If you happen to be in Edinburgh, take yourself off to the City Arts Centre to see the Paper Trail exhibition. Feeling set adrift on day 5 of my daughter’s 6 day holiday with her grandparents, I decided to stop pining for her and went to indulge in the visual arts. A friend and I are in disagreement about what this can do for you. I say it takes you out of your head and plants you in the moment. He believes something very different.
While I was leaning in to the details of these works, I saw in faint pencil a statement that resonated. “And now is the time for forgetting and laughter.” Apparently, those are song lyrics (can’t remember from where and don’t want to interrupt my train of thought to look it up). But they dug in, made a meaning and now I’m glad that I followed my spontaneous idea to see the exhibition.
I tell my friends that most of the previous year had been less about planning and more about surviving. For the past few months I’ve gently entered into a new phase and this phrase seems apt for where we are. It got pretty damn serious there for awhile, but now we are settled, I feel I’m back on track with my artwork, so now let’s put aside the memory of obstacles and instead adventure, play and have fun.
This is a good place to be.
Now that there is space to move and breathe, there is also space to plan and stop treading water. I had been sending out ships already but when a parent at the nursery gates said to me – after I had told her I’m an artist – “All the artists I know are independently wealthy,” I wanted to laugh and cry in equal measures. So this week I launched an almighty vessel and this is certainly going to change the coarse of our future. The reality of not being an independently wealthy artist is that you live month to month not entirely certain of what will land in your account. Most artists I know have two jobs and I realised I can no longer be an acception. I don’t have the luxury of back up. The teaching circuit beckons and I’m actually quite excited about this.
There will still be time to create, and most importantly, time and energy to parent my amazing child. My life must be a good and workable example for her. As ever, I endeavour to do what’s best for us both, our team of 2. With that said, there will always be room to play and laugh all along the way of life’s journey.