In my studio, an artist’s Christmas is typically a time for resting and preparing for the coming year. Although it may be different for others, I think of it as a mini hibernation.  This is so because it is time to be introspective and quiet.  The warmth and light of my studio create a welcoming space for my reading and thinking.

Most years, once the Christmas family feasts and celebrations are over, the house falls quiet and our focus can shift to our inner world. For so many people, this year the quiet time is likely to start much earlier. I confess that I have stepped back from social media for a short while to reflect and take a break.  Stepping away from our daily duties for a moment or two gives us time to remember what is really important to us. 

This morning, we received a Christmas card from the family members who would usually be with us at this time of year. It features a wonderful piece of artwork by Alicia. There’s a wonderful exuberance and joy in her art. The image encapsulates everything that is Christmas: Elves, wreaths, stockings, family pets, Christmas trees, presents (of course), and so very many stars. My favourite element of her design is the statement ‘I like warm hugs’. Don’t we all!  After all, what can possibly be more important than being able to give a warm hug to someone you love?

Choosing your art path for 2021

I don’t know about you, but my art has become a fundamentally important part of my life. It is the way I interpret so much of my world and a means of thinking through complex emotional landscapes.

An artist’s studio is invariably a very personal space. It’s where we develop our skills and more importantly, where our thinking evolves and deepens.  It is a place where we can be brave and take big steps in our artistic journey – or create work that stays familiar and feels safe. Neither approach is wrong. There is no ‘wrong’ in art. There are no real mistakes, Because, as artists, we have the privilege of being able to choose our path. We get to do that every time we start with a blank sheet of paper, canvas, or board. If you are having an artist’s Christmas in your studio, consider which approach is going to feel like the right main path for your 2021. Making this choice now will shape your studio year ahead.

May you be as uninhibited as a child every time you pick up your paintbrush.

Merry Christmas and a much better 2021 to you and your loved ones.