No time for art?

Hi friends! The other day I got an interesting comment on a video and it was food for thought. I discuss it in today’s video!

If I waited for the perfect time to create…

  • I wouldn’t have a blog.
  • I would never have uploaded a YouTube video, much less have 1900+ videos in my archive.
  • I wouldn’t have volunteered to teach art in schools.
  • I wouldn’t have been published in art and painting magazines.
  • I wouldn’t have illustrated two children’s books.
  • I wouldn’t be making my living as an artist.

I would be unhappy, anxious, and full of regret. While all of my projects may not be perfect the time spend making them enriches my life and hopefully others. It is a crazy proud feeling to see work that someone has done from one of your tutorials. It’s a wonderful feeling knowing that you inspired someone else to take action and create something. There is no perfect time for art, in fact often if I get a whole day to create what I want I a struggle with “analysis paralysis” because I have too many options on what I can do. If I only have 30 minutes I jump in and pick something. Fun fact: That’s what I start my drawing course with 30 second timed sketches-no time to worry about perfect!

If I worried about having enough time to do everything perfectly I wouldn’t exercise, clean, volunteer, have friends over or make art. I don’t want to live like that, do you? …are you?

You can get so much done if you abandon perfect and take back those scraps of time and spend them intentionally.

And while we are at it let’s stop comparing our art with other people’s art (or judging other peoples art because when you point the finger you have 3 pointing back at you.) We can be inspired by scrolling through social media and looking at the lovely things others have created and that’s great but if you find yourself feeling bad or jealous and down on yourself because you haven’t made anything in a while (ot because their craft room is prettier than yours) it’s time for a break. I get it though, it’s easy to pick up your phone and scroll when you are not feeling like you have enough time to get anything done, but before you know it 20 minutes is gone in a flash and you have nothing to show for it. It seems like we have less time because it is so easily snatched away from us without us realizing it. We need to take back those scraps of time! I remember back when if you wanted to be social and share art you packed up your supplies in a rolling tote and met at a local scrapbook store and created together. All of out supplies fit in one bag and we got so much more done! How about a little more social and a lot less media?

I didn’t intend to go on a rant today and I don’t want to take up any more of your precious time my dear friends:) Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below and let me know what you are going to work on the next time you have 20 minutes. I bet you have some good ideas! I want to wrap this up saying that you should spend YOUR time however you want, it’s yours. Be intentional because you only get one chance on this crazy planet so make it a good one! Have a great night and til next time happy crafting!

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1 Year Konmari Update & My Personal Rules!

Hi Friends! Last year I decluttered my home (and most notably my over stuffed art studio/craft room) using the book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo as a guide. I ended up with a tidy home but there were other unexpected benefits to and that is what I am going to talk about today.

What I appreciate the most about going through this process was the mental clarity, reduction of anxiety and increased self-confidence it gave me. I now have more time because I have less stuff to manage. I have more creativity because the supplies I kept fueled my creativity where as before the excess dampened it. I learned to let go of “fantasy Lindsay” and just be me. I got to admit that just because I wished I liked something didn’t mean I had to like it and just because someone else likes something it doesn’t mean I will. The fact that we are all different is what makes life fun!

The decluttering of my stuff (and my schedule) helped me clarify personal rules which guide how I live my daily life. There is nothing profound here but often it is the small things you do everyday (and not the big things you do once in a while) that have the most impact on your life. As they say how you do anything is how you do everything.
Lindsay’s Rules:
1. Wear shoes (this rule comes from my dad who would often tell his lazy child to “get your feet dressed!” LOL I never feel ready for the day without proper shoes on. The FlyLady echos this rule)

2. Put first things first (This is credited to Stephen Covey from his book the 7 habits of highly effective people. You need to set your priority and focus on it before you get bogged down or distracted by non important tasks)

3. If it’s not a “heck yes!” it’s a no. (I have said yes to projects out of obligation or fear that I would miss out on opportunities if I declined anything but now I say “no” unless I am super excited about another person’s project.)

4. Don’t leave a room empty-handed. (Whenever I leave a room or an area I scan the room to see if anything there belongs where I am going…there is always something LOL!)

5. If it takes less than 5 minutes do it now. (Reply to that email, write that check, mail a birthday card, return a quick phone call. If it needs to be done and takes less than 5 minutes I just do it. This is for actually important things, not for checking Pinterest real quick:)

6. Begin with the end in mind. (Another Stephen Covey gem, before beginning any project visualise the outcome to stay focused and also to determine if the juice is worth the squeeze.)

