Do you dream about having your own office or studio space one day?
Los Angeles photographer Laure Joliet works from home for years. But when her living room starts overflowing with prints and posters, Laure decides to take the plunge and she rents her own photo studio in LA’s Chinatown.
That’s when Laure realizes that she needs a lot more than just a white box. She suddenly has to create a multi-functional space that’s cozy enough to use everyday and a professional office that clients can visit.
It takes a little trial and error, but Laure finally puts together a studio that she loves + where she can get serious work done.
Don’t be intimidated if you want your story to sound like Laure’s. Read on for her 5 design tips for designers, artists, photographers, and anyone who aspires to have a creative office of their own.
1. Get a good desk.
“I’ve used the wobbly pass-me-downs and they are fine but having a solid table to either set up a computer on or to be able to use as a working surface is crucial. It’s where everything happens. You want to make sure it’s big enough for what you’re working on and is something you love.”
2. Make space for collaboration.
“It’s so important when you work largely by yourself to have people come and visit, to have projects in the works with others. I love when my studiomates come in and plop down on the bench and we talk through what we’re working on. Being able to bounce ideas off of one another is huge for staying motivated and feeling connected. Having a zone where other people can come in and be comfortable helps to foster those relationships.”
3. Create some kind of order.
“You don’t have to be super organized. But some kind of order will help free you up to be creative, to get back to your client, to cross something off the list. If you’re constantly searching for what you need you burn up energy unnecessarily. Start some systems, stick to them, change them if they don’t work.”
4. Surround yourself with inspiration.
“I like to keep a rotating collection of images tacked to the wall. Just stuff I tear out of magazines or find in my day, things that inspire me, colors I like, scenes I’m drawn to. I also love having things around me that friends have made. It reminds me that I’m part of a larger system of creative people. I have pottery from my friend Tracy and colorful pillows from my friend Erin (of cotton and flax) and photos from other photographer friends.”
“What’s a creative space without a bunch of plants? Having that texture in the space immediately makes it feel bigger and more alive. Plus when I’m procrastinating, watering them gives me something to do.”