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Art Studio Inspiration

Surprise! I am posting this on a Friday, although I regularly post here every Monday. I wanted you to see the mood and inspiration board behind my upcoming design studio redo project. I have been planning to update my art studio for some time now. In fact, its has been evolving and changing over the years, but there are always tons of art supplies and tons of products being made, so it was hard for me to find the time for an update.

I knew that I really needed to do it this Summer before I hosted my Shibori workshop class because I was expecting a group of 10 people and I wanted the space to be more functional and streamlined place for them to create.

Also, I am a big believer in decluttering as an artist to let go of old projects and create a space for new more meaningful projects to arise. Apparently, a good time to bring creative projects like this to fruition is during the full moon, so the fact that the studio redo just happened to coincide with the full moon in July, appealed to my mystical side as well…more on that later. 

First, I created studio space pin board on Pinterest where I currently collect photos of ideas that appeal to me for a studio space. If you would like to join this board and pic high quality studio pictures along with me please message me on Pinterest and I will add you to the board.

Art Studio Mood Board

I am drawn to the light and bright palette of the photos above, I also had some similar pieces in my studio. My built-in cabinetry is almost identical to the vertical corner storage in the photo on the left. Also, I have a long custom butcher block work table, that I use to build my products. These photos capture some of the current pieces in my studio and the overall coastal modern feeling that I wanted to create. As a product designer, I prefer a mostly white workspace because it is a clean slate, much like the walls of an art gallery. The white paint allows me to focus on the products that I design. ​

Art Studio Inspiration

Art Studio Inspiration originally appeared on A Day In the Life blog, please see the product board with options 1 or 2 and let me know which one you like the best!

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Artist Round-up: Palm Springs

One place that I go to for design inspiration is Palm Springs, CA and the desert surrounding it. There is something magical about the expansiveness, colors, and natural landscape that appeals to many. Visual artists over the years have built their art practices out in the desert.

Over on A Day in the Life, I will share some of my 5 favorite artists + one blogger, who live in the desert, inspire or creatively captures those desert vibes for me.  From Los Angeles to the Palm Springs area, you can make it out there in just under 2 hours.

Read more about my 5 favorite artists here.

Happy Monday!

 

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Color Wheel Art with kids!

Today, I’m sharing a basic color wheel project that I have done many times with kids. When I make art with young kids, I use the color wheel as a topic for discovery.

After, introducing children to the Color Wheel, I like to host a “color hunt” in the center of the room. I allow them to fill color coded egg cartons, using a collection of “found” kid-friendly objects. I love how the collage of colorful objects looks on black illustration board too. Every time, I do this lesson some of the materials I use changes…some objects such as buttons and puzzle pieces that can be recycled and found around the house. One thing, that I have used every single time was colored pasta and colored drinking straws cut small. First, I ask young artists to search for the primary colors during the color hunt. Next, I asked them to search for secondary colors and sort in the carton. I made my cartons out of Mochi containers, which required eating Mochi:) Then, I painted them with acrylic paint so it would stick. Tempera or poster paint on an egg carton would work too!

Color wheel Collage

Here are some of the materials I use for this project below:

  • Foam shapes
  • Colored pasta
  • Buttons
  • Feathers
  • Craft glue, these mini sized bottles are great for small hands, although they are used up fast, if they clog or dry out, I feel less wasteful b/c they typically last just a few projects.
  • Pom-poms, something soft or metallic looks good.
  • Black card stock or thicker

There are so many household materials that are good for collage. You can get creative and use anything in a primary or secondary color that you want to repurpose.

Here are a few of the artworks below.

color wheel

If any of you do try out this project with kids. I would love to hear about it. How did it go? Did your kids enjoy it? any variations that you tried and any final product pics? Please share!

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Renovation Story: Demolition Part 4

You may be wondering…how all the construction work began and what was left of the house after the demolition?

First of all, we needed to strip everything down to the studs in order to preserve the original historic footprint of the home. We preserved framing and structural supports when the wood was in good condition. We removed everything from drywall to ceilings to sub-flooring.

You may remember that this hallway would be one of the largest changes within the floor plan.

We prepared to move the original bathroom into the hallway to enlarge the kitchen and serve as a guest bath.

Then, we would include a Master Bathroom within the remaining hallway space. Below you can see the new framing for the Master Bathroom and the Guest Bathroom  is framed out directly behind it.

Below is a segment of the original spacious hallway that I shared pictures of last week. The original floor tiles pictured which were in not able to be reused.

Next, a small transitional space leads from the Master Bathroom to the Master Bedroom.

All other areas of the home needed equal reconstruction through demolition. Some were in a state of disrepair!  As I am writing this, I am really appreciating the amount of work my contractor took on! In the front of the house the living room had been used as a bedroom and needed considerable demolition.

The crumbling chimney and fireplace in the living room was a major concern to our HVAC installer. We decided to remove it completely and leave open the option of installing a see-thru direct vent gas fireplace down the road.

Below you can see how the living room walls, chimney and closet have been completely removed and the new framing is in place. I chose to create 6′ wide doorways through to the kitchen on either side of the fireplace wall for an open concept look and feel.

The 2 upstairs bedrooms and the stairway leading to them were stripped down in a similar way.

Next Monday, I will show you where all this demolition leads! With the drywall in place, we can begin to visualize the overall look and design plan.

Have a great week!

