Friday, October 22, 2010

Setting Up A New Studio Is Like Building A Nest

I have been spending the past three weeks unpacking hundreds of boxes for our new home in Deep River, ON. Only this past week have I been able to unpack 1/2 of the studio boxes in the basement. I still have about 45 more to go. I can't wait to work on the rest of the house unpacking because we are having a new furnace installed on November 2, and I need my studio boxes out of the way.

In going through this process of preparing to move and moving I have felt a bit like I was in gestation while packing everything up in Cambridge, and seeing it go on the moving truck for two weeks. We arrived, and I had to prepare the new space by taking down one wall, painting the other walls and the floor, an then get things moved in. As I unpack each of the boxes and try to organize supplies, books, tools, and equipment, I feel like the birds outside who have been building their nests for winter. A twig here, a twig there, and bits of leaf to hold it all together.

I find myself filled with emotions as I pull out items I have not been able to use since early July when we knew we would be moving. Yesterday I put away my hand tools for bookbinding, and got all the shop lights hung. Each box yields bits and pieces of my studio from Clinton Street that need to find a new home. At one point this past week I realized I won't have room for some of my "inspiration" shadowboxes that I had in the old studio, and will have to work a new spot for them in someplace else in the house. Irrespective of this, each tool I put away, each piece of paper or book that finds a new home, helps me to build my nest; that warm, wonderful, peaceful place that will be the home for my artistic soul in the weeks, months, and years to come.

The great news is that I have a studio, and it is in my home, and I will be able to work in it each and every day. What a blessing from God to have space, tools, equipment, materials, and supplies to make art with within steps of where I live.

All will be well, and all will be well, and with God's great grace, all will be well.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Unpacking and Setting Up The New Studio

I am just now starting to get the new studio unpacked and set up. The movers managed pretty well, all things considered. We have moved into our new home in Deep River, ON, and my studio has gone from 3 smaller rooms in the attic of the Rectory in Cambridge to one nice large room, with extra storage, in the basement of our new home. Here are a few photos of the space before and after I started putting things into it last week.

I guess they posted out of order, but you get the idea. I painted the walls and the floor in this new space the week before our things arrived from the states. Moving in was very tricky-my large light table did not fit into the space, so I have to sell it. It is going to be a great space to work in, however, because I have every table set up with a nice amount of walking space in between.

The movers had the most trouble with the paper cutter. It has a new home now, and is out of the way of other work. My challenge today is to unpack the remaining 45 boxes in the basement and find places for everything. I have 30 cases of paper left, even though I gave away 25 cases of various stock before we left. I could not stand the thought of giving away all the paper I had gotten free, but it is a little overwhelming having all these cases of parent size sheets of paper in the basement on pallets. I plan to build a formal paper storage shelf after the new furnace is installed November 2-3.

This basement is very dry, has lots of light from the existing windows, and a two heat sources-one from the baseboard electric heat and one from the furnace. It will be a cosy place to work once we are unpacked and organized.

I find my creative verve is finally  starting to push on my soul a bit. We have been here since September 26, with all out things arriving on October 4-5. The utter madness of trying to live surrounded by boxes and nothing put away really takes it out of you.  I feel as if I have been living within an artist's book collage where all the pieces have not been properly glued down!  As I have unpacked my tools and materials, I find my heart racing with anticipation of being able to work in the studio full time again.

This move has been a good one for us in more ways than one. We have been able to see to dear loved ones who needed us here, which is most important. Some of the family issues are being resolved and we both believe we made the correct decision to be closer just in time. The new parish for Fran├žois has been very welcoming to us both and exciting things are already happening here within the faith community.

Although I am a bit overwhelmed with the unpacking, sorting, and getting things put away, I know that God has called us here in her infinite wisdom. All will be well, and all will be well, and with God's Help, all will be well.