Thursday, March 04, 2010

Changing Direction

As I begin the transition from a career I've had for almost 30 years to being at home and able to pursue my art full time (or as full time as the Collies allow) I've found myself disorientated.
It was actually my close friend Katherine (Making a Mark) that came up with 'disorientated' to describe my feelings. I can best describe it as skipping from one thing to another until I get 'brain freeze' as my son would say.

Now that something I've wanted for a long time is in sight I suddenly have mixed feelings about it. Over the last month or two I've spent a lot of time looking back over the years I've spent at work, thinking about decisions I made, thinking about 'what if', wondering if I'm now making the right choice. Going from a fairly successful career with a monthly salary to staying at home and creating art is suddenly scary.

Deep down this is what I want and I know I'm moving on to a path long desired, but it's still not an easy transition.

So the point of telling you this is that my feelings have affected my artwork recently. Other than one or two small pieces I haven't been really happy with anything I've created over the last few weeks.
The latest casualty is the ginger cat I started in watercolour, when I had a good look at him he was far to orange so I started again, this time coloured pencil on drafting film. In the daylight he is a far better colour so for the moment I'm happy with him.
With several deadlines fast approaching I'd better get my act together and actually finish something.
Tomorrow as they say is another day, actually it's British Collie Club Championship Show and I'm showing my crazy puppy as well as Roxie, so that will be a totally different challenge. If I can coax Cody to keep all 4 feet on the ground for five minutes I will have had a successful day.


Dors said...

Hi Gayle. I love the kitty. just gorgeous. You are so talented.
I say go with your hearts desire. I am retired and believe me It's hard finding a couple of hours a day to do my art.
I don't know how I found the time to work a full time job.
Once you get settled after retiring it will all flow nicely.
Enjoy your art..Life is short.
The money is always good but you can't put a price on being creative.
Best Wishes

Reflections From Life Art Blog said...

This cat is looking marvelous Gayle!! Great colors and detail.

It is disconcerting to suddenly be at home full time able to work on your art all day. I have found it very difficult to work from a home based studio. My family keeps distracting me, interrupting me, and I end up getting nothing done. I really need to get studio space outside of the home in order to get any work done. I hope it works out well for you though.


Toni said...

Gayle, here I thought you have been a full time artist for a long time. Trust in yourself and God. Breath! You know I love your work.

Leslie Hawes said...

Your work is so extraordinary, that after a commission or two, you will hit your stride and wonder that you ever felt disoriented.

Jai Johnson • JaiArt.Com said...

I completely understand how you I've "been there done that". It does take some time to adjust. It took me about 2 months before I was integrated into my new "at home" routine. Here I am 12 years later, going back out into the workforce again, though only on a very part time job. It has to do with pets though, and since I paint pets too, they blend together nicely. You'll be fine! Just take your time and don't rush will all fall into place for you! --Jai

P.S. Your artwork is wonderful!

Gayle Mason said...

Thank you for all your comments, I'm sure that once I actually finish work and settle into a new routine I'll be fine.
I have lots of projects in the pipeline which I'll share soon.

DEB said...

Gayle, I took the same leap of faith you did. Only for me, I quit my job as a design engineer in 1997 (halved our income) and we moved here to VA while I was pregnant with our 3rd kid. With all those changes at once, I put my art on a back burner until about 2 yrs. ago when I decided my kids were old enough that I could seriously pursue it. Then, I went through a period where I felt like I had to enter every show, sell every piece, accept every commission and every challenge. In short, I made art into the same stressful career I'd given up.
Then I met an artist and director of a local art show who has been in the art business for about 4 decades. She gave me some very sage advice. She told me to find my balance. I'm still working at that, but I am now painting the things I enjoy painting, not worrying so much about sales, or feeling like I've failed if I don't enter every show I want to. I've set my priorities, with faith and family first - then art, and some days there just isn't enough time for the art. I'm learning to be okay with that. It's been 2 yrs., and I'm still feeling like I'm on a new journey. I hope you feel oriented soon, and even if you never do, I hope you enjoy the ride as much as I am!

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Gayle - your talent for achieving the impossible in terms of the amount you fit into your life leaves me feeling very confident that six months from now you will have a big beaming smile permanently fixed om your face!

You've been very successful in your career and with your "hobbies". Raising your dogs, winning big prizes with them and getting them into Crufts PLUS selling the number of commissions and prints that you do - not to mention selling work before the show even opens at the SOFA Annual Show - means I know you will be extremely successful in your chosen new direction.

I'm really looking forward to seeing you change direction and start new things. (Have I mentioned etching enought to yet? I think you'd be a natural!)

In the meantime I'm coming up with a bottle of champagne to celebrate your 'release' in the very near future! :)