New year, new homes! We're back with our "At Home with..." series, kicking it off with Chicago-based artist Courtney Shoudis and her mesmerizing family home/studio. A multi media artist, Shoudis spent years in the fashion industry before naturally gravitating to painting and sculpture.
Tell us about you! How did you start Studio EmmJean?
I'm Courtney Shoudis, a Chicago-based artist. Studio EmmJean began as a concept to merge all my interests, evolving into and through a dynamic 2200-square-foot loft, used as my home, my gallery, and my art studio. I have personally curated the interior of the studio to seamlessly blend with my art. Today, the studio not only showcases my paintings and sculpture and interior aesthetic but also curates and offers vintage and rare art books for sale.
What made you want to share your love of interior design on TikTok?
Honestly, my friends pushed me to start a TikTok account and I’m so glad they did because I did not expect the support that I received on this platform. I am completely addicted to TikTok now. There are so many cool and unique homes and creatives being showcased on there and I truly can not get enough of all of them.
Tell us about your creative process. Where do you find inspiration?
This question is always asked. I find it ambiguous to answer, because the creative process itself and where to find inspiration is ambiguous and constantly changing. There are certain aspects of the creative process that are standard practice. For me, personally, these processes come through reading literature, introspective analysis of the world around me, and constant sketching of ideas.
What’s one piece of advice you always go back to when it comes to your career?
Learn to embrace patience; meaningful achievements don't happen overnight. It took me a while to grasp this truth. I used to pressure myself for swift progress, but I've learned that success is a culmination of countless small steps. Consistently take daily actions, no matter how small, toward your goal – it truly adds up. Studio EmmJean, a project we've been cultivating for six years, is still in its early stages, and I cherish the gradual growth into what I envision.
What makes a space feel like home?
My husband and his presence makes it feel like home. He’s also an amazing cook and being able to have the aroma of his food present is indescribable. It really is a blessing to have this space, surrounded by our art and creations is what makes it a true home to us.
As an artist, what’s your best tip for achieving a sense of balance in your home?
A balanced home is one where you can leave the universe behind as soon as you walk in. Creating a place that is both aesthetically appealing to you, yet comfortable and livable.
What are some of your home essentials?
I have to have fresh flowers as often as I can, I love creating a new floral bouquet because it always changes the space. My current obsessions for the space is anything Gaetano Pesce and my Clr Shop blankets. Last but not least, is art and lots of it being showcased in the home.
What are you looking forward to in the next year?
Anticipating the upcoming year, my focus is on creating new artwork and expanding my sculpture portfolio. Studio EmmJean is also planning selling prints of my work; something that I have been planning for the past few years. Additionally, I look forward to nurturing our recent venture in library curation, and expanding the sale of used and rare art books. The excitement lies in observing the unfolding of these endeavors in the coming year.