A View From the Easel 

Welcome to the 225th installment of A View From the Easel, a series in which artists reflect on their workspace. This week, artists set up shop in an old corset factory, drag nature into the studio, dream of blasts of color, and take inspiration from juniper bushes.

Want to take part? Check out our submission guidelines and share a bit about your studio with us! All mediums and workspaces are welcome, including your home studio.

Linda Laino, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

I’m a painter and writer. I’ve been making art for over 45 years and I’ve almost always had a home studio. A studio at home provides me easy access to my work, even if I am just being in the space with my paintings. This is one of two areas currently dedicated to my practice. I live on the second floor where this space is, and I have a small garage below that accommodates storage, a large easel, and a wall for larger work. The upstairs space is flooded with light in the mornings which is not only good for color but also for my mood. My work is rooted in nature and I tend to drag nature into my surroundings and line shelves and window sills with all manner of pods, rocks, and perfectly preserved insects. I struggle with sufficient space and organization when I am actively working. There is constant chaos and clean-up for different aspects of my process. On the opposite side of this photo is a terrace on the same level that allows for light and openness with a flowers and sky view. Sometimes the hummingbirds fly in and out.

Rick Shaefer, Bridgeport, Connecticut

My studio is on the top floor of an old corset factory in Bridgeport, Connecticut. I and a group of artists from a previous factory building worked closely with the two NYC owners in the renovation of 39 studios for artists and musicians. The openness and light of my studio, with its high vaulted ceiling and bank of north-facing windows looking out at the railroads and highways and cityscape beyond, is ideal for inspiring large charcoal drawings that have become the center of my practice. I have the room to both work large and display larger works in this amazing space.

Toby Corbett, Los Angeles, California

Every studio needs a red couch. This one came all the way from the east coast where I was temporarily working on a job. I had to bring it to Los Angeles where I maintain a studio in the historic neighborhood of Lincoln Heights.

My studio building was built in the latter part of the nineteenth century when Italian families dominated the slopes of the surrounding hills, growing grapes for wine, and olives for oil. With the passage of time, the walls now have many stories to tell. I often lay on my red couch contemplating the lives of all who have passed between the now-exposed studs, crumbling plaster, and peeling paint. I feel like my studio has a sense of timelessness which I try to convey in my paintings. On my red couch I dream of drawings on cave walls, and blasts of color from Pont Aven.

Keven Wilder, Door County, Wisconsin

We built a new house in Door County, Wisconsin, with a studio/gallery during the pandemic (timing and rising costs were not for the faint of heart). The studio/gallery space faces north with plenty of light overlooking a meadow full of juniper bushes, deer, and flocks of birds. My abstract work is often informed by scenes from nature so the siting of the studio with ample meadow views was important. The pegboard wall allows me to both display pieces during gallery openings and it also functions well as an easel. I like to work on several paintings at once and the pegboard wall allows me to do so. I use the rolling table as my palette so I can easily move it as needed. To the right of the pegboard wall is a storage wall with moveable bins containing various art tools and materials (palette knives, tape, charcoal, etc.). I love having everything at hand so I don’t waste time hunting for the right tool when I’m in “the flow.” To the right of the wall storage unit are shelves for displaying finished work and showing the photographs of my photographer husband. The studio has a cork floor to make it easier on my legs for long painting sessions. I’m very fortunate to have this magical studio space!

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