However, it IS a good time to reflect and consider the year ahead - how I might choose to approach it; things to shrug off, things to change, things to rethink, things to create, etc. So, in an extremely lazy fashion, I am doing a bit of that. One thing I find that I do - or rather, don't do - which is a cause for much self castigation is to not draw every day.
I had a lecturer in art school with whom I really connected. Tragically, for his family, myself and so many others, he died suddenly before I finished my degree, and before we reached what was my final unit of life drawing. But he left me with many things. My sense of play with media, and not getting bogged down by how one 'should' approach different materials. The need to challenge myself when I draw - think around possible constraints, to make the most of a page, push past what could be considered the limitations of particular materials and/or circumstances. To remember that drawing isn't so much about what's in your hand as what you see, and remembering to really look at things - see the shapes, the light, the colours, the textures... That it should be fun! And most importantly, that it should be a daily activity.
I was lucky enough to have him as my teacher in a range of different studio areas, including one where on the first day, he presented us all with a brand new hard cover drawing journal. The subject itself was media studies, but the journal was intended not so much as a record of class activities as a tool to help create an actual practice. He informed us that he wanted to see something on the pages that showed that we drew something EVERY DAY. He didn't care what it was - it could be as simple as mucking around with some new chalks, pencils, or other drawing materials. What was important was that we did it every day. To that end, ever since, I've carried a tiny A6 sketchbook in whatever constituted my regular handbag. And a mix of felt tip pens and pencils that roll around in the bottom of the bag along with the spare change, old receipts, tissues, and other bits and pieces. Every time I dig in the bag for something I see it, and hear Bruce saying we must draw every day. But I don't. Because, life. And the every day excuses we all make for not doing things.
So, I've made a commitment to do a daily photo challenge activity that's hosted by blogger Fat Mum Slim. I figure, it's a daily prompt that will make me think creatively about what I can do with the limitations of an iPhone camera - that being my only digital camera. And I'm thinking that alongside the photos, I can make a drawing each day. I won't be posting them all here on the blog, but if you care to hop over to The Original Dragon Mother Facebook page, I'll post the daily photos there. And I'll post the drawings on my Facebook art page. So, if you're interested in following along, they're the places to be.
For me, this stuff is about self discipline - which is something I find all too easy to let go. And that's just me being lazy. Lazy leads to letting far too many important things go - things that can make daily life much more interesting, challenging and, ultimately, fulfilling. And I have no excuse, really. I don't work for anyone any more. The paid work I do do is freelance, so it's on my own time. Ergo, I have more than enough opportunity to look at how I spend the rest of my time and find ways to be so much more productive - which will make for a much happier and more satisfied me. And give me much more to think and talk about with Dragon Dad at the end of the day - rather than just my online stuff!
So, I've started the Photo a Day Challenge with today's prompt, which is 'my fave colour' and because I'm kicking it off in conjunction with this post, I'll pop in in here - because I can! From tomorrow on though, go check out my art page for what's to come.