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Separating Art from Life

Posted by Edwin Duncan on

I have a whole life that is separate from painting. I’m really fortunate to have my passion, art, be my livelihood but with this balance, it can be easy to feel like I am a one-note woman. I’m an artist – done. I create art. It earns me money. I use the money to buy more supplies. I create more art. Etc. It’s a romantic notion of satisfaction, but after that being my entire life for the past few years, it has become apparent to me that there must be more to life than the thing that earns you money, even if you love that thing.  

 So I’ve tried to create an entire life separate from my art. I got my dog, Daisy. She helps me remember to take care of myself, the creature, as well as myself, the brain. She reminds me about the importance of simple delineation between work and play. She also literally reminds me of the outside world every few hours when she wants to walk or play outside 

 And I’ve joined a metalsmithing class: I already feel proficient in painting, but it’s the first medium I tried. I wonder if trying to create art in other mediums will teach me anything about my potential.  

 Any readers have a hard time separating their life from their work and want to share some successful tips or tricks?  


Creating in Comfort

Posted by Edwin Duncan on

I admire artists who deliberately make themselves uncomfortable in order to further push their artistry, to keep them from lounging, to encourage the continuous making of art. Jack White has always stood out to me as a great disruptor of artistic comfort: whether he’s keeping his petals just too far from his feet to comfortably reach with his guitar plugged in, playing in a bad with a notoriously elementary percussionist, or using equipment that Bob Dylan would have found archaic when recording his debut album – Jack has always reminded us that comfort can be the enemy of good art.  

 That said, I have a hard time standing for as many hours of the day that I spend painting. So I have a few different options. My floor station is a Moroccan pillow on a large white tarp, I can paint down here, do some outlining or rough drafts, and work on huge floor pieces. Having just one pillow upon which to perch my body keeps me balanced, slightly uncomfortable, and mentally alert. My desk option is a standing drafting desk where I work on detailing, on foot, crouching and stretching as needed. And finally, my outdoor option is in development. Check back!  

Image result for jack white struggle

 Any readers have any specific comfort-while-creating standards/rituals?