You might be wondering what postcards have to do with running. It would seem not much. But some of the lessons I’ve learned from running are going to help me get my art back on track.
In my other life, I was a struggling artist. Ever since I graduated, I’d been attempting to make art on my own. I wasn’t part of any art community, and had no peers with whom to commiserate. I was creating in a vaccuum, and for me, that proved difficult. I was a decent painter, but I was always waiting to feel “inspired,” and thus my creative output was really low.
Similarly, it can be hard to run on your own. Just finding the motivation to run is a constant challenge. But as part of a community of runners, it’s way easier to get motivated because of the support and energy you draw from your peers. Running with others also helps you push yourself harder than if you run alone.
I now realize waiting for “inspiration” to create art is, for the most part, utter nonsense. The “secret” to making art is to consistently make it, whether you feel like it or not. Not everything is going to be a masterpiece, but if you keep making stuff – and lots of it – you’re bound to turn out a few winners.
The same holds true for running. You can’t wait till you “feel like” running, you just have to go and run, whether you feel like it or not. And do it consistently. Many times that feeling of wanting to run only happens after you’ve started running. Once you warm up and get the kinks out, and then you realize, “Hey, this isn’t so bad.” And if you run often enough, there are bound to be some memorable runs.
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So… what about the postcards?
They aren’t paintings, but the process of making them is similar to how I make my paintings. They’re like a quick and dirty maintenance run. I’ve also thought maybe I should try to bring Running into my art, hence the running themed postcard. Making postcards will allow me to ease back into painting. If you want to help motivate me, give me your mailing address and I’ll snail mail you your very own postcard!
And here’s another way I’m going to do it: set a realistic achievable 5k art goal. I started a small canvas the other day, and I am going to finish that puppy by the end of the month. That gives me exactly one week to put some paint on canvas. (Actually it’s on board, but whatever.) And since next week is a taper, I don’t have much of an excuse.
It’s crazy, after writing about art and thinking about art, I’m feeling inspired to make some art!