Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Work Smarter Not Harder!!!

I have been so busy working on my to do list and amidst the madness that is my creative life, I am still recovering from my thrown out back. This means less time working on art and more time letting myself relax and take it easy when my body tells me to! I have been thinking a lot lately- With my back going out again it’s time to figure out realistic solutions and new ways to live my creative life. As I lay on the floor last week in pain I was so mad at myself thinking - who cares if you have wonderful opportunities - if your mind and body are too exhausted to enjoy them, what’s the point?!?!? Somebody said to me recently that I need to work smarter not harder and my first response was...huh? How the heck do I do that??? But I have been thinking about this all weekend. Somewhere along the way I decided that as long as I keep working, keep moving, keep saying yes to opportunities, keep making things - that everything would work itself out and good things would come. Well, the good things came but they didn’t happen from working like a crazy person, hurting myself, not taking time for myself and my family. Living a creative life pursuing a creative career can be really exhausting and over the weekend I made a conscience decision to just let things go and try to apply the “work smarter not harder” mentality to my own life and so far it is actually working- I am completing my big projects but in shorter increments of more organized work time (like 3 hours of being productive instead of 6 hours of being disorganized and thinking I need to complete 5 projects instead of the 1 that is time sensitive) which gave me time over the weekend to do some of the other things that bring balance to my daily life- like cooking, reading, watching movies with my husband, working on the house and just relaxing a little. My plan is to make it through my big projects and then ENJOY and savor the holidays and time spent traveling to see friends and family- this is enough for now :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

No Wonder I've Got Issues!!!

My morning took a turn for the worse when I lifted my arm up to fix my hair and there went my back- ohhh the pain!  Since this happens more often than I would like- I knew if I hobbled down to the floor, turned on my heating pad and laid down- I would feel better.  And as I lay on my back, staring up at the ceiling in pain I thought about how every time things in my life get a little out of control, too busy, not enough balance- my body never fails to put the breaks on!  I am only 33 and I typically struggle with back issues every couple of months and it ALWAYS happens when I don't take care of myself.  In the past I have blogged about how I paint on the ground, crawling around on the floor, when I sew I sit at the machine for hours, and I work a day job where I wear heels and am in front of a computer all day- all are a terrible combo for my back.  I spent about 5 hours on floor this morning and have decided it is time to take better care of myself- it makes no sense to work like a crazy person, in crazy positions to the point of not being able to move.  I have compiled a handful of studio shot taken of me in action and I cannot believe this is how I have been spending hours and hours working- no wonder I've got issues!!! I must figure out a better way to work hard and a better way to create!  

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Jumping Around

I have been working all night in my studio jumping from one thing to another- I am in the midst of finishing up projects for an upcoming article for Somerset Workshop. I am so close to being done but still lots of work to do! Here is a little preview- can't share what it is....but it is made of canvas- you probably guessed that!!

I also finished three more canvas journals that I will be adding to my shop tomorrow morn. They are made from painted canvas and recycled paper- All ready to be written in, pasted, painted or even sewn! 

TIP:  And last I have a great tip for all you crafty people out there- Those who have taken my classes know that I always have a can of house paint on hand- I have used house paint since college (when I was a poor art student and used it in place of gesso).  I still use house paint for priming canvas (or even fabric), mixing with color to extend, for splattering and just about anything else that I suddenly need while painting and creating.  The best part is that it is cheap!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

You Haven't Lived as an Artist...

I have this theory that you haven't lived as an artist until you have struggled with rejection - over and over again. Don't get me wrong it is wonderful to be validated, accepted, and have success in creativity (maybe because I am a GenXer) but there is something profound and inspiring about feeling pushed down, rejected and discouraged... and yes I said inspiring!
So many ground breaking artists struggled with their careers but went on creating anyway...Caravaggio's works were rejected and criticized by the church because of their subject-matter. Renoir was laughed at and rejected not only by the public but by his own fellow artists and continued to paint. During the beginning of Impressionism many of the Impressionists like Monet and Pisassaro struggled to find buyers for their works, and many of them lived hand-to-mouth!! Van Gogh only sold one painting during his short life, was tortured by his craft but went on learning and making art- And the list goes on and on and includes musicians, writers, poets and actors that have been rejected or challenged by their audience and their craft- it is the common factor in all of our experiences! I have recently had a handful of rejections (why else would I be blogging about this?!?!?) honestly- for every AMAZING opportunity that has come my way- I have had 10 rejections and struggles to get to that point. It takes a toll- it challenges your dreams, it makes you feel insecure, angry, it causes questioning and often breeds discouragement. I have spent the weekend thinking about some recent set backs, thinking about what it means to me to be an artist and why I have been traveling this path my whole life- reflecting on being a little girl, knowing that becoming an artist was what I wanted, deciding to pursue drawing and painting which meant years of difficult critiques by art teachers, rejections of proposals, bad feedback from gallery shows, craft and art fairs that produced little or no money and taking on a lifestyle where I would sacrifice "normal' job offers in the name of pursuing this strange dream. I am not typically the type of person to get too introspective, I don't fall into a dark place, I don't put on some dreamy or whimsical music and look inside myself...in fact it is just the opposite- First I cry (and the tears are usually angry ones!) I crank up some loud rebellious tunes, I get fired up, I break some of the rules I learned in college art classes-like forgetting about form and color theory, I draw on the experiences of all those artists through history that fought hard for their success, I remember that being creative means sometimes you fail- but at least it's in the name of passion. I then make a HUGE mess in my studio (that involves splattered paint of course) and I get back to basics - my heart tells me to make art and that is what I do- fearlessly. I remember that the reward of being true and faithful to being an artist is worth the moments of rejection.

