Struggling To Create: Strawberry Frog #2

Struggling To Create During Home Isolation


How are you doing?  I hope that you are safe and healthy.  And, for my artist friends are you struggling to create?  Or, rather, have you been able to keep your work production up?

Struggling To Create: Strawberry Frog

Home Isolation.

The reason I ask this question is that I am hearing from some artists friends that they are struggling to create their work during this time of home isolation.  Speaking of which, I find myself working sporadically lately.  I have to push myself into the studio.

Funny, isn’t it?  I thought that this time of home isolation would make it easier to spend time in the studio.  Certainly the internet abounds with online classes, groups, challenges and other ideas for making art at home.  Perhaps there are too many choices?

Struggling To Create?  We Are Not Alone.

I find it helpful to know that I am not alone and that struggling to get into the studio is normal.  Interestingly enough, artist James Gurney did an article about this subject recently titled “Should You Wait For Inspiration?”  And, he came up with three suggestions that might help keep the work flow going.  I’ll paraphrase:

  • Set up “workstations”.  For example, I might have an easel set up for working on an acrylic painting.  That would be workstation one.  Plus, one might have a table set up for doing drawing or doodling.  So, when I’ve gone as far as I care to with the painting, I can switch to drawing.
  • Have a step-by-step process.  I can see how having a sequence to follow might be helpful in getting the mind focus.  For example, doing some warm-up thumbnail sketches or a contour drawing, or whatever works for you.
  • Leave fun and easy to do to start the next day.  Similarly my Dad (artist John Stermer) said he liked to prepare himself for the next day before he left his studio at night. In other words, he already knew what he was going to do when he first walked into the studio.  As an example, a fun thing for me might be laying in a colorful wash or two.

Struggling To Create: Strawberry Frog

My Stations.

So, back to today’s creative struggle and what I’m doing.

Station One:  I like to have an on-going habit of doing small studies.  Sometimes, it seems to take forever to get them done, but I work away at them anyway.  And, today I have two studies of my small model of a strawberry poison dart frog.  It’s all about shapes, proportions and angles.  But, still, it takes practice seeing and drawing the angles.  In any case, I do these while sitting relaxed in my easy chair.

Station Two: It’s my major work area.  I have an easel and drawing table.   That is to say, this is where I do larger drawings as well as paint in watercolor or acrylic, such as my latest painting.

Station Three.  I didn’t think I had a station three, but I do.  It is wherever my lap top is; that’s where I do my writing.

Keep To A Schedule.

My sister who is working from home says that she’s keeping a regular schedule.  I can see how the would work and help me, for example, push past procrastination and self doubt.  Hmm.  Just a thought.


I am tremendously grateful for my situation.  That is, I have a safe and comfortable place for home isolation with my husband.  I have nothing to complain about.

Instead, I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks go to all the “frontline” workers who provide essential services.

And, my heart goes out to you who have real problems due to illness, job loss and other tragedies due to the present virus.

Struggling To Create: Two Cappuccinos Please

Back To Work!

So, in summary, I best do my part and get to work creating!  And, it doesn’t matter what so much as that I go ahead and get to work.  Keeping a schedule will help!

#strugglingtocreate #acrylicpainting #procreatedigitaldrawing #iPadProdigitaldrawing

2 thoughts on “Struggling To Create During Home Isolation”

  1. Hi Peggy

    What a lucky morning I am having! I came across your blog. I liked the writings about “ tangent in design” and the recent post about productive art making in sheltering in your place”. They both are excellent articles. Thank you so much for such helpful articles.

    I am a watercolor painter also, mostly portraits in a traditional way. Those three photos of you posted on your blog are beautiful and I instantly thought of painting them. Would you allow me to show paintings of your face to my artist friends if I get to paint them? I’d appreciate it. Thank you Peggy

    1. Hi Misuk, Thank you, I am so glad that you liked my articles. I find it interesting that you are a watercolor artist yourself and that you specialize in traditional portraiture. Do you have a website or place where I can see you work? I’d love to see it. I am amused and pleased that you liked my selfies and want to create paintings of my face. How about this, would you be willing to send me more information about you through my contact page? Please see I’d appreciate it. Again, thank you!

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