Saturday, February 09, 2008

My January Ta Da List...

I am continually reminded that the creative flow is a fickle process. Sometimes I have so many ideas for blog topics and art in general that I have to stop what I'm doing to write them all down so the don't forget them....this month has been the opposite. I think that my list of resolutions posted last month left me a bit paralyzed. I was struck with a sudden feeling of regret for having declared so much so publicly...oh no, now I actually have to try to DO all of those things --- otherwise I'm not the only one who will know that I've failed.

The purpose of my "declarations" is not to set myself up for failure, but to motivate myself by making my ideas more concrete and real. I blog a lot about this because I believe it so strongly. So why, then, am I regretting my ambitious new year's resolutions? Because some these resolutions, I've already discovered, are actually a lot of hard work, and that always strikes fear in my heart. Do I really want to work that hard? Isn't my full-time job, and home ownership, and teaching classes, and writing articles enough? Why do I want to add more to that? Maybe I don't. But I think I do...and I know I will not be happy with myself if the next eleven months flies by and I have not at least taken steps in the direction of my ambitions -- there, I said it. I am ambitious. And then I feel guilty that my ambitions are not all more altruistic.

But then I teach an art class, or make something with my own two hands and some paper and paint, and I am reminded once again, that even if what I do is not heroic, it matters.

Art matters.
Creativity matters.
to me, and to those in my classes. I see it in their eyes, and the expressions on their faces as they engage in the creative process.

So, on the creative front this month, I...
taught three "inchies" classes at Stampassion, and they indeed energized me and reminded me why I make art;
I had an artist date with my friend Debbie, which is also always a powerful reminder of how sharing the creative process makes it even better;
I participated in a monthly ATC swap, which is always a fun way to share art;
I had my first session (of three) for 2008 with my creative coach, Sheri Gaynor, and my focus was mainly the children's book I want to write and illustrate this year (which is the main reason for all of my paralysis -- this is major hard work!!!!
...and I worked with my friend (and event planner) Lori on a number of freelance design projects. Lori and I always work so well together, that this too is another really great reminder of why I do what I do.

I will leave you with a picture of Sammy the squirrel, a daily visitor to my back porch. He began visiting when I hung a bird feeder (that my dad made), and originally, I was annoyed because I would find Sammy swinging with wild abandon from the feeder, while my hungry little birds chattered noisily in nearby shrubs. But I also figured he's probably hungry too, so now I leave extra seeds scattered around my deck, and he hasn't needed to cimb into the feeder since. And talk about an ambitious, goal-oriented creature. You have to admire that!


Marilyn Rock said...

Terrific post Kerri! You always hit upon subjects that are so meaningful and often things that have gone through my own mind about my goals with art and life. I, for one, love reading about your plans whether they happen now or in the future. I do know one thing; you will and can accomplish what you set out to do! You offer so much to so many. Sammy the Squirrel is one ambitious soul; and one thing about squirrels, as we all know; they are persistent :)
Love, Marilyn

Debbie said...

Great post and I second everything Marilyn said. I believe that it is good to have lots of goals. You will get far more done than if you didn't have them!!

PS you left Max out of your list of top jobs - because he is!! All that time you are walking and playing you would be doing art... but they are worth every sacrifice!!

Anonymous said...

HUGS! I'm an agressive goal setter, too. Sometimes, I get a little wigged out by it, but then I realize that I need to nudge myself in a major way...thus, the serious set of goals. Also, I love that you have a creative coach and that you set artist dates -- both are so important to feeding the creative soul, I think. I have a group of ladies I meet with regularly, too. I don't know what I'd be without them...nuts? (Well, I'm already close...but, you know what I mean.)

Congratulations on your Ta Da list, you amaze me! Also, thanks for sharing the photos of Sammy -- he's pretty cute!

Finally, happy Valentine's day, Keri!

Chris said...

Hi! I found you in the first Artful Blogging issue, which I recently purchased because of the second Artful Blogging issue and I ran over here, except that I didn't leave my office, but I basically put the URL in correctly, and your blog popped up! From Somerset's mouth to your ear!

That's not really how the saying goes, but you know what I mean. Anyway, I love your ta da list, and your writing, and I particularly like it that you see a similarity btw HDT and ED, esp. philosophically, although facially there are coincidences.

I don't remember why I called, but I guess it's enough to tell you that I like your blog. I'll be back. Not to be scary, just letting you know.