11 April 2020

Studio Saturday - finding time to create

This week I seem to have been "oddly busy" - busy doing odd things, things that shouldn't take long but do, and somehow not getting started on many or all of the things on my Long Lockdown List.

I did give the cooker knobs a very thorough clean, and smile when using them now -
 A thorough scrub of the bathroom -
 Keeping the kitchen counters, and table, clear -
 And revelling in the afternoon sunlight in the living room -
Odd things need to be done to maintain a sort of basic tidyness and cleanliness, some every day and some occasionally. Things that I've tended to put off, and off, and am staring to get round to. Washing the windows is the next big one, needing a lot of furniture moving - only possible after a good night's sleep. 

It's of concern that maintaining this deep-down tidyness could just take over - obsession? - and other things wouldn't get done.

Fortunately the phone goes Ping and something needs replying. Which is another odd arena - keeping in touch. I fantasise writing cards, to put in the post, to friends not seen for ages and won't be seeing for a while. It's so nice to get something in the post!

Food takes up an oddly huge part of the day. Cooking something nice "for one" with what's on hand, and keeping a list of what's needed (my son is the go-between). My aim is to gain back the couple of pounds lost a little while back, to eat "enough" protein and calcium and fibre, and to enjoy meals. So I play around with setting the table and take a photo of each meal.  Another project on the list is to collate these lockdown meals.

Also I'm oddly busy with daily exercise (those 10,000 steps) and am taking cliche photos on my walks - views and closeups of spring blossom, quirky things in the neighbourhood, series and collections of this'n'that. In the early days of having a digital camera, after the 7/7 (2005) terrorist action, I started recording the everyday things around me, in an uncertain time when it seemed they could suddenly be taken away. (Re-photographing those locations, or at least those I could walk (= exercise) to, would make for an interesting project - another for the Long List.)

At this time we're back to uncertainty and again it seems that the everyday life we took for granted is irrevocably changing, slipping away. Fortunately I have no job to lose, and financially am ok for a while longer. That most precious thing, health, is very much in the back of my mind, but paradoxically there's that feeling of having all the time in the world. It alternates with a kind of despair that each precious day is slipping by, with nothing to show for it. As if a concrete achievement were needed, or busyness was necessarily a good thing! 

Which brings us, finally, into the studio. The ceramics studio is out of bounds, none of us are going in at the moment, we're doing as we've been told and Staying Home. How fortunate it is to have a studio at home too, even a crowded and chaotic and overwhelming one. (Instagram offers glimpses of others' studios and how appealing they look, so organised, so tidy, the workspace obviously in use ... sigh ...) And other people work on the kitchen table and must clear up before every family meal. 

The weekly drawing and woodblock session happened, as they jolly well should, so some "studio" work went on. At one point the "studio" threatened to move onto the dining room table -

... if only to escape areas of chaos like these -

 However, the studio has areas that are under control -
 ... and there's a view of greenery out the window -
 Currently the workbenches are clear and there's fabric laid out for a short project -

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