Thursday, January 14, 2016

garage turned office

Working for yourself from home can be interesting and sometimes presents challenges! While I have an off sight studio space that I use for most of my art making, I do all of my computer tasks (video and photo editing, editing digital artwork, blogging, writing, designing online classes, email and any business tasks) in my home office. 

For the last few years, I've used our third bedroom as my office (you can see it herehere and here) but over this last year I've I wanted to move my office outside of our living/family space. When you work from home it can feel like there is no divide between work and family and it can be tricky to have boundaries. I still need to have an office at home- I work at really odd times and enjoy the flexibility of being able to get up early or stay up late working. So Andy and I started brainstorming different options and different ways we could make our existing space work. In my dream world, we would remodel or even add onto to our home but right now this just isn't in our budget which means we needed to get creative with what we have.

The solution we came up with was moving my office into the garage. We have a two car garage that we do not park our cars in. Instead, our garage is another space that we use for storage, projects and art making. The photo above was taken before Christmas, when the space was a MESS. But after we cleaned, organized and made space we decided the best and most economical option was to build two moveable walls that could create a cubicle office.


A while back, Andy built moveable walls for my studio space- you can see them HEREI've worked in galleries where you often find a hollow wall that can be painted, moved and changed depending on the exhibit or creative project. I love my studio moveable walls- they are a really great way to divide space, change the space and also can be used as a backdrop for photography and art. 

Andy built two light weight walls (removable walls) for our garage that are braced together to create a small cubicle that measures about 7ft x 9ft. It takes up one corner of the garage and the rest is still open with enough space to store all our junk (bikes, surfboards, beach gear, etc).

We moved my entire office set up into this space and it has made a world of difference for me! I love that I am able to step away from our living space to go to work (even working a few feet away from our home and family life make a difference for my mindset). The best part is that I actually have more space than I did our in our spare room and also have an entire wall of counter space for creative projects.

For about $150 we were able to add some additional space. And while I hope some day we will be able to renovate our home, I am happy that we found a creative solution that works for today!

p.s. you can read about how I stretched my huge canvas and created my big quote painting HERE


29 comments:

Helen said...

Absolutely love this. Thanks for another great post x

Bekka Joy said...

That is awesome! It looks so good and I love that you can be 'out of the house' :) What are you doing with the new space inside!!??

jabbott said...

Nice separate space you created x

Raj Aryan said...

Cool Idea! So much creativity and fun
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britt schmiesing said...

sounds great!

Izzy said...

A great space..

Terri said...

Looks like a wonderful space to get some business done! Always love how creative you are with using what you have on a budget. Thanks for sharing!

Nancy said...

Very nice space, and Andy's skills for making the walls to define the space are outstanding.

Domestic Diva said...

Just curious how do you heat the space. We have an "extra space" in our garage I would love to use but I think I would lose interest while waiting for it to heat up.....since I live in the south for it to cool down in the summer. Yours is a beautiful space. I am not trying to be negative I really love the idea but I want to know if it would be feasible option for me . Thanks

Alisa Burke said...

Great question! The Oregon coast is pretty mild and rarely gets warm enough for the garage to get too hot and while some days dec-feb can be chilly, it's manageable with slippers and a sweatshirt, a rug also helps. I have a small space heater but don't use it that much. I've seen garage projects where they add insulation to the door so I'm sure there options for keeping it warm/cool. I hope this helps!!

Jodi Marie said...

Though, it's all amazing and I'm wondering where you got that beautiful rug, I think my favorite part is Lucy's painting on the wall! My girls are only 15 months, but they help me with the backgrounds for paintings all the time and we've begun to fill our house with colorful textural canvases. Thanks for always inspiring creativity!

alisa burke said...

Thanks Jodi! Lucy's painting is also more favorite! The rug is from Urban Outfitters a couple of years ago.

studioGypsy said...

oh that is awesome!! xoxo

Lisa McKenzie said...

I think it is super cute! Great idea for seperating work space from family space. I must say Andy is an awesome handyman! I never thought about movable walls & I loved the sink idea in your camping van. Have fun in your new space!

Brig said...

You are sooooo lucky you have a handyman around AND a space to even come up with an option. I'm the handyman around here but don't know much really. I just know more than my partner ... It's all about time to sort something and not sitting in MY studio with chilli sauce smells. MY studio space has been taken over by chilli sauce that needs to be bottled. What a great space!

Brig said...

If the wall you have the shelving on isn't brick / cement then how have you put the shelves up? My studio is lined with Gyprock (I don't know what you call it in America) so I have to have free standing shelving or go about shelving with special heavy duty hooks that have claws that go into the back of the Gyprock.

Stephanie said...

Alisa - so amazing! LOVE the movable walls.

Naked Eye Studio said...

That's an amazing transformation! Such great lighting and work space. I'm eyeing my garage now :)

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1"Dikejar-kejar hutang

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3"Barang berharga anda udah habis terjual Buat judi togel


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Helmi said...

Beautiful en thanks for sharing!

Corrine at corrinegilman.com said...

Wonderful to see that special girl painting on the wall. Great little space. Nice to have such a family involvement in all your creative life. xox

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