When I first started on this journey, I didn’t find one artist discussing their minimalist lifestyle. Although I haven’t seen too many artists writing about their journey, I do think that many artists can be minimalists. As an artist you may not be as extreme as only owning 100 personal items, but you can pare down so that you are able to focus more on creating versus unnecessary clutter.
As an artist, I need to have color and art around me as they influence my mood and keep me motivated to create more art. My minimalism has nothing to do with living in a home only decorated in neutrals, owning only 100 items (although that is great if you can), or having a wardrobe consisting of predominately black basics unless you want to. It does however focus on minimalism in terms of your environmental footprint, being a conscious consumer, and paring down excess possessions and clothing, minimizing the to-do list, using chemical-free beauty products, being vegetarian, and buying organic, vintage, fair trade, and handmade clothing and items when you do shop.
I believe that minimalism can actually create a clear focus for an artist. By getting rid of clutter, maximizing your money, and organizing your art supplies, you are allowing more space and time to devote to your art.
1. Give your art a home.
Decide which room in your home, or what area of that room you will use as your studio. Now decide how you would love for it to look even before you start the process of decluttering and reorganizing.
2. Take out all of your supplies.
Look through everything that you own and toss what is old, broken, crusted and dried up, and no longer inspiring. Give away any supplies that you are no longer interested in and recycle and toss the rest.
3. Determine your focus.
With what you have left, decide what area of creativity you are most interested in doing. If five years ago you thought you’d be interested in scrap booking, but never started and still haven’t thought once about it, give those supplies to someone who currently is.
4. Create with what you have.
Decide at this moment you will design, paint, draw, knit, etc. with your current supplies. This forces you to be more innovative and you will most likely surprise yourself.
This is one of the most helpful tasks. You may need to buy something if you don’t already have it, but it will save so much time and energy finding the supplies that you need. Check your local thift shops for the perfect organizational tool for your supplies.
Use items that you already have such as glass jars to organize smaller arts and craft items. You can even label them with 70% recycled printed paper and cardstock, or you could use the scrapbooking paper you haven’t tossed out yet.
To read more about decluttering go here.
(Image by D Sharon Pruitt)