As you know from last week's post, I recently completed a huge open studio event with almost 4000 visitors over 4 days. As that event approached, I stopped painting, did a lot of cleaning, rearranging, and tagging. The event was great. Now what?!!
Big events are fantastic and sometimes pivotal, but they are a serious interruption to the rhythm of work producing art. How do you shift the focus and ‘get back to work’ after something like this? Here's how my shift typically happens:
- Rest up! I often get a cold the week after the event. I've been pushing, pushing, pushing to get ready, and not getting enough rest. My body keeps asking "can you rest now?" and when the event is over and the answer is finally "yes", it's my body's way of making sure I take the rest that I need : )
- Don't be surprised if you feel a little depressed. This is a natural result as the endorphins and adrenaline ebb.
- Set aside a day (or more) to do all my follow-ups: validate email addresses, send out sign-up bonus gifts, add people to my mailing list; pack up and arrange delivery of paintings to their new homes.
- Move things back into their ‘working arrangement’ so that I can walk in and begin painting without any 'excuses' intervening.
- Have sketches/ideas of what I want to work on next BEFORE the event, so I’m eager to get back at it. It could be the idea that I didn't have time to get at before the event, or something sparked by a conversation during the event.
- Having something else scheduled that doesn't cause a lot of stress: I scheduled a watercolor course at my studio, and have an exhibit coming up. It could be a demo. Something that gets you back into 'working artist' mode, but doesn't require a ton of work (that would just extend the pressure period).
How do you shift your focus and ‘get back to work’ after a big event?