Fan and Window, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Fan and Window, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

What are you up to these increasingly chilly days, dear reader? Let’s talk about what we’ve been making lately. (The comments are always open.)

I’ve been making observations lately. Observations about what kind of art I make and why. My photo series, The View Through the Windshield, continues, with photos such as the ones above, taken on foot, not from the car.

Here are more photos of what I’ve been up to, plus thoughts on what to do when you’re in a creative lull, which I am, a bit.

Spray painting acorns, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Spray painting acorns, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

This fall finds me spray painting acorns gold; these are for a workshop on Thanksgiving centerpieces.

I have a long history of spray painting things metallic colors, here’s a doll frying pan from when I was a kid that I found in the basement:

Doll frying pan on sketchbook, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Doll frying pan on sketchbook, copyright Elaine Luther 2016

My artist critique group pointed out my love of toys and how many of them I use in my art, so it’s not surprising that I photographed this window with the doll sized real estate for sale sign.

Tiny For Sale Sign, Copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Tiny For Sale Sign, Copyright Elaine Luther 2016

An artist said that it is her job to notice things. I tried to track down her name so I could attribute it, but I can’t find it.

Here’s something I noticed from a recent road trip:

The Sinks Do Not Throw Water, Copyright Elaine Luther 2016

The Sinks Do Not Throw Water, Copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Far from making fun of whoever wrote the note, the mis-use of the word tickles me. I think, “Well, thank goodness for that! I hate it when sinks throw water on me!”

My road trip also inspired a necklace, photos soon. So it’s not a complete creative lull, I am still making art.

But I am at a bit of a crossroads. I have a number of successful bodies of work, the Our Ladies of Perpetual Housework, the Medals that You Wouldn’t Want to Earn and Balance and Tension.

I just scaled up the Balance and Tension to 4 and 5 feet! And got a price for making them in steel.

What do I focus on next? What should I make? I’m not strongly pulled in any direction. At times like these, I focus on refilling the creative well.

Refilling the creative well, sketchbook page copyright Elaine Luther 2016

Refilling the creative well, sketchbook page copyright Elaine Luther 2016

I try to be gentle with myself that I’m not “being productive,” and focus on taking pictures, noticing things, keeping up my more-than-weekly-but-not-quite-daily habit of creative sketchbooking.

I think of this as refilling the creative well, so that when the time is right, I’ll have so much more to draw from.

Another refilling that I’m doing is embracing my collecting habit, embracing that I’m an assemblage artist who needs stuff to respond to and work with. The more stuff I collect, the more stuff I can make.

I hope this makes some sense and is helpful. It’s difficult to write about being in a muddle when you’re in the muddle.

What do you do to refill your creative well?

Want more photos like these? Follow me on Instagram at Elaine_Luther.

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