At the moment this post goes live, I’m in Montréal. It’s my last day here, and I’m either having a leisurely coffee in that café I’ve fallen in love with, or I’m scrambling to make sure I have everything ready when I head to the airport in a couple of hours. (It could go either way.)
On one hand, this trip has been fantastic—I’ve taken loads of pictures, and I’m probably (remember, I’m writing this ahead of time) feeling incredibly inspired.
On the other hand, this is the latest in a series of disruptions—a couple of day trips in the summer, a cold, et cetera.
I thrive on routine. It helps me get past creative blocks, and it takes away my excuses to not do something, and it just generally makes everything work. But when my routine is disrupted—by a cold, or a trip, or just something else that I need to get done on a deadline—all of that falls apart, and I have a really hard time getting back on track. It can take weeks to build my routines back into place, one by one.
Not to mention: routines work well for writing and drawing, but they’re not great for photography. I can’t really decide to just take pictures every day from 10:30 to noon. (Well. I could. But it would be a lot of pictures of the cat, and she hates the camera.)
I’ve realized that I have to stop relying so much on routines. Right now, I just can’t sustain them, and trying to is holding me back.
I’ve been making some progress over the last couple of weeks—I had some client work I needed to get out the door before I left, and I had a surprising amount of prep to do for this weekend trip, so I haven’t been able to rely on any of my established habits or routines to get things done. And it’s been good. It’s been working.
When I get home, I’m going to have another list of things that need to get done: edit this massive collection of photos (and the photos from the summer that I haven’t got to yet), finalize the site redesign (I’d really wanted to have that done before I left, but… yeah. Didn’t happen), some other things that I haven’t had a chance to think about yet. All of that is going to get in the way of the things I want to make: photos, drawings, everything else.
I have to find a way to make it all work.