Modern Studio

This modern studio design on Pender Island for a painter is nestled in the woods to provide inspiration and a quiet sanctuary. Natural wood from the local forests contrasts with the modern horizontal metal siding which grounds the structure and adds visual interest .

The Artist requires a space with plenty of good, natural light, but with no direct sunlight on the rear wall where she does her painting. We addressed this challenge by placing clerestory windows right up against the ceiling, tucked up under the soffit. We also placed low, horizontal windows right down at the floor. The winter sun is low on the horizon and shines under the roof overhang falling high on the wall well above the work area. In the summer months the roof overhang blocks the sun from entering directly but still allows reflected light. The windows at the floor allow sun in all year but it strikes the floor and is reflected into the studio.

The artist wanted a modern studio design, but didn’t want it to look out of place in the trees. Horizontal galvalume metal siding was chosen to offset the natural wood, and create a contrast that also picks up the colours of the exposed rock. By placing it horizontally, the structure is brought down visually. The studio was built on a pier foundation, which makes it appear lighter, almost floating when approaching from the path. We also created a small sitting area that is used to read and find inspiration. Two large, custom sliding doors open the space up to expand outside and promote good airflow in the studio. A full bathroom and a day bed also allows the sitting area to be used as additional guest space.

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