While thinking about retirement, I imagined a little studio on the 2nd floor of a refurbished barn on our property where I would spend hours in front of sun washed windows painting and welding amazing sculptures. And then my free time would be photography and fulfilling a life long dream-writing a novel.
So 16 months into retirement are things as I imagined? Yes, though on a much smaller scale. But isn't that how reality differs from dreams...
First of all, absent a barn on our property, I improvised by setting up a small studio in a seldom-used room adjacent to my study. A fresh coat of yellow paint, new honeycomb blinds over an arched window, a 1960's Formica table that my parents gave me long ago and some storage units from the Container Store provide a great place for art and crafts.
And this is an example of what I like to do. Re-purpose. Use ordinary objects for art. Whether it be antique glass creamers, old register grates, antique beads, old bar stools, prisms from chandeliers, old jeans or pennies, I enjoy these being the starting point for art. Here are a few examples over these retirement months:
I created a small vase by painting an antique glass milk creamer with acrylic paint and added beads around the neck.
I purchased an old register grate at an antique store which became a great garden sculpture
I love making sun catchers. This one is from old and new beads, a prism from an old light fixture and an old bus token.
Since the seat was falling out of this old chair that Mike picked up on trash day, I used it for a pot of geraniums.
I create purses using old jeans, handles from old purses and scarves.
Mom and I created a sign for the kitchen using pennies.
With my mom and sister Pam, we created felt Christmas trees and added bead ornaments. (The EAT sign and the felt trees ideas came from the CraftedSparrow.com blog).
I thoroughly enjoyed the Christmas season. I created tree toppers using old jewelry and beads. Other tree toppers were made of felt and fabric paint. Of course, there was that slight failure making a "Noel" sign...
And I continue to make jewelry from old and new beads...
As far as writing goes, I am enjoying writing this blog. Although I expected it to be about retirement, I guess it's really about my life and what I'm up to. Sometimes writing takes twists and turns you don't expect. And though I haven't written that novel yet, I am working on a few other things. Here are a couple of children's books that I wrote a few years ago and recently revised.
And photography lives strong through this blog. I am always taking pictures of every event, much to the chagrin of friends and family.
So it's not exactly what I imagined for retirement, but it's pretty darn close. I love creating, whether with words, beads or paint! I find myself looking at things and imagining what it could be. And the time just races by when I'm working away in my studio...
I hope you are making time for your own creative outlet. Your inner artist needs to come out!