Thursday, August 21, 2014

Signs of Life

Evidence of studio activity...

What I'm working on at the moment is a series of postcards made from children's book pages, featuring stampheads.  Quite fun.

Although I always wind up doing more than I should at one time, meaning I end up pushing myself physically.  It's easy for me to get on a roll and not want to stop.  Yesterday saw me powering through a lot of pain in my back, neck and right hip...before I finally stopped myself, called the chiropractor and was able to get an adjustment later in the day.

My desire to make less art now is about taking care of my body -- I need to keep reminding myself of this, that it's not about being lazy.  The truth is that it hurts.  All the art I make has me looking down at a work table, and that's hell on my neck.  Or standing up at my tables, which is hard on my lower back and hips.  Even sitting and looking down is painful.

And so it goes.  Lots of good new ideas, but what actually gets done will happen in snippets of time between lots of resting.  Ahhh, aging...

Note to younger readers especially:  Establish healthy boundaries for your body, and apply them.  When younger, our bodies usually don't complain if we overwork ourselves.  Or if the body does ache, it's too easy to stop working for now and then go right back at it with renewed and increased vigor later on or the next day, often day after day.  Until one day, after years of overworking yourself and having no regard for what the future might hold, your body simply isn't able to stand any repetitive activity for more than a few minutes.  Ask me how I know...
 

15 comments:

ileneharris said...

I used children's' book characters when you and I made cards awhile back. They are my favorites! Have fun...

Leslie said...

So fun to see someone else's work space. And so true about abusing your body when you're young. It definitely catches up with you. I creak out of bed in the morning, joints complaining with every movement. Glad you're back to doing something arty.

girlunwinding said...

Hey, some is better than none. Great advice for the newer generation!
~Dawn

Roberta said...

Sorry you are hurting.....Little bits of work at a time. You are right about that.....we have to remember to get up and move....

Jacki Long said...

Oh so true!
Wisdom for all of us! ♥

MegWeaves said...

And in my case, also, don't do it if I know I'm going to hurt later. I know I'll hurt, but I still do some stuff. Absolutely silly, but I haven't learned yet.

I love the post title. I think I'll pinch it, Connie. And look forward to more of the memoir, too.

(I'm back home, almost back to normal schedule.)

Maggi said...

Sorry to hear that creating causes you physical pain. Have you ever thought of trying to find one of those draft boards (don't know the correct name) which can be used at an angle to save you constantly having to look down?

Judy Sall Fiber Art said...

Good for you, stopping and getting in for an adjustment. It is so hard to stop when you're on a roll, but I've had to learn to work at moderation in so many things... much better than overdoing it and paying too high a price for my over indulgences!

Corrine at sparkledaysstudio.com said...

Those will be some pretty sweet stamp heads. I know what you mean about the neck thing for sure. xox

Christine Adams said...

Have you tried a drafting table? Slant the work, not your neck? It means you have to tape it down, but perhaps that would work.

Margaret Cooter said...

Body ache - pain is a signal, and for artists that signal can be about focus ... quality rather than quantity...

Irene said...

An athlete does warm up exercises before he gets down to business. Might that not be a good idea for you to do? Do some gentle stretching before you start to limber up those joints and muscles? And do them every once in a while during your activities when you take a time out. I am sure that will help you. Going from active to non active and the other way around, is not such a good idea. without a step in between. xox

Emma said...

Great to work, a little at a time. What is it with our necks (backs, hips)- who eisigned them?! I have a great relationship with my physio therapist who's doing wonders with my shoulders.....I love the NHS!

Paper Chipmunk (aka Ellen) said...

S***!! So sorry to hear about the pain. Craning your neck down to do work is not good at all. Others have mentioned a drafting table, but for standing work there are ways of raising the table you already have as well. As for sitting… hmmm… it really can be hit and miss to find a good height to work at, or at least it was for me, and can be a very frustrating process. But it is possible to find ways of working that don't require as much excessive neck craning.

Is your chair adjustable? Being able to adjust your sitting height can help too. Just a thought. Ultimately, though, pain just sucks. I do hope you are able to find a way to work without hurting yourself. Alas.

jenclair said...

Love seeing your creative chaos!