It's March, and in my book that means it's (almost!) Spring. Even though we have several inches of crusty snow covering our yard, I am already in that I-survived-another-winter mindset, and I'm thinking about planting flowers, giving away the kids' outgrown clothes, and CLEANING MY STUDIO!
My problem - and I know many of you have the same problem - is that there is too much of everything in my house, my car, and my studio. I am not a compulsive purger, and I am not a hoarder. Ok I admit I am a collector but in the way most creative people are collectors. I like to have lots of pretty things to inspire me. I need all of my art and sewing supplies where I can see them. I really need to go through that stack of magazines before I give them away. I have old fabrics I want to donate but I need time to go through them and keep a few for sentimental reasons. Sigh...
Last weekend I really got a kick out of Amy Butler's presentation at QuiltCon. She also collects colorful interesting things wherever she goes, and then arranges them into themed groupings of eye candy, but she makes it look like a photo spread in a home dec magazine. Of course with some primping and selective editing with photography, one can make almost any room look like a scene from a glossy magazine... if you can get your kids to stay out of the room for a day.
These days, there really is too much of EVERYTHING. Too many emails, too many TV channels, too much information online than one could ever hope to process in a lifetime. It is the blessing and the scourge of the creative soul. We are finding our way in this new reality - because even "living a simple life" is a relative term. I never feel that I have mastered this balancing act, but I feel that I've learned how to have reasonably good boundaries so I can be fairly productive and efficient.
My trick - is to have a chunk of time every day when I pretend I have nothing else to do. This is my Empty Time. I meditate, I draw, I sit in a garden and write in a journal, I take a long bath listening to classical or jazz music. If I didn't do this, I would literally go nuts.
Cleaning my studio a couple times a year is also Empty Time. I am creating a blank space upon which to project my next set of ideas. It can be a very spiritual experience for me, because when I make the space, the ideas and inspiration come. Sometimes it just takes my breath away.
I'll be in my studio this week!