|  May 2, 2014

Of course when I say that it’s time to dig deep into the reserves and find extra time to get new work done, I come down with the dreaded flu. I’ve been out of commission all week. So, unfortunately no work in progress shots. Everything is in stall mode. Which actually seems fitting these days.

I remember a long time ago when I was in AP Spanish in high school, I felt like I had hit a wall in my language skills. All of a sudden, the syntax felt clunky, my conjugations were tripping me up, words that I knew were escaping me and I was frustrated. My teacher told me sometimes when we are about to make a huge growth we hit a wall and we plateau for a bit. We trip up, we stumble, we question, we doubt. But keep going because you’re about to make a leap….I keep hoping that she is right when it comes to my studio practice right now.

12×12 inches

I’ve been doing a lot of questioning of my art process lately. What is it that I want to create? What is my purpose here? Where do I want to go? I’ve been vacillating between abstracts and my representative works. And then there are so many other things I am itching to try. I know that my inspiration and motivation are tied to actually being busy and working and getting my hands on the materials. And that when I am not able to get in the studio and work, that that is when the doubt creeps in and the questioning…

Questioning one’s self and the why’s and what for’s of what one is doing is very important. But it’s when it stops you from doing, well, that’s a problem.

Tracing the Surface
encaustic mixed media
12×12 inches

Patience is one of the most important qualities of creation, especially for anyone who wants to begin making art. The results cannot be pushed. Everything emerges in time. Even experienced creators find it difficult to accept that the gestation period of an artwork might be prolonged with few signs of progress. There may not even be indications of inch-by-inch progress. Days, weeks, and months may pass without any signs that the work is moving forward.
– Shaun McNiff, Trust the Process

The good thing is that I’ve been at this for a while now and I know that this too shall pass. It always does. I just need to get back in the studio.


  1. by mary on May 3, 2014  3:11 pm Reply

    Hope you get better soon, Bridgette. Best wishes for sunny days soon in the studio--

    • by bridgette on May 6, 2014  3:16 pm Reply

      thanks Mary. I'm on the tail end now, thank God!

  2. by Just Jen on May 3, 2014  9:06 pm Reply

    your post gave me pause Bri. for a whole bunch of reasons not the least of which is my own questioning and pondering on where I'm going, what I'm doing. but I'm not a believer in the whole 'when things get tough it means a giant leap is about to occur' notion. from my experience that usually occurs just before the wheels fall off the cart. not that I think that's gonna happen for you!

    re: quote ... patience is not one of my virtues and the idea of having to be present for days, weeks, months and not see any movement? oof. not sure I could do that. then again. what is the alternative? giving up. ha! not likely.

    wish I had some pearly words of wisdom.
    all I can offer is ... I hear ya. xo

    • by bridgette on May 6, 2014  3:19 pm Reply

      Thanks Jen. Maybe i'm hitting a midlife crisis that is rearing its head in my studio? ha! Who knows. For me, it really comes down to not being able to get in the studio. My work has always been such that one thing leads to another, leads to another. So I'm thinking that if I could just get in the studio, it'll come back. Just need to get in there. hoping.

  3. by Cathy Missaghi on May 3, 2014  10:34 pm Reply

    I can sooo relate to this post , going through all that now, all except the flu...hope you feel better soon.

    • by bridgette on May 6, 2014  3:19 pm Reply

      Thanks Cathy. Hope you get over your bump in the road soon too

  4. by Seth on May 4, 2014  11:19 am Reply

    I always feel that the slow downs are periods of time that our brains are percolating. Fresh ideas and bounties of creativity always follow!

    • by bridgette on May 6, 2014  3:20 pm Reply

      That's what I'm hoping Seth. I think though a lot of it just has to do with not having enough time and feeling frustrated by it. Looking forward to seeing you soon!

  5. by Sharmon Davidson on May 5, 2014  2:07 pm Reply

    I'm glad you know that this too shall pass, and that things will turn around when you're back in the studio. I also understand how easy it is to doubt; I hit a wall of only about a week or two, and was panicking, fearing I'd never make art again. Learning to trust the process is not always easy. Hope you feel better soon!

    • by bridgette on May 6, 2014  3:20 pm Reply

      Thanks Sharmon. Yes, it is so much about trusting the process. Thanks for that.

  6. by Kitchens For Living on May 6, 2014  4:18 pm Reply

    Your "self speak" is so helpful to me as an artist. It makes me feel I am not alone. Thanks for sharing it.

  7. by Marijke on November 21, 2014  4:14 pm Reply

    Hai Biridgette, just "stumbled" in to your blog. I am also a painter and recognize your stumbling and questioning all to good! But I know that it is just that what it takes to come further in your artwork and your progress. So lets just have stumbling, questions, doubts and dribbling sometimes and wrestle through it until we can welcome the flow back in. Artistic greetings from the netherlands :)

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