When I painted these cacti I was thinking about the question that I've been asked a lot from other creative moms, "How do you find time to create?"
My quick answer is often, "Childcare, lots of dirty laundry, and pizza nights," ie. I don't do it all.
The answer to the question, "When do you create?" is a bit more nuanced.
Before Sam wakes up. This was a big goal my first year as a mom. I saw other's talk about how they were making it happen early in the day and I would almost cry.
"I can't wake up earlier than he does! Earlier than 5:30 is too early!"
If you're reading this and that is you, imagine me patting you on the back and saying, "It will be okay. There will be a time when he will sleep past 6am. Rest."
This is when I often am most productive when it's just the two of us. Especially when I was working on The Late Bloomer Project, I would purposely schedule my days to fit around the fact that I needed to start painting as soon as his nap started. Did it constrain our schedule? Oh yes. But it's what I needed to do to make it work.
Nights are a bit hit and miss as far as creative productivity for me. When I was neck-deep in Hear Motherhood night time was my creative escape even if that meant being up and working on audio editing until Sam's 1am feeding. Now, I'm doing my best to be in bed by 10:30, which means I might get an hour of work done after putting Sam to bed at 8. Sometimes though I will watch netflix and be astonished by the artistry of another artist.
The moral to this story: There is never and will never be a perfect time to create. Motherhood has toughened me up and taught me to grow through less than ideal conditions. Kind of like a cactus.
The current "Story Behind the Work" series describes the people, places, and experiences that have influenced the pieces in my first art show - Local Color.
Be sure to check out paigemeredith.com/localcolor for more stories behind the art as well as information on how to buy an original piece of art.