I posted a brief answer to a question on an art forum and realized (as usual), it also applies to moi.

It was about being stuck, and not knowing how to get back to making more artwork.

There are two easy questions to ask yourself when you get stuck.

1) What do I need to do/have/find out in order to finish this piece?

I kept sitting down to my jewelry table to make up more earrings for an upcoming show. (It’s a show where only my lower-priced work will sell, so I need to make product to fit that niche.)

But I kept finding myself wandering around the studio, focusing on other little tasks instead.

I realized when I was actually making the earrings, I’m missing some critical beads for that design. But once I got up, I forgot I need to order more.

To be specific, they’re going to take some tracking down, and that’s the part that’s creating an obstacle.

Today I realized I’ve got to dedicate some time to finding them. I’ve contacted my regular suppliers, sent samples to an African bead trader, and did a quick search online.

Just knowing I’ve done what I need to do to move forward has increased my interest, and energy level.

IF that doesn’t work, ask yourself this question:

2) Do I really need to finish this piece?

If not, guess what–you don’t have to! You can simply change your mind and set it aside. (Unless it’s a special order, in which case, hunker down, sister!)

And about here it dawns on me, the other reason I’m having trouble settling down:

I do have special orders to take care of! In the frenzy to clean my attic and studio so I could work and host an open studio, I forgot I have a few orders to take care of. Well, duh.

Now I can settle down to work, knowing I’m focusing on the right task.

And I’m relieved knowing the other task has a solution in process. When I’m ready for it again, it will be ready, too.

Author: Luann Udell

I find it just as important to write about my art as to make it. I am fascinated by stories. You can tell when people are speaking their truth--their eyes light up, their voices become strong, their entire body posture becomes powerful and upright. I love it when people get to this place in their work, their relationships, their art. As I work from this powerful place in MY heart, I share this process with others--so they have a strong place to stand, too. Because the world needs our beautiful art. All of it we can make, as fast as we can! Whether it's a bowl, a painting, a song, a garden, a story, if it makes our world a better place, we need to do everything in our power to get it out there.

3 thoughts on “GETTING UNSTUCK”

  1. I had a conversation recently with Ginger Davis Altman, a polymer clay artist and tutorial writer (and science nerd like me), and she revealed that she is working on a tutorial to make TRADE BEADS. Her other tutorials are super great and I sense that, in emergencies like you describe herein, that you will be able to MAKE trade beads. Soon. How cool is that?


    1. Actually, Susan, Jamey Allen beat her to it–decades ago! Jamey is a noted ancient bead expert. He originally made beads out of polymer clay in order to explore theories about how certain glass beads were made. His samples were published in many early books on polymer clay.
      I can’t wait to see Ginger’s tutorial–sounds wonderful! I’ve purchased tutorials from her before, and they’re great! THE BLUE BOTTLE TREE Etsy shop


  2. Interesting!

    I would think that he might have also explored how they “wore down” with polymer.

    I can see tumbling new polymer trade beads with small smooth river gravel to age them

    I can see you creating aged trade beads to go with your vision for your animals.

    I can’t wait to see Ginger’s tutorial either. She is one of my “science buddies” and I love her mind. I love how she tests things.

    I’m working on a tutorial for my polymer clay opals and I keep her tutorials in front of me to keep me on the right track.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s