Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Materials Clean Up Day

I would like to think that my materials, especially my professional quality mediums, will last forever. Occasionally I will open a new bottle of something and compare it to one I've had on my shelf for who knows how long and there is a remarkable difference between them. It's easy for a new product to get lost on a shelf with old products. So today I spent some time cleaning out old supplies. I probably still err too much on the "keep it it was expensive" side but it felt good to clear out some space and make mental notes of what I need to pick up at the art store.

A few things I did:
1. Arrange Bottles By Use
I have two types of bottles. The big 32oz or 128oz bottles that I keep to fill the little bottles and the little bottles that I will actually hold in my hands while painting. The big bottles simply refill smaller bottles but I have them all in the same space. Solution:  I Put big back up bottles in a lower, harder to access shelf and the small bottles of the same materials in the easy to reach shelf. By creating a specific place where I keep second and third bottles or the much larger cartons of a medium, I will know where to look to see if I am truly out of something. This also clears up the easy-to-access space and will mean tripping over multiple bottles of the same thing while trying to grab something else.

Monday, May 06, 2013


I am a huge fan of Pinterest, and just yesterday I saw the poster, "If you're tired of starting over, stop giving up."

Oh and how. After a long vacation and a brutal few weeks of work, I sat down to draw and paint. I hadn't regressed as far as I feared. And the first day I felt absolutely thrilled to have the pencil back in my hand. Maybe I could just start again. But then the next day I felt the oncoming dread. I felt the frustration and anger that I've felt so many times trying to learn to draw and paint. I was angry that my hands couldn't do what I wished for them. And even worse, I was painfully aware that I couldn't even articulate what it was I wanted them to do.

In the beginning, so much of progress is in the mental game of sticking with it. And when we are in the rhythm of doing, we overcome all these screaming voices that tell us we will never create something that will fulfill whatever it is in us that longs. And when you stop for a week or two or three, you have to get past all of those voices again. Maybe the skill in your hand hasn't all disappeared but the steadfastness of your head has weakened. And maybe that's worse. Today, anyway, it feels worse.

So up this hill again we climb. One foot over another.