I spend a lot more time on the Web now than I used to. It's dangerous for me. When I want to learn or practice something that's out of my comfort zone, I tend to spend too much time doing research and reading about it instead of doing it. Research and reading are way fun; they're also a safe option to taking action .
As with most things in life, this issue has two sides. The other side is that I'm a learning junkie. There's little else that I prefer over learning. And, boy, was the Web ever made for someone like me. I can dig as deeply as I have time to spare into any and all topics that strike my fancy. Interesting details surface that enrich what I already know, and altogether new and fascinating subjects emerge -- all the time. The Web was made for inquisitive and curious people; and for procrastinators.
Making art is the big thing outside my comfort zone these days. Inspiration is everywhere -- on the Web and off. When I was working at BLF (Big Law Firm), I could work for twelve hours straight without skipping a beat. Part of it was my nature, and part of it, admittedly, was that there was always something more to be done, but a lot of it was the mastery I felt in what I was doing. Doing something I know how to do well feels terrific -- almost as good as learning.
But the type of art I'm exploring now -- working with paint and ink, combining fabric and paper, manipulating digital images -- brings no sense of mastery with it. I'm starting from scratch, and while a certain amount of R&D is good under the circumstances, too much can paralyze. It can even fool you into believing that you're doing something. And the clincher: I don't even know if I'm going to like what I'm doing even when (and if) I learn to do it well.
What's the solution? I'm not sure there is one. In any case, not a quick or easy one. Getting comfortable with what I'm doing is the only solution that truly makes sense. And you get comfortable by doing. I know this. I KNOW this. So I suppose this post is, more than anything, a public pep talk. Studio time first thing in the morning, regularly. Got that? You heard it here first.