Moving My Art Studio: Hindsight is 20-20


I was attempting to not have to pre-pack my art studio in boxes as much as possible so that I would save some time. I had white carts on wheels I could push with my foot and I could pack just a bit at a time and the trades could wheel them in at the other end. So how do you not pack and still paint? You can’t or at least I couldn’t.

As it happened, I discovered that although my intention were to slowly filter through my art products and supplies from each room and carefully place them in white rolling carts (which do not require boxing), the trades had an entirely different set of expectations.

I swiftly learned a few lessons:

First: you may not have to pack boxes but you must have a plan of action in any case. You may need a color coding system or give each room a name so that when you arrive at the end point the movers know where to place the material without you having to check the carts. Mistake number one.

Second: the electricians, the duct cleaners, the window cleaners, the blind cleaners, the painters, the builders, the roofers, the cable people and gardeners all have agendas of their own that they work around and you are just ONE of their clients. Coordinating these schedules with your own is painful. Worse, they all seem to converge on your establishment at one time. In the process, you can get overwhelmed and forget important events as I soon discovered.

Three: try to not overload your brain. I’ve been thinking and micro-managing this move even in my dreams. Try and sleep more and take some much needed time-off.

Four: you may not be able to paint during this period of time and if you do it may not be your best. The difficulty I have is that I am a block painter. I need a dedicated amount of time each day where I just paint and have no other interruptions to contend with to get creative. Depending on what kind of painter you are you may need to adapt. Whichever way you jive, make it ok.

artist studio

On the positive side of things, don’t forget to assess what you have learnt about yourself. I’m surprised at the relative calmness and the decision-making skills I’ve exhibited during this time period, even with the “trades” convergence. I’ve taken delight in my time alone with my library books. I’ve had visitors come by and offer me encouragement and help and for that I’m grateful. I’ve exercised my brain power in terms of organizational skills, design and visual placement of furniture, work environment, tools and products. It’s a good month.

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