When Space is a Premium… mind over matter!

12 October 2015 / Design

Living in a small home I know what it is like to have no room to unleash your creative passions!  One of the places I often work is in our main living area over the dining table where I can spread out and enjoy the natural light from the garden. However, at the end of the day I must ensure everything is completely cleaned up and packed away… finished or not… to make way for the next day’s myriad of other uses that the area in the household demands. This can play havoc with your motivation to start new projects and not to mention how many potential distractions you attract by being in a high traffic environment.

“You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, it does not exist”

  • Friedrich Nietzsche

So while I wait for the the art angels to deliver me my dream studio with spacious rooms full of light and inspiring views, there are a few things I’ve found that can help overcome that cramped feeling when working in a small space.

Firstly, perspective is important. I used to begin my day with an ambitious list of everything I hoped to accomplish and then crash and burn when I pulled it all out and realised I could not get past the first or second task before feeling overwhelmed. By piling everything up that you wish to set yourself for the day you create an impossible task that only becomes discouraging.

Instead, keep things simple and break projects into smaller, more managable parts. This way you can feel more productive and have more immediate results. It also makes good sense when space is an issue. The less you have out, the more space you have!

Secondly, I create boundaries. When I paint I have a candle burning to indicate that I am working. This helps me stay in the creative zone as well as lets the rest of the house know I am not to be disturbed.

Another helpful tip is commitment. Procrastination is every artist’s greatest challenge so setting yourself a time each week to work on your craft is important. This could be set times on a particular day in the week and in small enough chunks such as a 2-3 hour blocks to help create a habit that sticks.

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