Ryan James




Hello loves,




Sometimes it's just not there is it? You can try to pin it down to lack of energy, lack of inspiration or just lack of coffee. Either way art is it's own beast and when she doesn't want to play...she doesn't. On Wednesday I just sat at my desk, paints in hand staring at a canvas for about an hour and a half. It's not as if I didn't know where to start or what colours to put on there I just couldn't bring myself to begin. Thankfully I had a few commissions to post off so I took a small break and after an appropriate amount of coffee I sat back down at the desk and still...nothing. Now was it frustrating? Yes. Was it irritating? Yes! Did I freak out? No. I didn't feel a creative block nor did I feel a sadness nor any other kind of weirdness. To be honest I think I was just tired. More tired than I thought I was. Still, for more hours than I probably should have I sat there trying to push through until I finally gave up and by give up I mean I caught myself in a youtube sinkhole. I hate wasted time. If I'm not being creative I'd rather be doing something else. So I left my art studio, took the dog for a walk and then got some nice food and finally watched “The Train to Busan”, a zombie horror that I've been dying to see for ages. Then yesterday I woke up and started drawing again as if nothing had happened.



Now art is my side business. It's my passion. I have the freedom to take breaks but I have learned through my other work that solely producing work is not the only way to be productive. Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is take a break. Years ago I would have tried to push through to the point of where I would be more tired than when I started. Work ethic surpassed self care. That's just not the case any more. Your body is your business no matter what your work is. If you don't take the time to look after you then it's a ticking clock until you become ill. Today I woke up and everything is still normal. Sometimes I have an off day, sometimes I have an off week. Last year I had an off five months. Going through a sketchbook from that time a few days ago it's shocking how crappy some of the art was that I made during that time. Looking back at that I probably should have taken more breaks than I did and I definitely should have taken the pressure to create off my shoulders. Now all of you know by now that I like to make. I don't feel right if by the end of the day I haven't created something. A poem, a sketch, a sentence for a book, I just don't seem to sit right in my skin if I haven't done something. So in order to keep myself in that space I have learned to ensure that I look after myself as much I can.



Stress is diluted focus which is hands on one of the main reasons I go off course. I divide my attention way too much. I try to fit in way too much and for the most part I love doing that so long as I don't take it too seriously. It's when it feels like my list is hanging over my head that I start the journey towards burnout. I know that other artists read this blog but I think it's also a point ot make for everyone. Breaks are important. Breaks are productive. Breaks are vital for resetting your creativity and your well being. So with that said, I'm going to go and get myself a coffee but before I go I just wanted to check in. I wanted to let you know that it's all going well here and that even though I am working lots and working hard that I am also looking after myself. I have been thinking of starting a few new projects, particularly a patreon. If you have any ideas or thoughts on that let me know!



Thanks for tuning in.



Big Love,



Ryan James x





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