Monday 11 March 2013

Inside the Studio

Artist’s Studios fascinate other artists, collectors and art historians so I thought I would give you a glimpse into my studio. It’s a smallish space - I have banished my car and taken over the garage for my studio. An air-conditioner has been installed to prevent me melting in the heat of the Australian summer, and to any painting fumes. However, I am careful to use odourless solvents and mediums and where possible to open up the doors and let in the fresh outside air.

This post was prompted by an interesting Facebook Page called, suitably, A Peek Inside Artist’s Studios which invites artists to post photos of their studios.

Looking at images of artist's studios reveal a multitude of approaches to studio design. There is the 'nothing gets moved/cleaned/thrown away' variety and also the pristine clinically clean and tidy kind. I must confess I didn't find too many of those!

I think I tend to fall somewhere in between. At heart I am practical and tidy. When I'm working materials go everywhere with abandon.Then I have to tidy up. OK, it's confession time - I have to make room for my students...

When I was unpacking my boxes some favourites were the two Ardmore ceramic pieces. I bought the bowl and jug  many years ago(pictured above). This was before the Studio found fame on the world arena, and when they were (sort of) affordable. I decided immediately that instead of hiding them away in a cupboard I would use them in the studio to store my watercolour brushes.

This video is an interview with David Dawson provides not only a glimpse into Lucien Freud’s Studio but his way of working and personality as well.

I find the images of the studio of Francis Bacon quite disturbing - I couldn't  in my wildest dreams work in a studio that wasn't organised.

The piles of stuff would literally drive me crazy. I must confess to having a “be kind to brushes” phobia - I cannot bear to see brushes abandoned in tins, encrusted with paint. I need a clean palette and lovingly cleaned brushes.


  1. Yes, I love seeing inside people's studios! Yours looks very tidy to me! Mine gets really messy and then a big tidy up about every third week! My three cats contribute greatly to the messiness. While you are trying to keep cool we are doing the opposite with the underfloor heating keeping us tropical while it's minus 2 outside!

    1. Confession time - I did a lot of tidying up before taking the photos!

  2. Even at my messiest I don't come close to Bacon. How can he find anything? Searches would drive me mad. Yet his work is highly ordered. Hmm? I'm of your persuasion--messy when working, cleaning up in between projects. Clean slate and all that.