ArtsLab Shopfront's artists in residence

What else would you be doing?

It takes time. I’m reminded all the time, but mostly by myself, that it takes time.

Which means having to mediate my own desires for immediate success, or success full stop, having to re-envisage my time frames, having to postpone, work harder, let things go, or re-orient. Mostly having to admit when I’ve got it, but being willing to know when I haven’t.

To borrow and re contextualise the famous quote from The Princess Bride – “Anyone that says differently is selling something”.


It also helps me to ask… what else would I be doing? Walking to the shops? Drinking coffee? Chatting with friends? Earning money? And then?

When I was eighteen I discussed not going to University with my boss – who was also an early mentor for me. I told him I didn’t want to waste my time, cause University took three years, at least. He replied by asking how old I was going to be in three years – pointing out that no matter what, in three years I would be twenty one either with or without a degree. The question then arose… what would I want to have done by the time I was twenty one…? When I was twenty one, what kind of life would I want to look back on?

I’ve always thought, since then, at how amazingly different time spend looks from before and from after a project.

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