A Look Inside the Deep Space Sparkle Studio

I remember the moment when I decided to rent a studio space.

I walked into my business coach, James Wedmore’s Laguna Beach office during one of our mastermind meet-ups, looked around and knew that a studio, was exactly what I needed.

Six months later, Neil and I found a small space in Goleta, above a pizza shop (isn’t that where all good things start?) and signed a lease.

I was excited.

Neil was nervous.

What I knew was this: a physical move away from my home office and into a studio space would be the catalyst from being a solo entrepreneur to a business owner.

Take look at what the Deep Space Sparkle headquarters looks like and how Patty organizes her space.

18 months later, I was right.

Deep Space Sparkle has grown from one employee (me!) to 7.

We have a thriving membership site, online workshops, a podcast and even a new book. My mission has always been to support art teachers with the highest quality of art inspiration, lessons and resources. And now, I have a team that feels the same way.

I’ve been wanting to show you around for a long time. I hope that whatever space YOU have in which to create, dream and make, that it is inspiring and perfectly aligned to you.

Let’s take look around…

Take look at what the Deep Space Sparkle headquarters looks like and how Patty organizes her space.

This is the entrance to the meeting and creating space. It has had many iterations: at one point, this is where the team worked. Now they are in the front section of our narrow space near the front door.

Maybe a few pictures of the very first days in the studio would be helpful to see how the space transformed into a long shoebox to a beautiful space…

At first, I created art in the front room. This is where I hosted the kid’s workshops for my book, Draw, Paint, Sparkle.

I loved it because it had a lot of natural light and was perfect for taking pictures for the book. Here’s a few pictures from the book…

Draw Paint Make Creative Projects from an Elementary Art Teacher Patty Palmer

Meeting with the Team

The wooden table that we got from IKEA was hands-down the best piece of furniture we purchased. It is sturdy and accommodates art supplies and the team.

Once a week, our in-house team of 4, Skypes with our virtual team of 3. Amy, Amy and Marisa (yes, we have two Amy’s!) appear on our large TV screen and we chat for an hour. We give updates on what we’re working on, what we need help with and what’s working really well. I love taking this weekly opportunity to share with everyone what Deep Space Sparkle is doing, what my big goals are and how we’re moving towards these goals.

Take look at what the Deep Space Sparkle headquarters looks like and how Patty organizes her space:. Plus, Team Meetings and what we discuss!

Meet Neil

Hopefully, you all know Neil. We’ve been married for 25 year, have 3 grown kids and he gave up his career as a computer engineer to become Mister Sparkle. It’s a role he loves and anyone who has ever had the pleasure of working with Neil, knows how lucky we are to have him.

Neil has a small office near the front of our space. I think it used to be a waiting room for a dental office, but I can’t be sure. He loves the peek-through window so he can spy on me…since this picture was taken, I have since barricaded the window with book shelves.

Neil, AKA Mister Sparkle and his role with Deep Space Sparkle

This is my office.

The place where I do my facebook Live session, record my podcasts, write blog posts and read.

I love it even though it is way too messy. I have two tables: one desk to hold my computer and one table to create art and do my demo’s on. There is a door in my office that opens to a store room. All I can say is that you don’t want to see that.

Where the magic happens. Patty's studio, desk and where she records Art Made Easy Podcast

How I store and organize my art supplies

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably have seen this set-up before. I change it up frequently but the essence is always the same: I organize in groups.

I have a place for colored pencils, a place for markers, a bin for painted paper, a bin for plain paper, a bin for oil pastels, a bin for chalk pastels…you get the idea. When I’m working with kids, I make sure to have clear tubs of pastels so they can help themselves.

This shelf is an iconic grid shelf from IKEA. I pasted some color posters in the back of the shelf to add some color.

How Patty organizes her art supplies at the Deep Space Sparkle art studio and headquarters

Paper storage is always a challenge for me.

I put white paper together, colored paper together and watercolor paper together. It’s hard to keep the stacks straight so I don’t try too hard. I’m always on the look out for better paper storage.

How Patty organizes her art supplies at the Deep Space Sparkle art studio and headquarters

I have two large white boards in my office. One white board is in the front room and holds the team calendar. The other one is in my office and is used for art demos for my Thursday afternoon facebook Live sessions and my own planning.

