Sunday, January 3, 2016

Happy 2016... let it be wonderful. Please.

"The Winter of our Discontent", 9x9" mixed media on paper. Available.
That orange is actually copper. Again... can't quite get the metallic to look like metallic.
This time last year I was cleaning out my studio, wondering how the hell I ended up with so much stuff I don't use. Some weird psychological block prevented me from using the "good" stuff...  and that had to be dealt with so I didn't become some dysfunctional hoarder found dead under my mountain of unused handmade paper. I managed to do pretty well with that this year... my trips to the art supply store became few and far between, to the point where the newer staff don't even know me by name. Since I am walking distance from the best art supply store in the city, that is a major feat of discipline. Yay, me.

How lucky am I? My friends totally rock...
I've done a decent job clearing out my stash. I was actually at the point where I was thinking I would have to stock up, when I got a text from artist friends who were clearing out their stash. "Do you have any use for this stuff?" she asks... "We're giving up painting and going digital. If you want it, come and get it".

Hell, yes. I came home with a box of new mediums to play with, colours I never would have bought myself, supports in a variety of sizes. And a tabletop easel for working on small pieces. Awesome. I shall have to do something special for them as a thank you. They have loads of art already... but maybe they can find space for another little piece.

I came across a couple interesting ideas for the new year... actually within a week I saw the same idea posted in a few different places in mildly differing forms. Obviously, the universe is going to smack me in the face with this until I take notice. It's a simple idea that reminds us to savour our accomplishments. You take a jar... I happen to have a large mason jar hanging around that just keeps getting moved from place to place, so I'm going to use that... and turn it into the "Jar of Awesome". Every time something good happens, you write it on a piece of paper and put it in the jar. When life gets you down, you can read through all the positive things in the jar, making everything seem a little better. I could have used that a few times over the course of 2015. Ok, maybe more than a few. I may even put up a new shelf in my studio so I can have a new jar for every year... it will remind me that life has been good. Needed on those days when I wonder how much one person can deal with before they crack. 

I also found an illustration challenge that may be good way to make sure I draw on a regular basis. I hesitate to commit to these online challenges, mainly because I know I am easily distracted and the chances of me seeing it through are pretty slim. I suck at these things. But I've bookmarked the site just the same, and I'll see how long I last. It could be a good thing for those I-have-no-idea-what-to-draw moments. 

I don't know what 2016 is going to bring for me. I'll have some new challenges at work... mainly adjusting to a new "open concept" floorplan that is sure to negatively affect my productivity (see paragraph above... the "easily distracted" part. I will need blinders and noise cancelling headphones to get anything done. Who the hell thought this would be a good idea?). My mom will also be moving at some point... somewhere closer I hope, so it will be easier to check in on her. Who knows what else might happen. I am going to try to take it day to day, and make the best of whatever presents itself. I can't change what I can't change, but maybe I can control how it affects me. Maybe. We'll see.