Art Supplies

Creative Solutions for Art Studios

November 14, 2014

By Alina Bradford

An artist doesn’t need to spend thousands of dollars to outfit an art studio with furniture and supplies. Sometimes the best studio gear comes from reusing items and thinking outside of the box. Here are some creative ideas for setting up a functional art studio, no matter what type of art is being made.

Art Studio Tables

drafting table for art projectsEasels aren’t the best painting supports for every art technique. Wet on wet watercolor painting and illustration, for example, need flat surfaces. A art studio table provides the artist with the flat surface required for some mediums and also supplies a space to mix mediums, prep canvases and more.If there is limited space in the studio, one solution for a flat work surface is to use a card table that folds up. Another option is laying a core door on top of two filing cabinets. This not only provides a long work surface, it also provides storage for art supplies.

Drafting tables aren’t just for engineers and architects. Illustrators and watercolorists can benefit from having this useful table in the studio. It can be adjusted to different angles and often has built in holders for pens, pencils and rulers.

Alternative Art Palettes

table paletteWhen most people think of painting palettes they think of the wooden ovals that an artist holds while painting. Sometimes this classic palette doesn’t work for every artist’s needs. Luckily, artists can create their own palette to fit with their painting style.A small table can become an excellent free-standing palette for artists that don’t like to hold a palette while painting. The artist can have a piece of glass cut to fit the top of the table to protect it. The glass allows for smooth paint mixing and is easily cleaned. The legs of the table can be shortened to make it the perfect height.

The door of an old toaster oven is another palette alternative.  The glass window is great for paint mixing and the handle gives the artist a firm area to grip while painting. Old toaster ovens can be purchased at thrift stores or flea markets.

Art Studio Storage

art studio cabinetsAn artist can never have to much storage in a studio for paints, finished paintings, papers, canvases, rags and brushes. Here are some ideas for inexpensive, creative art studio storage:
  • Old kitchen cabinets found at a building salvage yard or torn out of an old house
  • Plastic bins with drawers that can be purchased at most department stores in the home section
  • Metal shelving that can be purchased at  a hardware store
  • Flat storage purchased at a department store’s going-out-of-business sale

Using a little imagination, any artist can have a studio that fits their needs, no matter how small their budget is.


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