Life is a series of jumbled and contrasting pieces.
Wait. Scratch that.
They’re not contrasting, just disparate – an immobile network of gears and some of those gears are in fact raccoon pelts and a few are playing cards. In other words, life is made up of stuff and when you try and make sense of it the thing shifts on you, bucks you off. That’s why, as some mystics, cosmic healers, and stadium filling charlatans can attest to – the only way to understand life is to cut off the fat. Reduce it down to a workable size.
Now, the fat might be what makes life the delicious meal it sometimes can be, it also gets in the way. Bungles the whole bit. Like trying to release a balloon and then realizing that someone (or something) has, for some reason, built a birdcage around your hands and the sky is filled with an assortment of needles, ticks, and splinters.
Oh, but the balloon is in fine shape, so there’s that.
In other words – organization.
When you have work, hobbies, a thirst, a hunger, relationships, car payments, a mortgage, gardening tasks, and a calendar to keep – there is also a need for organization. Becoming overwhelmed is a symptom of being alive so better to just leave that unsaid. Complaining is best when done alone in the shower. No one needs to hear it. It’s your own struggle.
This struggle is dealt with in different ways. Song, dance, words, paint, ink , books and images – images in rock, leather, paper, and skin. That’s all it is, this art thing. It’s just a way to deal with struggle.
My anxiety medication has run out and when the subtle dread comes back and I don’t know what to do with it I just turn on some music or flip through a book. Watch a movie. Search through the history of illustration. Dig deep into the back catalog of a band I have a passing interesting in for unheard tracks. It is a searching, a want of a salve; realizing this is both wonderful and embarrassing because what it is saying is how art heals and repairs.
Finding the perfect song that you want to play on repeat, NO, finding the perfect song that requires you to play it on repeat is as important as a good night’s sleep or a fist of vitamins. It fixes the parts of you that you can’t reach yourself.
This is just a way of saying thank you to all of the musicians, writers, illustrators, print makers, perfume creators, and crafts-people that have done something. You can’t all be famous or wealthy, but if you keep putting your work out in to the world there will be one person out there who is looking for exactly what you’ve made and whether either of you know it or not, you will find each other.
I don’t ask much from anyone but I will ask this of you – find something you love, maybe search for something new to adore, and find it’s creator and tell them how much you enjoy what they’ve made. It is worth it, I promise, and both of you will be made a little stronger for it.