My home office/studio is an extension of my mind. This sounds awfully self-satisfied or even neurotic. But lest you think me a suburban egomaniac, it’s the only room anywhere I would ever describe in such a way. And I use the word “studio” more often than “office” for a couple of reasons. First, my background is in painting, work traditionally done in an artist’s studio. I don’t often paint in there these days, but I could. An easel stands in one corner, and every brush and color that I might need are right there waiting. However, the deeper reason, though related, is not identical: as an undergraduate art major, I fell in love with my assigned studio space–I realized it was much more than a space for painting. It was a space for reading, writing, and thinking; it was a miniature cathedral of solitude; it was sometimes even a space for eating and sleeping–all of this in addition to whatever creative work may occur. Tacked and taped on the walls were photographs, quotes, and articles; canvas frames were hung from pushpins; a floor map of the Metropolitan Museum of Art occupied a little space above my paint box–anything, really, that I might look to for inspiration, comfort, encouragement, or pleasure. The studio became an important space psychologically, as I spent hours and hours of crucial identity-forming time within that little walled-off corner. It was as much internalized space as it was external.
That was twenty years ago. These days, artists and writers carve out space online in which to share their work, in addition to their various physical spaces. And the more of oneself that goes into the site, the better, apparently. Here is author and artist Austin Kleon‘s advice: “Fill your website with your work and your ideas and the stuff you care about. . . . Stick with it, maintain it, and let it change with you over time” (67, 69). I have done that, more or less, whether inadvertently or intentionally. The purpose of this “online studio” is to be a digital home for whatever creative work that I feel inclined to share. If you stumble through the site, I would love to hear from you. If not, then I respect that, too.
Kleon, Austin. Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered. New York: Workman Publishing Co., 2014. Print.