I've decided to take part in another Instagram/ creative challenge for the month of November. This one is a wood burning challenge hosted by @woodburncorner with #burntnovember The tasks are every other day, so already pretty relaxed compared to the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge from September. I have already come to terms with the fact that I might not complete them all. I have not even uploaded all of my work from the 30 in 30challenge to my website, I have a few commissions that are pretty urgent, & Christmas is coming up. One solution is to kill a few birds with one stone & word burn some of the Christmas presents this year. Most of the people I gift to are not on Instagram, so it works out.
Day 1 is titled "About Me." I knew immediately what I wanted to do. It was simple, quick, & is the easiest way to show me, my logo. Back to back jj. June Jewell. I love my name. I got made fun of plenty for it growing up. There was a short period in middle school I wanted people to call me Katie, but other than that, I have always loved my name.
Who am I though?
Now that I'm married & have a son, I feel like I push myself to the back burner constantly. I don't really feel myself or think about myself much at all until my husband comes home from work. On the whole, I'm ok with it, but sometimes, I just want to lock myself in a room for a weekend & paint. I haven't shopped for clothing for me in the 16 months since his birth...minus a couple shirts from the thrift store. I don't shower like I used to, which is fine. I've really decided that I was quite wasteful with water. I forget to brush my hair after showering & it sometimes becomes a tangled mess. I have to push myself to eat meals & drink water. I don't sleep much anymore. My husband & I don't have s much time together. I feel like these are normal mom things. I know I'm not alone in this, but it's still hard.
I have been asked "how are you?" like 600 times in the past two years since I've become pregnant & had Calvin. I don't know if I've answered honestly once. Sometimes I'll say "tired," but mostly I'm "fine." That's a loaded word. Sometimes it means "ugh, things could be better" & sometimes it's just such an automatic response. I feel like "how are you?" is very rarely sincere these days & I only really answer sincerely when I feel it's being asked by someone that's genuinely curious. A cashier will ask, but not answer when I ask in response. A neighbor will ask while passing on the sidewalk, but keep walking before I've opened my mouth.
Each day parts of me lose a little bit of faith in humanity, while other parts know how truly great humans can be. Raising a child has always been difficult, but I feel like now, with all of this knowledge (& "alternative facts") out there, it can be so dang stressful to get through one decision. I need an outlet for these emotions & painting soothes me like nothing else.
My son is my world. He is the smartest, sweetest child I could've asked for & I am so blessed that I can stay home with him. Someone asked me recently to describe my day in as few words as possible. "Day mom, night artist." I need this time when he's asleep to be me, to turn off the mom in me. I usually have a laundry list of things that I'd like to do during this time & am bummed when I just want to paint or am too tired to get much of anything done.
I've painted my whole adult life, sometimes once a week or month, sometimes I would go months without putting brush to canvas. This year, I have not feel right if I have not been painting or being creative in some way every single day. I'm trying to figure out a way to dive deeper into my subconscious, I guess, to paint what I cannot say, which means exploring different types of works.
I don't get around to the administrative portion of my practice nearly as much as I would like to. There are always pieces to upload, prints to order, portfolio stuff, marketing, emails to send, the newsletter, updating facebook or instagram, blogging, etc. I figure, I'll catch up when I don't feel the need to be as creative or if I hit a block.
Trying to make everything in your feed look unified & cohesive is exhausting & I've given up. My art is what comes out. It's not very focused, it doesn't all look alike. I have cute & colorful animals right alongside random & messy abstracts. I use whatever colors my hands gravitate towards, I don't have a set pallette. Not a lot of thought goes into my work. It's all very intuitive. I spend too much time in my head during the day. My art is where my head goes to shut off for a bit.
Well, enough of this rambling. I really should get some sleep, so I can try to make sense of life again tomorrow.