I’m writing a book. And by book, I mean a real book, and it may bleed out into blog posts, Facebook posts, and other formats to get the information out there to you all. The book is called Art at Lunch. Keep up with the making of the book, which might include some working on it at lunch, by visiting my book website: Art at Lunch.
What is Art at Lunch?
Art at Lunch is just that – making art during your lunchtime. Serious art. Art you can use to build a larger body of work, work out ideas, build skills with or creatively solve a work-related problem while making art.
I work in an office job. I love my job, but I dream about doing art all day. I rush home after work every day to make art. I’m single with no kids at home, so this getting to art at night may be easier for me than some. However, I do have a busy social calendar, and on the nights I have other plans, I find myself dreaming about getting back into the studio.
My studio is a wonderful place to spread out and do big, messy, complicated things like printmaking, collaging with big stacks of found materials, three dimensional work, and anything involving a lot of smelly glue and pots of paint. However, there are many, many art-related things I can work on for just a few minutes at a stretch that help me build skills, stay in practice and build my capacity for doing shows or creating larger bodies of work. Another benefit of doing art in those small, precious moments at work is that it is SO relaxing, and low-calorie!
I am guessing maybe there are lots of other people like me out there who don’t know how to pull of this thing of art-making at work… maybe because they are too shy to try, or not quite sure how to get started.
My aim is to make this EASY for you by providing short lessons/ideas for you to try in a variety of mediums. We’ll give you a list of all the materials – keeping that simple too – and tips and tricks to give you instant success that will help you build confidence quickly. The better you feel, the more art you will make!
My belief is that we all want to be creative – it is in our basic nature as human beings – a survival skill, really. With just a wee bit of information, encouragement and some ideas, I have seen people take off and soar almost immediately. This book will give your art-making wings.
Don’t Drink The Water
Here I am today getting ready for “lunch.” In my lunch bag that I packed before leaving for work was my trusty Moleskine journal containing a line drawing I did last night at an art meeting, my watercolor palette (QoR tin), a water brush, and a rag. I fetched a nice paper cup of water from the cooler outside my office.
Have you seen this joke about artists? Don’t be accidentally drinking your painting water!
I Hope I Get Caught
It used to be that I was worried that my doodling in meetings, making art-related copies on the copy machine, or *gasp* painting in my office would be found out by my co-workers or superiors and that I would be perceived as not-serious, not working through my lunch hour, not not not.
I’ve been practicing making Art at Lunch for about a year now and just today my mind wandered to this place: I HOPE I get caught watercoloring at my desk!!! It’s lunchtime, which is my time. I’m not doing anything against the rules with my materials. It’s my choice whether to spend time wolfing down a sandwich or making a beautiful watercolor.
Getting caught doing something wrong is a mindset, a bad mindset, my mindset. Instead, I imagined what it would be like for someone to come in to hand me an invoice, ask me a question, or request a service and notice what I was doing and stop and watch me paint and then say Hey, I’d like to do that too.
What if instead of hiding in my office, I was painting down in the lunchroom? What if a whole table of us were painting, drawing, knitting, and chatting? Wouldn’t that be awesome? Just something to think about.