Mission Statement

This blog journals my quest of art, whether it is a piece of work that is inherent in nature or one created by artists known or unknown or that I created myself. During this search, I have come to appreciate the magnificence and generosity of God who in his infinite wisdom surrounded us with exquisiteness everyday...everywhere and inspired our human spirit to create beauty that feeds our bodies and souls. Come join me on my journey to find art through my travels and my own creative endeavors. Maraming salamat.

All rights to all posts and contents on this blog, including photos and artwork are reserved by jojo sabalvaro tan.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Welcome to my Studio

My Studio, 2011

Happy 2012!!! I thought I'd show you around the area where I do my creating. I took over one of the small bedrooms in the house as my studio/workroom/craft room/atelier. A Tibetan monk who came to the house and did Feng Shui analysis told me it was the best area for me in terms of creativity and productivity. My neighbors might have been wondering why I had a group of saffron robed monks parading around the house. I am convinced that following the monk's advice has helped me and my husband. The room I use as a studio is in front of house and faces south and gets quite a bit of sun so it is nice and cozy in the winter but a little warm during the summertime. I am also not so cut off from the world as I see my neighbors coming and going from the windows.

My studio is where I do my painting, my quilting and every other arts and crafts that I dabble in and is crammed to the rafters with all my supplies. I keep saying to my husband I need more room, but I am sure the minute I move to a larger space, I will still say I need more room. The carpet was changed to wood floors for ease of clean up. Arts and crafts can be quite messy, as you all know.

 A Madonna and Child painting in progress

A big work table sits like a peninsula in the middle. This is where I paint, cut my fabrics and experiment with different projects. On the table, I keep some of my most used supplies - pens, pencils, markers, rulers. My IPad also sits on a player for easy access to inspirational music, reference to patterns and information on what I am working on. I used to also have my Apple MacPro laptop computer but now that it is extinct, I use my IPad or the Apple Mac Mini for any computer work such as my blogging and writing. A big easel tucked in a  corner is used for larger works and to review paintings in progress.

I have a couple of bookshelves where all my reference materials, books, magazines and patterns are kept. Above one of the bookshelves is a small flat screen TV where I can watch how to shows and videos. I was so used to working around chatter when I was at the office that when I retired,  I kept the TV on one of the shopping networks to keep some kind of chatter going while I work, Now I am more used to the quiet and can work with just some light classical or jazz music playing.

Quilting and painting supplies

I keep all my paints on a wall shelf arranged by type (watercolor, acrylic, oil) and color. Some of my painting supplies are stashed there too. Additional painting supplies including my brushes are on my taboret next to the work table. All my quilting supplies and fabric stash are in the closet. The fabrics are organized by color and type (civil war, batiks, Asian, 1930's).

The Sewing Center.
The teak cabinet is on the right.

Behind my work table is my sewing area with my Bernina QE 430 sewing machine holding court. I even have an embroidery module for this machine which sadly, I rarely use. I'll have to tell you about my collection antique sewing machines and thimbles in a future post.

Some of the jewelry making supplies
A mid-century Scandinavian teak cabinet my daddy bought at a garage sale (it may have been a buffet cabinet in its former life)  is where I keep my portfolios of paintings, more painting supplies and stuff for scrapbooking. The other half of the cabinet is filled with paraphernalia for my jewelry making. I normally use the top of the cabinet as an ironing surface when I am quilting. There's a bulletin board on the wall above the cabinet where I tack my ideas, patterns, work in progress and reminders. A wood shelf hangs above that displaying some of my completed works. This time,  my nutcrackers are on display.

My favorite little corner of the room.
A lot of ideas come to me here.
I have a favorite little corner in the room where there is a comfy upholstered wing back chair. On one wall next to the chair is a my design wall for my quilts and a rod where I hang some of my finished quilts.  This chair is where I daydream, think about what to create next, plan, design in my head and do my reading. This is also where I do my knitting, crocheting and hand sewing. Recently, it acquired another function, as I use it to photograph the items I post on my new Etsy shop (Please visit my shop at www.etsy.com/shop/PassporttoCreativity).

With the current set-up of my workroom or atelier (if I am in a fancy mood ;-)), I can only pretty much work on one project at a time. I get frustrated at times because I never know when inspiration to do one thing or the other strikes. And that's where my UFO's (UnFinished Objects) come into play, cause I sometimes have to abandon something I am working on to chase my muse, so to speak and start something else.

A few of the watercolor palettes I own.... What can I say, I love color!
My favorite palette is the large one shown that I purchased at Dick Blick and an equal favorite is an enameled metal one from Daniel Smith (right upper corner) that was given to me by my dear friend, Ginny who encouraged me to paint with watercolors.
My brushes and watercolor pencils.
I have a treasured brush that I bought at the Sennelier store in Paris, the same place where  Renoir, Monet and many famous artist bought their art supplies. I hope their vibe rubs off on me.
The jugs, jars and mugs I hold them in where mostly picked up during my travels as souvenirs.

There you go, a little tour of where I work and play. I won't apologize for the mess. I believe it comes with the territory. I do not know how to be creative and neat at the same time. If you can give any ideas on how I can maximize my space, please holler.

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