How Long?

How long does it take me to make art?

Recently someone asked me how long it took to finish one of my colored pencil pieces.  The truth was, I didn’t really know.  Not exactly.

What I mean is, I knew that about five weeks had gone by between the time I started the piece and the time I finished.  But that doesn’t really tell the story.  I am seldom able to do nothing but work on art all day, every day.  Other things come up and get in the way.

Since I’m single and living on my own, I have to do all the household stuff like cleaning and laundry.  I have to shop and buy food.  I have to run errands.  I have to put gas in the car.  I’m also involved in another business, TSG Multimedia, that takes some of my time.  I envy artists who have a significant other who handles all that stuff.

And even when it comes to art-related activities, it’s not all about actually doing art.  I have to book art shows.  I have to do paperwork (yes, even an artist has to do that).  I have to make prints and cut mats.  I have to keep track of all my prints so that I can sign and number them properly.  I have to print the certificates of authenticity that go on the back.  Then when all of that is done, I have to put each print in its own plastic bag to protect it until the customer puts it in a frame.

So in light of all that, I decided that I would try to keep track of the hours I actually spent on a piece.  I have this software app on my computer that is normally for billing clients an hourly rate, but it works just as well for this task.  Whenever I sit down to actually put pencils on paper, I am going to turn it on and let it run the clock.

We’ll see what happens.

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