Side Effects

“When you focus on the practice instead of the performance, you can enjoy the present moment and improve at the same time.”

James Clear – Forget About Setting Goals. Focus on This Instead.

With yet another turn of the calendar there aren’t many weeks left in 2017.  17 in fact.  That’s 17 fresh starts.  Or 17 opportunities to choose, act, repeat, if you’re developing a new weekly habit.

And I am.

Every week, I intend to complete one ‘sewing’ task.  They will vary in magnitude, and distance from my current comfort zone.  But by the end of the year I should have 17 more items to wear, and a new set of sewing skills under my belt.  But it’s okay if I only complete one.  As long as I turn up for weekly practice.

Oddly, I feel more comfortable problem-solving with fabric and trying out new (and often complex) sewing techniques, than I am drawing with pencil on paper.  Yet there’s more at stake.  Maybe it’s the way I’m looking at things; I’ll be asking myself about that while I’m mindfully sewing.

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Dream Believer (2)

Have you ever asked the universe for advice, or taken guidance from a dream?

It’s not something I’d ever thought of doing until I learned that ‘it’ had guided successful watercolourist Anna Mason back into art after a long hiatus.  And last week I justified my own reasons for asking for myself.

I was sceptical at first, conscious that I might inadvertently seek out the ‘answers’ I was hoping for.  But with nothing to lose, on two consecutive nights I asked the universe to shine a light on my future path.  And on two consecutive days, it did.

For example, on day one, the model for my weekly life-drawing class was the life-model I drew at art college over ten years’ ago, but haven’t seen since.  Maybe it was just a coincidence.  Yet it was the first time he’d been booked by that class, and I myself had missed loads of them (including the previous three weeks).  There were other hints, and I’m still receiving encouragement.  However, they all were, and still are, pointing me in the same direction.  And who am I to argue with the universe?

It seems I am on the right path, but I may need to adjust my compass.

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Dream Believer (1)

Have you ever asked the universe for advice, or taken guidance from a dream?

You know when you get that niggly feeling in the back of your mind, wondering whether you made a mistake taking art at college instead of physics, or some other ‘sensible’ subject, but no-one had a crystal ball so you had to go with your gut feelings at the time, and now your gut isn’t playing the same symphony that was so familiar to your younger self, and you look back and try to remember when it happened, whatever it was that happened, when you weren’t so sure anymore, when you just wanted to know if you made the right decision, only now you’re on a precipice and you have to choose your next move.

With my studio and its contents almost settled, I really needed to know whether I was pursuing the correct path.  I mean, you don’t have to be a creative to be creative, but you need to know which it should be.  So, I decided to ask the universe for guidance.  And it (kind of) replied…

WordPress prompt: Precipice

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From Chaos to Calm

Three things I’ve learned this week:

  • Feng Shui helps you plan your creative space more creatively
  • Decluttering is much easier when you take things out of context
  • Completely rethinking how you use large and small spaces is re-energising

Over the last two weeks I have rearranged my studio space twice.  Well, most of it.

I hadn’t stepped into my studio for weeks, except to open/close the curtains and dump stuff on my desk, and I didn’t have the energy or drive to do anything about it.  My headspace felt cluttered too, and I started to question what life would feel like if I gave up my art altogether.

Then this blog post from Anna Mason popped into my inbox. And a little research into Feng Shui for creative spaces took me to this gem of a post on Rogue Habits.  It’s a work in progress, but here’s my new studio layout:

Studio Calm

I was unsure about pushing my desk up to a wall, but the move to Abundance and Prosperity promised more of an adventure than infinite self-discovery in Wisdom and Self-Awareness.  Plus, the view of our back garden was a distraction when my desk was in the middle of the floor.  I’m now sitting in the most Eastern (and auspicious) point of our home, and there’s a mirror on my desk so I can see opportunity (and Mr C) approach.  There’s still lots of clutter to deal with (currently residing in our living room) but I’m already feeling brighter and creative ideas keep popping into my head.

I’m still not sure whether I believe in Feng Shui, but if it works, who am I to judge?

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