Each winter I go through a reflection period that should really be described as creative withdrawal. I'm not sure why this is but I think that it's partly because it's the time of year I have more difficulty working in the studio. The kind of work I do can't really be done inside my house, at least not entirely. So I need a space I can cut, carve and sand wood, spray paint, etc. Part of the garage tends to be transformed into this space. But even with attempts to insulate or heat the space, it's still too cold to work the majority of the time. At one point I was able to rent a studio space. It was wonderful to be in the creative environment with other artist studios and it was a little warmer. I enjoyed the experience while it lasted.
Artists are nothing if not flexible to change. We can create pretty much anywhere. I recall reading about how Eva Hesse traveled to Germany with her husband and spent much of her time in the warehouse he was using to create his art. At that time she was a painter and he was the sculptor but she decided to explore the warehouse and started creating from the random things she found discarded there. Through that experience came she came into a body of work that otherwise may not have happened.
From personal experience, I can attest to being flexible about the space available to work. I've taken over my kitchen table and the living room, converted a second bedroom into a studio and even utilized a corner of my bedroom. On a warm sunny day, the deck or driveway served me well. I also took my work with me to art shows, which I still do. Even now I have dedicated space in the living room and garage but I create in pretty much every room and outside. But there are still limits to the kinds of things I can create in the spaces I have available. I'm a mixed media artist so I use a lot of different materials, some traditional, some not. Not everything is appropriate to work on in a house. If you've ever seen an artist studio, then you know it's a place where it's ok to get paint on the wall or sawdust on the floor. Not so much in the place your spending time with your family or cooking.
So feeling once again not whole despite the little creative projects of crocheting and sketching I am doing, and missing the creative energy from being in a space with other creatives, I started searching for a space I could work year round. Surprising, Greensboro is lacking in terms of affordable studio space. Thanks to a fellow artist who knew of a space, I now have a small studio at the Creative Aging Network-NC at Bell House. I only just signed the contract and haven't moved one thing into the space yet but already there is an excitement inside me about working again. The ideas are almost overwhelming, even for the few pieces I have in progress that I couldn't finish because of the weather. I don’t know how long this studio space will be available as the building is up for sale, but that's ok because I'm flexible. #jnicholsart #lifeofanartist
I'm Jennifer Nichols, a mixed media artist from North Carolina. I enjoy capturing the essence of nature through a variety of materials. I incorporate found objects such as strainers and bottle caps into my work. I am drawn to these items but it is also important to me to do my part to protect our environment by keeping things out of the land fill.