Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I'm Stuck, Where's my Crayons?

Did you ever get stuck?  I don't mean stuck by the monotony of everyday life and looking for an adventure.  What I'm talking about is the stuck in the middle of too many things on my need-to-do list and no time for what I like doing.  I get paralyzed when I can't decide. 

Play with the paints or vacuum the carpets.  Doodle at my desk or do the food shopping.  As a home-based artist I always have the little nagging feeling that the family and house comes first.  The distraction of deciding could take up the day leaving no time for playing!  I want to play all day and I can't and it makes me angry! (Stomping my foot and holding my breath until I'm blue.)

So I'm reading The Artist's Way, still.  There it is in black and white, that the inner-child artist needs to play, or else.  The "or else" could become self destruction!  And play is less scary than work.  Artist's use distractions as excuses not to work because the idea of the resulting outcome is a scary idea. 

It's fear.  We're afraid the outcome won't be any good.  Will anyone like it?  And if they don't like it, will I question my talent?  It's all so scary that we avoid doing everything but art.  If I don't keep at it some one else with less talent than me will get ahead because they know how to talk it up and they keep at it.  Sure, those kind of people have no fear!  Arggh!

The book says it's the job of the artist-adult to allow the inner-child artist to rant and gently turn the situation around, a creative U-turn.  Just hand that "child" crayons and paper.  Ignore the tantrum.

It's the process that is important, not the outcome remember?  Yeah, I remember.  It's the dream of the artist to be painting all day, but it's not a reality I guess.  Ok, I'll find some time between laundry loads to doodle.  Sorry, I forgot.  Okay, I had my tantrum, I feel better now.


  1. Sometimes I set the timer and when it goes off, I go to
    the opposite activity so if I paint for 45 minutes, then I go clean or fold laundry for 30 minutes. But what happens for me is that I start ignoring it or setting increasingly long times for painting and short for cleaning! LOL
    What seems to work best for me is to get a certain minimum level of housework done and then create for a few days until I have to get back to the minimum again. And I didn't let my housekeeper go when I retired. She is my Godsend.

  2. Yes, one day, a housekeeper! LOL


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