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  • Rachel Reynolds

My Experience Renting a Studio for a Month

Hi friends!

Hope you’re having a great week - I feel like February is already flying! This is my last full week in the studio, and I thought today I could chat about my experience renting it for a month. I know it can be a big decision for artists to rent a studio, so I’m really grateful I was able to have this trial opportunity :)

In case you missed it, I started out 2023 by renting out a beautiful studio from another local artist. She is spending a month rock climbing in Nevada, so I jumped on the opportunity when she asked on instagram if anyone would want to rent her studio for a month! At the time, Curtis and I were also looking for new apartments - so we knew this would be a good trial to see if I preferred working from home or if I might want to rent a separate studio, and that would probably adjust our apartment search.

my first day in the studio!

So many pros!:

First, let’s chat about the all the good things - because there are a lot! First, and probably most important - I totally got in my creative zone while I was in the studio. It really was such an amazing experience to only be focused on painting and not worry about the dishes in the dishwasher, or if I should run the vacuum real quick, or go pet Leo (though I did miss him!). I really do think having that totally focused time as a creative is SO important, and I’m really happy with the collection I was able to release because of that.

Also, I feel like renting a studio away from home really got me back into a healthy routine. I loved getting up knowing I had somewhere to be. This might be so random - but I have always really struggled with what I want for lunch. Like it catches me by surprise every day, ha! But knowing I was going to be at the studio, I packed my lunch every day and it was a total game changer. I didn’t have to stop in the middle of the day and think ‘what do I want for lunch’, it was just already done. I know a packed lunch might not seem like the most groundbreaking discovery, but it really helped my whole day and routine!

Another great pro was definitely the content opportunities. I know that might seem silly, but being an artist in 2023 means that you need to produce beautiful online content of your work as well. This studio was decorated so beautifully and was so bright, that it just came really naturally for me to take more videos and images of my work.

Also, if you happen to rent a studio at more of a collaborative space - it can definitely offer a lot of opportunities! You might be able to host your own show and collaborate with a ton of other artists. It can be a great way to immerse yourself in your local creative community.

So as you can see, I definitely LOVED my month in the studio! Especially during these winter months, I know it can be hard for creatives to stay inspired, but since I was getting up to go to this beautiful studio everyday, I really didn’t run into any ruts - which was truly amazing!

Things to Consider:

Okay, I don’t really want to use the word ‘cons’ because I really don’t think there were any cons to renting this studio! I think a better phrase would be ‘things to consider’ if you’re thinking about also renting a studio space.

One thing to consider is that having an additional space is also an additional space to take care of. So just like if something were to break in your house, it could also break in your studio. I don’t know why I never really thought of that before - but we had some problems with the heating while I was there and it made me realize wow this is a whole other space to maintain. It really wasn’t that big of a deal, but I just thought I’d point it out - because I had never thought of that before. (again, might be obvious to others, ha!)

Another thing to think about is your workflow. I wouldn’t say I work ‘all hours of the day’ but I would say I work a variety of hours. For instance, if I’m prepping or sealing a canvas (or something simple like that) I might do that in the morning with my coffee. Then I’ll get ready for the day, then I’ll get back to painting. Sometimes I get the random urge to package up prints after dinner. There’s really no telling when I might want to work on something! But, if all your stuff is in a studio somewhere else - it kinda limits that opportunity. Which you know, might be good for boundaries and that stuff, but I think I prefer to have my art things where I can see them at all times.

One always important thing to think about is cost. Depending on where you live, it might be cheaper to find a home that has more room compared to renting a studio space. From what I’ve gathered, renting a studio usually ranges anywhere from $400 - $1,500 a month in rent, which doesn’t include things like travel to get there, parking, etc. Some artists find this cost totally valid, so it really just depends on where you’re at financially.

So - where do we go from here? Well like I said, I’m so grateful for this really unique trial experience! In case you don’t know, I currently paint, pack, and ship from our living room - so having this extra space for a month was so refreshing. Overall, I decided that moving forward I would prefer to work from home, but have my own space. One where I can shut the door and really get in the zone, but can also go in at any time of the day. Oh, and there obviously needs to be a special bed for Leo in there, too! I can definitely see why artists would not want to work from home, but I think for our lifestyle right now - this will work the best! And I definitely want to bring along the good habits I learned from working in the studio this past month.

Lucky for us, Curtis and I found our new apartment that meets all of these needs! It popped up on Zillow and we jumped on it. (I first mentioned it here). Art takes up a lot of room, and that doesn’t always go with a city lifestyle - so when we saw something that would be enough room and still in our price range, we called right away! It’s a *tad* less updated than our current place, but that’s a very small compromise to make - it’s so cute, and my mind is buzzing with all the ways I want to decorate it. We move into our new apartment in May, and I can’t wait for the new studio space!

So there we have it! I hope this helps anyone who has ever considered renting a separate studio space. As always, I’m happy to answer any questions you might have!

On another, yet somewhat related, note - I can’t thank y’all enough for your support on my most recent collection! In case you missed it, I released 18 new original paintings and 8 new prints this past Sunday. Whether you liked, commented, shared, or purchased - it truly means so much! I had so much fun painting this collection, and I’m already looking forward to the next one. Hint: my Chicago friends might love it…

Alright so now for the real talk. Tell me - what are you making for the Super Bowl?? I can’t decide what direction I want to go - either a chili bar, or just all the appetizers. You know - wings, cheese board, meatballs, jalapeno poppers - the whole thing. Also, who are you rooting for?? Curtis just got me a Justin Fields jersey as an early birthday present, so I’ll be wearing that and hoping for a better year next year!

As always, thanks for reading along!!

Cheers! Rachel


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