Articles

A View from the Easel

CHICAGO — The 96th installment of a series in which artists send in a photo and a description of their workspace. Want to take part? Submit your studio — just check out the submission guidelines.

Kharis Kennedy, St. Croix, US Virgin Islands (site)

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Because it is crucial that I am always the youngest and thinnest person in the room I keep the doors to my studio locked to ensure that no one else can get in. The competition is relentless: I live on an island in the Caribbean and as many as two to three tourists per month get lost, find themselves stranded in the courtyard that my studio shares with a few other businesses, and knock plaintively on my glass doors.

The vibe in these historic walls is voodoo and this permeates my paintings. The vibe in my head is fashion. Currently this leaves me no choice but to paint animals and humans who not only model haute couture but also radiate an intuitive spirituality.

Margaret Niven, Santa Cruz, California (site)

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I have a live-work space in the Artspace Tannery Lofts at the Tannery Arts Center. My unit is one of the smallest in this 100-unit development, considered a “studio” as in “studio apartment.” Because I am on the top floor, I have a 14’ ceiling which has allowed me to build up. The beams in the top of this photo are the supports for my sleeping loft. I took the photo from the “living” end of the loft. My 14 foot high x 10 foot wide painting wall is to the right. My work table and some storage are to the left with more storage in the space above the bathroom and closet. The light from six clerestories is exceptional most afternoons.

Living in one room with my work from start to finish allows me extended time to think, dream, fuss, change, and explore.

Dawnice Kerchaert, Pontiac, Michigan (site)

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One side of my studio space is set up for metal fabrication and the other side is filled with natural materials I have gathered, plus few other things I might use. I like to work on multiple things at a time so I value table space. The process is grungy and sometimes noisy. I have had this space for about three years. Previously my studio was in a smaller basement space, so the natural light here is another bonus.

Emily Klima, Long Island City, New York (site)

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This photo is a panoramic view of my studio. Behind me is a couch and sink against a huge window with northwest and southwest light exposure and music — always music playing! My very awesome table that I acquired when I moved in on the left is a large and very heavy work table for mixing, collaging, pouring, and sketching smaller paintings or works on paper. The ceilings are very high allowing me to hang a lot of my finished paintings for open studio and appointment visits. It’s very comfortable and peaceful in my “happy place” with plenty of room for me to move around, sit, stand, ponder, and dance with my work. I am always grateful for the continuous opportunity and abundance that keeps me doing and sharing what I love to do.

Sophia Sobers, Providence, Rhode Island (site)

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This attic studio is just one of many “part-time” spaces that I use. It reflects my daily process of navigating this space, in its many instances of existence, to create large sculptures (which you can see in this image), smaller explorations, growing plants for installations, photography, and drawings. It is always in a constant state of change, construction, and deconstruction, which reflects my own process in some ways. Working in an attic space has taught me to learn from working in non-traditional spaces and arrangements and to be flexible with what I create and how it’s constructed. Believe me — you need to be 5 steps ahead of yourself in order to be able to get large pieces up and down such a narrow flight of stairs!

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