Practical Guide to Setting Up an Art Studio at Home

This is the first article about a brand new series on .ART blog! It is all about survival tactics: practical and easily applicable tips that will contribute to your creative success!
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Whether you enjoy doing some oil painting, sketching, or creating sculptures, it’s essential to have a place at home where you can be creative. If you don’t have an art studio at home, it’s easy to set one up in just a few easy steps. No matter what type of arts or crafts you love to make, having your own area to express yourself is key to letting your creative side shine. This guide explores ways to help you get started creating art at home with your own studio. Read on to learn some helpful tips and tricks to begin setting up your very own creative space.

Considerations

Before you start planning your art studio, there are several important things to consider, including:

Budget: You don’t have to spend a lot of money to enjoy an art studio at home. However, it’s important to set some cash aside and create a budget, so you don’t end up spending too much. Think about what you’ll need, including lighting and supplies, so that you’re prepared for these costs as you go.

Lighting: When it comes to creating art, natural light is best. However, you’ll also need ample lighting to work on your art at night and at different times during the day. Look at the area where you want to set up your art studio and ensure that it has enough lighting. If not, consider adding some brighter overhead lights or a few task lights, such as a floor and table lamp with an adjustable shade so you can direct the light as needed.

Ventilation: Proper ventilation is crucial, especially when working with paints, glues, and other potentially volatile mediums. Be sure that you have enough windows in your art studio and consider installing a ceiling fan for extra air circulation.

Sink and water: Working with paints and other supplies can be messy, especially if you’re dealing with oils or watercolor painting at home. If possible, choose a room with a sink or have one installed. A utility sink is an affordable, durable choice. These sinks have a deep basin and are perfect for busy artists who need quick access to water.

Workspace: Consider how much room you’ll need to work. You may only need a small studio if you like to draw, but a larger one if you’re working with massive sculptures. Think about your workspace before you designate a place to set up your studio, so you’ll have enough square footage to create your masterpieces.

Privacy: It can be tough to get creative if you’re in a noisy part of the home. Choose a studio location that’s quiet and private when possible. This will allow you to focus and really immerse yourself in your art without outside distractions.

Floor protection: Carpet is not recommended for an art studio since it will absorb paint and other materials, leaving stains behind. Make sure you install flooring that’s easy to clean, like linoleum or vinyl material, for quick and easy maintenance.

Chair: A comfortable chair is a must when working on your art. Look for chairs with ergonomic support so you don’t end up with a sore neck or back. Chairs with wheels make it easy to move around the studio as needed, too.

Where to set up the studio

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When you’re ready to set up your art studio, think about where you plan to get creative. Here are some ideas to consider when setting it up at home.

Shed: A separate outdoor shed is an excellent spot for art. Set this area up with new lighting, all of your supplies, and more. Sheds are also great for drying paintings and sculptures or for storing your larger pieces.

Spare room: A spare bedroom is a perfect place to set up your art studio. It’s easy, convenient, and gives you quick access to the studio from anywhere in the home.

Garage: Your garage is a fantastic place to set up an art studio, and many already have utility sinks in place. The garage door lets lots of light in, and concrete flooring is perfect for dealing with spilled paint. They also offer plenty of ventilation and storage space too.

Patio or outdoors: If you’re feeling inspired, have some fun creating your artwork outside. A screened-in patio is an excellent choice to help you avoid dealing with insects or debris.

Attic: The attic is an excellent area to work on your art. However, make sure that it has proper heating and cooling to keep you comfortable and protect your artwork from extreme temperatures.

Basement: Your basement can quickly transform into an art studio. Use this space to get creative while enjoying some quiet and privacy. Make sure your basement is dry and free of water issues to protect your artwork and supplies. Paint the walls white to create a brighter room and a nice blank canvas to work in.

Corner: If you don’t have an extra room, consider designating a corner of the living or dining room to become your art studio.

Under the stairs: Reserve a spot under a staircase for a small art studio. This is ideal for sketching, drawing, or for making smaller paintings. Attach a wall-mounted easel or some shelving to the wall to give you more room.

Popular types of art to make at home

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The type of art you choose to make at home is entirely up to you, but it often depends on what type of space you have to work with. Here are some of the most popular types of art to make at home.

Painting and drawing: Whether you’re doing oil painting at home or using watercolours, this is one of the most popular art forms to enjoy. Sketching and drawing are also popular mediums, and none of these requires a lot of extra room unless you’re planning to paint a mural or work on an extremely large canvas.

