It’s all the rage on creative blogs – a post a day, a collage a day, a journal page a day, a photo a day, a heart a day, 365 days challenges.
And it makes sense, if you want to keep the flow, get in the groove. You need to show up every day and do your thing. For a long long time I didn’t, I let life run me over, I was exhausted and kept saving my ideas for tomorrow. “It’ll soon get better, and then…” turned into years… But I’ve learned recently, if I want to get it done, I need to get started. No matter what life looks like today.
Being me, I do know however that a fixed project commitment every day doesn’t work for me. Making it a duty, heck, that’s why I became self-employed so I wouldn’t have to show up on time for somebody else’s gig, you know, the sun is shining, perfect time to go riding at 11 am! (or paint – don’t get many hours in winter).
Besides, once I begin thinking about it, I can suddenly imagine doing a doodle a day, a written something a day, a painting excercise a day, a yarn a day, a photo a day, a knit-one-row-a-day project, a cartoon character a day, an index card sketch a day, a horse a day….. (see, I’m making lists again!)
I also have a list of things I’d like to study, artsy as well as “bookish”. Schedule a day where that’s what I’m doing for xx hours a week. But I need to take it slow because I know what happens if I don’t. Multitasking is poison to the soul!
So I’m not going to commit to any one particular thing a day, because suddenly life happens and I’m off in another direction for a while. But, starting with my converted book I’ll try to show up every day and do “something”, not just gab or think about it (which I’m really good at as you’ve gathered). I have plenty of little things I want to do that are not art in themselves but preparations to make art, such as stencils for use on book pages and elsewhere. Font research. Great for days when art scares you, but you still want to feel some accomplishment.
In fact I think I may have so much fun with it that I started on its partner. I even looked for the part 5+6 that I knew I’d seen, but I’ve thrown out quite a few books over the last years, both my own, to make more room on my shelves, since I’ve reached the limit for more shelves, as well as my MIL stash that lived in the loft for a while. The stash, not the MIL. So they were gone, and recently too as I recall, when deciding I couldn’t be bothered reading them. A whole stack, same size, different designs, would have been cool though! Maybe.
The covers are a work in progress. The pages I either slather with gesso, making the old paper more sturdy as well as preventing markers from bleeding through to the other side. It contains chalk, so it dries quickly and also makes a porous surface suitable for inks and watercolors. Or I sometimes use leftover paint from something else to make a little background that I can later use for collage or paint something else on top. If you add a lot of medium you allow the text to be seen through the colour, you can even use matt acrylic medium to get the same effect as gesso but keep the text. I pull out every 4-5 pages so it doesn’t get monster thick when I add all those things, the spine being the width it is.
The thing about this project is no pressure. I don’t need to get an idea to work on it, I just mindlessly add a bit of paint and maybe something likeable comes out of it. I haven’t wasted expensive paper if it doesn’t, but maybe it’ll keep me in or get me into that flow. It feels like it’s now or else – having wasted all that precious time already. So this is my way of reminding myself over and over that a new software is being installed. I’m going to drag my resistant twin kicking and screaming into the century of the fruitbat.
Maybe eventually I’ll come up with something that I’d actually like to document and collect every day, for now I’m publishing my intentions so feel free to check up on me and keep me to it. 😉
In return I promise not to actually pester you with my antics daily. Maybe just a special doodle once in a blue moon?
But just to make it harder on myself, I’d like to hear your ideas for “something a day”. Do you think it’s a good idea/routine/challenge and why?