The Length of Art

One of the most frequent questions I have been asked is how long it takes me to complete a piece. To me it’s a difficult question to answer. Once I get an idea, I am thinking about that idea and all the ways I can flesh it out. If I am not thinking about it I am doodling it, or buying supplies for it, or day dreaming about creating it. Before I actually set hands on the piece I have created it, recreated it and reimagined it more times than I care to admit. So when it comes to putting the piece together it doesn’t take nearly as long as someone might think because I have already put it together several different ways before I even hit the studio.

Believe me, I will crash the car because I am doodling an idea long before I crash it because of texting or something similar to that.

Another diliema I run into is that I often don’t price my pieces what others think they should be because it never takes long to put together the piece. But my father in law said something recently that made me rethink that. He asked me how valable my time was, and then asked me to include all the time I spent thinking about the piece and creating it in my head. He told me to consider the schooling it took to be able to do that skill, and years I have taken to be the visual problem solver that I am today. Include that cost, he told me.

I spend much of my time as an Art teacher giving students the opportunity to think and create, asking them to solve visual problems-to expand their knowledge and comfort levels. And that is priceless… so even though I would not consider my work priceless, I do now consider much more than the length of it takes to create a piece of Art.


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