Starts and Finishes

Life’s rhythm of starts and finishes controls the daily flow of energy and time.  Both aspects are required to progress, and each has obstacles and rules.  The start requires a kind of nesting energy.  I go through and clean and reorganize, gathering materials needed for the new project, or for certain things, I hire someone!  If I resort to hiring I have to get organized and make decisions on the spot, hiring rather brings the beginning to the top of the list.  Sometimes I hire a teacher, most often hiring has to do with physical labor that I no longer enjoy doing.  Studio work generally begins with recovering the studio work surfaces which are cluttered from finishing the last project.  It’s a process that makes room for thoughtful time to review choices and decide the first steps. I worked in clay for 20 years and found the process of kneading clay to be a meditative way to prepare the start.

Declaring the finish has a variety of scenarios which are determined by the detail involved in the project. Paintings can spring to life in a flash with the end suddenly known or take weeks of looking before a clear understanding arrives and declares them complete. Building the garden path may develop in stages, each stage a form of “ finished”. I think my home in general is in an evolving state of finish, as it reflects the ever changing needs and desires of those who live here.  I try only to add things I really enjoy, nevertheless it is in a constant state of becoming, like me it is a work in progress.