The Studio as Sanctuary

If you grew up or are currently practicing a particular religion you know the power of the sanctuary.  There is something quieting and comforting about crossing the threshold.  I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a parallel universe, but it’s close.  When in the sanctuary the surroundings, the people, and the ritual makes the experience important on many levels.  The sanctuary is the place of calm, contemplation, and consideration.

If you’re an artist and you look at your work as part of your spiritual practice, and you don’t go to a synagogue, church, mosque, or other religious house of worship, how do you achieve that same experience?  I know for me something happens when I cross the threshold of my studio.  The opportunity to walk into a sacred space that speaks the language of thoughtfulness, creativity, and openness makes it an ideal space to be consecrated as a sanctuary.

When working with artists who are having difficulty getting themselves to the studio the question is what questions are you contemplating that need answers?  Can you think of any place more appropriate than the studio as sanctuary to give you the peace you need to hear the tiny whispers from your soul?  Making the studio a sanctuary takes intention.  It’s not something that simply happens; it’s something that evolves.  What would you put on an altar in your studio?  What purpose does this altar have in your studio space?  How do you initiate yourself when you walk into the studio? 

A few years ago I had a client who was struggling with making the transition from tech person to artist.  He understood the importance of giving meaning to crossing the threshold but was unsure how to accomplish the action.  In the end he decided to change his shoes before walking in the studio (which was in his home).  He bought a pair of fun and funky hi-top sneakers.  Crossing the threshold now had meaning.  The music he played while creating his work was emotionally and spiritually evocative adding to his creative mindset.

Give yourself the gift of a sacred space when creating art.  Having your own personal sanctuary is a blessing!


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