Half of the room is my awfiss. It's an awful mess, hence the name. For someone whose workplace was always tidy and who was the darling of the custodial staff because of it, you'd never know it by my home desk! And it's always been that way! Piles and piles and piles, teetering precariously and balanced upon a mere sheet of paper that once disrupted, will cause an avalanche of disorder.
The studio half, on the other hand, gets messy when I'm working, but is easily tidied. I do have a table that is presently a catchall and rather dangerous - one slight breeze and heaven only knows - but the rest of it is fine. Sure, I could use another set of shelves and it would be perfect, but there isn't room for that, so the cats have to share the futon with art supplies. They don't seem to care as long as their blankie is there.
Because I hadn't been down there, things had gotten dumped here and there, so yesterday I spent a little time with Dino singing Aint' That A Kick in the Head while I brought order to the joint. Then I started working on a long overdue project for a lady who helped us with a parliamentarian problem waaaaay last fall. She's a purple person, so her thank you gift had to be purple. I had just the right papers and aside from the angst of doing "real" calligraphy, I had a ball.
At the end of the day, when it was time to come upstairs and make dinner, I felt like I'd "done" something. It made me wonder about other artists and how they schedule their time. I know we don't work by the clock - none of us artsies can do that. But we still have to have blocks of time because art doesn't happen in minutes. It happens in hours. I spent a healthy three hours on just the calligraphy part. (If I'd practice more often than once every twenty years, maybe it wouldn't be such a trial!)
I'm not sure what non-artsies think about how art gets made. I'm sure they don't have any appreciation for the time, never mind the cost of the materials. But how do they view what we do? Do they understand the fact that we are stellar problem solvers? (Oops, that isn't going to come out right...I might need to do this over...I hate the way that looks; can I undo a part of it...what happens if I...which of these looks better...crap! I hate that color!) And do they understand how many problems get solved all in the course of making one tiny card?
My sister once suggested I just do an assembly line thing. Good grief! Each of my cards is different, and even if I did use the same basic layout, there is no way I could duplicate that previous card. There was some problem that arose, that I solved and hence it has a look that is unique. You cannot duplicate the bugs in the ointment!
And that is, as Martha Steward would say, a good thing. It's all supposed to be different.
Thankfully, Big Kitty meanders down when I'm working, asks a couple of questions about how a piece of equipment works, wonders about something I'm doing and is really good at helping me engineer certain effects. The spouses of artsies are a critical component because it is their ability to go with the flow and their encouragement that moves what we do from playtime into legitimate creative work.
I'm looking at a busy week with other obligations. But I'm also trying to figure out when I can clock in at Ten Cornstalk Studio. I think my feline employees would appreciate me showing up. Someone has to turn on the iPod! Besides, I really do like working there.