June 20th, 2011

owl

memoirs of a freelancer.

I was talking to a friend of mine today about the crazy pressure freelancers put on themselves with the excuse that you've got to take work when it comes your way. we put it before meals, we put it before sleep. in reminiscing, I realized I have had some seriously odd "must get this done, no matter what" moments:

I remember sobbing while painting. sobbing from the stress, while simultaneously painting to try to make my deadline. on more than one occasion.

I remember sweating with anxiety, racing heart, while painting. more than one occasion, but definitely during that time I had a three hour window to execute an illustration from assignment to final and my scanner broke at the last second.

I remember being surrounded by moving boxes, but painting instead of packing, even though movers were coming the next day, because I had a deadline.

I remember drawing with a broken arm, and packing orders with a broken arm, because my deadlines and customers were waiting for me, and I had committed to these things before I broke it.

I remember a lot of sleeplessness, both from the long hours as well as the anxiety that accompanies them.

I remember days nudging together into blobs I only remember as "the time I worked on __________"

meals skipped, coffee after coffee, and in-between these periods, stretches of empty calendar days (typically used to "catch up on life", make "personal work", etc) when I wondered if I would ever be hired again, or ever given another art show, or ever have another customer.

what a crazy way to live!

by the way, all the work is "personal". what a silly word to distinguish it as being self-initiated.