The Year of Easing

I opened my emails on a Saturday evening, for the first time that week, and found the twice-yearly notification of the next rental inspection.

Time to be judged again.

Co-incidentally, I was looking back through my bullet journal and noted a margin note made in January: “IDEA: Year of Easing”. Looks like I was pondering what to do about the bundles of unused, but might be useful, recipes.

Don’t we all want things to be easier.

I mention a potential New Year resolution – a Year of Easing – in the context of the rental inspection because I look around and there’s not much that needs doing. Over the last 18 months, there’s been an investment of time, along with a bit of money, making it easier to keep this place tidy and clean.

“Easing” is a lovely word … to make less serious or severe … to move carefully and gradually … a carefully constructed move towards lightness.

With that idea in mind, today I turn my attention to the section of enclosed verandah that is supposed to function as an art/craft studio. I took down the tables for Christmas breakfast (held outside) and didn’t put them back immediately with the intention of cleaning the windows. Five months later, the tables are still folded and stacked, thus rendering the space useless.

I mused previously about this space, back when I had to clean up after dust storms in 2020. Enclosed verandahs in old Australian homes are very drafty. Since then, I have added new shelves, which helped greatly with keeping the space organised and tidy. But they are also a convenient place to quickly dump non-studio items. Empty plastic tubs. Camping chairs. Even some power tools are creeping their way in.

I’m going to combine the clear, tidy and clean with an art project! Let’s multi-task.

I don’t want to be distracted with making or painting. If I did that, the primary aim would cease to be the priority. Instead, I’m pulling out the old DLSR, finding that tripod and setting them up.

What will evolve?

Not a finished work, or even an attempt to start one. Instead, I cleared a shelf, set up some white core board on and behind it, and positioned the tripod so that I can take photos of things I sit on the shelf. It’s not a lightbox, in the traditional sense.

There’s a germ of an idea emerging. Can I use this space to create small tableaus, a still life, piled up menageries of stuff to photograph? I think I will enjoy the process. I very much enjoyed creating this image for a post about creativity some years ago (ouch, 10 years ago):

To kick things off – because setting up the next step before walking away helps ensure a successful return – I must place something, or some things, on the shelf.

Pfffft. After 18 months of making my home easier to clean, there’s not much in the way of knick knacks to pile up. More thinking is required.

At least the studio is tidy and functional again. That’s a big win worth celebrating.


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