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Work environment, messy or clean freak? Discipline leads to joy!

I’ve known that I need an organized and clean space to be at my best. The bigger the mess, the more it invades my space, and that’s equal to the amount it invades my brain-space and encroaches on my creativity! Is everyone like this?

When I discipline myself and tackle the chaos first, (the office and studio are one room!), I feel empowered and happy…able to create anything in a single bound! :laughing:

Seriously though, it isn’t always about self discipline, there just aren’t enough hours in a day! There are so many days, weeks, etc… that I no sooner get one thing off the ‘list’ and 3 new ones get added. :weary: And the chaos includes the phone, texts, mail lady…dog, kids…need I go on? Nope. We all have a life. And I’m not complaining, I love my peeps.

But oh joy! When everything lines up and I have hours before me and a clean organized space to work (play) in! True contentment. Am I right??


Totally agree that organization makes for better and happier production.Here’s a link to a section of Jack White book “Malady of Fear” where he writes about it: https://tinyurl.com/Messy-studio

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Thank you, that was very well written. I adhere to the same 6 monthish decluttering rule he spoke of in my life and home but the office/studio is always the last to benefit from this way of life.

I had read from Carol Marine of her parties where they burn or rid themselves of some not as successful art and I found it so freeing myself when I did the same. Where I have not been so successful, TO THIS DAY!, is something else this article you cited mentions “We don’t start a painting and come back to it weeks later…” I do know that it hinders me greatly to start pieces and not finish them because of life calling. It clutters up the studio and my brain.

Even though I am a goal oriented person, I’m creative (as we all are!), and find that I chase down an idea exploring something and get interrupted from life calling or running out of time or energy, (illness that plagues me), I forget where I was going with that, and it results in a lot of unfinished projects. It’s not that I lose interest, but that I lose my direction. I do best when I paint ‘in the mood’ of subject or medium. I know I have to be well rested and feel good to be at my best creatively. I liken to to a novel writer who gets interrupted when the words are flowing and the whole idea is lost and he throw’s the typewriter out the window!

What’s the solution? More self discipline. Take better notes, be more organized in every way so that I can move more freely in that organized studio & brain. Sometimes I have to shut out some ideas to chase down one. In theory, I should be able to pick up where I left off more easily right? Don’t give in to all of my impulses and stick to one media for a while too. Yeah, that might be the ticket! I do know that when I focus more, I get more out of myself. I’m getting better at that. :grin:

I’m just sharing not to go on about me me me, but so that someone else reading may glean a help or two like I did from so many.

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Man, that was a lot of words. Sorry guys!!

As with most things, I’m a very ‘all or nothing’ sort of a person. If I can’t do it properly I won’t do it at all.
So I tend to let the mess build until I can tackle it properly, then I have a massive blitz. In between blitzes I seem to be permanently throwing things away but the piles of ‘stuff’ never seem to get any less.
I had a bit of an enlightenment a couple of years ago when it dawned on my that I actually like having lots of things out rather than tucked away in cupboards. I’m a very visual person and sometimes I catch a glimpse of some objects sitting together and think they would make a great still life. Also if things are stored away, I forget they are there. I like to ‘see’ where things are. I prefer open shelves to cupboards for this reason… all within reason of course. Theres only a certain level of mess thats tolerable.

Cool, nicetomeetcha Ms. Opposite! Haha. Yeah, we are opposites but both fab!!

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I’m not sure a messy studio is necessarily detrimental to your practice. Sometimes it can spawn a $143 million artwork.

A messy studio distracts me. I’m messy. I’m easily distracted. So straightening up is part of my painting ritual. When I start my day with a quick studio straightening gets me moving and opens my mind-space to a new painting challenge. In other words, cleanup gets me “primed”.

Woah! That’s cray cray. Doesn’t work for me.

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Cray-cray like a fox.

Maybe the messy studio can BE the artwork.
Tracey Emin sold her unmade bed, complete with questionable personal grotty bits and pieces for 2.5 million.

Yes, absolutely. As to Emin, I’ve seen a few interviews, and I can’t help but really like her, even if her art doesn’t quite match up with my personal taste.