the invariable importance of painting and calendars

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With Christmas behind us, I decided the next few days will be all about doing the things I said I would do over the break, but never actually do because I’m so busy doing everything else. This includes reading a new book (“Starting Point,” a Hayao Miyazaki autobiography), cleaning the bathroom (still haven’t gotten around to that one yet), and, one of my favorites, painting.

I love painting for a few reasons. The stroke of a brush is much more forgiving and supple than the hard lines of a pencil. While drawing easily becomes stressful for me, painting is purifying. When I paint, I feel that I have a goldmine of skill stored inside of me, and the riches can only be extracted if I keep going. It is the inescapable cliche of self-discovery through art.

So I sat down with my watercolors and brushes yesterday, trying to get inspired. I ended up sifting through my Pinterest board and eventually ended up with these cute little things.

A few years ago I remember buying a calendar with my Christmas money, and when my friend saw it, he couldn’t understand why I spent 12 bucks on it when there is a calendar app on my phone. I was taken aback and had a hard time justifying my purchase. I mean, each year I always bought a wall calendar. It was the way to start off the new year in my family. But, he was right – it was kind of a waste of money. Right?

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So creating these teeny calendars made me happy, because I don’t think paper calendars are obsolete. And I was glad to discover that some of my friends were willing to pay me to make them, as treats for themselves or gifts for others. I can’t quite figure out why, but I feel like there is something important hidden in the idea of having a calendar on your wall, not just on your phone. It’s validating to know that others feel the same.

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