Studio Snapshot – Karen Park

Artist name: Karen Park


Location: Massachusetts
Website: KarenPark.com
Blog: Art and Tea
Flickr: Karen Park’s photos

Do you have a dedicated studio/artistic space? Yes


Where is it located? I converted a downstairs family room in my home

Is it a large or small space? Medium, about 11 x 12′

What medium(s) do you work in? I’m a mixed media jewelry artist working with all types of beads, polymer clay, metal and fiber.

Do you have a separate area for each? I have 3 separate areas in my studio right now, one for beadwork, one for polymer clay work and one for metalwork.  The one for metalwork is a temporary setup until I can get a sturdier workbench.


What one word would you use to describe your studio? Sanctuary

What do you think is the best feature of your studio? I have space to spread out in.


What would you change if you could? The rug.  I’d rather have ceramic or wood on the floor.

Can you share an organizational tip? I save the rectangular sturdy plastic containers from our local Chinese restaurant.  They make great storage for individual bead projects and are also great for travel.  They stack well, too!


Describe the usual state of your work table? Organized chaos.  I’m a confessed neat freak but things can get pretty  thrown around and cluttered when I’m in the midst of an intense creative phase.  Then I do a major cleanup after my project is finished.  That helps me clear out my psyche as well to prepare for the next project.

Does your work table face out into the room or toward the wall? One faces a sliding glass door out into our backyard, one faces out into the room and one faces a wall.  So, I have variety.


What’s one drawback of your studio/artistic space? The lighting.  I’ve only been in the space 4 months so I haven’t set up proper lighting yet.  I’d like to install some shop lights that hang from the ceiling to really light up the space.

Do you have any studio mascots (pets, mannequin whatever)? Our black lab, Jack, comes and visits me often, especially if there’s a thunderstorm.  Then he’s under my worktable!

Do you have an idea wall or inspiration board? I just picked up a small bulletin board and would like to pin up some images for color inspiration.  I also have some beautiful needlepoint pieces my Mom created that are a great inspiration to me.

Do you listen to music in your studio?  What kind? Yes, I listen to all types of music.  Usually, it’s relaxing instrumental music but lately I’ve been addicted to listening to Josh Groban.  What a voice!

Do you display your own work in your studio?  Other artists’ work? I display some of my amulet bags along with an art doll that was created in collaboration with some very dear art friends.


What’s one quirk or unusual feature of your studio? I have a fireplace in the room, a very wonderful feature!

Any question of your own that you’d like to include? Not a question but a statement about how very blessed I am to have a creative room of my own.  I lived in a small apartment for the last 4 years with no dedicated art studio space and words cannot describe how spirit nourishing and empowering having this space is to me.

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Studio Snapshots thoughts and a question

Anyone interested in being featured in a Studio Snapshot?

It has been quite awhile since I last posted a Studio Snapshot interview.  I have one long overdue studio to share with you (so sorry Karen), and I thought I might answer my own questions too, but I am out of interviews after that.  I don’t like to be a broken record asking for people to participate.  To keep this going, I need some more artists to give us a peek into their studios large or small, messy or organized.

It’s very easy.  Email me through the contact page of the blog.  Then just answer some questions I will send to you and send me 4 – 6 (or more) photos of your creative space, plus one photo of a representative piece of your work.  Variety is fun.  Your creative space can be a simple table in a corner, various nooks and spaces around your home, a large dedicated space or anything in between.

While I am on the topic of Studio Snapshots, I’d also like to know if those of you who read this blog are interested in seeing more studios?  Post a comment and let me know.

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Studio Snapshot – Sarah Fisher

Artist name: Sarah Fisher

Location: Pennsylvania

Website: Philadelphia Area Polymer Clay Guild (Our Guild,  I am the web tinkerer)

Blog: PAPCG Blog

Do you have a dedicated studio/artistic space? Yes

Where is it located? In our family room

Is it a large or small space? Approximately 6’X10’

What medium do you work in? Polymer clay with a yen to start felting

What one word would you use to describe your studio? Oh, God.  The first word I thought of was “dusty.”  Maybe that’s because I just did a deep cleaning.  The second one that came to mind was “home.”  They aren’t mutually exclusive, I’m afraid.

What do you think is the best feature of your studio? My new table/work surface.  It’s 8 feet by about 30 inches deep.  The best part is an inset of marble that used to be the top of a bureau we had when I was a child.  My husband took it to be polished so it is like new.  I remember my mother using it to knead fondant for petit fours when I was a little girl.  Now it’s the best PC work surface ever.

