That was a long break.  Unplanned but needed to realign with the big U – my term for the Universe.  I’m plugged in and ready to hole up in the studio until Open Studio time in June.

A fellow artist asked on Instagram:

What do you do in the moments to reconnect?

I interpret this as getting back in the groove.  How do you get back to anything when you’ve taken a break?  I’m lucky in that I love what I’m returning to so I don’t really give it any thought.  No plans.  No list.

This week, I walked in to the studio and as usual I started sweeping the floor.  It’s a humble offering to a new day, a fresh start.  I took stock of what I needed to put away, work to hang, paintings to box for upcoming shows or old work I wanted to look at again.  I sat on the sofa awhile and took it all in; letting the eyes wander the walls freely.

I reconnect by moving.

This helps me get out of the mind and into the moment.

I then began to prep large panels.  Lifting and turning a 40 by 30 inch wood panel is like doing a set of straight legged dead lifts at the gym.  I stood for a couple of hours bent over the griddle applying the first few layers of medium.  Paint, torch, paint, torch.  I don’t like stopping this process because I need the panel to stay warm and accepting of the wax.

I reconnect by starting with what I know.

After ten years of encaustic painting I’m comfortable with this part of the process.  I could do it in my sleep.  I know how hot the wax is by the smell and shine.  I can “juice” my brush with just the right amount of medium to get the most out of each stroke.  I remember to prep many panels at once so when I start painting I’ll be ready.

And ready is just a sweep away!