This week has been a little rough. For the past three nights I've been working on my largest custom print to date, a 16 X 20. Monday and Tuesday I spent hours perfecting my spacing to fit 144 words. By the end of Tuesday night, I had finished the last practice sketch with ink in 45 minutes. Last night I was ready to do the final print in a dark teal gouache. This time I finished the print in two hours. My hand was aching and tired, but I felt relieved because I had finally completed this big project I had dedicated several hours to. B and I were checking the words on the print to the copy of words requested by the client; by the time we were half way through the long quote, I had already missed or made a mistake on FOUR words. I was exhausted, mad at myself, and shocked at how badly I messed up. It seemed ridiculous that even after paying close attention, practicing for hours, and working slowly that I still made mistakes. After a moment of frustration, I took a deep breath. At this point I knew there was nothing I could do to help the situation except relax and try again tomorrow.
Tonight I will have to go buy more paper (..maybe two sheets to be safe this time..) and spend at least another two hours redoing this beast of a print. But instead of stressed or angry at myself, I'm going to choose to relax. Choosing to feel stress after making a mistake isn't going to undo it. It will only make the process of doing the work again worse. The fact is I just have to do the work. By choosing to acknowledge this fact, I eliminate my auto-response urge to feel stressed or angry. Today I just need to breathe in and breathe out, and do my work. Some days this is the best thing we can do.
Instead of stressing, procrastinating, or rushing through the work, try breathing. Notice how different your emotions are throughout the day and see what kind of work you can accomplish.
p.s. If you're interested in seeing the actual print I have been working on, please follow me on Snapchat. My handle is the same as all social media – @coloregrace!