Around the middle of last year I had a real desire to get back to painting, something that I had not really pursued for a wee while. In my efforts to set myself a daily practice of developing ideas, I had started working again in sketchbooks in a random way but also in a wee A6 moleskine. Just a 10 minute sketch a day of whatever came to my imaginations knowing that the majority would not make it any further than that, but hoping that some would develop into new ideas for actual paintings.
I was also writing every day, three or more pages of stream of consciousness writing – gobble-de-gook to anyone but me, however a way to get those ideas and imaginations out onto the page and begin sorting them into plans for new work. I would sit out in the garden every morning with my muesli and a cup of coffee and write and sketch, watching the bunnies lolloping about, I would taste and smell and listen and watch and let my thoughts wander.
All of that stopped when I got my diagnosis and I don’t think I have sketched a thing in the last 6 months until now. The writing stopped and the plans for new artwork stopped. My energy had to go elsewhere. It certainly was not a conscious decision. The shock just knocked the pause button on anything that needed more than a little imagination and planning.
I continued to make my character sculptures thank goodness, they are so much a part of me now that the making of them is a welcome habit, like the regular rhythm of a well-known nursery rhyme. My embroidered brooches also kept my hands moving, the hand embroidery methodical and intricate.
But now with a new year ahead of me I am re-discovering and enjoying the feeling of pencil on paper. I plan to sketch a new idea every day, knowing again that the vast majority are rough and will never grow into anything more but that every so often there may be a wee gem. Small and slow beginnings these little sketches that take only ten or fifteen minutes before I go to the land of nod but who knows where else they may take me…..