7. Do something creative each day. (Nuff said.)

8.Get at least 7 hours of sleep each night. (Lack of sleep will leave anyone irritable, sad and not at their best plus people who get more sleep live longer.)

9. Sharpen the saw. (S. Covey again here:) Spend some time each week challenging yourself to improve a skill)

1o. Be Lindsay. (This advice come from Gretchen Rubin. Don’t compare yourself to others, you don’t have to like what other people do, you don’t have to do what other people do and you don’t have to want what other people want.)

Here are the books I referenced in the video. I really found value in them and they are popular enough you can probably check them out from your library. In case you want to purchase them I have included amazon affiliate links.

Thanks for spending some time with me today and til next time happy crafting!

Get Unstuck!

Hi friends! Given the fact that we are on the internet right now there is a good chance we are procrastinating. I totally get putting off an unpleasant task but what about when we put off something that we love to do, like creating? Today we are going to talk about creative block, perfectionism, getting stuck and getting started so hopefully by the end of the video you will be ready to jump into your next creative project!

Did any of those points resonate with you? Let me know in the comments below and if you want to hear what John Cleese has to say about creativity you can watch his talk here. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Why I Closed My Booth and Built a Website

Hi friends! Sometimes I think that we do things out of habit or because it’s easy to keep the status quo. Today I’m going to tell you about a decision I have been postponing for quite sometime: Weather or not to keep selling my cards, paintings and jewelry in the booth I rent in a local antiques mall.

Antique store owner

The booth made a little money but to be honest I did not have the time to maintain it as well as I should. And if I want to be really honest one of my big motivations in opening it a few years ago was to get this finished art out of my house! I loved that I had a place to store my art where people could buy it. I could keep depositing new art there so it didn’t take over my house. Also I had become burnt out on the craft fair scene and I didn’t like schlepping art around in the cold and giving up my weekends. It seems odd that I had not made an online shop before this because it would be cheaper than renting space and more convenient as I could work from home. Sometimes it just seems easier to keep doing what you’ve always done. But I am a believer of doing what needs to be done, even if you don’t have a clue how to do it.  I needed a website where I could have an online store and the best way to learn how to do something is to do it! Watch the video to see how!

This video is sponsored by Wix You can build your website for free using beautiful templates quickly and easily. Their in-house design tools make is easy for someone with little computer experience to create a stunning online store, blog or other website.

Check out my NEW website!

I decided I needed a website for 2 reasons:
1. I am closing the local retail space I sell my paintings, cards and jewelry at because honestly I didn’t have the time to maintain it and it had turned into a glorified storage space. And the retail space I have was not reaching my potential customers like a website would.

2. I want to have a piece of the internet I can control no matter what happens to the social media platforms I am on. My blog fulfills that need to an extent but I don’t have an e-commerce (store) option there. I have heard of so many creators having their social media accounts terminated or the platforms that they are active on disappearing. Remember Vine? Also social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and even YouTube can dictate who sees your content (even among your subscribers) so if you want to be able to control the space you are creating for you need your own website. You don’t have to worry about a site shutting down or deleting everything you worked so hard for.

We plan to have the online shop up and running in February. My hubby is joining my business full-time mid January and I am so excited about the opportunities this will open up. I have had to turn down so many interesting projects just because I couldn’t pile one more thing on my plate. I have other big plans for my website in the new year and I can’t wait to share them with you. Here’s to trying new things! I’m glad I did. I hope you found this helpful or inspiring and it goes to show you that if you are willing to step out of your comfort zone you can do some pretty great things! Happy crafting!

 

Optimized vs. Maximized: What are you?

Hi friends! I am back today with another minimalist Monday vlog. I know that I can get in the habit of pushing  through things quickly only to pile on more tasks and before we know it our life becomes a treadmill of productivity over balance.  Often it is just busy work tricking us into thinking we are being productive. I’d rather be effective than busy. I’d rather have an optimized live than a maximized one, how about you?

Video!

I’d love to know what you think in the comments below. This year has been a turning point for me and oddly enough it started by decluttering my house using the Konmari method from The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I know it won’t work for everyone but I am so thankful for the day that I pressed play on that audio book. It might be a good gift for someone who is struggling with clutter and overwhelm. I used to be maximized and my art studio was proof of that! Do you have any good books to recommend? Let me know in the comments below and til next time happy crafting!

