I’ve written 22,000 words (just on my novel–I’m also 4 pages into a new short story) in the past two months. This accomplishment seems to have spurred my creative energy in general, because now all I want to do is create something. Anything.
A recent post of mine bemoaned the fact that I didn’t have enough time to pursue all of my interests, at least not while juggling grad school and a job. It’s ironic, then, that this month I discovered a new hobby thanks to my dear friend Joy. They are called deco books, and they rose from the slam/friendship book culture of the 80s. The point of deco books, however, is the artwork. While my boyfriend frowns upon them as a waste of time, I value them for their therapeutic and stress-relieving properties. They have also led to a rekindling of my interest in collage and mixed media. My original senior project as an undergrad was to be a massive mixed media piece that was slightly too ambitious for the time frame in which I had to work, and the senior show in general. I always regretted not following through with it, and over the years I did a few more mixed media pieces before abandoning it in favor of writing and illustration.
Thanks to deco books, I’m creating art again, even if it falls more on the “craft” side of the spectrum at the moment. Just this evening I hand-cut a stack of artist trading cards to challenge myself to work that small (normally I work no smaller than 11×14–these are 2 1/2 x 3 1/2), and tomorrow I plan to buy some canvas panels for collage work. I started an art journal this week as well. I may be stretched a little thin, but I firmly believe that I do not have to sacrifice one of the things I love in order to succeed at the other. Like the ATCs, this will be a challenge to myself. And I think it’s one I can beat.