Full Time Artistic Aspirations
Sometimes when I roll out of bed at 3 in the morning to get ready for a 3 hour drive to my regular ‘day job’, I fantasize about being a full time artist. I think it would be great to rise at a respectable time, indulge in an extra cup of coffee while reading the daily paper and working the crossword puzzle, to get in some daily exercise, do my laundry and shopping in a somewhat leisurely manner, be home for a home-cooked supper every night, and in all those glorious other hours between work away at my art. Of course all that schedule would be tossed aside if a particular piece of work was so exciting and demanding I couldn’t sleep or eat until I finished it.
Then I happened to glance at the cover of a book I bought for $4 at a library’s excess book rack. The author was P.D. James. I had thought she lived that life I described above, substituting writing for paintbrushes and threads. Instead I discovered she began writing in her thirties, all while working to support her family. After her husband died, she entered government service and wrote over 17 books. Her ‘day job’ gave her the background to write convincingly.
Having a regular day job and fitting art in the nooks and crannies that remain adds a richness and depth. I do not have the luxury of wasting time; I must be organized. Design ideas and project steps can be thought out while driving. The first idea is probably not the best one but by the time I’ve thought about it all week, it is refined and ready to go.