What would you change if you could? More sunlight would be great.

Can you share an organizational tip?
I like to reassess the space every few months and remove things I don’t use.  I also like to optimize the space to make it easier to work on my most recent favorite techniques


Describe the usual state of your work table? Cluttered, but not since the new amazing table…

Does your work table face out into the room or toward the wall?
It faces a window, but I am having a mirror installed on a swing arm so I can see behind me.

What’s one drawback of your studio/artistic space?
Did I mention dusty?

Do you have any studio mascots (pets, mannequin whatever)?
My golden retriever  Hope and my cat, Hilary share the room.  I have a gold statue of a leaping carp on the advice of my Feng Shui consultant….

Do you have an idea wall or inspiration board? Sort of.  I keep pictures of project ideas and color schemes.  I also keep a Moleskine sketch book for this.

Do you listen to music in your studio?  What kind?
Usually only when my friend is over.  We’ll listen to the cable TV adult alternative station

Do you display your own work in your studio?  Other artists’ work?
Yes and Yes.  I have display shelves on the wall.

What’s one quirk or unusual feature of your studio? I have a wonderful mobile of PC stars made as a collaboration by members of the Philadelphia Area Polymer Clay Guild.  It is unique, inspiring and very dear to me.

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Studio Snapshot – Michelle Davis Petelinz

Artist name: Michelle Davis Petelinz


Location:
Raleigh, NC

Website: Jordan’s Treasures

Blog: Artventuring

Etsy: Camida’s Shop / Jordan’s Treasures

Picasa: The Ancestress Series

Do you have a dedicated studio/artistic space? My beautiful, new studio space was conceived, designed and built by my darling husband.  I moved into it this past April, and I love it.

Where is it located? It’s located in our basement, (which is why we bought this house last year) right beside my husband’s studio (he’s a painter).

Is it a large or small space? Our combined space is large, with 3 windows a door to the outside.

What medium(s) do you work in? I work in primarily in polymer clay, acrylic paint, and handmade paper; I’m a mixed media artist, and I incorporate beads, powders, feathers, fabric, stamped textures and other items in my wall hangings, clocks, mirrors and shadow boxes.

Do you have a separate area for each? No.

What one word would you use to describe your studio? Love-filled

What do you think are the best features of your studio? The amount of storage and working space, and the windows—I can see the sky, trees and animals (see below!).

What would you change if you could? The black floor—what was I thinking?!  It’s very hard to keep clean.

Can you share an organizational tip? Color coding for file folders, and see-through containers for just about everything else.  Being able to what you’re looking for at a quick glance saves time and sanity!

Describe the usual state of your work table? When I’m busy, it’s pretty messy-looking, though I know where everything is, of course!

Does your work table face out into the room or toward the wall? My drawing table and computer area face the wall of windows, and my work surfaces face the wall.

What’s one drawback of your studio/artistic space? We haven’t done the bathroom addition in the basement yet, so having to go up to take care of business and/or washing out brushes is an annoyance.  But, it does get me up, which is good, since I often forget to stretch for hours, and pay for it later.

Do you have any studio mascots (pets, mannequin whatever)? Do the families of rabbits and groundhogs outside my windows count?  I think they do!  They’re a major source of amusement, as are the various birds, including hummingbirds who come by occasionally.

Do you have an idea wall or inspiration board? No, but I do a great deal of research online, and I create visual files for reference before starting most projects.

Do you listen to music in your studio?  What kind? Yes, jazz mostly.

Do you display your own work in your studio? I don’t usually display my own work unless I’m working out a problem with a piece.  I like to ‘live with it’ for awhile, which often lets me solve the issue.

Other artists’ work? The first pieces I hung in the studio were a series of photographs from a calendar of Women of the African Ark, by Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher.  Since much of my work is inspired by the colors, symbols and motifs of African tribal groups, these photos are perfect; I never tire of looking at them.  I also have a clay totem by Courtney Tomchick, a batik by Theodore Shola, prints by friend and artist Paul Goodnight and I’ll soon have a favorite painting by Jillian Zausmer Goldberg, who’s also a friend.

How has your studio affected your work? Being able to spread out, be organized, and continually inspired by nature and visuals I love has been wonderful.  I’ve created new pieces, and have many ideas for more. As I often say in my blog:  stay tuned!

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