I thought getting back to art following my unexpected hiatus would be fairly simple. In fact, I thought it would be more than simple. After all, the studio would be neat and nicely organized again, right? Cleaning up after the flooding meant putting things away, so everything would be in its place.
Well, yeah. Right. It didn’t happen quite that way.
Clean-up itself wasn’t much of a problem really. As I’ve written before, there really wasn’t any damage to speak of, just lots of wet flooring and between all the towels I keep here in the studio and the heater that sits beside my desk, I had the place dried out soon enough.
And then the rains came again. Yes, the studio flooded a second time, and this time was even worse than before. We not only had lots of water, that water brought lots of dirt and mud with it. It also covered a much larger area than before.
Fortunately, I’d learned my lesson. While things still weren’t “put away” in their proper places following the first flood, at least they were safely away from the problem areas. So, I can happily report that there was no damage whatsoever — but, oh, what an awful mess there was!
So, for the second time this spring, I spent hours cleaning in the studio. It was such a mess that my husband even came home from work to help with the clean-up. Needless to say, even though it’s all dry here now, it’s still a huge mess, and with more rain in the forecast, my husband has been doing a lot of work with the window well where the water has come rushing in.
At this point, I do have my drawing supplies and sketchbooks safely put on the shelves where they belong, and the same goes for my canvases and canvas panels. And that’s about as far as I’ve gone. In other words, things are still scattered about. I know everything is here — somewhere — but trying to put my hands on any certain thing is not easy.
It all means that nothing in art is easy at the moment. If I want to do a bit of drawing, I’ll have to go searching for my pencils and pens. My big gansai set got misplaced, leaving me to wonder how on earth I could lose a large set of paints like that. Hint: I was using it for my fashion illustration, and when I picked up those supplies and took them upstairs, the gansai went with them. Thank goodness it’s “found” now!
Long story short, my studio still isn’t as “workable” as it should be, but it’s getting closer now. As I’ve started spending more time here, picking up projects I’d been working on, and doing a few new landscape paintings, I’ve had no choice but to look for lost things, then put them away once I’ve found them.
Maybe it’s all for the best, really. My husband often says that things happen for a reason, and that’s true, of course. When he says it, though, he’s implying that there’s a deeper meaning behind whatever occurs. My studio flooded twice because we had a severe storms and we needed to do a bit of work around the window well. That’s the reason behind it, but going to that deeper level, maybe it happened because I needed reminders about picking things up, putting things away, and keeping a little more order here in the studio. You think?
Well, yes, I think this has taught me a lesson. Even in a creative environment we need some sort of organization. In fact, maybe we should say that especially in a creative environment we need organization. Creativity is messy, as we all know, but it’s possible to reach a point where the messiness becomes counter-productive. That’s the sort of mess I’ve been dealing with lately.
Now, I’m getting it back to what an art studio should be, I think: a place where possibilities exist, a place where my creative imagination can play, a place where I can quickly find what I need and enjoy the process of art. For a while, I worried that I’d lost a bit of inspiration and motivation. I think I’ve found it again now.