|'Count your blessings' by the wonderful Tilleke Schwarz: www.tillekeschwarz.com|
I'm not sure whether counting your blessings will actually contribute much to the creative endeavour, in any case.
Anyhoo, homily over.
19. Get lots of rest.
|Sleeping Woman by Tamara de Lempicka|
So, no one can go too long without rest, but, again, I'm not sure this is going to be my no. 1 priority, creativity-wise.
20. Take risks.
Are we talking about the sort of 'risk' you take when you mix up, say, a lovely acidy-green and splat it all over your canvas or are we talking about jumping-off-the-pier-just-for-the-hell-of-it kind of risks? I'm all for the former and NOT AT ALL for the latter.
It was perhaps 'taking a risk' to take this old postcard:
Now, going back to jumping off the pier and the like, I actually have a bit of an obsession with 'jumpers' [not the Sarah Lund kind -- although we finished watching the boxed set of The Killing 1 this week, at an average rate of 3 episodes a night, and it was awesome] and have been known to spend hours on holiday trying to get photos of kids doing just that. Here are a few:
|At Charlestown, nr St Austell|
21. Break the rules.
Hmm, I'm not really for breaking the rules. Or only very very small ones that don't really count. When the riots broke out this summer, we sat at home watching it on television, very disturbed and telling ourselves that it was the end of society. We thought we were seeing the social fabric being ripped apart and, for a few nights, we thought it would never be mended. If you had gone on the rampage and grabbed for free the stuff that the culture tells you you must have, why would you ever delay gratification again? That the 'clampdown' did succeed in re-establishing the normal capitalist order seemed incredible as we had felt the momentum of the disorder would not be stopped so easily. Obviously there is a delirious pleasure to be had from breaking rules but the dominant order will reassert itself one way or another and then there's usually payback. I don't relish payback.
In art it's hard to break the rules now in postmodernism anything goes. I like juxtapositions that don't feel right, as in this small painting I did a while ago:
|The pink section is the pattern of a dress I used to have as a child|
Good one, Mr 29 Ways.
23. Read a page of the dictionary.
Oh indeed. Yes indeed. Many's the day that I open the dictionary at random, but quite punctiliously, and punctuate that day's conversation with pungent puns and punchy points. I can come across as a bit of a pundit, but my speech positively pullulates with puncta. No one dares to puncture my puncheon when I'm in the flow. I'm as pulsating as Pulchinello, as punchdrunk as a pullet. Pummel me now before I have a pulmonary embolism!
I take this to mean that you try to set the creative work you do within a set of aims or ideas. You create meaning for your work by thinking about it and setting it in a context. This, I think, is a good way to approach projects and something I could do with doing more. Or, rather, it would be better if I stuck to one project at a time instead of flitting from one thing to another. I do have the beginnings of frameworks for my work, I have ideas about why I'm embarking on something or other, but I don't stay with each thing long enough to develop a coherent 'body of work', if I dare use such a fancy term.
This, for instance, was a big picture I did more or less as an experiment a few months ago:
25. Stop trying to be someone else's perfect 100%.
Ha. This one isn't a problem. I'm under no illusions that I'm anyone's perfect 100%.
26. Got an idea? Write it down.
YES! DO THIS. Is there anything more frustrating than the vague sensation that you have had a fantastic idea and forgotten it? Naturally it's the best idea you ever had. And now it's gone. I've lost so many ideas, I could weep. Ideas are also scary -- they have so much unrealised potential. If I look through my notebooks and see the ideas I've scribbled down, I know that I will never follow through on even one percent of them. I will die and they will die with me. That's a black thought. But even blacker is not keeping your ideas in the first place.
I write ideas down in my current notebook, then I try to 'harvest' them into a special ideas book. I'm just looking at this now to see if there's a page I could bear to scan and use as an illustration, but there's something so 'naked' about ideas in their first form -- they seem foolish, naive, and yet I know that they are precious.
I'm going to keep my funny ideas to myself for the time being...
27. Clean your workspace.
Photo taken at 10.32 on Saturday January 14, ie right now. I'm saying nothing.
Absolutely. What's the point otherwise? If being creative isn't fun, or, if not a laugh a minute, then at least satisfying and enjoyable, why bother? I know that when I'm happy making something, it's completely absorbing. I don't think about snacking, I don't need music or the radio on, I don't feel the cold, I don't notice the time passing. I know it's one of the best ways I spend time.
|Trying to take photos down a kaleidoscope was fun|
Yep. That would be good, wouldn't it?
|Unfinished since 1978|
|strange unfinished necklace experiment|