austin kleon in his artist self-help book, steal like an artist, advises you to lead a boring life so you can get work done. as a mother of four living in crazytown, i respond, “ha!” easy for you to say, mr. kleon. i don’t think artists who suffered bouts of depression & mania, who turned to drugs & alcohol to quiet the demons in their heads, who found themselves in complicated lives with hordes of children, etc. etc. i don’t think these artists chose these lifestyles thinking it would make them better artists. it’s easy for someone who doesn’t come from a background of abuse, who doesn’t suffer mental health issues, it’s easy for a person like that to advise others to “be boring.” but as an adult child from an abusive background, i have found that keeping life boring is a struggle. as an artist mother to four children, a boring life is a flushed away luxury. right now there is a screaming toddler in my arms demanding to nurse (he wants to nurse non-stop, it seems.) i tried to fill a pen with ink & had to stop to pull misha off of poppy whom she was repeatedly body slamming as they fought over a book.
fuck, wouldn’t a boring life be awesome?
i’m not even going to tell you about my mother’s day….
but i was able to etch out a drawing of poppy as he nursed. i added horns & wings. because, they are there. you just can’t see them unless you really really look. i don’t like drawing from real objects very often. i prefer to pull things out of my head. that’s probably the real reason i added horns & wings to a sketch of the baby latched onto my nipple. portraits of babies are usually creepy. so i think the artist should just admit it and go with it and go ahead and creep out any portrait of a baby.
page 32 should be easy to finish–in theory. maybe i’ll dose the kids with benedryl (just kidding, child services!) and not think about dusty’s stalker or where we’re going to live when the lease is up or how the fuck i am going to make money to support my hoarde….
at this point, misha is shoving shrek 2 at me, ignoring the fact that i am using the laptop she wants to play her movie on. poppy is nursing, falling asleep and shrieking every time i jostle him. fidgit & iggy are fighting about whether or not iggy washed his hands after he pooped & before he touched fidgit.
no matter how boring i am, my life won’t stop being an episode of crazytown, usa (my next graphic novel.)