Posted on

Finding Time to Paint

It is something I hear over and over from students and professional artists alike – I don’t have time to paint!

Why is it we don’t make time to do what we love? Is it lack of motivation, fear, guilt, laziness or not allowing ourselves the luxury?

I think of art as nurturing my soul and self-care. Without it, I am cranky, depressed and just generally not in a good space. 

People have the misconception that artists get to paint all day. If it was that easy and believe you me somedays I wish I could just escape into that space. Kind of like going off and reading a novel! 

With my busy schedule that would be a luxury!

I wear many hats to make a living as an artist. A good portion of my time is consumed on computer related tasks. Whether it is marketing, blogging, social media, photo editing, applying for submissions, correspondence, bookwork, video editing, website updates, product development – the list goes on! 

Aside from that I also play harp gigs and teach lessons. Right now I am preparing music for a celebration of life and am putting many hours of practice in to learn 3 difficult pieces. I still do some design work and do the estimates and billing and coordinate the schedule for my husband’s clients. 

Making art is my therapy – the only way I can stay sane! 

So if I can fit it in so can you! I know it is hard – we all have a life! 

Here are some things that may help.

  • Change your mindset – Quit saying you don’t have time! Even in 10 or 15 minutes, you can accomplish something.
  • Schedule – find the best time in your day and schedule it! Whether this is morning noon or night. Whatever tool you use- block the time off! Treat it as an appointment with yourself
  • Have a plan! What are you going to work on when you do show up. If it is a large project -chunk it down. As an example, you might prep the canvas one day, paint the background the next, sketch in your subject, paint it in grayscale, add the colour and so on.  Take your process and break it down. Don’t wait for a large block of time – it may never come. 
  • STOP BROWSING! – You heard me – browsing is a time sucker and a form of procrastination! 
  • Join a group that meets on a weekly basis to paint so you stay motivated
  • Take a class/workshop
  • Set some goals around your art so you have something to aspire to. This could be to make a painting a day, or a week, or create a consistent body of work, or do a series. Whatever gets you excited to get painting! 
  • Show up and do quick studies to keep your self in practice! (I borrowed this from music practice)

That is what I have been doing – small quick studies. Spending about an hour a day to free my brain from all of the knots from computer land! 

I did set some confines for the studies –  to paint in colours or colour combinations I don’t normally use and to work quickly in a theme, developing a small series. 

I have been using a 6×6″ Strathmore Acrylic Pad which I love!

Image result for strathmore square pad

 

I will take the keepers and mount them on cradled panels. 

 

If you are in the mood for painting flowers sign up for my NEW ONLINE workshop. The classroom is open and you can find out all the details here

If you need help setting goals and coming up with an action plan to get your most important work done I offer my coaching service.

I look forward to helping you! 

Posted on

Studio Reno

The stars have aligned and my studio renovation is underway.  Although I am losing some working space I am gaining some great convenience! With the addition of water and a washroom, I may never leave my studio! 

All of this has been happening as I have been painting up a storm for my upcoming show. 

Posted on

Is Clutter Holding You back?





Is Clutter Holding You Back? 










My word this year is FOCUS. As I have been trying hard to stay focused I have become increasingly more aware of how clutter affects me. 

Visual clutter seems to lead to mind clutter! Even if the clutter is not apparent on the outside - it is there when I open the drawer.  

When I grew up spring and fall cleaning was a ritual. Clearing through closets, washing walls and windows, putting everything in order. 

Doing this changes the energy. Somehow I have not adopted this practice, I blame it on my day to day busyness. I always do the filing cabinet at year end- cleaning out the previous year's files and putting them into storage. It seems general purging gets left behind. 

In the last couple of weeks, I have had several conversations around energy. I started rereading my books on Feng Shui, I met a Fung Shui practitioner, an energy healer and was introduced to energy work through my harp teacher. 

The universe has an amazing way of showing us what we need to hear if we are ready to listen! 


Decluttering helps to remove blockages that stop the flow of energy and creativity. 


Creating art is all about flow- you can see that there is a direct correlation between your creativity, your productivity and your energy. If things are a mess it is easy to procrastinate and makes it harder to get started. 

 Do you have clutter in your studio? 

It can be overwhelming  - chunk it down into small size bites. Here is a list to get you started. 

       1. Clean one drawer or bin at a time.

       2. Donate seldom used items to less fortunate.

       3. Throw away dried up paint and pens

        4. Recycle damaged matts and papers





 I have to go tackle


ONE

drawer now.


     Will you be joining me?






I