I cleaned my office yesterday.
Over the holidays, it had become the repository of all things not Christmas. After the holidays, it remained the repository of all things not Christmas and everything else that had nowhere to reside in the house.
Having a messy office stunts my creativity. It inhibits my time spent at the keyboard. It gives me anxiety. Makes my mind feel chaotic.
It was time to make it stop.
And I finally figured out, after one month of allowing it to stay messy, that the office fairies were not going to magically appear and make it all better.
It was up to me.
What do you do with all those papers and ephemera that sit about? Mail. Flyers. Cards I want to keep because I like the image and won’t that be just so perfect for a painting?
Well… I can tell you what I did. I created three piles. One for trash — and that got piled in the garbage bag. One for ‘need to keep to look at’ and one for ‘artful ideas’. If it didn’t fit in 2 or 3, it went into 1. No questions asked.
Unless of course, it had C.C.s name on it or one of my daughters.
They got their own piles.
If I’d taken before and after photos you’d be amazed that I could even find my desk before I cleaned it up. I was. Between piles of books, mail, papers, and an assortment of unidentified objects, other than the space where my laptop sits, there was little room for working.
No wonder I was feeling so creatively stunted on the page. I was all boxed in with mess!
I told C.C. afterwards that I don’t create well in chaos. Even in the studio, while it is designed to be able to leave ‘the mess’ in place, I don’t like it to be chaotic messy. I like it to be orderly enough that I can find what I’m looking for and have space to put things as I work. When it’s messy and chaotic, I feel edgy, my skin itches and my nerves are all jangly inside my body.
I create more freely when the space around me is tidy.
It doesn’t mean there’s no clutter, or excess. It just means that what is there is not randomly strewn across every surface.
Which is interesting given that in colour personality typing, Gold is not very prominent in my personality. (You can take a colour test HERE)
I’m fairly balanced in Green, Blue, Orange — I like to think my way through problems, create out-of-the-box solutions and go with the flow. I do not like routine nor structure, and I definitely don’t like rules.
Which is a good thing because when it comes to art-making, I tend to work from that space that says — there are no rules. And if I find one, curiosity will always drive me to want to see what happens if I break it, stretch it, reconfigure it, adapt it. Usually, what happens is, I find myself immersed in the creative process, feeling alive and enlivened by the very act of creation.
Which is what I love to do most.
So, yesterday, after I had cleaned up my office, I spent a few hours at my newly uncovered desk and created….THIS! (click on the link and see what the Basement Bombshells Art Collective is up to) 🙂