolling Along....

Last March, after spending time at Bessette Studios,  I remodeled my studio.  I use the word "I" liberally.  Immediately upon my arrival home,  I announced, "I want to cover the wall with plywood to make a ginormous easel so I can work on several large pieces of art at the same time. I think I'm going to try to do it myself!" and my husband quickly replied,  "ummm, let me help you with that." And he proceeded to do it for me.  To my credit, I did help hold the plywood and hand him some screws....

I can't tell you how much this has improved my painting life.  Since the initial remodel, (you can read about it here) I have painted the plywood blue because the wood grain was distracting me. 

the studio with the blue plywood wall easel

Another thing I learned last March was that I was creating self-imposed barriers when I painted.  The seriously wonderful drop-leaf table that I scored from an antique store in town for $80 (you can see it in the photo above) was large enough, but the way I used it, cluttered with paints and supplies with only a small space left for a palette, was not helping me to paint freely, loosely, or fluently. 

To give myself more room, I initially used a card table covered with plastic for a palette.  Although the size was FANTASTIC, I had to walk back and forth to the paint if I was working on the far side of the wall easel.

Stealing an idea from Jeanne Bessette, I went in search of a rolling cart to use as my palette holder.  The Husky 2-tray steel cart was the least expensive one I could find ($49.98). I ordered it online from Home Depot and it was deposited on my doorstep in three days with no shipping fees!  I LOVE the internet (see earlier post about Modern Day Living).   

Here's what a Huskey 2-tray steel utility cart looks like new (click on the caption if you want one too):

Husky 2-tray Steel Cart 

Here's what mine looks like: 

I use parchment paper inside the upper tray for a palette

Last week, I pimped out my cart by adding four wire spice racks from Ikea to the sides ($2.99 each) for paint storage because I was still limiting my palette space by piling up the cart with bottles of paint and brushes leaving just a small space to squirt in! Seriously, I have boundary issues.  I used electrical ties to hold the spice racks in place because they like to rock back and forth if they are not secured.  

close up of spice rack hanging on cart.  note purple electrical ties. 

I heart my cart and affectionately call him Buddy; he follows me everywhere.

One thing I am learning about my art process is to do whatever it takes, if possible and affordable, to make my process easier.  If I have to stop to find a supply or take time to make more room to squirt paint, then I run the risk of losing my focu...oh, look, a rabbit!

In the studio, painting with my best nine-year old friend.  
Buddy worked for us both.  

"Hello, this is Buddy.  What's your favorite color?"
Buddy the elf


jo said...

I dig the cart and your nine-year old painting disciple.

dr said...

I dig the big blue painting on the big blue plywood wall easel!

Kim said...

I dig both of you :) and I am stunned that you read my blog!!!!

art by Michael Perchard said...

Kim! Reading your posts always make me smile!
Thank you!
I love your studio!
The photo of you and your nine year old art buddy is priceless!
Keep on making great art!
Take care!
Your loving huge canvas paintings art buddy!

Laurel said...

I love the wooden easel and Buddy. Thanks for the great ideas!

karen said...

Wow. Love the change you made. I want one of these walls in my studio. I DO have the room, I think. Maybe when you finally move in, you can help me set it up so we can paint together.