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Letting Go of Some Good Stuff

November 14, 2011

Two weeks.

If all goes well, we are scheduled to close on the house in two weeks.  Decisions about what to get rid of – and what to keep – are getting tougher – and more urgent.  We’re in a dangerous mode right now, one of “put it in a box, we’ll take it to the RV, and then decide what to do with it”, and that just won’t work.  So, with the clock counting down, I have to make some really tough decisions about art supplies, artwork done, framed artwork, frames, etc.  My artist friend, Ron Guthrie says the books can’t go, because they add too much weight.  He’s right, of course.  Well, maybe a couple will go.

I went through all the art stuff just a few days ago.  I emptied out some tubs, consolidated some things, but I knew it wasn’t going to be that easy.  There’s still just too much.  Up to this point, it seemed easy, because it was a sort of abstract philosophy of “we’ll find a place for it”.  But that’s silly and unrealistic.  Just “finding a place for it” is what I’ve always done.  And it’s why I have so much stuff I really don’t use much.  So, today, along with doing a few things on the list Nell left for me this morning (It’s really not a bad list.), I’ve started tackling the art stuff again.

I’ve narrowed the large tubs down a lot.  In addition to the two that are in the cargo trailer, I’m down to these two.  The top one has framed art and the bottom one has a small number of empty frames (8×10, 9×12).  These large tubs with frames represent a lot of weight, so they’ll need to be distributed properly in the “basement” storage compartments.

I kept frames that I absolutely knew I would use for festivals and art fairs, and boxed up the rest, as shown here.  These are probably destined to a local school or art club, an idea tossed out by my artist friend Deborah Secor in Arizona.  Narrowing the number of frames down is a major improvement, because these add a lot of weight to the motorhome.

I’ve also gone through my art supplies (the small stuff), and eliminated a lot, ending up with more empty small tubs that can be used for other things in the motorhome.  There are, of course, more of these smaller tubs that contain unframed artwork, small (mini) frames, framing tools, precut illustration board and foamcore board backings, scrap board, sketch pads, etc.

What I have now for actual drawing and painting supplies (aside from pads and illustration board), are:

a) the french easel, which will be used outdoors of course, but will also set up on the dinette table for painting indoors;

b) the big tackle box that I’ve had for years.  The supplies inside that tackle box have changed over the years, depending on what my particular focus was.  It now holds all the usual little stuff like razor blades, erasers, and clips of various sizes, but it is now primarily my paint box, where brushes, paint, and the other little painting supplies will be stored.

c) the small tackle box, which is primarily for drawing and sketching.  This little box is handy to carry when I want to go out and just sit and do some outdoor sketching, or for when I want to sit and draw while sitting in the recliner inside in the evenings.

Progress.  A little at a time.

The clock is ticking.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Dick Secor permalink
    November 14, 2011 8:46 pm

    I went thru the same process and ended up donating a lot – I mean a lot of framed paintings to charity organizations here in New Mexico. Not an easy task to give up things. We are in a very small apartment until April 1, picking up the new Rv on April 4th in Elkhart Indiana. We still have quite a bit in storage to get rid of thru donations – mostly furniture and “things.” We will keep the storage as some antiques we just can’t give up and I have quite a few large 30 x 48 – 24 x 36 gallery wrapped paintings stored (climate controlled) as well.
    Wiodh you luck!!!

    Dick Secor

    • November 14, 2011 8:52 pm

      Good to hear from you, Dick. I’m putting together a “Links” page on this blog, with links to blogs of other travelling artists. I’m definitely adding you to the list. Best of luck to you as well, my friend!

  2. November 15, 2011 1:49 am

    You’ve taken an important step in paring done your art studio. I’m going through the same process. Still have much in the studio to purge. I got rid of my French easel in favor or a smaller pochade box and tripod; which can also be used on a table top. All my painting gear now fits in a single backpack.

    The links to other traveling artists is a great idea. Perhaps we should all do it. Thanks for adding me to your list.

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