Hilary

 

 

 

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Renovation Story Part III: Interior Floorplans

At the time of purchase, I did plenty of internet research about the history of shotgun houses. I want to share what I learned with you. Part of what makes this neighborhood historic was the period these houses were built along with the traditional layouts and floor plans.

A classic shotgun style home would have only 3 rooms: Front Bedroom, Kitchen, and Living Room. Occasionally, the living room would be located at the front of the home.

Historically additions were added as fourth rooms to the side of the home. In this case, our home had both an addition and an upper floor, which offered 2 additional bedrooms.

You may remember from the previous post…this upper addition of a second floor over the back portion of the home is referred to as a “camel back”. So our home has 2 additional bedrooms.

The interior doorways would traditionally all line-up so that a single mythical “shot” could be fired into the front door and exit out the back door…our house was a little more chopped up than this…here is the original floor plan below.

You may notice the tiny bathroom on the North side of the property. This was likely an addition to the home. Although bathrooms did not exist within these homes at the turn of the 20th century, they were added to large hallways as indoor latrines became more commonplace. Not only did we decide to expand the kitchen into the original bathroom, but I designed a Master Bath to occupy the unused space in a large and grandiose hallway.

The hallway was really unique because of it’s high ceilings. There was evidence of really interesting hardwood floor tiles, but they had deteriorated so badly that I felt adding a Master Suite with a bathroom would add the most value to the house for a modern lifestyle. The high ceilings in the Master and Guest Baths also lend some charm to the rooms themselves.

The updated Floor plan below shows how we decided to open up the Living Space and Kitchen. We expanded the kitchen into the small bathroom to provide an open L-shaped work triangle. Next, the guest bath was shifted into a small section of the hallway and we constructed a linen closet at the base of the stairs. From the front of the house to the back we lined up the interior doors, which allowed us to move the exterior side door back into the original placement within the property.

Doing a floor plan remotely is more challenging than you may think. There are additional windows on the South side of the property that I only discovered upon traveling to see the residence early Autumn of 2013.

Here you can see how the crowded kitchen looked before the renovation.

and large hallways…as you can see, the hallway was large enough to be used as a dining room at one point.

Once the demolition began, we had lots of dated wood paneling, ceilings and floors to be removed!

If you missed my first 2 Renovation Story posts…you can begin reading here.

Come back next week, for an updated look at the interior demolition.

 

 

 

 

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A Renovation Story: Part 1

As you may have noticed, I have not written a blog post since August of last year. The timing of my absence has much to do with the home renovation that has ruled over my waking and sleeping hours over the past 6 months. Although, originally a project that was estimated to take 2-3 months maximum…the timeline has doubled in it’s trajectory. This is the listing photo of house the we made an offer on last February without ever having physically seen the house in person.

Fast forward 5 months later to July, when we closed on the offer after a patient wait for the Estate to reach a resolution. I flew to Kentucky to sign all the necessary paper work and begin planning the future of the property.

This historic shotgun home is located in Clifton, a neighborhood on both the State and National register of Historic places. I devoted some time over Summer to reading and learning about what it meant to be a part of this historic community.

When researching the property, I came across this picture of the home from the year 1950. As you can see from the photo, the lot to the right had not been developed and was still an empty lot.

And now, that I’m finally sitting down to reflect and share the design process. I want to tell the story of the renovation from inception. So, I will do my best to include all the small details that made the project special and fun for me.

Starting with the inspirational photos of shotgun homes in the area. I gathered ideas for updating the entryway, adding a porch or an improved front “stoop”. 

Ultimately, it was a meeting with the Landmarks commission that ruled out many of these improvements to the original “footprint” of the home. Although, my case worker was extremely helpful, it would have been a challenge to have any dramatic changes made to the front of the property without finding evidence of a porch or a proof that my property was set back from other properties in the same line. From this first meeting, I resolved to focus on the exterior finishes and adding a patio of pavers to the back of the property instead vs a porch on the front.

The back porch is completely shaded in evening, so this seemed like a logical choice.

I learned that Louisville, Kentucky and New Orleans currently have the largest number of these homes in the nation. Our particular house is referred to as a camelback house, which means there is an upper floor that attaches to the back of the house. Here is what the original “camel” back of the house looked like.

We made a few simple changes to rethink the back of the home and add a patio.

I will share the results of the renovation each week! So come back to see how a few adjustments to the door alignment and windows have realigned the property.

 

 

 

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Nature Inspired Art + Consulting

One of the most fulfilling aspects of design work is the opportunity to discover new artists and acquire new artworks. Below is a Limited Edition Print that we purchased for this Room in Progress. 

It has been a while since my last Fine Art Friday and I have been wanting to uncover new work. Seiko Tachibana is a Bay area artist from Japan. She has been painting and creating art for over 20 years. She even creates these intimate little art books with an accordion fold.

Watercolor is one of my favorite mediums because of it’s aqueous ephemeral quality, which is why I connect with Seiko’s Locus of Water installation. The subject matter as well as the style feels current to me.

You can almost feel the raindrops through all the rhythmic little splats in this painting. Do they remind you of rain clouds too?

I was lucky to spend a little time outdoors this weekend. How about you? Did any of you have the chance to connect with nature?

In case you couldn’t go on an outdoor adventure yourself…I have found this noisy little blog where you can get your fix. I plan to read up on her adventures anytime the longing for nature amidst city bustle becomes to much to bear.

Have an artful Monday.

xx,

Hilary

 

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