Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Creating and wrecking, all at the same time

Wow! It's amazing what a little fun and spontaneous creativity can do to revive a person's spirits!

First of all (before we get to the creative part), I had to recognize my burn out and do what needed to be done. I emailed my boss (who, by the way, is supportive and won't hold this against me) and said "I can't do this. I need a REAL break. You'll have to sign off on this video project for me." It was hard to do, since I've had a huge stake in this project and I feel a lot of ownership and responsibility for its success, but sometimes, I just have to let go.

Then (while the paint dried in the room I'm painting), I started to wreck my journal. And it was fun! I've signed up for Jamie Ridler's online book club, The Next Chapter, and we're working on Wreck this Journal by Keri Smith. Well, let me tell you, this is a hoot!

First of all, I have to admit, I'm not in this alone. When my daughters discovered the book, they quickly confiscated it and begged and begged until I said they could contribute. So it's become a joint project. Turns out they're wonderful, uninhibited journal-wreckers.

Maddie and I dug into a planter and rubbed dirt on this page:
Dirt rub by Maddie and me
And then Julie filled this page with a great word:
Julie's happy page
And then it was my turn. I started with this page...
Getting ready for good thoughts
And decided the good thoughts would focus on the project I'm still hoping to get to later this week.
Thinking good thoughts
I'm working on a little studio/office/creative space that I've decided to call my "creative sanctuary" (I think I owe that term to Olivia, but I can't seem to find the original note.) So my good thoughts were about the things I dream of creating in my small cocoon-like space in a dark corner of the basement.

Just for fun, I tore that page out of the journal and buried it in the wall, as a bit of a blessing for the space. I'm hoping that all of those good dreams will come true.
Buried in the wall of my new creative sanctuary

And then, because that creative act revived my spirits and I was feeling bold and spontaneous (plus the sun poked through the rainclouds momentarily), I went for a walk around the block in my paint clothes. It started to rain again on the way home and I just burst out laughing. It was a good, healing laugh, and (truth be told) it was followed by tears (that's kind of how my emotions are going these days), but it felt good and right to be laughing in the rain.

Just for fun, here's a picture of my amazing paint pants. I've worn them for about 15 years and I don't think I could ever give them up. They've got so many stories in those dry colourful bits of paint.
If these pants could talk...

One more thing... when your emotions are all over the place, and you're busy painting bold orange and green walls and then taking creative breaks to wreck journals and dream of creative spaces, it turns out that Ani DeFranco is a great companion. I can't stop listening to her.


Olivia said...

Yay, Heather! Good for you. I love your idea of burying your WTJ page in the wall.

I don't know if/where I said that either, but I love it; maybe you were reading my mind---"creative sanctuary"!

I'm excited about your journey and the new direction you're moving in...can't wait to hear more.



Anonymous said...

unless there is something seriously wrong with your camera, those are totally not your feet!!!

Vera Marie Badertscher said...

Love the ways you are freeing yourself. I need that from time to time.

Leah said...

What a fabulous post! I love the way you are creating this creative sanctuary and I was so tickled by the way you buried your WTJ page in the wall! So cool!

daisies said...

wow ... you did a lot and i love love love that you buried your page in the wall, so great!! :-)

Jamie Ridler said...

How wonderful, Heather! I just loved reading about your wreckage! It's so awesome that your daughters are diving in and helping and I just LOVE that you've blessed your studio space with a page from this creative adventure! That's bound to be wildly auspicious!

The Bodhi Chicklet said...

One of the things I'm loving about this project is seeing what others are doing and discovering pages in the journal I have yet to discover. Very inventive stuff going on in your neck of the woods. Congrats on the creative space too!

Beverley Baird said...

What a great start to this wrecking venture! I agree with TheBodhi Chicklet - the best part for me is the community we have created and the freedom to explore others work. I am being so inspired by everyone!
I too am hoping to create my own sanctuary. If you saw the room you would have doubts! But that is my goal for the summer.
I love too that you have buried your good thoughts in the wall. Good karma!
take care.

Melita said...

wow, YOU WRECK!! welcome to the exciting journey. look forward to sharing more with you!

magpie said...

wheeee! i lovw what you've done with the place! i love your colors. for some reason i'm all black and white so far...of, and coffee...

looking forward to seeing where you go


vicki said...

I'm looking up the journal thing after this comment is posted. Great art, great meaning, and glad to see your revived.

However to be honest after reading this post I did not have some deep thought as I usually do after reading your post. I didn't think, "I can do that!" or "Thank you, and how did you know I had that in me too?!"
Instead I thought...

"Wow Heather has really nice feet"

(laughing to myself) HONEST I DID!~

Pamela said...

My youngest daughters favorite artist -- she has her everywhere -- even on her ringtone.

Rose said...

I love that you hid this in your wall...

Karmyn R said...

I love the paint pants....I end up getting rid of mine after a few paintings and then starting a new pair. Maybe i should have kept them.

And yes, Ani is my sister's favorite artist.