In the process of creating a "nest" that suits my artist/creative side and my love of nature and general optimism, I decided to make a gigantic wall mural in 3D in my home office.
The wall is about 16'w x 8' tall. These daisies are enormous! I'm still refining some details here and there, but I must say with my desk right in front of it, when I do my multiple zoom business meetings, the backdrop is ideal so that no matter what I wear, the redhead pops out against this land of giants.
I never thought too much about backdrops. I see many that are just the contents of a home room that feel too casual, or pictures and awards that overpower the person talking, or even ones picked from the Zoom catalog that show weird green screen-like edges on the person.
I wanted a "signature" background and with name being Sharon DAY, it seemed like one of those things that clicks a brand into the head. The sunny Day lady with the flowers. Seen together pften enough, we are not forgotten.
Ironically, there is a front entry living room in my home and a back room that is an Arizona room, but since I work from home as a screenwriter, producer, and actress, I needed a HUGE office, so my entry room is the office. Based on mid century and lots of wicker and plants, that mural wall just goes POW when you walk into the home.
It's literally impossible to be depressed with this staring you down and in person it's so 3D you almost feel a bit disoriented like a miniature being in a giant backyard lawn.
Honey, I shrunk the writer!
This summer I plan to finish up the office renovation as the other parts of the house are pretty much big gut projects. I can see it in my mind how I want to do this so I capture the inspiration I need. One the wall opposite the desk, I hang 8x10 photos of my life and favorite places, family, friends, and posters from movies I've worked on. The desk is positioned to look out an enormous pictre window at the nearby mountain.
A 12' x 4' chalkboard I created from a piece of sheetrock affixed to the wall and painted with chalkboard paint. I can work out huge plot lines for 2-hour films or 1-hour episodic series on it.
How you create your home office can change your productivity and success, as well as make it possible to be in a comfortable setting to work instead of a sterile office you had to haul your ass to every single day in traffic.
The oversized elements in my office actually make me feel more creative. The points of reference are so out of usual proportions that I can't take them for granted. I can't just skim over them when I look around. It's not just that you're in an environment, it's that the environment is possessing you.
My tips on office rehab -
1. Silence or isolation. Whether you redo a closet to open the door and work at a desk there and close off so you don't see it the rest of your leisure time or you put in a double pane window and door to shut yourself off, these things are really critical.
2. Leave reminders of why you're working so hard, whether it's family photos, pictures of vacation dreams, plants, or funny bobbleheads, just feel like you're in your space, not necessarily corporate's.
3. Keep your industry in mind. I used to do medical transcription from home and everything around me was medical charts, pharmaceutical reference books, medical reference books, lab results samples, etc.
We all play roles in life. If we go to a fancy date night, we dress up like a grownup, if we are painting the kitchen, we wear overalls. Our very attitude changes from formal to casual just by changing clothing. So, keeping your industry vibe around you keeps it feeling like the energy that generates that produce/service.
My switch to working purely in the creative entertainment industry made me rethink the use of my office. I need to create plots, characters, dialogue, settings. I put up my oil painting easel and a dresser for my supplies so I can literally paint whenever I need to open a new side of my thought process.
I have the ability to pose mannequins, have a gigantic chalkboard for plotting, the crazy daisy mural, tons of sunshine, happy plants and exercise equipment to let out stress and move my body.
That visitors enter into the office first is a wonderful way for an artist to set the tone that they are entering an inspirational space and the aesthetic is dynamic. It is not just another suburban tract house with Ikea and Target items, beige and white.
I utilize bright colors like turquoise and yellow, tons of sunshine and plants. It just feels like an artist's bungalow in the South Pacific.
When you put on a business suit your very approach and personality shift. Having a room aesthetic that encourages your career is life-changing. I could sit in any room with a desk and a planner but I wouldn't look outside of my computer screen. For your eyes alone, lifting your head and looking into the distance often is important.
A simple window can be enough to feel like you're working in paradise, especially if it has a great view of the garden or you can see people walking and reminding you to get up and move around.
If you're a terminal desk worker like me, you really could use a desk peddler under the desk to work your legs or a stand-up desk you can adjust for standing. I pull mine up once every hour for an hour and play music and dance while I type. You can march in place too. But, a day of being seated is about as bad as smoking a pack of cigarettes where health is concerned, so unfold.
The mural was a very physically demanding and sometimes overwhelming project, but it literally stamped the space as mine. I feel like I walk into my office and it understands me. Strangely too, I noticed that I tend to go into the kitchen and get matcha tea and raw honey and just savor it at my nature sunshine happy space. It changed my whole health aesthetic too. I'm so much more efficient at my job because the space is completely associated with creating and the processed of sitting and typing offers me amazing views around me.
Happy office decorating! Share any of your changes and how it affected your work.
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