What Do Artists Do All Day?
A few years ago I stumbled across a series on You Tube entitled, "What do Artists do all day?" There are not a ton of episodes but we watched all of them in the course of a couple of weeks. They're a really charming look into the daily lives of artists working in various mediums. My favorite by far is the one featuring painter, John Byrne. He got sort of famous painting album covers back in the 60's and now he's known (in his circles) as a painter of self portraits and as an occasional theatre designer. That piqued my interest after spending the better part of my 30's and 40's in the theatre. You can see those 2 short episodes here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUPKic-MN7A
To answer the question myself, a typical day for me is rising at 5 am and heading down to my basement studio in my home in Shoreline, WA. I try to get in a quick timed sketched- a single complete painting or drawing in an hour or less OR if I'm on some sort of deadline I work on whatever is on the easel. At the moment I have a commission that is due and I am painting away at a vintage motel. I can usually get in 2 hours of painting before the kids are up for breakfast and we get my wife out the door to work.
Then, I'm a homeschool dad for a good portion of the day. I teach history, science, language arts, French and of course, art. On a day like today, my wife gets home after lunch and I'm back in the studio, working on the business side of the art making- marketing, website updates, returning phone calls and emails. I find that the business side is not unlike the "making stuff" side- there are good days and not so good days. But I always feel that the worst day in the studio is better than the best day sitting in a cubicle somewhere, working for someone else. So I am grateful. By the end of the "workday," we are making dinner together, playing music, reading and tucking our people into bed. Every day is full, every day is a gift.
I think how we answer the question "What do Artists do all day" is probably as diverse as there are artists in the world. I feel fortunate to get to make stuff, live and work from home, surrounded by my loved ones. I thought it might be interesting to write about what this artist does throughout the day. I'm pretty normal but I realize that I get to do something that is a little off the beaten path.