28 March 2008

What's YOUR ritual?

So this weekend has been completely cleared of anything other then studio and art quilt time. I looked at the calendar today and got that gross creepy feeling, which only got worse when I pulled out my datebook and saw that the next few weeks are going to be busy. No, no...let me restate that...they are going to be incredibly freaky B U S Y.

I've always said there is nothing more inspirational then a deadline. And boy, am I feeling incredibly inspired. This weekend I pull together six art quilts for Open Stuidos and get all the materials packed away that I need to work on them during the show.

No, there will not be drinking involved. (There might be chocolate, though.) The base for each one is laid out, which means I just have to get them stuck together. Which honestly is my least favorite part. And I have to psych myself up a bit to get motivated to do that. (Luckily the glare of the calendar is enough to get my butt moving this time.)

But I do have my little odd rituals that I do before I settle in to work. I've heard many artists talk about the things that they do to get themselves into a creative mode. My habits are not nearly as poetic or zen as most but it got me wondering: what do you do to get into the creative mood? Odds are you have some, even if you don't realize it.

So in honor of my query, I bring you my Top Ten Rituals that Get Me Started Creating:

1) Procrastination. Somehow waiting to work on something until there is just no more time to put it off is a wonderful means to get the creative work moving.

2) Drinking a pot of coffee. Yup, you got it. A whole pot. Normally once I get working I have to keep going because once the groove is broken, I won't go back to it. Being totally hopped up on caffeine to the point that I vibrate help keeps the momentum high.

3) A good action/war movie. Don't know why but if there is swelling dramatic music and men running around screeching inspirational speeches to their buddies, I am more alert and will keep working.

4) A big huge unmanageable mess in my studio. Okay, that's a lie but you'd think that was one of them for how often I have to clean that damn room.

5) Hiding the laptop. It prevents such activities as blogging. (Oops, guess I need to work on that one.)

6) Luring the westie into the studio with doggie cookies. He is not unlike a cat in that he will lay on anything I am working on (I still work a lot on the floor.) Mostly he just sits there and stares at me like a little furry buddha, critiquing my work as I go along.

7) Closing the blinds. I can see the look on your face, you know. While most artists are taking sledgehammers to their walls in an effort to get more natural light in their studios, I'm usually blocking it out. I'm not a vampire, I'm just used to working in an office all day and making art at night. My brain can't wrap itself around the idea of working during the day so I have to trick it. Apparently I'm quite simple because it usually works.

8) Taking off my shoes and socks. I always work in my studio barefoot. Which is often a stupid thing to do if, like me, you aren't real vigilant about picking up the straight pins you drop on the floor.

9) Photographing works in progress. Doing this gives you a whole new vantage point of what your stuff looks like. Not sure why, but the camera makes it look different. Its always handy too when your design gets stuck. Take a picture of it, print out a few copies and draw different ideas on them to find the next step and then translate it onto your project.

10) Doodling on my work table. Sometimes my mind stalls when I'm working and I just need to draw. So I grab the sharpie and start drawing on my work table. I suppose its preferable to drawing on the walls.

So I'll probably be employing most of these over the next couple of days. (Once my back unkinks itself, this weather is beyond obnoxious. Snowed a couple inches yesterday, its all melted and blue skied today. Ugh.) There will be art here soon. Hooray!

1 comment:

Deb said...

I like to start cleaning up yesterday's mess in the studio, it gets my mind going on ideas, what to do next, etc.