Tuesday, 7 February 2017

A Day In The Studio

(other names: bedroom, dumping ground, day-crèche) 
Welcome to my 'space' where I probably spend a little too much of my life. A bedroom doubling up as a studio sounds like the dream, right? It has its pros and cons like most things in life....coffee breaks in bed, pyjama uniform and slippers being your vital choice of footwear are all pros but trying to switch off and sleep at night is pretty tough when your 'To Do' list is literally staring at you from across the room. 
I'm beyond fortunate to have such a big space to myself but I do keep my equipment down to the absolute minimum and try to only hoard the bare necessities to keep Darwin & Gray ticking over smoothly. So here are a few things in my studio that i would simply be lost without. 

T O  D O  L I S T S
My no.1 daily obsession is to write a 'To Do' list and most of the time, I never bother even doing half of it. It is a part of my morning AND night routine, before I sleep I prep for the next day ahead and when I wake up.....I prep all over AGAIN for the same day, I cross off jobs that I clearly just had to get out of my mind the night before that aren't necessary but for every job I cross off I'll add probably about 3 more.
I am that obsessed with the bloody things that I'm even looking at designing my own for Darwin & Gray because I've come to learn that I need a particular layout that requires space to note down all kinds of different things in the most OCD of orders.
An actual IMAC, not a Macbook has been my game changer of the last 3 months. I used to cave most nights and take my work to bed especially when I was at University and end up working away on my laptop until the early hours and wonder why I was so exhausted the following day. My Macbook sadly broke and so I replaced it with an IMac, a station that I HAVE to sit at, HAVE to switch off and HAVE to walk away from when I get tired. Plus it has a far bigger screen for me to work away on and I get to watch Planet Earth 2 in 4k. Bonus.
I use a Sony Alpha 5000 and it has become my sidekick, it's small and practically weightless whilst being a solid little thing. I've started shooting in RAW and actually putting time into manually adjusting the settings rather than my lazy ass just throwing it into auto constantly. The best feature is the instant wifi to send across the files straight to my iPhone making it perfect to travel with.
S E W I N G  M A C H I N E
Over the years I've collected a few machines and although my baby is my mint green Singer that I inherited from my Nanan, my work machine is a Singer Talent and it's been an absolute trooper over the years. I am NOT a sewer, everything I know is self taught and having a basic machine is kind of perfect for me. I don't delve away from what I know and I tend to stick with the same foot, settings and fabrics so this machine ticks all the boxes.
T H E  T R E A T  B O W L
This is actually a thing. My sister bought me an engraved bowl saying 'Stacey's Sweet Treats' for Christmas because what I thought was my little secret clearly is not such a secret after all. I have a major sweet tooth so 99% of the time, you will find something stashed away in the studio. FYI I do have a yoga mat in here too....that balances out the healthy to unhealthy ratio, right?
A cheap A4 lightbox from Argos that has seen me through my A levels, College, Art Degree and Masters still lives to tell the tale. I'm a nightmare for drawing/writing something small in the heat of the moment or when an idea is fresh and then struggle to recreate it in the same way so a light box is a god send especially with typography. I love to layer the type using the light box to figure out layout and scales - sorry Photoshop & Illustrator but I can be a little old fashioned.
S C R E E N  & P L A T F O R M 
I am relatively new to screen printing and have my own screens coated and exposed for me by a local screen printing club to then bring home and print with. I have the screen platform by DIY print, it is an adjustable platform that easily folds ups and packs away into the corner of my room when I don't need to use it. I've literally just spent the past month with my store closed online learning how to print better and testing ideas so that in future I can create new things regularly and still keep doing as much as I possibly can at home so having my own screens to expose and platform to print with is perfect.
S P O T I F Y 
How the hell would I survive without music, genuinely. My subscription to Spotify is potentially the best value for money out of all of my bills per month, I listen to it every single day and it introduces me to artists that I would have never have found otherwise. I have playlists for absolutely everything (just like I do 'TO DO' lists) and it has such an important role within the studio, mostly to keep my sanity.
N A T U R A L  L I G H T 
This doesn't even need an explanation, natural light is just better. Full stop.

Now, to do a studio tour or not to do a studio tour?

Photo by Leo Baron

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