Balancing act…

Now that the pressure is off and I am officially finished in terms of artwork requirements this year I have been catching up on paperwork etc.  All fine and good but I know from experience that if I don’t keep creating I go a little loopy so after a week off I sat down yesterday to do some carving.

It was with absolute astonishment I realised that I was tensing up…I felt a bit icky and really didn’t want to start carving.  Of course I ignored the feeling and just started carving but I kept thinking about it on and off for the rest of the day.  I love carving…I do it for fun, I do it because it is a vital step in my artwork, I do it because it is the one thing that stops time for me – I loose myself in it and for a person with a busy brain like mine that is like a holiday.

So what was the problem?  When I thought about it some more I realised that I’ve done a heck of a lot of carving this year…much more than I’ve ever done before.  And I’ve done it under extreme pressure for much of that time.  The pressure was what kept me going when I wanted to give up – when my wrists were aching, my back was sore and my eyes could barely focus – I knew I just had to push through.

But now that the pressure is off I just thought it would be back to normal and I would just carve for the absolute pleasure of it.  Apparently different parts of my mind and my body didn’t necessarily agree.  So it is back to little, gentle carving sessions…baby steps back to fun.  Carving is my happy place and I can’t that go.  The lesson here for me is if I push myself too hard in one direction I can’t automatically swing back in the other direction and if I am not careful I may loose something that is one of the biggest pleasures of my life.

Tis all about balance…but perhaps because I have never been very good at balance I should admit it is more about controlling extremes.  Wish me luck with that!!

The Regional Arts Fund is an Australian Government initiative supporting the arts in regional and remote Australia, administered in Western Australia by Country Arts WA. Stepping Up is auspiced by HARTZ (Hedland Arts Council) Inc.

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