Not so long ago my creative life was hiding behind a busier life. Until recently I worked in the Cath Lab of a busy London teaching hospital. At times it was 24 hours a day. The team I worked with saved lives, sometimes in controlled but dramatic and messy circumstances. Mostly we were successful , other times we weren’t. Art and creativity happened on my days off. If I had a creative block there was always an entirely reasonable excuse given the pressures and hours of my day job.
Three months into my year of not doing the day job I’ve hit creative block without having a decent excuse.
So here are my not so decent excuses.
#1 The weather
#2 My iPhone camera is playing up
#3 The dogs are playing up
#4 Can’t really be arsed
Faced with zero creative energy I did what many creative people do, I tidied my studio. Surfed the net. Ate chocolate. Bought some new pens on-line.
The turning point came when my phone unfroze. I wrote an article that was overdue for a local magazine. When I looked for the photos I needed to send in with the article , I discovered my phone had taken a crazy abstract image when I had dropped it in the woodpile, which is why it froze. The only portion of this picture that I recognise is a portion of a decking offcut. Beyond that I’m mistified , but I love the image.
After finding this I was inspired to get back to finish painting the picture that I had planned for the day. I had been printing in the studio so there was no alternative to painting outside in the rain. The painting only needed its top coat so I figured rain was just another fluid to add to the already eclectic mix of mixers . The painting is another one featuring litter and pollution in a harbour . The bright colours are created by the reflection of an amazingly clear blue sky in May. I get the pollution effect by mixing paints and pigments with a variety of clear fluids so that they attract or repel each other. Today the clear fluids were the unavoidable rain, lube, saline, gin and acetone.
Now the studio is completely unusable. This will take days to dry and is in the centre of the now tidy floor.
Creatively damp from painting in the garden I took the grumpy dogs for a very wet walk, happy in the knowledge that even if I could be arsed tomorrow there is nowhere left to be creative . Who needs good excuses?