Sculpting: From clay to wood carvings, creating sculptures is a wonderful medium to enjoy making at home. Be sure you have all of the tools you need while allowing plenty of extra room to get creative. Easy cleanup is also important for this type of art, so look for the right flooring material when you set up your studio.

Jewellery making: Custom jewellery is a beautiful art form that’s perfect for a home studio. A spare bedroom or attic is ideal for this type of art. Organize your jewellery-making materials and label them clearly so you can find everything you need as you go.

Sewing: From beautiful quilts to custom clothing, sewing is a true form of creativity. Set up a sewing room where you can use your sewing machine, cut fabrics, and get as creative as you want without interruption.

Painting/drawing materials required

Here are some key materials you’ll want to have on-hand if you enjoy painting or drawing at home:

Drawing: Make sure you have a good variety of graphite pencils, coloured pencils, and pencil sharpeners. Stock up on paper and get a few quality sketchbooks to work in. A durable table and comfortable chair are also key items to include in your drawing studio.

Oil Painting: Gather lots of beautiful oil colours to get started on your artwork. Make sure you have a quality artist palette, several different-sized brushes, a sturdy easel, and canvas in several sizes. A drying rack is also important to allow your artwork to fully dry before you display it. A paint extender can be helpful, too, especially if you want to change the texture of your oil paints when applying them to canvas. Primer isn’t required, but it can help provide a good base before you paint.

Water Painting: Watercolor painting is a very popular medium. Make sure you have plenty of brushes on hand and containers to hold your water as you go. An easel is highly recommended, however, you may also paint while working at a table or desk. Don’t forget to stock up on canvases or quality watercolour paper too.

Sculpture Materials Required

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Sculpting at home is a great way to decompress and get creative. Here are some things you’ll need to start sculpting in your new art studio:

Modelling clay: When working with clay, you’ll need to make sure you store it properly to prevent it from drying out. Stock up on clay in different textures and colours and gather tools like carving knives and a V-tool for relief carving. Ensure you have access to water since clay dries out quickly and needs to stay moist while working. Armature wire, shaping tools, and callipers are also necessary modelling clay tools to consider.

Wood carving: Working with wood can be messy, so make sure you’re in an area that’s easy to clean up the sawdust. Choose different species and colours of wood to work with. You will also need sandpaper in different grit levels to help smooth and sand your sculptures. Hand chisels and gouges are also crucial when you’re working on the fine details of wood sculpture. Wear a mask and make sure your studio has proper ventilation, so you’re not breathing in the sawdust as you work.

Ice Sculpture: You’ll need a deep freezer if you plan to work with ice, and a garage or shed is ideal for this type of art studio. Choose large, clear blocks of ice that are at least 50 pounds or more. Look for quality permanent markers to draw your design onto the ice. A rubber mat is great for holding the block in place. Other items to include are durable rubber gloves, an apron, and safety goggles. You’ll also need sharp carving tools or a small chainsaw and a sharp chisel to make ice sculptures.

How to organize the space

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No matter what type of art you enjoy, it’s essential to keep your art studio organized.

Shelves and racks: Freestanding shelves, wall shelves, and racks are a must for an art studio. Use them to stock and store cans of paint, brushes, clay, and tools.

Folding table: A folding table frees up space when you don’t need it. They’re also portable, making them a handy item if you want to do some artwork outside.

Plastic containers: Clear plastic bins make finding all of your art supplies easy. Make sure you separate your art items by type, then store them in the bins. A plastic container with a lid will keep your things clean and free from damage.

Mason jars: These handy organizers are great for paintbrushes, pencils, and much more. You can place them on a desk or table, on shelves, or hang them on the wall for quick access.

Wine rack: Repurpose a wine rack and use it to organize your art items. It’s a perfect way to hold small jars of paint. You can also fill the wine rack with the Mason jars to keep each one separated and organized.

Pegboard: This handy accessory is a perfect addition to an art studio. Mount some pegboard to the wall, then add hooks and small bins to hold everything neatly in place.

Whether you love to paint, draw, or sculpt, setting up an art studio in the comfort of your home will let your creative juices flow. Think about your budget, the best lighting, and which part of your home you plan to use before you get started. With some patience and creativity, you’ll be able to enjoy your at-home art studio in no time.

This article was originally posted on Porch


Want to contribute to this series – send us your pitch or what you want to read about at media@art.art.

Cassandra Rosas
Cassandra Rosas
Cassandra is a content writer at Porch. She has been passionate about art, painting, and sculpting from a young age. She is also a health and wellbeing advocate and loves reading, writing, music.