Tag: organization

Mess from Chaos

I have not been dealing well with the chaos of my environment. Mess I can handle, in abundance, but I have to have some semblance of mental order if not physical.  However,  both my home and my studio have been utterly uprooted. The longer this went on, the more agitated I have felt.  It started with moving shelves in the downstairs in the studio. Trying very hard to put things into order seems to increase the upheaval.

Of the many difficult choices I have made lately, closing my studio for the winter was oneDSCN5426 of the hardest.  I love that space.  The happiest I have ever been in my life has been within those four walls, making art.  Although, “closing” really is the wrong word. It is not like I am surrendering my business or the making of art.  However, if this winter is even half as bad as the last one, I will not be able to heat both buildings.  With luck, there will be a lot of heating through kiln this winter – for I should be able to throw and sculpt during the days after the kiln has run and on the days where it is simply warm enough to work in the space.

Between now and when it is becomes too cold to work, I want to get as much throwing done as possible around my other obligations.  I feel a great pressure to get as much done as possible before the weather turns completely. As much as I dislike the logic of this decision, I still believe that choosing to heat one building seems to be the wisest choice.  It gives me the best chance to keep being productive.

Finances are not my only reason. I have been experiencing greater problems managing stairs.  Some days, I feel like I can climb mountains, others I am falling and staggering and not able to walk with any kind of grace at all.  The unpredictability irritates me.  Fatigue has not gotten better, either.  I am forcing myself to work, having to pick what I do depending on how my mind and body are fairing in any given moment.

To help combat this, some friends moved my painting supplies and easels and some furniture from the upstairs of the studio to the house.  The paints and glazes and clay cannot freeze, so they would have had to move anyway.  However, easels and brushes and canvases are not returning to the studio. My ability to make it upstairs is simply too unreliable.  I am hoping that having the tools of my craft here, in the house, I will be able to make art even on my worst days.  patienceCertainly it will take some of the risk out of winter – I will not have to travel over ice and snow.

Tonight, I am tired and sore but I had to write this out before I went to sleep.  It has only been with the help of my friends that I am back into what passes for a normal mess from that painful chaos.  I am so ridiculously grateful to them – they were able to do this work, to help me.  Their kindness makes me want to sing!

With such good friends, I think that I will be able to get through what comes.

Reorganizing. Again.

Every few months, everything in the living-room changes places.  It’s not as though I have the time or the money for a full redesign, although I would love to have someone paint the space for me, but even without resources, something has to shift. The urge builds for days, like I am sitting on a pea, until I have to move. It always, always involves the computer.  This technology should by all rights be in the studio, where I want to do this kind of work the most, but the dust from the clay kept getting into its workings and after three major repairs and a new screen, I decided for its health and well-being it must be in the house.

Only, I am having a hard time settling it into one specific place.  Because I rent rooms, it has to be in the living-room – the only room I have in my personal space that isn’t taken up with a bed either for myself or visitors.  Depending on where I am in my writing projects – not to mention my bookkeeping, webdesign, and graphic design work – I will want it put in the corner to block all distraction or right here, in the middle of the old mantle, so that I have as much surface material as possible at my disposal for work.  Twice I have moved the room around specifically to accommodate visitors.  At least I am well versed in putting together and pulling apart computers and all their accoutrement. Usually, the whole process takes no more than an hour.

As satisfying and energizing as it was to move the computer around tonight – knowing that I have my end of year work to do and two major website redesigns that will definitely benefit from this arrangement – I felt this wave of futility because I know by spring I will be driven by an impulse to change it all around again.  With a bit of sadness, I even predicted the specific reason.

For now, I intend to use the desk mostly as a standing desk, only resorting to an office chairs when I am too sore or uncoordinated to stand (like right now).  However, when I do this, I am almost guaranteed to have to crane my head up to see the screen. So, I already know, when I move the computer again in a few months, I will be telling myself it is purely for the safety and well-being of my neck.

But that will take months.  For now, I’m going to enjoy the new configuration of this familiar environment.