I’m ALWAYS working: Inside the life of an artist.

The number one question/comment I get from people when they meet me in person or send me an email is… “How do you do it?”, “Where do you find the time with having 3 kids?” Most shake their heads in wonderment and I always jokingly answer, “it’s easy… I just neglect my kids.”

But all kidding aside, the life of a creative person is different from that of, say, my engineer husband. He easily leaves his work at the office. He rarely ever talks about it and if he is thinking about something related to work, it certainly doesn’t show. I, on the other hand, can’t turn my brain off. I am always, always, thinking about something bead/jewelry/art related. (This post was actually thought of while driving to my sister’s apartment to help her move.) I really think it is the “not turning off” of my thinking that keeps driving me to do what I do.

Time is everywhere. Sometimes it seems to be moving faster then at other times, but it is always there. What I have found to work for me is routine. Not scheduled, hard core to the minute kinda routine, but just a general “sameness”. I get up in the morning, I pick up the house while the kids are getting their breakfast before school.

My studio is near my laundry room so I can throw in a load before I set to work on something (although more often then not this laundry loading thing rarely happens). I have also found that involving my kids (especially my 4yr old who is home with me) in what I do is a tremendous time saver. Lauren has her own bead bowl and while I work on a necklace, I give her a piece of wire to make her own necklace too. I ask my boys, “what do you think of these new colors I used?” Not only does it give me a dead honest critique, I think it helps develop their artist “eye” and creative “genes”. While the kids are at school, and Lauren is at preschool, I have 3 hours of uninterupted alone time with my torch. And I usually have been thinking all morning about what I will do during my torch time later in the day.

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Okay, okay… so that is the easy part, right? What about running earrands, and soccer games, and the rest of everyone’s busy life? Well for me… trips to Target are an awesome opportunity to find inspiration (the bedding section has really great ideas). Car rides let me write commentary in my head (it is like a running dialog, everything from blog posts to new item descriptions get tossed around). Soccer games let me chat and network a bit with others and I always have a sketch book around to jot down “AH-HA” ideas that pop into my head (watch what other people are wearing, for me it always sparks ideas… “I could so make that better” is what I am usually thinking).

So here is what I want you to get out of this… next time you are complaining to yourself that you don’t have “time to create” start looking for time. It’s there, really, it is. Turn off the TV… bring your latest project out on the deck while you watch the kids in the pool… keep a notepad in the car and write down color combos you see and love… read your emails while Barney is on and when it is over, turn off the computer and let your kids help with your next project. No one ever said being creative was easy… and those that think it is have never tried it.

Kerry Bogert is blogging about her glass art beads and jewelry from her home studio in Ontario NY. Check her work at www.kabsconcepts.com.

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10 Responses to “I’m ALWAYS working: Inside the life of an artist.”

  1. nancysellsglass Says:

    Are you inside my mind or what?! 😉 Excellent post Kerry!!

    Nancy

  2. beadabundant Says:

    I have three kids, too, and that’s exactly what my life is like! Laundry room next to the bead studio and all. Thanks for writing this post. I think it’s a great life that we’re able to be home for the kids and not have to do the 9-5.

  3. lisa Says:

    that picture is about the cutest little person i’ve ever seen in my entire life!!! thanks for the great thoughts and suggestions. lisa

  4. blest Says:

    I have four – and we homeschool so they’re always home. But I’ve gotten the eldest boy started beading… 😉 The younger ones are steadily learning that when I drag out my big rolling bead box, it’s time for mommy to do her thing. They’re getting better and better at leaving my stuff alone.

    I know what you mean about thinking of this all the time. Yesterday I was arranging stuff on a bead board and trying a new idea inbetween my weight lifting sets!!!

  5. kabsconcepts Says:

    Thanks for the wonderful feedback everyone! I am so glad to hear I am not the only one constantly being struck with ideas at random moments. But I gotta say, Blest, in between weight lifting sets made me laugh, that’s GREAT!!

    Anyone else wanna share when they have had random inspiration?

    Thanks for the compliments on my cutie, too. That sweetheart is my little one, Lauren. She was about 2yrs old in that picture. It’s one of my favorites. Just please ignor that mess in the background, lol!!

  6. Melanie Says:

    Thank you for an insightful post! I get asked this question a lot too, and I don’t have kids. I actually ask this of my friends with kids and businesses too, so it helps me to see that they probably do it the same way I do…all the time.

    My challenge is to try to make time away from the business, since it is all around, all the time. I have been wanting to find ways to turn it off for a while, like an hour a day, because I fear burnout…

  7. blest Says:

    If you don’t mind the shameless promo, Kerry, here is what came of my lifting/beading session:

    http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=6193970

    (and I’ve lost 80 pounds and hit my goal! Woo Hoo!)

  8. jcherrell Says:

    Super awesome post!!!!!!!!! Lots of people talk about being “addicted” to glass and/or beads and how it seems to influence different aspects of “regular” life. Finding a workable, inspirational fusion of the two is key to living the life of an artist, I feel!

    And…you’ve inspired my next contribution to WMC. I want to share how I use my time waiting in lines to work on my glass skills.

  9. Time Management: Getting it ALL done with time to spare — Bead Nerd Says:

    […] on Watch Me Create, Kerry Bogert wrote a post about people asking her, ‘Where do you find the time to do it all?’ and it received a great response. Just yesterday I read that Nancy Puffer was contemplating the […]

  10. Rosa's Fused Glass Says:

    Thank you for this wonderful post! I am thinking about beads/glass/jewelry all the time too! this post inspire me to be more organized and find some time extra to do more stuff. I have two boys, the youngest is in preschool and the oldest is in kindergarden, unfortunately he has some develomental problems and I have to deal with his powerful tamtrums and swing moods, that really make me stressed and I always feel desoriented, do not know where to start (specially cleaning my messy house in the mornings, this is a nnever endign task).
    I am not trying to get in to the bussiness thing because of this situation, but in my very little free time I make some glass beads that at the end of the year I have enough glass beads/pendants to set my table at a craft show.
    Thank you for this wonderful post
    Rosa G.


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