Workflow Wednesday: How To Start A Painting
I found this post on my old blog recently. Although I wrote it when Bean was just a baby, the struggle to extricate my attention from motherhood to focus on my creativity is no easier now. The details may look different for me now, or for you there, depending on your craft or the age or number of your children, but I'm guessing the struggle will feel familiar to many of you. How to start a painting:Carefully break the sleeping baby's latch on my breast.Freeze until I am sure she's asleep.Slowly get out of bed, hoping the bed frame doesn't creak and wake her.Sneak down the hall, avoiding the squeeky board.Turn on the baby monitor.Check the time.Empty the sink, wipe the counter.Put away the mail.Add a couple things to the running to-do list that I thought of while laying in bed.Empty the litter box.Peek in the bedroom to make sure she's breathing.Check the time.Start a load of laundry.Put on some music. Change my mind and leave the music off because it will wake the baby.Go in the studio.Go back to the kitchen for the baby monitor and a glass of water.Go in the studio.Pull out a photo and fight the urge to go print a better one off the computer.Pry open the palette and check the paint.Toss the dry paint out and apply new colors.Fight the urge to go vacuum.Check the time.Talk back to the voice that says I'm not any good and I don't know what I'm doing and I have lots of other things that are far more important and a better use of my time.Go fill a jar with water and sit.Fight the urge to go check that the baby is breathing.Rummage around for an appropriate surface to paint on.Resist the urge to choose something that needs a coat of gesso, thereby giving me an excuse not to start the actual painting yet.Sit down at the easel.Notice that the support I chose is a different aspect ratio than the photo and rummage around some more for masking tape to mask the photo to the right shape.Listen closely to the monitor to make sure the baby's breathing.Go get the mail.Check the time.Panic, because the baby's going to wake up any time now.Sit.Take a deep breath.Dampen a brush and pick up some color.Take another deep breath and relax my shoulders, bringing my attention to this brush, this color, this moment.Begin.