Sunday, 19 June 2011

Bee Behaviour

Only two weeks to go until I deliver the new work to Issigeac for my next exhibition, "Tri and Leaf" (details in the side panel), and I am behaving like a bee! This is quite normal, it always happens. 

Two months ago I said I was dedicating this time to making, and I have tried to so. But, as I thought, the vegetable garden has been a major diversion due to an extremely dry spring with abnormally high temperatures. Can we really ever call weather “abnormal”? It seems to do what it wants, and fortunately, no one has found a way to control it – yet. More pumps and hoses and gadgets would no doubt make watering the garden easier and quicker but it's just more consumerism, which as a rule I try to avoid.  It is also more stuff to own and maintain and hauling buckets of water out of the well has benefits in the form of nicely toned arms.

There is an old cast iron hand pump on one of the wells in the garden, but it does not work. Last week I got distracted trying to repair it. The bit that creates the vacuum was missing so I made a new one out of a piece of  plastic pipe and some wire and an old hot water bottle.

I got quite excited when I replaced it, I could hear it sucking sweetly against the walls of the pipe as I levered it up and down. But, then I realised that the check valve might be broken or that the well is too deep for a hand pump. Wikipedia says the maximum depth you can pump by hand is seven metres but the water line has now dropped in this well to nine metres so I have temporarily abandoned the task, as I must make some baskets!

Decisions have to be made and pieces finished. I have five things on the go at once, partly because it stops me from getting bored and partly because it helps avoid RSI in all its painful forms. For weeks I have been buzzing around the studio landing here and there, playing with this, trying that, taking an other to bits and starting it again. I am then off  onto something else, or into the garden.  

 The real creative stuff begins when I  wake in the morning thinking there are only so many hours left to finish everything.  I realised long ago that I need the pressure of deadlines in order to work well and today was a turning point as a result of finding just the right material for a particular piece, I can now see what has to be done – it’s just a question of putting in the hours and steering clear of distractions. I am buzzing off.