Monday, August 25, 2008

How Many, How Much?

I love paper. I know I am not alone in that. It is an occupational syndrome and should have a name. This love affair is not restricted to studio papers which are in a class all their own. It carries over to all the functional papers I have in my life as well. I found this Weekly To Do List notepad yesterday. The color attracted me, but who needs a special list like this with clever simple graphics and really cool color stripes? Any of the pads I have will do, and besides I thought, look there isn't much room on each day. How could you fit more than one thing on each really pretty stripe?

Then an image hit me of what one week would look like at the END of the week with those 7 things completed. And that intriqued me. I am a sucker for ideas and experiments, and the paper is kind of cool. I am probably justifying the purchase at this point, but it is my syndrome and I am begging for your understanding. You see Dave Navarro was discussing refining goals this weekend and the Law of Attraction. Anyone who read through my goal setting template knows I am big on quantifying and action as well. If you don't put a number and an action with a goal, it's less likely to net the results you want. I was up for some fine tuning. I have a huge set of deadlines staring me in the face. And a huge number of art pieces to complete. And a not so huge number of hours in a week. For Dave's challenge, I thought, "Hm, I need to put the estimated hours and pieces down, quantify the list." Not that I was totally surprised, but if I started right this minute and worked 16 hours each day... those deadlines are still in jeopardy.

So I thought. And I thought some more. And I looked at the studio production list. Hm. And I looked at that notepad. Wrinkled my nose, thought briefly of Dave. Might be time to bundle operations. Huh? That has worked before. Instead of doing one piece at a time, I focus on a process like say drawing and do the drawing on several of the major pieces at once. Or say do a heavy session of ink, or cutting materials. It has to do with getting into a rhythm. If the overall map of the pieces is in place, and the themes are set, it can be done. Prep to a point and then then get into each piece. Since drying times and materials are a consideration, multiple pieces can be worked at once.

So those color stripes are looking like they need to read something like, 24 inked sheets of collage, 10 - 22"x 30" watercolor subjects chosen/ small sketches done, 4 texture canvas's prepped. Something like that. Can you imagine what it will feel like at the end of the week, when I look at the stripes on that paper and the tasks are complete? And even better, that production list has a finite number of pieces on it. Could it be doable afterall? We'll just see what this little striped paper can help me do. So the biggest one of my 3 Most Important Tasks this week is to bundle my processes and put the numbers on this week's page. (And then do them of course.)

Yes, it is Organizing Monday. I also want 2) to read the ebooks I have on my hard drive, and 3) to move my body more. So I am working on how many, how much there too. That makes my 3 MIT's for the week. Do you have something that could use these two simple questions: How many, how much?

No Brush , we don't need your calculator. Let's just go get busy. Better get Pencil out of bed. We have some stretching to do.


A Brush with Color said...

Organizing Monday it is--I'm impressed! I'm so old-fashioned--I use one old moleskine book for EVERYTHING--note taking, sketching on the road, lists of "to-do's" etc...meeting notes, you name it. And then I just check off and cross through every item that I've accomplished that day--I like to feel I've gotten things done, so I push myself to cross through things with that line. Your methods here sound far more sophisticated, and make me feel like I'm living in the dark ages, but I do think whatever works for anyone is what we need to do! Good for you! I agree about paper--I love all kinds of papers, books, magazines, newspapers,'s all good.

Janice C. Cartier said...

It isn't dark ages , it's effective. ;-) I used to do that too. Anything having remotely to do with Moleskines is way up there with me. ;- )

I like to keep the studio, sketches, and painting plans separate from the more administrative things though. There are so many hats to wear. It helps me compartmentalize.

Isn't it satisfying to check those things off? I am so glad to hear you have the same thing about paper. Don't get me started on my love for books.... :- )

Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome said...

I love how you were able to look at your tasks in a different way. Too often people get stuck in one point of view and can't shake it. Because of your ability to re-group your tasks they are now doable - well done!

And good luck!

PS I love Moleskine too - but I buy the Cahiers - they're perfect for writing.

Janice C. Cartier said...

Alex- Being in "production" mode can be a bit overwhelming. A big series that is also emotionally challenging needs all the help it can get so , why not try the little stripes out? :-)

I will have to check out the Cahiers. Part of the How many, how much? is writing too. x number of scenes, so amny journals sifted through...putting them in finite terms...maybe that is the tweak, that will get it done, now , not Someday.. .. :)

Amy Derby said...

I have paper addiction too. It's a disease. LOL

Loving your photos.

Janice C. Cartier said...

I have to open the tube the three hand made pieces of sheer paper came in is a huge pleasure I am going to savor.... ;-)


Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome said...

Yes, having concrete, measurable goals is a great way to get rid of Someday. Well done!