oftenAs I enter the BUSY fall season, I am reminded that it is crucial to slow down, to make wise decisions and, as they say, to smell the roses. I need to ponder, meditate and create.
Each year, I vow I will make my life a bit easier and more peaceful. I know we have commitments to a family or work responsibilities (and a combination of these). Let me encourage you to review your calendar and carve out some creative time for you. I truly believe this time spent enriching this right side of the brain and imaginative part of you will benefit other areas of your life.
Although I love solo painting, I find I often create best during scheduled activities. My theory is if you plan creative time, it is certainly much more likely to happen! You do not have to dream up a massive project.
My schedule included teaching classes, attending workshops and art retreats and vacations. Each of these provided opportunities to sketch, photograph, paint, dream and paint upon return.
I have learned to carry a small travel art kit. When traveling, I pack my necessary supplies into a 9” x 12” nylon mesh zipped bag. Inside: a small watercolor set with 12 colors, 2 brushes, 6 Inktense watercolor pencils, 2 sharpies, 2 mechanical pencils with erasers, and a spiral 7” x 10” 140 lb. watercolor pad. The mesh bag allows supplies to dry out. This can easily fit in a carry-on suit case. Add a bottle of water and clean paper towels as you travel. Be brave! Take that art kit with you and sit down and paint or sketch your surroundings or a creative idea that pops into you head.
When my car is available, of course, I tend to pack more.
Another trick: put art supplies in a special place or container. It can be a small zippered bag (which I found in the travel section of Marshalls!) as I used to travel, a small table or basket. Many people creatively journal their scrapbooks.
My wish for you is to re-evaluate the amount of time and energy you have—in combination with a busy family or demanding job. Before the holiday season begins, grab a bit of time and space for creativity. Reward your art spirit!
Images below: 1) painting of red ice plant near freeway, 2) sketching by the beach at Pauline Agnew's (center) workshop, 3) me sketching in the Rodan Sculpture Garden, Paris, 4) watercolor sketch of Rodin sculpture, 5) sketching from cafe table, Beynac, France, 6) California Art Club retreat, Highland Springs, 7) plein air painting from Highland Springs lavender field , 8) red barn in Livermore
Note: The last 15 months have challenged us! This month I encourage you to learn from the isolation and I wish you a cautious, but joyous June reopening!
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