When There’s no Room to Paint or Create

If you don’t have room to paint….

clean craft office
The kind of craft room I would LOVE to have…..

For decades, I was always waiting for perfect. I had to have the perfect place to paint, the perfect time to draw, the perfect subject matter to work with. I wanted an organized craft room and a dedicated space. I craved a space of my own to create, to make a mess, to not have to constantly keep clean….and place to run away and be a painter for a day.

I hate to admit this to anyone, let alone myself, but I am the queen of excuses and  I have a Masters Degree in procrastination. And now, for all the world to see, I have admitted it in print to be forever engraved online.  I have wasted precious moments making sure that dishes were done, the carpet vacuumed and the bathroom scrubbed before I started a painting. And found that at the end of the day, I was too tired! And a room of my own has never ever materialized, either.

I think getting older is the only way that I have finally been taught that time is an elusive and delicate thing. That the same 24 hours given to each person each day is the same amount given to me. And while so many have accomplished so much using that same time, I regret that I have not accomplished as much as I had wanted.

chaotic art and sewing room
The kind of mess i actually work in……

My life is more the chaotic type. I do love to have things clean and organized, but the fact is, I will never have the room I want. I have finally settled for making do. I don’t even have the room to have a DISorganized space! Imagine that 🙂

Over time I have found ways to utilize the space I have, to work with smaller projects and to fulfill the crazy creative side of me that so desperately needed to be fed.

And the bonuses of the things that I found making up the plus side of the column in my ‘ no place to paint’ life actually surprised me.

Pros of Working with Small Art Projects

  1. A smaller project takes up less space. It doesn’t require a large spot to work with and can easily sit in your lap.
  2. Smaller projects are easier to store and pull out again later.
  3. Small projects using pencils, colored pencils etc, don’t make the mess that oils and acrylics do.
  4. Projects of a smaller scale work up, and are completed, much quicker.
  5. In a pinch, small projects can be stored under/behind a chair or on a shelf in a hurry if needed.
  6. If you are a person of detail, a small art project allows you to work up close and personal.
  7. With the improvement in technology of scanners, a small project can easily and professionally scanned and enlarged.

I’ve settled on a way to keep things organized, and a way to get my paintings and drawings finished. I keep things around my armchair in flat containers that are clear and individually labeled. I don’t work on anything larger than an 11 x 14, which allows me to work while watching TV with my family. I use a good quality natural light lamp that can easily be dimmed and angled toward my work without disturbing anyone.

When I decide I am brave enough to show a photo of my ‘work’ area around my recliner, I’ll post one. Then you will know that you, too, can paint in your own personal Arm Chair!