My thoughts are hopping between a myriad of different projects and topics. These projects and topics range widely in terms of scale and proximity: some large and immediate, some large and distant, some small and distant, others small and immediate. If I am honest with myself then I should probably admit that there is too much going on … and that I am in this position, which I am sure that I share with many artists, because the things that I prefer/need to do do not provide an income, so a rather substantial percentage of my week is spent doing something that provides me with a salary. At the same time I think that I might be expecting myself to achieve things as if I were a full-time artist. The reality of having a fractional permanent job is that I can only be a fractional artist … and I do not know how to do that!
I have to remember that these are extraordinary times, and that this is too contributes to the irritation that I am feeling. Or perhaps the irritation is felt more acutely because of these extraordinary times – ’corona as amplifier’ – making me more aware of things that I already felt and knew.
It is almost the end of August – a month that all but disappeared in a flurry of workshops, projects, meetings, discussions, tasks, and deadlines. All of which, save one, would have been far more enjoyable had they not piled upon each other causing some to get crushed, others to be eclipsed, and even those at the top of the pile were not particularly well balanced. Perhaps I am being hard on myself … but I know that I can do better, and that I want to do better, so I get frustrated with myself when my enthusiasm overtakes my capacity.
Needless to say I have not had time for reflection through the lens of writing. And now I wonder what to do with those snatched moments of thought and analysis along with half remembered responses and ideas triggered by seeing so many shows while on holiday in southern Sweden. I think that I need to accept that those moments have passed, and I need to trust that anything vital will still be with me.
I (easily) allow others to make demands on my time. Why do I not allow myself the same? I say that my practice is important but I am not convinced that I demonstrate it.
In addition I find it so much easier to account for my time when I assign it someone, or something, else. I wish that I could shake this need to account for myself, especially as I know that it is a purely internal circuit/monologue – dialogue(?). I am pretty sure that asking why I feel the need to justify and rationalise how I spend my time to myself could keep me in therapy for years.
So do I accept that that is how things are and do my best to get on with it? Or do I put my spanner in my works and see if I can break my machinery and rebuild it better?
A bit of an aside: I wonder if my overly zealous account giving works against me when making certain award and grant applications. Could I be spending too long trying to work out how to justify and account for the award (should I get it) that I put lead shoes on the actual idea or project – that wonderful little spark of a thing that needs love and nurture.