The beginning of the “Journey” prac.

Yesterday I had a panic moment. I realized I had not yet developed a concept for my art practical that I will be working on for the next four weeks. Like a true procrastinator I sat and had tea with a jumble of people who happened to be at my house, sighing sporadically and explaining the woes of an art student to anyone who asked.

The theme of the impending artwork is “Journey”, and as it was I had no direction for it. I usually spend time developing my concepts and exploring ideas, but I knew I had 24 hours to thumbsuck something worthwhile. After all, this is matric and concept is everything.

One of the women that was at our house having tea was staying with us for the weekend. My mom had met her only a week previously, developing connection with her and her travelling companion. They were on holiday from Germany and needed someone to show them the sights. Unfortunately, there was a traumatic situation and this woman had to separate from her friend and leave South Africa early. She needed a comfortable and safe environment for the weekend, so my mom offered her our spare room.

Someone suggested that I speak to her about her journey. I had a spark of imagination and asked if she would mind being part of my art practical. She obliged and we sat down for an interview. Three and a half A3 pages and over an hour of audio recording later, I knew most of her life story and I was late for church. What an incredible woman! Hearing her speak and visualizing her life inspired me to use her story, her journey, as the focus of my prac.

She has lived through so much and come out so beautifully. She prefers that I do not share anything personal on the internet, so I will respect that. But oh my goodness. Her story leaves me speechless. I am so excited to express the experiences she told me about as I see them in my mind’s eye.

Sometimes procrastination leads to the most wonderful concepts. Most of the time it leads to half-baked ideas.

madness and minutes

Salvadore Dali once said, “The only difference between me an a madman, is that I am not mad.”
I feel a little crazy. One minute I will be all like “Yeah! Let’s do this! I’m gonna ace (insert subject/project)!” And the next minute I’m sitting with said work in front of me going “Please help me, Jesus. I think I’m going to die.” And I won’t be joking. The thing is, I haven’t died yet, and I think its safe to say that I don’t think a mountain of work will kill me in the near future. I mean, a little hard work never killed anyone I know.
But somehow its still really hard to just do it. To just tackle it. To not procrastinate. So I have started using something awesome. Its called the 2 minute rule. When all I see is a huge pile of to-do lists and textbooks, I pick the most important task (ie: the one with the nearest deadline) and challenge myself to do it for 2 minutes. That really doesn’t sound hard! And it really isn’t. And it works incredibly well because I end up carrying on working because I’m on a roll.
I have to do things like this because I can’t afford to pretend that the work isn’t there. I can’t afford to tell myself “later”. I can’t afford to palm the tasks set for me off to others. I can’t afford to not prepare myself. My procrastination and lack of preparation not only affects me, but others too. It affects me when I don’t study, am faced with an exam, fail miserably and then have to deal with the consequences of that. It affects others when I am part of a team and can’t put myself and my desires aside to push through and be the best I can be within my team. 
I won’t pretend that I don’t fail at this daily. Procrastination and I are at war right now. The two minute rule is my secret weapon. But the important thing is that I continue to pick myself up and carry on to the best of my ability.
Oh and about that war? I think I’m winning.