How long does it take . . .

to make art?

I was thinking last night after I made the padded mailers that they were among the most satisfying of the projects I’ve done during this blogathon challenge month.

And honestly, they were just about the quickest, too. Instant art, from stuff I just had laying around.

Sooo . . . getting back to my original Floating Ink notion that it’s possible to fit a little art-making into any life, how long does it take to make art?

Off the top of my head, here are some estimates.

If you have one minute, you can:

  • make a quick sketch
  • write a poem
  • take in all the turquoise, or peach, or deep blue colored things around you while you’re riding on the bus or waiting for your daughter to get out of her karate class

If you have five minutes, you can:

  • fold an origami crane out of a piece of neatly patterned paper you probably have on your desk right now (and may not even know it–maybe I’ll do that one for my next post)
  • open your journal and make a more detailed drawing of something beautiful or useful you see or want to make
  • add to that poem
  • play a game with your son while he sits anxiously on the paper-covered table and  you wait for the doctor to check his ears–take out a crayon (you do carry crayons, right?) and draw a circle or a zigzag or a wavy line–right there on the exam table paper–then hand him the crayon and ask him to finish the drawing. Then swap–let him make a starting doodle for you to complete.

If you have 15 minutes, you can:

  • write a limerick
  • write down the dialog you hear playing out  in the next booth at the diner, which will become the bones of a short story–or a novel
  • pull out your colored pencils and draw the pleasing design inspired by your coffee shop napkin or the tiles in the lobby of the building where your meeting is
  • knit 8 rounds on the cuff of the sock you’re making for your dad
  • cut some flowers or some ornamental grasses and arrange them in an old jar or your favorite teacup

If you have an hour, you can:

  • spend your lunch break at the museum
  • walk in the park and refuel your brain
  • read, read, read
  • write a sonnet
  • open your palm sized watercolor set and make color studies of the building you can see from your desk, or the bowl of jelly beans on your assistant’s desk

If you have all day . . . wow.

If you have all day you are a fortunate creature indeed. You can immerse yourself in a project that you may not even know you need to make until you lay down the first brush stroke, or catch the first whiff of paint as you open the tube, or stare at the blank block of carving medium, or run your fingers over the velvety surface of the drawing paper, or just sit quietly, close your eyes, and clear away all your thoughts.

You have time.

P.S. Of course, if you have 31 days and lots of supportive blogging friends egging you on, you have time for a whole blogathon challenge!

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