Monday, November 17, 2008

In Zones





Yesterday I spent some very mellow time listening to local radio and working through some source material. It was a nice way to spend a chilly Sunday afternoon. Between the creative writing and the music, some decent flow is happening. And I can build on that. This is "Active Projects" Zone week on my calendar. That means I bring development pieces to the next step, work hard to bring current pieces along, and in general, pay closer attention to the studio aspects of my work. The artistic hermit is called into play.

Zone System. It's an idea that kind of acts like an assistant/ event planner/ permission giver all in one for the working artist. And is meant to solve that perennial problem we have of not being able to be all things at once. Each week has a name for each Zone or area of focus and I know what the direction is for each Zone because I have my goal setting template all nicely completed for each of these areas. So even though the week may require some out of the Zone on demand actions ( every week does), the majority of focus is still in that particular area. Over the course of a month, each Zone repeats. Bases are tagged.

I found the focus and names for my Zones by looking at the important things I spent untold hours doing. The ones I felt nag at me when I was doing one and not the other. Know what I mean? If I am in the studio, what about marketing? If I am bringing things out of development, what about the finish work? And what about invoicing, cover letters, shipping and cold calling , and building relationships, maintaining the ones I have.... and and and. And at the time those other things, like designing successful and FUN residency projects,and fundraising for my community, archiving, competing, and uh, painting, and going on location, which drives it all...See what I mean? Anxious making. ( And was there anything in there about necessary down time? Or a personal life? Notice that too?) How could I manage them all? Zones. Once I had things fitted into those nice little Zones, lots of that nagging, uneasy feeling went away. And I actually got more done.

So yesterday was a mellow day, ( Just proofing that last paragraph made me flutter. Yikes, there is so much to do) But this week, this week is all about "Active Projects". There are some really cool things that come out of these sessions, the kind of juice that drives the work. Without it, there would be no need for any of the other Zones. No, not one. Brush and I are pleased about the scribbling and the radio. The other things had to be quiet, take turns, so we could go forward once again.

So here we are on Organizing Monday. Paintings need to be finished, To do list items need checking off, and I have some new goodies that percolated up, from the good spot...that would be a happy dance you're seeing.

How do you deal with competing demands on your time and attention? One task until complete, or do you have a system for juggling?

5 comments:

ParisBreakfasts said...

Doodly, doodly, do
That's the best I can come up with and my poor jet-lagged brain...duh

Janice C. Cartier said...

That's better than my brain lagged by jets could do.
;-)

Welcome back form Paris.

Janice C. Cartier said...

From, that would be from.. hey , and I am not even jet lagged. Just typing impaired.

A Brush with Color said...

You're so good on your Organizing Mondays. I'm impressed!

Janice C. Cartier said...

Thanks. Now let's see how the rest of the week gores. ;-)