Woman with coffee and muffin stares at iMac

How to Make Working from Home Work for You

More of us than ever want to be our own boss. That’s what makes working from home so appealing. Working remotely usually means we can choose our own hours, within reason, and are far more flexible. It’s the antithesis to the ‘daily grind’. Instead of a long commute in the morning, it’s a short stroll down the hall to a makeshift office area. We can squeeze in that gym session, a catch-up, and even some cooking because we’re managing ourselves after all. Of course, just like with any work setup, there are pitfalls too. It’s not all lie-ins, late nights, and lunching. If you’re considering a career working from home here’s a guide to doing it the right way.

Artist dips brush into brown paint among other colours
Image Credit: Pixabay

What Do You Do For Work?

This is the first, quite major, hurdle facing anyone looking to work from home. If you work as a doctor there just isn’t going to be any way for you to work remotely. Certain professions are customer, patient, client-facing by nature. It may appeal to you to work from home but it just won’t be possible. Having said that, there are lots of careers which can be set up from home.

If you’re a writer, an artist, or a composer, basically any career where work is commissioned from you, you can work from home. In fact, in these scenarios, it’s often best to work remotely. Artists can save money on studio space by converting a spare room into a place to paint. Similarly, if you’re a writer it’s ideal to work from home. All you need is a comfortable place to work and a laptop.

Making Money

Making money is the hardest part of working from home. Whatever it is you’re trying to sell, your work, your products, your services, it’s tough. Unlike working for a large company, you’ll have to market yourself. Marketing is key to surviving if you work freelance. It’s what drives traffic to a website, gets commissions, and translates into money. If you haven’t already, consider enlisting the services of a company like Octave Media. They’re experts in marketing and know the ins and outs of the trade. Whether you’re a fashion consultant looking for clients, or a would-be entrepreneur trying to sell your products, these companies can get you, customers. They do this by implementing modern marketing techniques like social media, blogging, and SEO.

Money and credit card in back pocket
Image Credit: Pixabay

Tips For Making It Work

Once you’ve established yourself in your new work-from-home position, you may find it tough, to begin with. To start with it can feel isolating. Especially if you’re used to working in a large office or social setup. It can also be challenging to self-motivate. The main thing to do is set yourself a routine. Don’t lie-in. Save that for the weekends. Don’t sit at your desk, studio, or workspace all day either. Move into another room for lunches and any other breaks. Fill your free time with meeting people. Go out every single day, even if it’s just to the shops, this will help you to feel integrated still. Lastly, enjoy your new-found freedom! Create a schedule that gives you more free time, work from a coffee shop or the park, and savour your new work setup.

Female artist in well-lit home studio

Creative Space Ideas For Professional Artists

Working as a paid artist is hard work and like any other freelancer most of your time will be spent trying to get your work noticed and pick up commissions. The rest of the time will hopefully be channelled into actually creating your next masterpiece.

Unlike most freelancers however, an artist requires a little more equipment and space than a desk and a computer.  A good art studio is expensive to rent and is often difficult to find locally.  There are options of renting shared spaces with other artists, but if you really want to create the ideal space to inspire your creativity then why not consider building your own home art studio. If you have a garden, even better, if you have a spare room, either way, the following tips will still prove helpful:

Step 1.  If you don’t have a suitable building or space to convert into an art studio you can build your own using a prefab steel building. These are cost-effective and quick to install and will give you a blank canvas to create your ideal studio.

Step 2.  Look for clever storage ideas. One of the key elements to a good home art studio is making sure you have storage options for all of the many art materials you will need. Storage can be as elaborate as fitted cupboards and bespoke shelving or as simple as empty jam jars and biscuit containers to store brushes and paper safely.

Table filled with a variety of art brushes
Image Credit: Pexels

Step 3.  Decorate it. Whilst you don’t want your new art studio to be so busy that it draws your attention away from your creative projects, you do want the space to feel warm, welcoming and inspiring so decorate your space to your own personal taste making plenty of room on the walls for sketches and pictures that you will accumulate along the way.

Step 4.  Even in the summer, if you find yourself working through the night you will need some protection from the cold (assuming you’re not in the tropics).  Not all art materials perform well when the temperature drops below a comfortable level so install a heater to turn up the temperature on your creative ideas. Portable space heaters are also an affordable option.

Step 5.  Furnish your studio.  Although you will probably spend most of your time on your feet in your home studio, it is handy to have a comfortable seating area to allow you to take a step back and consider your direction. Try an old sofa or bean bags for a more relaxed working environment. You will also need a table and shelves to store paints, brushes, boxes, and other materials. If you are also going to be using a computer then you will need a sturdy desk. One important must-have is a sink with running water for your dedicated clean up station ensuring art tools like brushes and cups are kept clean after use.

Whimsical garden studio with big glass windows
Image Credit: Pexels

Step 6.  Plenty of light. Make sure when you are creating your space, decorating it and filling it with all your necessary materials that you leave plenty of room for good light.  Natural light is always best so make sure there are adequate windows.  If windows are a premium, try adding artificial lighting in strategic positions to flood light onto your creative processes.

Step 7.  Finally all that’s left to do is move in.  Once your studio is ready you can move in and create your new creative future.

Artist in studio painting colourful pieces
Image Credit: Pexels

From First Shipped to Mega-hit: The Adobe Illustrator Story.

It’s amazing to see how this software was developed by such visionaries that include co-founder, John Warnock. Nearly 27 years later, Adobe Illustrator has completely revolusionised the creative and publishing industries.

Enjoy and appreciate the history lesson. It’s 20 minutes well spent.