Thursday, May 07, 2009

Dead Head

When I'm gripped by ennui, my blog entries get longer. So does the time it takes to write them.
I fight off boredom by focussing on the practical. I have several large paintings at various stages of completion. I want to deliver half of them by the end of next week. This means I'll spend five or six hours a day in my car, driving to and from the enamel 'factory' on the other side of town, and about as long (I'm too allergic to the fumes to cope with any more) working alongside my assistant on the paintings themselves. This leaves no time at all for navel-gazing so, with luck, I'll stave off the depression that lurks in the shadows of my low tolerance for tedium.
Don't ask me why I feel like this. I suspect it's just another segment of a fairly conventional creative cycle – that, or a psychological trick I play on myself to upset the dull predictability of my current routine and, maybe, compel myself to act on, rather than file away, the next good idea I have.

6 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Motion = a great distraction from ennui.

Some days, the next step is whatever it takes to get moving, whatever you've got to do to avoid those pits: driving, picking your nose, the distraction of deadlines or enamel fumes, you name it.

mondotrasho said...

I worked for a software engineer for a few years. "The creative cycle" was very apparent to me in that environment. Many months were often spent just talking and conceptualizing ideas which were one to two years away. To the outside observer it might have appeared that we didn't do anything except talk for months on end. It was following that initial creative period that the actual software was "composed". This second period was similar to a garage band rehearsing. Things were created, destroyed, refined, paths continually changed until "the thing" took shape. Demotapes were made. We called them "betas". The final phase was marketing. First we had to educate our own sales staff as to what it was that we had created and why it mattered. The goal was to make them believe and to see the function and unique qualities of the finished work so they could tell the world. Sadly, I eventually left that workplace, not because of the nature of the work and "the cycle" but because an individual in our marketing department (one of the partners) had developed an addiction which was threatening the finances and stability of the corporation. Ultimately, it was the influx of too much money too fast which was undermining the creative work.
...treat yourself to that "fresh air" supply mask and white suit like they use in autobody painting. Sure, you'll look like an astronaut but at least you'll be healthier. My guess is once people find out you paint in a space suit your paintings will have add cache. ~m

Anonymous said...

its a very high risk that Hazel is taking exposing herself to such toxic fumes so often. The damage done cannot be undone but further toxic exposure can be prevented and should be. Don't you want to live a long life Hazel? If your assistants are also exposed you may need to read the Occupational Health & Safety Act. We don't want to any of you ill. The real consequences may not emerge for a number of years. Take care for your own sake and others !!!!

vee gee

Charles Marlow said...

Hey, let's start a SAVE DOONEY FROM HERSELF campaign. It'd make a great t-shirt!

More seriously, maybe we should just mind our own busness and enjoy the art and the artist on her terms.

Anonymous said...

"Any VOC (volitile organic compound) is bad for you.
The paint continues to release solvents for a couple days at least.
Just because you can't smell it,doesn't mean it's not there.
Central nevous system damage,and brain damage, are long term risks"

I cut the above from an information site on using enamel paint. The general advice is always use a respirator, have plenty of ventilation and if you feel ill see a doctor.

The toxic build up over years in the body from long term exposure could bite hard one day. When we are young I know we don't worry about the far future that much, but it comes along really fast.

It doesn't hurt to be careful & ensure you stay healthy.

v.g.

Anonymous said...

I forgot to add that gloves are also required for health and safety as the toxicity is skin absorbent. Even non toxic enamel is unsafe although risk is lower.

I bet Hazel doesn't smoke but this toxic enamel is probably more lethal. Anyway Hazel you know all about this and are taking informed risks and nothing we will say can make any difference is my guess.