‘Balance’ is my word for 2011. It might look like a simple word, but it is a loaded one – very tricky to achieve, and even more difficult to maintain. Because guess what? It is not a static condition in which once you achieve it, you then could passively keep it. No. It is fluid, always on the move. It is something that you have to keep on nurturing in everything you do.
For myself, balance means to focus more into the process of things – of doing, of working, of creating, of living. That is, rather than focusing on the end result. Which for me means patience and acceptance of my own limitation: I am known to want to do so many things all at once and all has to be perfectly done! I tend to keep on working almost non-stop until the job is done or until I collapse. I tend to spend impractical amount of time and energy on minuscule details in almost everything I do: from washing the dishes to hanging the laundry to designing to creating art. And I do enjoy it too – most of the time! Some would say I am a perfectionist – or obsessed. I won’t be happy with my work until everything is just so – even if it’s only me who notices it. Do people notice it in my work? Do people appreciate how everything is done just so? I don’t know. I hope at least some of them do. I don’t expect them to notice the particulars, but just that they notice that it is very well made/crafted/done. People might not be able to pin point what makes it so, but I hope as a whole my work should be able to speak for itself. Yes, it is important for me to create my work as best as I can make it – spare no efforts. And that, my dear, takes time. Plenty of it. So, I just have to accept that I will always take more time to finish my work. (You would think by now at the ripe age of 41 I should have known this already, wouldn’t you. Well, I am an optimist :)).
Which means, no more letting myself get frustrated when things take much longer time to get done – process takes time. Which means, breaks and rest and play time are necessary: they are to be fully enjoyed without guilty feeling whether I have finished a certain set of work or not. My work is never done anyway: there is always more and more coming. So yeah, take breaks often – enjoy play time. Doing nothing is needed to set the balance. But of course, there are still deadlines and commitments to meet… Now… which way is it towards balance again?
In my effort towards balance this year, I have made a commitment to join the Art Journal Caravan hosted by the amazing super woman designer Tangie McMeen Baxter at SBG! Yeah! I’m starting out late – but hey, better late than never never! In Tangie’s AJC, you can move at your own space, you can start any time and jump around to wherever your inspiration take you. The golden rule is you have to enjoy doing what you’re doing :).
So, this is my first page for the AJC 2011. Balance.
Background paper: Shades of Black (Studio Ztampf!). Fonts: Kabel BT and Lacuna Regular. The picture is of one of my works, entitled Soaring V.2.08 (2005, porcelain and wire). I chose this because the wire that forms the cage and the wire supporting the wings is one piece of wire: it is an act of balance ;).
The Inspiration to ponder for the First Week was Process – which is particularly very apt for me as my thinking of Balance has been closely linked to Process. So here it is, my 2nd page for the AJC 2011. Process.