Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Its been about a week since starting work again, and though I posted regarding Droolicious, I feel as though ages have passed since I blogged.

Things have been great, and changing, challenging and fast. I've returned to a job I had before, and it hasn't changed a bit- so there is comfort and familiarity there. On the other hand, after the first two days outside of the house and a growing List of Things to Do, I began to think very protectively of what time away from work was made up of, from there the week became about observing myself in my ever-growing roles.

As a small business owner, this time being "unemployed"/ "self employed" was more fruitful than I was seeing at the time. Wanting to move beyond running the Etsy shop alone propelled me to get serious about investigating the realms of marketing, wholesale, and budgeting. With 2-4 days outside of the house, the name of the game right now is organize, systematize, act. The at home work space got a dramatic face-lift, too. I've hidden from sight all the supplies and products I don't regularly use, moved the winter clothes out of my dresser and replaced them with shipping, WIPs and silkscreen stuff, labeled my supply boxes. I now have the impression of a clear division between orders to ship and space to create. Putting away WIPs is such a breath of fresh air, I can hardly describe.

I have always, always, always worked on drawings and paintings in the middle of a cluttered and disastrous (to the untrained eye?) drawing table. This is one of those signature dichotomies in the life of the creative entrepreneur- my business owner self is such a neat nick, and shipping or emailing or anything business after a night of drawing (!) or painting (!!) has me "tut tut"-ing myself. On the other hand my artist self, who has been around much longer, is all pencil shavings, coffee cups, 5,000 images torn from wherever, tacked across my wall, and toppling teetering piles of notebooks. I no longer take this tug-of-war between instincts lightly, when time is so precious these days. I want both of those sides of myself to thrive, and when I'm in those roles I want to be able to pay full attention to my project without a single worry that I'm taking time away from either endeavor.

C recently loaned Craft Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco (Chronicle Books) from the library, a fine read for those of us entering into the middle years of Etsy ownership. It was a great book to settle down that dizzying whiplash of suddenly having 20 LESS hours for my own work. It helped with getting my mind around what to delve into in my "off" hours, especially on the expansion-beyond-Etsy subject. It also helped to feed my brain with business facts as I was cleaning/ rearranging my room, all the while scheming where and when to make the next glorious mess.

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