Sometimes, I just draw.

How Patty organizes her art supplies at the Deep Space Sparkle art studio and headquarters

The big wooden table is perfect for creating lesson plans. I spread art supplies out over the table, gather my inspirations and start creating art.

But there is one step before that…

How Team Sparkle creates art lessons

Marisa, the content coordinator for The Sparklers Club, Amy, the lesson plan creator and I get together once a month to discuss the upcoming bundle. We put all of our ideas on the table, share inspirations from books and brainstorm the best way for an art teacher to teach the unit. We divide up the ideas and start creating the lessons based on our Deep Space Sparkle method of determining the best project for each grade level.

Our goal is to make sure each grade level builds on the skills, that the Elements of Art are incorporated and that there is a solid reason why an art teacher should create the lesson.

How Patty from Deep Space Sparkle selects, plans and creates her art lessons.

Here’s a picture of our incredible team, minus Amy Clay. In Marisa’s belly is little Caroline who was just born last week.

I’m so proud of our team. We’re small but mighty!

The Deep Space Sparkle Team. Shot at The Bacrara Resort in Santa Barbara

I’d love to hear from you…

Are you a studio owner or a creator with a private space? I’d love to hear what works for you and what doesn’t.

What do you think?

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  • Cindy deRosier

    LOVED the peek inside your studio! Best wishes for continued success.

  • Lisa Saunders

    I can totally relate to your paper storage conundrum! A friend put me onto this company and whilst a little pricey (all up) AU$455, I can honestly say it is worth the investment! I bought 2x A3, 3x A4 and a ribbon dispenser and am excited to say it has transformed my storeroom. It will also save me $ as students can now take a colour of choice without wrecking the entire


    • Lisa Saunders

      ** entire ream ?

  • Linda Tvedt

    How fun to see Sparkle headquarters! Thank you for sharing!

  • Julia

    Lovely… and as I am one of yours oldest fans from the very first time, I am more than happy for all of you. Even do, please if I have the chance to meet you there it will be a pleasure for me.
    Very nice, charming and with that Glamour that only you have.
    Hope everything goes well today in Goleta.
    I am sorry because the holiday fier.

    • Patty

      You are sweet Julia…and I appreciate your kind messages. The fires in Goleta have thankfully resided. 🙂

  • Kathleen

    Love the blue wall! Can you share the paint brand and color name?

    • Patty

      Thank you! I’m afraid I haven’t a clue…Home Depot for suer 🙂

  • Lisamarie

    This is dreamy job inspiration and for home art for now with summer holidays. In a current declutter and sort process I’m grateful for your descriptions. Soon to more laundry, then more art play with the kiddos. Thanks.

    • Patty

      Skip the laundry and go straight to art play! 🙂

  • Jill Suzanne Hatcher

    Wonderful!! A dream come true! Thanks for sharing!! It’s so inspiring!! My studio is in my living room (which spreads out throughout the rest of our house ) and I teach lessons on our narrow dining room table!! It’s really hard!!! What you have is amazing and a huge blessing!!! I really love it!!! Keep up the great work Patty and Neil and Team Sparkle!!!

  • Jill Suzanne Hatcher

    Wonderful! A dream come true! Thanks for sharing!! It’s so inspiring! My studio is in my living room (which spreads out throughout the rest of our house ) and I teach lessons on our narrow dining room table!! Figuring out good storage is really hard!!! What you have is amazing and a huge blessing!!! I really love it!!! Keep up the great work Patty and Neil and Team Sparkle!!!

    • Patty

      Thanks Jill! It’s about making the space you have work for you. I worked out of my home for years and had many organizations renditions!

  • Veronica Hurley

    Your story is so inspiring! Thank you for sharing! I love behind the scenes because it makes it more personal and I find a connection with that person! I love art and can’t wait to become a sparkler! ☺️❤️

    • Patty

      Thank you Veronica!

  • Roisin aka Little Rose Arts

    Love your space Patty! It is a true inspiration! So colourful and full of potential!!

    • Patty

      Thank you!

