I often get asked if I have any advice to give, to fledgling artists or people who want to start a greeting card line. By no means have I "made it" or purport to be some all-wise knowledge haver, but I do always dispense this little tidbit -
Don't wait for things to be perfect.
For one, "perfect" exists in an amorphous blob of the undefinable, and is subjective to each individual. Mostly though, if I had waited for things to be perfect, I would never have gotten to where I am today. I was a control freaky overlord, miniscule-managing every aspect of my artistic life. Nothing would ever have been perfect, let alone "perfect enough".
The internet is (increasingly) a pretty scary space - but post your work in progress art, sell your three card card-line. Any something is easier to build upon, than nothing.
That said, I had actually come here to write about a different waiting game, but I am a few wines in and my brain tangentially farted. I came here to write about MY WORKSPACE, and specifically, BEING UNABLE TO WORK AT MY WORKSPACE UNTIL IT IS PRISTINE. That problem has been exacerbated this past year due to my multiple, very temporary living spaces.
I moved from Toronto to Vancouver. I packed up my life of 8'ish years and moved back to the hometown that I ran away from, and back into my parents home, back into my childhood bedroom. I won't go into the trash fire reasons that this all came to be, but one shit pile led to another and I'm so grateful my parents could still house me. I tried to set up my workspace on my childhood desk, but it was frightfully uncomfortable and tiny and I never got much work done. Here it is in all its glory - this weird tiny corner table that didn't fit my adult sized chair nor my adult sized legs.
That living situation lasted a few months, until I moved into my friends basement. It was a comfortable roomy basement and I was again so grateful for the support network that I had, but in each of these places I set up to "make do for the time being" instead of getting really comfortable. So here's some photos of my space while I lived out of suitcases and boxes.
(I would say "excuse the mess" but I'm not sure it's excusable.)
The thing about living like this, was that I never felt settled enough, or "perfect" enough, to embark on any big creative endeavors. It stunted my big ideas, ideas that I felt would come to me under "optimal" circumstances and none of this was optimal. It didn't help that I knew "optimal" was some inane construct in my head, I just couldn't do what I couldn't do. Knowing that I had to eventually move again in a very short time, also made me unwilling to spend the time needed to get comfortable in my work space, or to embark on anything other than the water I was treading.
When I finally could move again, my move in date got delayed, and delayed, and delayed again. I was so tired, having lived one entire fucking year in limbo with my so-boxed-life spread across the country, that I gave in (just a little). I put all my boxes in a separate room and gave my artistic side a little space to breathe - on this cobbled together desk right here, devoid of the mess it usually swims in.
With a much more comfortable, clean workspace all set up (and a generous handful of wine and spaghetti), I was finally able to get one thing done that I've wanted to do for months -
write a blog post.