Spring Cleaning for Artists – Studio Edition

best way to clean and organize your artist studio

With the time change this weekend that means spring is right around the corner – warmer weather (finally), longer days, flowers, and sun! There’s no better way to prepare for this seasonal shift and cleanse ourselves of the dreadful winter slump than through a little spring cleaning. And we just wouldn’t be who we are if we didn’t put a spin on spring cleaning for artists!

Whether your studio space is a little corner or a dedicated room in your home, a detached studio on your property, or a space you rent out each month I've put together the best way to clean and organize your studio to be more productive and essentially Marie Kondo your way to more sales! 

Here are five easy action steps you can take for spring cleaning your artist studio!

tips for spring cleaning and organizing your studio

We love these artist studios featured in Decoist


Benefits of Spring Cleaning

First, let’s start off with the benefits of spring cleaning:

  1. Cleaning helps you breathe better. A simple dusting rids your studio of dust and pollen so you avoid allergy symptoms and feel healthier.
  2. Cleaning reduces stress and produces happiness. A clean space refreshes and reenergizes you.
  3. Cleaning results in better time efficiency. A well-organized space allows you to be more productive.
  4. Cleaning is a workout. Moving up, down, here and there gets your heart pumping and your blood flowing.
  5. Cleaning is an opportunity to celebrate a job well done. After everything is said and done, reward yourself.



Spring Cleaning for Artists – Studio Edition

Create a defined space in your studio for creativity

As an entrepreneur, you’re juggling the roles of multiple employees – the CEO, the art director, the marketing director, and the sales director. Separating your studio space into two distinct spaces, one for creating your work and one for business and administrative needs makes you more productive with your task at hand because your focus isn’t diverted. If these can be two separate rooms all the better!


Marie Kondo your artist materials

The Marie Kondo craze is sweeping the nation for a reason. It works. Homeowners everywhere are finding a new inner peace by simply letting go of old, unused possessions. Try taking this same approach and apply it to your studio.

Without getting too much into it, Marie Kondo uses the KonMari method, which is a way of simplifying and organizing your space by getting rid of physical items that do not bring happiness into your life and keeping those things that do.

Basically, does it spark joy? If not, get rid of it.

Organize your materials into three piles:

While organizing your studio doesn’t have to be this black and white, go through your art materials with the question in mind – Does it spark creativity? Or Does it aid in your creative process?  I suggest organizing materials into three piles: keep, throw away, and donate. 

Keep: These are all the materials you decide can aid in your creative process.  Don’t forget to give the items you plan on keeping a good scrub.

Throw Away: These are all the materials you think you need but don’t.  Old brushes, dried out tubes of paint, or items you haven’t used or thought about in years.

Donate: These are gently-used items that are no longer of use to you but could greatly help out emerging artists who are unable to purchase their own materials. You can search online for schools or community centers near you that accept art-and-craft-supply donations.


De-clutter, organize and store your remaining materials properly

Why? An unorganized space has several negative factors. First, you can end up spending more money on materials because you can’t find things, so you re-buy them. Second, your time in the studio is precious because it is already limited, so why waste it by looking for materials. Lastly, when you can’t find materials you often tend to get frustrated which can impair your creativity. Once you’ve organized your space you will be free to concentrate on creating artwork more fully and boost your productivity.


Inventory your artwork

Now that you’ve thoroughly cleaned your studio and organized your materials, you have more space now. This is a great time to pull out all the works you may have forgotten about. Take this time to take updated photos, properly edit them, and update your website with current works. Don’t forget to properly name your images files before you upload them to your website to rank higher in Google.


Develop a Regular Cleaning Schedule

After spring cleaning, you’ll quickly recognize that it’s easier if you don’t let the dirty work pile up. For the rest of the year, establish a regular cleaning schedule to ensure that you and your clients leave your studio feeling fresh and zen each and every time!


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art comes alive

Known as the “Academy Awards for Art,” Art Comes Alive (ACA), ADC's annual art competition and exhibit, is embarking on its 10th year of helping artists get their work in front of art-industry professionals such as interior designers, art galleries, private art collectors, and corporate collections. Each year the art competition gets bigger and better, and this year over $300,000 in awards will be given to artists through gallery contracts, purchase awards, publishing contracts, and more!


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