Reviving back burner projects, a good thing?

I have been buried deep in technology for several months now and this past weekend it hit me! I need to create something, NOW! So I went out bought some new paints, Dr. Martin Dyes. Hello, why haven’t I been using these all along? Love them! I even revived a mood board for a project that I had set aside. It was one of those projects that sat on my rotary for too long, so I took it off the rotary. I am realizing that I still have the need to create what I call, lovely things. I have wrestled with how much time I can spend on this project which is why I set the idea aside. My soul just might need to create and paint, albeit slowly! I am not sure what form it is going to take on, if I will open a little lovely online shop or if I will create art for art’s sake but for now the paint and paper felt good! Have you ever pushed ideas aside only to revive them with fresh eyes? Were you sad you waited or did you think waiting was a good idea?

  • I am glad you found your way back to lovely things! Putting projects aside is definitely part of my process. I have a brilliant idea, (don’t new ideas always feel brilliant!) I work with it as far as it can go ~~ and then when I am in the stucky middle, I put it aside.

    The projects I am harvesting today were seeds that were sown months ago.
    I think it not only improves my work but also keeps the critic in me quieter. My inner critic is very very loud. She needs to be distracted! ; )

    • Monica Lee

      Terrific insight Laura-love the idea of harvesting seeds sown months ago! That makes great sense!

  • I agree–I think its a natural part of the process. Dormancy is part of the natural rhythm of life I think. Sometimes I refer to those simmering ideas on the back burner as ‘gestating.’ Either way they are still there, growing and developing. Then finally I get to the brave point where I am ready-to face the ideas, to face the fear of the new, unmastered task. I can’t wait to see what you have developing and growing!

    • Monica Lee

      Thank you Heather! Simmering ideas…when somethings simmers that means there is no sense of panic about it!

  • Mon, thanks for bringing this up. SO timely. I just pulled out a children’s book dummy two weeks ago. I wrote the story four years ago, got it to a finished-dummy state, my agent submitted it around, and it never went anywhere. Sometimes with passion projects I get a feeling about them that, I don’t know when and I don’t know how, but that sometime in the future , maybe in a few years even, that project will find new momentum and be ready to be worked on again. When I pulled out the dummy, I felt that way about it. It’s not on my rotary yet, but it is on my radar and it is simmering. Have fun with the Dr. Martins! I love those too, and your heart painting is, simply lovely!! :DD

    • Monica Lee

      Somethings are supposed to be brought back to light-reworked. Barba’s glasses book sat for 20 something years (don’t wait that long, haha!) You are such a good candidate for a children’s book!

  • I always have back burner projects that need to sit and marinate…then given a stir and a tasting. I really need to finish one and add that final sprig of parsley, bring it to the table and invite company over to feast 🙂 I just started subscribing to your blog~ it’s helping!

    • Monica Lee

      Oh good! And I feel like I need to go cook now after your cute analogy!

  • There was a time when I finished very few of my paintings because I was so hard on myself and my inner critic was so ruthless, saying, “This is awful, don’t waste your time!” Thank God for a teacher who pointed out is pattern in me and telling me many artists get to this point in the process. It was there I learned to set things aside with the intention of returning to it, letting it simmer like one of the comments above. Also the inner critic had a chance to quiet as well, so when I went to complete it later and saw it with fresh new eyes, many times I realized it wasn’t as awful as I thought it was. I’ve had many good paintings come from starts where I just wanted to rip into shreds. Thanks for your interviews and insight Monica.

  • I think sometimes projects need to marinate before they and/or you are ready to take them on!

  • Blissmade Designs

    I also like to put projects off, then come back when I’m inspired to finish them. Sometimes I can finish where I left off, but then occasionally l need to revamp my idea. I love everyone’s take on it, it’s a good idea to “marinade, simmer and wait to harvest seeds that were sown” until the timing is right.