The past week or so I’ve gotten in the habit of starting my daily piece pretty late, around 5pm or later. While part of me likes this ‘after dark’ schedule because I’m able to take the experiences from the day and pour them into the piece, the other part of me decidedly does not like the pressure that comes along with waiting until the day is done still with a blank canvas on my hands. There’s a sense of strain that accompanies that tight timeline — it’s that thought of “I have to get this done today.” While I know that’s a natural part of a daily project like this and sticking to any commitment, I don’t like how the compressed timeline affects the way I view my art, as if it’s something to “get done.”
So today I tried switching it up. Today I gave myself SPACE.
I started this piece when I woke up this morning and I was able to come back to it several times throughout the day. Instead of waiting for the day to happen and then pouring its essence into a piece all at once, it’s like each individual layer throughout the day was a different memory, a different feeling to document, a different ingredient to add to the final recipe. As I expected, stretching this process out a bit led to a completely different perspective that I felt I’d been missing for a week or so. That feeling of breathing room, of having emptiness to explore and to wander.
It brought me back to the immense value of SPACE and, frankly, I don’t think we give ourselves enough of it. We keep trying to cram more and more into our days until every part of our lives is on this hyper-condensed scale where we’re just trying to “get it done.” But, if we’re able to slow down and stretch out, to leave nooks and crannies for discovery and play and rest, that’s when we’re able to truly savor all the moments and goodness our day has to offer.
So that’s my advice today! Slow down, stretch out, MAKE SPACE.