Taking Breaks and Procrastinating

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Canoeing the beautiful Barron River I was 'off the grid' this past weekend on a canoe trip. The trip was awesome, challenging, relaxing, and so so beautiful. The days leading up to the trip was kind of terrifying. Going off the grid?! But what if someone orders something, or I get an email from a current client that needs to be addressed asap?? I might lose business, or affect my response times! Of course, none of that happened- I had emails and orders waiting for me patiently when I got back, and I didn't piss anyone off by not responding this weekend.

Having my own business feels like I have to be around twentyfourseven, and for the most part, I am. There's just so much backofhouse stuff to figure out, so many emails and notes to be on top of, there really aren't enough hours in a day! I really need to realise that I can take a weekend off without my new world coming crashing down around me!

This week I'm moving between taking actual breaks and procrastination, as I try to pace through the heavy workload I have set up for myself. I have SO much to catch up on. I still don't have business cards forgoodnesssake!!

Inks and Washi tape all organized with my purchase from aberfoyle antique market

But why have I been procrastinating so much on this and so many other projects? Some other calligraphers and artists seem to work so much faster than me, but I seem to get overwhelmed so easily. Maybe I'm just wasting time doing non-productive things. Like the continuous drive to organize my studio (majorly successful procrastination technique). I've been indirectly putting off producing art and creating more cards - it's become such a daunting task (what if it's ugly, what if it takes too much time, what if I run out of ideas?), and time has only made it worse! I was thinking about it lots this week, and am telling myself to just take it one step at a time. Just pick up a pencil/paintbrush and have some fun. It's on the docket for today!

Handmade envelopes from patterned scrapbook paper sealed with a pretty wax sticker from fox and quills

The thing with procrastination is you don't know where the time goes- allofasudden it's the end of the day/week. And then you meet friends for lunch or dinner and don't know what to say about the progress of your business! I laughed when I read this article about how to get out of your head and interact with the outside world. A really good read for those who work from home, have been working a lot, or for anyone who feels unsocial at times (everyone). I was amused to find that I practice half of these 'techniques', as I often am in a situation where I'm interacting with people that have VERY different days than me. I think I've gotten better at talking about my world, but I'm still not totally comfortable with it.

By the way, I've updated my portfolio to reflect some of the things I've been working on these past few months- check it out!

Anyway, I'm going to get to it now! (After a quick run..... )

xo

Pri

Finding and breaking routine

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Hope you are all having a good week! Live your Dreams- Cabin decor

I spent the early part of this week in Deep River, ON, a wonderfully idyllic town where the air is fresh and the mosquitos are plenty. It Shakespeare Quotewas the first time that I tried to work 'remotely' (when I wasn't able to close my studio door and block out the outside world for hours at a time).  It was semi-successful, but as much as I hate to admit it, a part of me longed for the daily routine I have at home, especially when I have a lot of work to get done.

I have a love-hate relationship with 'Routine'. The word itself sounds so boring, like you're going through the mundane motions of the day without thought or appreciation of life. But I have also realized the importance of establishing a routine for a small creative business, and how it can free your mind to think about less mundane things. It's funny though, how exhilarating and tempting it is to just break from routine, to go to the beach instead of sit in front of the computer, or for lunch instead of sorting your workspace. Getting into a routine seems like it would lead to substantial fulfillment in the long run, while running away from it fulfills in a shorter, more intense way (and maybe not as lasting?)

My routine typically changes everyday, and I think I may need to find a better one in the coming months, when I plan to create create create! I have a lot of plans right now, and have to see them to fruition. The task will be trying to not let the beach trips, vacations and catch-up lunches get in the way!!

I found this awesome article with routines of famous writers, and think this is so inspiring! I wonder how successful they were at sticking to it...

Do you have a routine? What's it like and do you feel that it liberates you or ties you down?

I'll be finishing up some work on my website this week, and preparing for my upcoming trip to the IAMPETH convention in Tennessee (which I'm SOEXCITED and SONERVOUS about!). We were given the chance to participate in an envelope exchange with other members (and bring to the conference, I guess as a sort of icebreaker). Here are some pictures from that exchange.

