Our neighbors just listed their house for sale today, which reminded me of our journey exactly a year ago of buying and moving into this house with my studio on the first floor. We looked at over 30 houses and there was always something wrong with the room I was planning to work in, or we just didn’t make the best offer over asking price. Lack of access for large paintings was the main problem. Anchorage is full of split entry homes, just like the one I grew up in. Now I live in one again, and it’s frankly comforting, yet a little bit odd at the same time. When we first moved in, the whole studio room was four different shades of orange. My first studio improvement project, aside from moving all my stuff in, was to return the walls to a regular shade of white. Next, we got a new large-format printer and rolled it into place. This house has great access to the studio directly from the garage!
Then we were busy with the Christmas rush, after wrapping up the last of my public art projects, and the Arctic Valley Ski Map design. In February, I upgraded my computer set-up, and finally got a Wacom tablet hooked back up. I thought the iPad would replace the Wacom tablet, but I find that it is best to have both working, and bouncing projects back and forth between platforms. Maria started asking when I would be ready to work on the studio to make it more presentable. There were still bins of paintings from the old studio, and heaps of frames, and studio stuff piled up. I was reluctant to start, but when she found a great deal on used cabinets and countertops from Alaska Denali Winery, I got to work. Carefully removing cabinetry is a skill on its own. Maria was budgeting most of April on the studio re-vamp, but it only took most of a week. I also found a new (to me) desk, and I am glad to say I no longer am using a plastic folding table for my CPU workstation. A year after moving into our house, my work space is finally set up!
I spent four days last month brewing beer, and I love to share it with both clients and friends. We can have small studio get-togethers now that the place is presentable. The studio is my favorite place in the house. I love it so much, and I am so grateful to be working and living in a place that is all our own. I can’t wait for you to stop over to see what I have been up to and share a glass of my home-brewed: West Coast IPA, Dark Ale, Hazy IPA, or a bottle pour of the world-famous Drippy Hippy ginger honey beer. Let me know when you can make it over.