Monday, November 24, 2008

A New Approach

So I have not been making a lot of work since the arrival of my baby and the beginning of a full time job. At first I just went with the flow and told myself that once I was settled in with the job and the baby, a new schedule would materialize. Well, that hasn't happened and I don't feel like it will until I make it happen and the best way for me to do that is to address the issue in the blog. I am hoping it that someone may come across this and will be able to relate. Or, it may be able to help someone else that is experiencing the same problems.
The problem of not being able to make work for whatever reason is one that plagues many artists. I have been talking to artists who have children and have been trying to get a sense of how others tackle the task of making art and raising a family. the responses are mixed, but the one that remains constant and should be obvious is the task of doing something that keeps ones mind involved in the art. Drawing tend to be the first one that comes to mind because it can be done with anything that makes marks and on any surface that receives those marks. It is the most transportable and possibly the most immediate. But for some reason drawing is not working for me. I have been avoiding it and I am not sure why. The intent of this blog is to determine what is causing me to refuse to make the work I feel needs to be made. I think this blog is becoming a part of my work in that I have been using it as an online journal in very much the same way I write in my sketchbook. So until The work starts to flow again I will document my tribulation.


Bill Donovan said...

Make a 1 hour painting everyday, dont think about it. Best advice you will receive, I am 100% positive.

Bill Donovan said...

Jonas, It took me a long time to figure this out, but I found that if I reply to the comments people leave, a dialog is started regarding the blog posts. That may be appropriate regarding the current topic.

Jonas Olson said...

Bill, I am thinking about the one hour painting and here is how it feels almost impossible for the painting without cutting into time with my boy. It takes me half an hour to get to my studio then about another half an hour to get supplies ready. Then I paint for an hour and begin to reverse the process. All in all, a one hour painting costs me three hours. When I get off of work at 6 and home by 7, Eat, make a painting. I don't have time to spend with my kid. So in essence, my real problem is time management. BTW, I did get to my studio for half a day on monday and it felt real good.

Cat Park said...

Welcome to parenthood. You will always be juggling, it will seem that nothing will ever get finished (even dishes take an hour to wash), and there will always be a ball in the air. Ultimately, your baby needs you more right now than your art does, so don't beat yourself up or get too resentful if you have to table your art temporarily to play with the baby. By the time he's a year old, things will be better.

My advice:
1. Don't sacrifice sleep to stay up all night painting on a regular basis, but this is a solution once in awhile if you are feeling like you will go crazy if you don't get some artwork done.
2. Set up a studio space in your home, make really small work, really quiet work, and only do it when the baby is asleep. Don't do anything that requires hours of focus or concentration.
3. Gelsy Verna said to me, "When you know you have maybe 90 minutes to work while the baby is napping, you become very efficient." Ditch the far-away studio, for now anyway.
4. If you can get away with it, do art when you are at work.
5. Seriously, just enjoy the baby and don't worry about the artwork. Somebody is always making more artwork, so the world won't be hurting if you sit it out for an inning, but your kid will only be tiny for a short time, and you don't want to miss having a close relationship with him because you were always in your studio.

Jonas Olson said...

Hey Cat Park,
I am in the process of making a studio in my home and I think it will work out. As for my other studio, I have found a friend to go in on it with me so we can split the rent and that takes off a little of the pressure of being there. And yes, I am spending a lot of time with my baby and wouldn't miss it for the world.