A SHED AS A THING OF BEAUTY
PAINTING STUFF - A NEW STUDIO FROM OLD STUFF
Our 1955 Cliff May mid-century modern house is a delight to live in. But with Jerry's impending retirement, we need to convert that middle bedroom from a paint-splattered, fume-ridden mess of a painting studio into a sleek, modern office for two. That's not so hard – empty the room, scrub the floors, paint the walls and move in a bookshelf unit and two side-by-side desks with chairs. The perfect place for me to write and live in the cyber world and the perfect place for him to, well, do whatever he wants. My PC and his MAC, living in peace and harmony and the excitement of DSL, with a comfy reading chair (that Plycraft Eames-style lounger and ottoman!)
But where would I paint?
Well, I explored the idea of an offsite studio in the Arts Colony, and Terry and Rolo Castillo of the da Center for the Arts made a couple of very generous offers. Susie Eaton of Bunny Gunner Gallery even called a property owner to check on studio rentals and Vincent Blue sky of Blue sky Gallery and Steve Ruiz of Blue Core Gallery both steered me to a possibility, too.
After a short 3-week hiatus, I was painting again yesterday and realized that I don't want to leave here to paint. I like painting in these beautiful surroundings with the plants and pets around me. I like hearing the cacophony of the birds. I like painting in my nightie, the bathroom only steps away. I like it that my kitchen, with its little drinks refrigerator, is right here, offering cold water and a whole lot more.
I could buy one, of course, if I want to spend $8,000 - $45,000. And they are very beautiful. Companies like Modern Cabana, Metro Shed, Studio Shed and Modern Shed offer gorgeous prefabricated modern studios which they construct on your site.
But I like the idea of matching my house, re-using materials from original Cliff May homes and building exactly what I want. Not to mention cost. I think we can build this – with some expert help – for less than $3000. It might take a while, but I think the result will be wonderful. I will post pics of the progress as we go.
Here's the site as it is now. The main patio is to the right, and there is a perfect concrete slab for the studio here (not to mention good light)
And here is what will be the view from the front – see how the view is an echo of a door set and window set? That's the Master Bedroom, with a bamboo obstructing the right hand window set. Doors & windows are each 5 ft wide.
And here are a couple of pictures of similar structures, but you have to imagine the door-and-window combo that we will use.That one on the left is closest in design, I think.
They are all very pretty, and I will take inspiration from them
The new mystery short story is coming along – I have the set-up and the characters, and there is a delicious little twist. But I'm struggling with the plausibility factor – sometimes truth is stranger than fiction, but that just makes it unbelievable, so it can't be used. Sometimes you gotta make stuff up to make it sound real.
The Short Story class will become a reality in Pomona – Terry Castillo and I will get together soon and nail down dates, format, etc. Maybe we need an introductory talk and a workshop. Maybe a couple of workshops…hmmm…this could be a lot of fun!
Jerry getting his 30-year pin at Cal Poly Pomona. I listened in awe to his biography – I had no idea he had done so much.
Be careful out there.