  • Diane O'Connell

    Hello from Victoria, Canada. I am so inspired with your energy and enthusiasm and hoping that you can help me teach art to my grandchildren. I have very little art knowledge, experience or abilities but love the world of colour, texture and design. I have found that you have a magical way of breaking projects down to simple commonsense steps, even I can make an nice looking picture. Thank you. I hope to become a sparkler this year.

    • Patty

      Hi Dianne! I write this response as I’m enroute to my little cottage in Prince Edward Island. You are living on an equally beautiful Island! I know the Sparklers Club will embrace you…there are a few artsy grandmas who are doing amazing things with their grandkids. So lovely that our paths have crossed. 🙂

  • Elisabeth

    Hello! I am an ex-pat & primary school teacher living in Oban, Scotland. I want to leave the classroom & venture into my own creative business. I am so happy to see how your business has developed and grown. You are my complete inspiration. I am taking the big leap this year and running a 2 week Art Camp for which I am very excited about. Thank you for sharing your work and wonderful ideas. Sincerely, Elisabeth

  • mleemcc2

    I love your space Patty! Is this where you started and grew or did you eventually move into this studio?

    • Patty

      I started by website when I was a teacher. I set up a home office. But when I quit teaching, I worked at home for a year then moved into this studio. 🙂

  • Rachel Alarid

    Thanks for the tour of your studio! I love how bright, clean, and colorful it is! We use a lot of IKEA furniture in our studio as well, and it’s really versatile.

  • Rebecca Blackburn

    My school districts superintendent Dr. Hill (Pender County) wants to know where to send a thank you note for the generous donation made to our school (South Topsail) but I can not find it on your page. Would you please email the address to send it? Thank you so very much! Rebecca Blackburn

    • Patty

      Hi Rebecca,
      This is so nice. Our address is 270 Storke Rd Unit 5, Goleta CA 93117

  • breseanjenkins

    The Deep Sparkle Subscription is the best thing I have ever invested in. The lessons make students WANT to be in art, and I look forward each month to what new and innovative things you will create for us. Again, thank you for partnering with classroom teachers!

    • Patty

      Thank you so much! Really. So happy that the kids are happy. That’s what it’s all about.

  • Kerrie Trovinger

    Hi Patty!
    I just discovered your company this evening and have been poring over your website. I absolutely love what you are doing! I started out on a path to teach art long ago. I have a BA in Visual Communications and got about 3/4 of the way through an MA in Elementary Education before I ended up with a corporate job in the Insurance industry and becoming the Mom of 3 boys. Twenty plus years have passed and I am looking to do something I am passionate about. I am wondering if there would be any opportunities for me to work for your organization? This sounds like this could be my dream job! I do not have a teaching license but have worked in elementary art classrooms and preschools before I started my corporate “gig”. I also force-fed my sons lots and lots of art as they were growing up. I live in Colorado but see that some of your team members work remote. I thought I’d reach out to see what your thoughts might be. Thank you!

  • Kelly

    I LOVE everything about what you are doing! I have a small space at home where I create, host a ladies small group from my church to paint and use to hold one on one art lessons with kids from time to time. I have a BIG Dream, Vision that I know God has placed in my heart about starting my own Studio / Business that has been based off of my Mission Trips to Africa and LoVe for children to be creative. I would LoVE advice on the “start up” process of opening this. Do’s & Don’ts maybe? How to utilize my home more until ready for that move! Any tips at all would be absolutely helpful. Also, every time I find myself researching ideas…. You always pop up! I believe you and your success, trial & error is exactly what I need. Thank you for your time! 🙂

  • LWren Walraven

    Patty! This podcast really resonated with me. As a struggling artist for 20 years, I have finally decided enough is enough and I need to make money! There is an entrepreneur lurking inside of me. Part of my beginning plan was to teach art, and because I was so afraid I started off teaching Kids art! Then I found DSS. But I really appreciate listening to how you grew your own business into the success it is now. Ironically I just finished an online class on how to be a successful entrepreneur for women and much of what you did and talked about on the podcast overlapped with what I learned in class. Thank you so much for sharing! Please talk more about your business!

  • Joanne Buck

    Really Nice studio! Great Job!

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