Watercolour painting and calligraphy on Mixed Media paperAddressed envelopes for IAMPETH exchange

I also received some BEAUTIFUL envelopes in the mail from this exchange- it's such a treat to get a hand written envelope and note among all those flyers and bills!

Envelopes from IAMPETH envelope exchange 2015

Have a happy Friday and wonderful summer weekend!

xo

Priyanka

Accepting change and making decisions

It's hard to believe that February has come, and almost gone. I don't know if it's a good thing (that I've been so immersed in work that I haven't been aware of time) or a bad thing (that I've been so immersed in work that I haven't been aware of ANYTHING ELSE). One thing's for sure, it's been sort of crazy! The juggling between custom orders, creating prints and greeting cards has been tough! It's been hard not to jump to a new thing every fifteen minutes but stay focused on the task at hand.

I've spent a lot of time thinking about how I can manage this new pace of life without going crazy. Organization, of course, is key, and my moleskin planner never leaves my side. No, I will not give up handwriting all my appointments and to do lists!! I've found that the other incredibly important element to sanity for me is a regular routine of yoga and running. Running is great when I'm super stressed and need to physically tire myself out to calm my mind, and yoga really helps with mindfulness and focus. Since I've been working from home and turning into a hermit, I've found a love for doing yoga in my own home space. Something about using my home as a place that I can wind down as well as work feels balanced and encouraging. I use this amazing website for my classes.

Having your own business can be so liberating and constraining at the same time. You can decide on ANY direction for your business, but all decisions feel like they hold so much weight that it's stupefying! I finally did make a decision recently, and that is to offer up my calligraphy and design services for wedding invitations and events. Yay for making the decision! I hand design the invitations and create a digital copy that folks can print themselves, or send to a printer! I'm working on getting some examples on my Etsy shop soon....

Speaking of Etsy, if you haven't already seen, I've added some new screenprinted cards that can be used for many different occasions- the cards are blank and speak the universal language of love. :) Here's my screenprinting process and setup in my home studio:

 

On a personal note, it's been a bit of a challenge understanding where my 'new life' fits in with the world and people around me. There have been stressful, sometimes sad, sometimes guilty, sometimes happy days related to this. I stumbled on this article recently. It was a good reminder that when I feel like I'm 'wasting time' (mostly in relation to my old life), I am probably wrong, and even if I'm not, it's something I shouldn't stress about because it's still leading me down some pretty amazing paths. I am still accomplishing something even if I am not going into an office everyday.  I need a daily reminder of this- we probably all do. :)

xx

Priyanka

The image at the beginning of this post is a little quote I wrote out for my lovely friend's beautiful new baby. Check out my Etsy shop for more pics and purchase options :)

 

 

 

 

It's really cold in Toronto

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Hello There! Thanks for visiting my new site!!

On here you'll find my portfolio and ways to contact me. I will also be documenting my journey in calligraphy and printmaking on this blog. (We'll see how often this happens... !!!)

 

Since it's absolutely frigid out (it feels like -21degrees people!!!), I'm tempted to try and set a record for the number of days I can hibernate at home. So I created a long list of to-dos that can be done safely (and warmly) within the confines of my home studio. On the top of the list is updating my Etsy shop with the new products (service?) I will be offering- custom calligraphy! Hope to have the items and product pictures up within the next week.

I've created a bunch of works for friends and family over the past couple of months, and am so pleased that they were a hit! Everyone loved having a meaningful poem/quote/baby's name written out just for them. It's a great custom gift for any occasion, or no occasion at all! If you have a project in mind, even if you don't see it on my portfolio, don't hesitate to contact me. I would be happy to discuss new ideas!

Other highlights on the agenda for the week: some custom quote projects, a couple of cards that need to be completed and sent out this week, enter the labyrinth that is the Canada Post website and figure out 2015 shipping prices (ew), and prelim designs for wedding invites (eek, yes! custom wedding invites! Not something I'm offering out to the general public YET...but maybe soon!)

Now that I've successfully procrastinated for a couple of hours this morning... I'll start tackling the list. Hope you all have a Happy Monday!

xo Priyanka

ps. If you want to know more about my business, I've rambled on about myself here.