Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Doing it All - As Good as it Gets

How do I have a life and continue being an artist? Or is the question -- How do I remain an artist and still have a life? The question I ask myself depends upon which part of my life is getting most of my attention. Like most professional women with a family, I'm always balancing my activities as a mother, wife, daughter, sister and friend along with working and making art ("work" means running a household, paying bills, marketing my art work, etc.)

So, how do I do it all? If I measure my actions or progress by the day, I often feel like I've grasped the tail of life as it whips past me in a strong wind and I'm barely hanging on for the ride. Along with that feeling sometimes comes the sense that I'm not doing anything at my best. At those times I have this fantasy vision where all of the non-creative yet essential stuff in life is done for me and I "just" make art. In the midst of that fantasy I'm serene and focused and everything I do turns out well because I have the time to make it marvelous.

But my life doesn't work that way. And neither does my art, at least not now. Whatever the creative work I'm engaged in, speed and multiplicity are the order of the day. There is little time to mull over every thought. I don't have time to change much. Whatever I'm doing now is my "best." Whatever just happened is as good as it gets. Vision has been outpaced by reality, again.

That concept is an interesting and challenging idea to make peace with. Art like life is what it is. The meaning assigned to art (and life) is what changes. And with that in mind, let's make the best of it!

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