I had my first studio nightmare.
Panic-inducing dreams usually come in the form of being the student who forgot to go to class or a teacher who neglected to write the final exam. Other variations include the actress who didn’t study her lines and the harried waitress who lost all the orders in a restaurant full of diners.
These nighttime terrors share two common themes: anxiety and an impossible obstacle. In the latest studio version, I found myself suddenly evicted and forced to pack up in a big hurry. A quicksand of art supplies threatened to swallow me up while noxious odors of turpentine rose out of concrete vats. Stretched canvases multiplied and grew to enormous heights. Blocking any escape, the halls outside my studio door had produced a forest of easels.
What the hell is going on in my subconscious?
Then it hit me. It’s time for my semi-annual pack-it-up and move it across the world…in two suitcases. Being a painter is equipment heavy when you consider paint, canvas, brushes, mediums, gloves, sketchbooks, drawing supplies, tape, and notebooks, not to mention a scanner, laptop, iPad, and a blue Bose speaker. Hauling this stuff roughly seven thousand miles is quite the challenge.
I must admit, I’m getting it down to a science. My canvases and large drawings are rolled around two cardboard tubes that fit perfectly within my suitcase. Plastic pencil boxes containing charcoal, markers, and watercolors stack between. On top sits a hard cardboard portfolio, custom made. On top of that? More drawings.
Now where do I put my clothes?