Feeling like a slug!

Me standing on a block behind my tall daughter in her prom dress
Me and Girl2 on prom night

First, check out Girl2 in her prom dress. This picture was taken on her very last day of high school! She will graduate cum laude, with a cosmetology degree, an associates degree in science and math, and VERY close to completing Eagle Scout. I can’t manage to change my socks daily. This is why, as happy as I am for her and as proud, I feel like a slug.

I  had all of these great plans for 2023. I was going to do a fair every month. I was going to complete a large painting every week, a couple of small paintings, and sketch every day.

With the exception of a couple of small watercolors, I haven’t managed to complete a single painting. I have done a small handful of sketches, but nothing near the volume I wanted to do.

So what’s wrong me? Why can’t I manage to follow through? It’s so easy to get down on myself and think about how terrible I am. But doing nothing is the norm. That is the standard that the human body wants to maintain. Inertia. A body at rest will remain at rest until acted upon by a force, right?

So the real question is what happened before that motivated me to do something? How did I manage to get up and do anything before? We typically throw around words like “discipline” and “plan” without really understanding how those words become actions.

I don’t have an answer to that. I know that routine is the best way for me to get things accomplished. If I manage to sit at a drawing table with my pens and paper, I will draw something. So I have to set the routine to have my pens and paper out, maybe at a specific time or at least convenient place every day. Like the saying goes, “Chance favors the prepared mind.” If my space is prepared and my materials available, it’s a whole lot easier for me to actually sit down and get some work done. The current state of the studio is not conducive to that effort, to say the least

Garage studio is trashed

I did manage to take some supplies with me to the mall while the wife and kids explored the shops. I didn’t get a whole lot of sketches in, but something is a brazillian times more than nothing, right?

Boy2 enjoying some Chinese food at the food court

Vlogishness 21JAN2017

I have been doing a lot of different stuff. Lately, I have been focusing more on realism than I ever really have. My schedule is something to the effect of in the studio with coffee and the butter thieving dog every morning by 4 or so. I do ten 1 minute figure gestures and then I do at least a 10 minute sketch (sometimes longer) of a random toy pulled out of a bag and then walk 2 miles. Mondays, I broadcast and edit a little. Tuesdays I go out to figure drawing group if I can. Wednesdays I watercolor a face from my Facebook friend’s profile pics. Thursdays I paint a mini sunset on the back of a playing card. Fridays I vlog and play guitar. Saturdays I edit and paint big. Sundays I edit and write. Then, i cap each day off (except for Tuesdays) with ten more 1 minute gestures, five 2 minute gestures, two 5 minute sketches, one 10 minute sketch, and one 20 minute figure. Do I do this every day? That is the plan. Then there’s life. Basketball and soccer practice ran long or impromptu teacher meetings for my beautiful, young bride mess up the schedule. Dining out or making a mad dash to OK to see family or even just not being able to keep my eyes open sometimes trip up the schedule too. The other day, I actually dozed off sketching a nude internet model. I’m just glad it wasn’t a live event. When you get tripped up, especially if you’ve committed to a group to do this particular art every day, it’s easy to say, “I’ll do two tomorrow.”

Except you will still be tired tomorrow. I promise. And when you think about sitting down to do it, you may begin to think about how you need to make one up. Thinking about having to do two, especially if it’s the last thing you do in the evening before going to bed, can wear you out to the point where you just can’t bring yourself to do it. Then you’ll owe three. Or you will skip one and it will just continue to wear on you that you owe yourself or your group one more. Then it becomes easy to say, “Well, I can’t make the deadline so there’s no point.”

Pick up your pencil/brush/chisel/feather and art. Forget about “owing” one. If anyone calls you on it, tell them either you’ll get to it or you won’t. Don’t let that weigh you down. If you forget TWENTY or THREE HUNDRED, pick up and drive on. I don’t even want you to think about “Doing better next time”. If you do it at all, you have lapped the ones standing still.

I kind of rant on that here at the You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ok23PqvOn1w