In preparing for the show this weekend…as well as for the new year…not only have I realized that I am re-discovering my routine, but I’ve also realized that, in fact, I have a very specific routine. It’s all started to come back to me: the way I have to mat and frame during the evenings, after work, on the dining room table with a glass of iced tea or scotch (depending upon my mood); the small tingle of panic that I’m going to forget to charge my credit card machine (or, worse, forget it all together); the way all the last minute details come flying fast and furiously at all times of the day or night; the way I have to keep notes to remind me of said details; the way I have to listen to that mix disc of music by Carolyn Mark as I pack the car, just right, so that everything fits (“hamstering,” my jeweler friend Charmaine calls it); and on and on and on.
The routine is nice. When I first started out, I didn’t have a routine and I felt adrift. Now I know what I need to do, what I don’t need to do, what I need to pack, what I can leave at home, what has to be done–and when. There is a perspective now. There is a plan. Some of it I cobbled together from talking to others. Some I figured out on my own. Still more of it I just stumbled across while blithely wandering around the wide world of art fairs. I’ve assembled my own way of getting ready, and it works for me. I’m comfortable with it.
I’d like to share one of the many new photos I’m offering for the 2008 season. I chose this one because it illustrates one way in which routine can work in strange and unknowable ways.
Blue 1902 (For Sale)
I have a routine when I go on a photo search. The biggest part of it is that I don’t go out looking for anything in particular. When I do, I often find that I have a relatively unsuccessful day. On the day I made this one, contrary to my usual routine, I went out in search of something very specific (what that was I don’t even recall any longer). As I should have expected, I was having a less than inspiring day. I eventually gave up on my original quest. No sooner had I done so, I passed this shuttered service station. I quickly pulled over, got out of my car, and made several exposures from varying positions. I got back in my car, the hair on my arms and the back of my neck tingling and standing on end, excited about the find. Even though these were the only photos I made the entire day, I felt it was quite a successful afternoon. And I learned, once again, to trust in my routine.