The past few weeks have served as a bit of a break from active writing (I define ‘active writing’ as writing every day for a couple of hours about art.). Wanting to take a step back and re-focus is the primary goal at the moment. There’s always something that brings me back to art though. It’s in everything I do. The practice of posting to my blog everyday in 2011 (at the very least, gathering material to post for every day of the year) taught me a lot about producing well written and researched content. However, after a year of that practice, I found myself wanting to write ALL the time and feeling guilty when I find myself unable to produce. THIS was a sure sign that I needed to step back. Aside from wanting to constantly write about the things I want to write about, I have to balance deadlines and exhibition reviews for different editors too.
After some introspective time, I wanted to share a few revelations and strategies. These are not new but I’ve found them to be very helpful. No matter what, there’s always something there to remind me that art and writing are not going anywhere. Reading the last line of Steinbeck’s letter to his son Thom about falling in love is so true (in any case, it can certainly apply to your passion),
“…And don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens – The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away”.
~ John Steinbeck, November 10, 1958 ~ Letter to his son, Thom
Despite the itching angst ridden feeling that washes over me when I attend art events or read something really amazing and phenomenal online, and end up not writing about these discoveries, I’ve definitely cut myself some slack. There’s just no way to capture everything and do it all justice. Lately, I’ve suffered from information overload as well and grappling with having this thing called ‘me’ time that incorporates relaxing and resting the mind and body. Here’s what I’ve had to tell myself over the past couple of weeks,
- It’s OK to not write about EVERYTHING I see!
- Documentation of art happenings are, sometimes, best left to memory…
- Being in the moment of an art experience which will never happen again is OK ~ Let go…sometimes, the memory paints a much more interesting picture
- Save all that pent-up writing energy for grad school and read non-art text (i.e., Tobias Wolff, Haruki Murakami, dive into some art magazines, flip through all my art coffee table books, etc.)
- Watch the films I’ve BEEN wanting to watch and SAY I will watch but don’t because I’m hunched over my laptop
- See art but take off the critical lenses!! It’s perfectly fine to spit out a gut reaction and not analyze the work
- Enjoy a nice cup of tea (a good cup of tea…we’re talking loose leaf)
- Connect with loved ones (yes, if you can believe it, I actually have a reminder on my calendar to do this…I know, I know…crazy, eh)
Overall, the break has been a nice refresher! I’m definitely back and will be posting some photos and posts in the next few days! Also, if you have other ways that you step back from your work, I’d love to hear them. 🙂