Making Space — The Impossible Task!

I don’t know how much different this blog post is about to be from the post I just made on my Exodus Project Blog, but here goes.

I just finished cleaning and straightening up my studio, Rubber Soul. I have a studio visit tomorrow with a curator, plus it had been an utter mess for months.


I was even able to clean out my flat files and organize them. I can’t believe I got to those! People think I’m so organized already. Now I am! I’m pretty proud of myself, I must say. I was just throwing stuff in there willy-nilly, and thought I had a “system,” but it wasn’t quite working out. I think I needed to have an inoperative system for about six years before I knew how  to make an operative one, if that makes sense. Ha ha ha!


Now it’s so fucking clean and organized and exactly right this time, I want to shout it to the heavens! (I get to excited about this stuff!) And hey, maybe this will work for other artists for all I know. Once I split things up this way, I was like, oh yeah, duh!  So here are my drawers from top to bottom, and of course, many only pertain to me, specifically:

Surfaces – All the nice, clean paper I have yet to make art on. I even divided those up into big flat bags and marked them (#300 cold press Fabriano, etc.).
Wraps – Anything that will wrap a single sheet of paper/print for a buyer or to ship. Paper or clear envelopes, “stiffiners,” large envelopes, acid-free paper wrap, cardboard, etc.
Originals – Large original work on paper that’s too large to fit in any of my portfolio books.
Journal Project – All the original drawings from my Journal Project.
Cut Patterns – A bunch of patterns that I’ve already cut, plus all of the master patterns for future cuts. These are for both paintings, and the Journal Project.

Large Prints – Prints over 20 inches in either direction.
Artists’ Books – These are mostly the ones I pull out for display. I keep the “fresh” ones in boxes somewhere else.
Small Prints – I have a lot of these.
Portfolios – I keep all my portfolio books of works on paper in here, large and small.
OPP – Other people’s works on paper: originals, prints, and photographs.

Yeah, I love to organize. Can’t cha tell? If you can’t tell from the above, those are two different cabinets. I have a really big one, which is the top one, and a medium one, which is the bottom one. Come to think about it, I often wonder if my 2nd one is the smallest version of those Maylines. Not that it’s a Mayline, it’s some other brand. I’ll have to measure it sometime and figure it out.

But it doesn’t even flippin matter since it works for me. They both work for me and I really don’t know what I’d do without them. However, I don’t think I could ever afford – and I’m not even talking money – another one. I don’t have the real estate. I don’t even have the real estate for everything I have now!



I lose sleep at night thinking about how much art shit I have! How much art furniture and painting storage I have. It makes me nuts!!! It really does. If I ever had to move and I couldn’t have a two car garage with a little back extension (yeah – like where am I going to find that???), then I don’t know what I would do!

Then again, I can also consider it this way: Some artists need a studio space, and a 500 square foot studio is not very big at all. I would just have to figure out how to pay for it …again!


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