For those out there that are pursuing a creative path, that struggle with artistic goals, that want it so bad they can taste it (the sour and the sweet)....don't ever give up, don't ever compromise your style or your process or your goals, always be you. In the words of my my most favorite artist- Bob Dylan - When you feel in your gut what you are and then dynamically pursue it - don't back down and don't give up - then you're going to mystify a lot of folks.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A Big Mess!

How in the world did this happen?!?!?!? My studio is a terrible mess and for some reason I have not had any motivation to clean it up. 

All week long I have been jumping from one project to another and instead of organizing I decided just to clear a space and plop myself down in the middle of it all....which works just fine for me cause I work on the floor anyway!

But thankfully I have been very productive, cause thats all that matters...right?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

This Guy...

This guy is a veteran? Looking at my husband today it is hard to guess that he served in the military - he has long hair, lots of facial hair, very liberal and is in fact celebrating today by surfing!! But yes, my hubby served this country for five years- his formative years actually as Search and Rescue in the Navy- he jumped out of helicopters, swam a lot, traveled the world, learned leadership skills, discipline, went a little wild and did all kinds of things that I will never understand or relate to. While he is a VERY different person today at 32 than when he enlisted at 18, there is something that will never change and that is how profound the experience of serving this country was for him. I am not typically very vocal about my patriotism (perhaps I need to work on this?) but today I feel like I must say thank you to my husband and the all the others who made the decision to serve their country. My gratitude.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hope Lives Here

 I am proud to share a little piece of my joy. 

A recent painting inspired by this amazing time, 

made into art prints mounted on gallery blocks.

from my heart to yours!

Check out etsy!

Friday, November 07, 2008

A Little Peace...

I have jumped back into my studio working on all kinds of fun stuff for the holidays and more!  

The first that I want to share is my new little canvas peace ornaments made from painted canvas (of course!)

$5.00 each or 4 for $15.00
Select your color or let me pick for you!

Visit my etsy shop!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Shop Updates!

Check out my etsy shop for new updates- wallets and totes!

And the Winner Is......

Chrissie Grace you are the winner of the Big Dreams graffiti bag!!!!!!
I will touch base with you to get your info!!

Stay tuned for another give away next Monday!!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Big Dreams Graffiti Bag- GIVE AWAY!!

So I have been procrastinating about doing a give away on my blog- not enough time, what if nobody comments, blah, blah, blah!! But I am proud to say that I have a nice inventory of stuff built up for the holidays and more to come and thought it would be a perfect time to give something away!  This bag is one of my favorites- made to look similar to the bag on the front of Canvas Remix it is full of my favorite little mantras (that I seem to repeat over and over to myself all day long!!) like Always Be You and Dream Big Dreams as well as lots of graffiti and messy paint!

So heres the deal- leave me a comment letting me know what your big dream is and by the end of the day tomorrow- I will draw a name and the bag will be yours- yipeee!!!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

New Work

Just a little preview of a series that I am working on that will soon be turned into small prints for sale in my etsy shop!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Walk Slow

Coming back home and to real life after my adventures in the Pacific Northwest has been a little strange...I am back to work which means I am back to living my double life- remaining professional and appropriate by day and making a mess and growing a creative business by night- I feel like Clark Kent and Superman sometimes!!! Anyway, since I got back I have been battling a chest cold which hit me on the last leg of my trip- I stayed home yesterday and made myself relax in front of the tv- sometimes it is good to veg out right?!?!

Thanks to my hubby I  got out for a little vitamin D in the evening when he suggested we go for a little outing and walk along the waterfront of San Diego to watch the sunset- kinda a tradition for us when we get back from a trip.  We took our time and strolled along the water looking at all the boats in the marina, appreciating the sun on the water and lovely city that we live- we walked slow- something he is better at than I am! I am trying so hard to be happy and appreciate the now and walking a little slower toward my goals instead of always wanting more and faster. Thankfully I have a great guy by my side who relishes in the present and loves taking his time to appreciate everything along the way- a perfect balance that I am learning to welcome with each experience that comes my way! Now is it back to studio to create some new stuff- stay tuned for a give away, new work and lots of inspiration!!


Related Posts with Thumbnails