My heart is with those enduring the brutal cold this week, as we are enjoying bright, sunny days and temperatures in the 60’s and 70’s.
Wherever you are, I wish you a Happy New Year and time to pursue your creative dreams. You may be setting new goals or just grateful for a clean calendar to begin anew.
As an artist, I find nothing better than to have my indoor workspace ready to go. I am a collector, and it’s hard to toss things I’ve inherited or have been gifted and are overflowing from boxes and shelves. Yet, spent time this fall, sifting and organizing so I would have little excuse.
Are you an artist, a writer, a creative novice? Nurture your aspirations!
Even if your space is a tiny desk or card table, set it up as you’d like. Hang or place inspiring works of art or treasured items nearby. Create an arrangement of flowers, dry weeds, or sea shells. Collect quotes or books by those artists, writers, musicians, dancers, actors who inspire you.
Add a candle and or burn incense! I do all the above and the scene and scents tell me it’s time to make art!
Lighting is important. A window is ideal; north light is even more ideal. However, I have a collection of lamps (a desk lamp, long armed drafting light, and standing floor lamps) – all from thrift stores. I seek full spectrum light bulbs.
Music lifts my mood. Occasionally, I will listen to an audible book, or heaven forbid, the news—but watch where it might lead your work!
Lay out your supplies: water or medium containers, pens, pencils, brushes, prepared palette (for acrylic paint, I use a Sta-Wet Palette which keep paint fresh for a couple of weeks – even in the desert!), paper towels, apron, paints and medium.
You are ready! Would you go to the gym without your shoes and appropriate clothing? Would you go to yoga without your mat? Would you bake a cake without assembling the ingredients?
Even when my mood is not ready - if I set myself in motion, I soon become lost in the process of applying color to surface! Another important item- a timer- or set your phone timer. I have often burned my lunch while painting!
I love painting people, but I also enjoy landscape and still life. While others in my family are attracted to fauna, I love flora! So far this month I’ve focused on plants, painting succulents and even sketching the Christmas wreath I assembled from eucalyptus, heavenly bamboo (Nandina), juniper, rosemary, sage-savoring the joy it brought. I sketch and /or paint from live plants or photos (preferably that I have taken) on my laptop. I choose music from creative periods of my life: James Taylor, instrumental guitar, celtic tunes and, yesterday, by Israel IZ Kamakawiwo’ole.
What are the colors of your new year?? The past may be in black and white, but the future can be in color! Use YOUR palette with care!
Next UP: Get ready to move your gear outdoors!