Until recently my progress in the art world had been severely slow, limited, and just not that good. Despite challenges (which didn’t last), and resources (of which there are many), and a beautiful walk to work every day to inspire me… well… nothing was happening. This was getting me down pretty badly to the point that I was spending more time in bed watching other people do things than was really healthy..
So I made a change. I asked my landlord, and fellow lecturer, whether there might be any space for a small studio in New College. My aim was to move my stuff out of the flat. All those paints, and pencils, and pieces of paper, and quite a lot else, was getting lost in storage in my attempt to keep our rooms as spacious as possible. This meant I didn’t really know what I had available to me, and this a good artwork does not make. My hope was that if I had a space in the college, then I would walk straight from work into my studio and be productive for a little bit more of the day.
I was massively blessed to be offered a corner of the upstairs room (above) at a low rent (they’re a charity, and so far my funds aren’t huge, so we understood money pains). I moved my stuff in and voila! It took a little while to really get into anything, but gradually I’m building on my progress. I have my supplies there, and the last few days have spent my spare afternoon time working on bits and pieces.
My main project at the minute is a study of St Chad, hopefully resulting in a mural and icon for a small chapel. That is hugely exciting, but it’s really already been a valuable space to me. I get to work, with music on, and have set up my materials so they help me. My paper/scrap pieces/etc are in organised drawers, meaning if I need paper of any colour I can explore and find something that fits just right. I have a host of sketch books which I have on my desk to help me work out ideas, planning them and gaining inspiration without losing track of it all. I also have my trunk, which is surprisingly coping well with its new use of holding all my paints and similar materials.
I no longer feel guilty for not giving it the time, I no longer feel awful having not let out my creative side, and I feel generally better in myself. This might not be a long-term solution (my place there very much relies on the college’s hospitality and if it no longer works for them then I’ll need to move. For now though it is amazing. I have very much missed being in an art studio, and hopefully you’ll see far more of my work popping up from now on.