This one tip can help build your crafty stash and your relationships! {Konmari Craft VLOG}

Hi friends! Wouldn’t you like to have access to more stuff without having to buy and store it? Well you can, as long as you are willing to share too. Today we are going to talk about ownership verses access. I know there are many things we want to own because we use them too often to borrow them every time but for those once in a while things borrowing can be just fine. I am lucky and have several friends who enjoy papercrafting as does my mom and sister so we borrow and lend all the time. It allows us to try new things and keep our projects fresh without breaking the bank. In today’s Konmari craft room video we will talk about owning vs borrowing stuff.

Video!

This video posted to YouTube last night and I always love to the read the comments left on these posts. They are always thoughtful, respectful and open my mind to other opinions. One theme I heard over and over was that they would like to lend and borrow more but all too often items come back broken,or they don’t come back at all. This makes me sad to hear. I think this will happen but in most cases people will treat your things better than their own (I know I do if I borrow something and I try to use it right away so I can return it and don’t forget about it!) I even had a sweet friend buy me a new die cutter platform because she thought she ruined it by putting the die in without a cutting pad. It has a scratch but I didn’t care, it still worked fine:) I guess you might not want to lend anything that would harm your friendship if anything happened to it because accidents happen and people make mistakes.  The loss of a thing should never cause the loss of a friendship.

So, Lindsay, how to we keep track of things we lend?

I got a great tip from my mom. Whenever you lend something out put a return address label on the item. I often get sheets of free return address stickers in the mail from charities I have given to in the past but you can order them or print them on your computer as well. That way the borrower knows it’s yours if they forget (it happens to the best of us!) and when you lend something keep a check out list just like a library so you know who has what (And you don’t drive yourself insane looking for that butterfly die you were sure you bought LOL!) I lend my crafty stuff to about 6 people so I can usually narrow it down if I need an item I lent for a project. I think the benefit outweighs the risk.

The other topic several people mentioned was that they didn’t have any crafty friends or they lived in such a rural area that supplies were hard to find. This is a bit more tricky but I bet there are more like-minded souls around than you think, or, you might be able to teach some folks your craft. You local library or church might also have scrapbooking, quilting, knitting or painting groups that you can join (or maybe you can start one!) I have enjoyed scrapbooking and painting groups at my local church, I am not a church member but they welcomed me just the same and I have started knitting and painting groups at the library. Find your tribe and if you can’t, create one by sharing you passion! I also realize that many viewers are homebound or not available to attend groups when they meet but you can find many forums and galleries online and share ideas and inspiration. I can tell you from experience the more light you put out, the more comes back to you.

I think the best thing about borrowing and lending is getting to see my friends more often, it builds the bonds of friendship and it feels good to help and we feel gratitude when we are helped. We were taught that sharing is good in kindergarten, we just need to remember that now that we are grown up. 🙂

Share your thoughts in the comments below, I’d love to know what you think. Happy crafting!

Konmari Vlog: The Value of our STUFF!

Hi friends!  Everything I think about “stuff” I am reminded of the George Carlin bit about stuff: “My stuff is good STUFF, everyone else’s stuff is CRAP!” There is some truth to this. Studies show we value things we own much higher than things we don’t. The mere act of ownership makes us think differently about our stuff. This is why it is hard to have a yard sale and price our things (things we don’t even want mind you) for less than we think they are worth. If you are trying to declutter but getting stuck on what to do with your stuff watch this video, I think it will help.

Video! (If reading in email click over to watch the video)

So many people have asked me why I didn’t just sell the stuff I gave away after decluttering my craft room. There were many reasons, mostly I wanted it out efficiently but another reason was I’d rather give it away to someone who would appreciate it rather tan sell it for a tiny fraction of what it was worth. It’s silly really because the end result is the same whether I threw it away, gave it away or sold it but I wanted to feel good about discarding and giving stuff to friends and organizations who could use it felt best.

It is almost like I was worried about my “things” have a good home and I am not alone. Also, who wants to throw money away and when we place a value on our things (we do, even the things we no longer want) it feels like throwing money away to toss it, or like we are getting ripped off to sell it for next to nothing. In ANY of these scenarios the goal is to get rid of the excess items we don’t want so why do we get so hung up on the “stuff”?

Here is the TED-ed video that I mentioned. The Konmari method is from The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. I hope you enjoyed this little vlog. Remember, It’s not about the “STUFF”…OK, maybe it is a bit. 🙂 Happy crafting!

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