Commitment to Your Art
Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by my inability to concentrate on my creative work. Mostly this occurs when life intervenes. Someone is sick, dinner needs to be cooked, or bills need to be paid. Any distraction and my thoughts turn to the mundane; gone are the birds of my imagination.
I’ve learned some coping mechanisms over the years. I write ideas into my calendar for future reference. This helps me to jog my memory when I do have time but lack inspiration. I also list some quick musings in my task app on my cell phone. That requires less time and keeps them available wherever I am. I also save images I find online that trigger a story plot or suggest a drawing.
Like many others, I sometimes withdraw from the world around me. I put the electronics aside, retrieve the tools of my trade, and just work. I don’t worry about whether it is “good” or not. I am just opening the cage door so my birds can fly free.
These activities work for me.
Creating a Family History in 2018
Gather photos of past and present pets. Record a few memories of each one. How did they join your family? Ask your family members to draw pictures of them. These can be fun; not only do they record the pets’ impact on the family but also show your family members’ fondness for specific animals.
Consider doing similar stories about family gardens or the flowers raised by a family member.
One of the most popular books for most non-professionals is a family history. Putting together a simple book that can be shared with your family members can be fun but it is also a lot of work.
Involving your kids, if you have any, can turn this into a family activity. Children and teens alike might like drawing family pets or houses where they’ve lived. Some will warm to the idea of self-portraits. Of course, the trusty cell phone can help them take pictures to include.
At some point, you can help them create a family tree. This can be helpful, but be aware that difficult issues can arise. Think of how each family member will react to the information included: divorces, deceased infants, suicides, adoptions, and other events may not be known by everyone who will see this information.
I will post this each month as a reminder to be cautious about information you share. Better safe than sorry!
Consider interviewing relatives, too; their stories are often treasures. Ask them for copies of old photographs of people and places. Don’t limit this to family. One of the things that makes these histories so interesting is pictures of friends, places of worship, schools, and favorite vacation spots.
I will be posting a suggestion each month for an activity that will help you focus your efforts. I think most of these can be done in less than four hours a month. You can spend more time if your interest is piqued.
“Everyone discusses my art and pretends to understand, as if it were necessary to understand, when it is simply necessary to love.”
Hiroshima Peace Day