Discover more from Incidental Comics
Seize the Day, Loosely
On Time and How to Use It
Am I making the best use of my time? This is an essential question. But asking it too much can be crippling. I work best when I don’t question what I’m doing or ponder what else I might be doing instead.
I simply show up to the drawing table, lock the door and get to work. Soon, if I’m lucky, three hours have passed, my paper is full of meaningful scribbles, and it’s time to take a lunch break.
Some days this flow state is easy to get into. Other days I stare out the window and imagine all the incredible things I could be doing if I wasn’t forcing myself to write and draw.
How do I overcome this state of frustration?
If I need a break, I lie down on the floor and attempt to nap on the ink-splattered carpet. If I’m feeling restless, I go for a walk or a run.
When my own perspective feels stale, I take an illustrated book from my shelf and try to mimic the style and linework of a master illustrator. By trying to draw like Jean-Jacques Sempé or Maurice Sendak, I loosen up enough to draw like myself again.
Or I go back to kindergarten. Cheap Crayola watercolors are much easier to experiment with than my Winsor & Newton Professional Series watercolor set. Scissors, construction paper, and glue are great tools for creative play.
Time to take out the scissors and let time fall away.
Each slice of time makes up the feast of today. I try to keep my days varied. I do my best not to overload them. Could some pieces of time be more delicious? Of course.
But a life of only work would be exhausting. A life of only idle entertainment would lack meaning. A life of only solitude would be lonely. A life without solitude would make creativity impossible.
So I do my best to seize the day—loosely.
The sands of time are slipping through my fingers. I think I’ll build a sandcastle.
For more comics on time and personal philosophy, check out my latest book of comics, THE ART OF LIVING: REFLECTIONS ON MINDFULNESS AND THE OVEREXAMINED LIFE.
Incidental Comics is supported by amazing readers like you. Please consider becoming a free or paid subscriber. Thanks for your support!