I have been trying to sort out my studio over the last couple of days. I have so much stuff hoarded away in there and no efficient way of finding anything.
I am a long way away from resolving this and I suppose it must be true of anyone who has had a long creative career. How much of what we produce to we keep?
I have a small sample archive of the work I created as an illustrator and cartoonist for The Economist and the F T and the Independent and so on, as well as work done for design groups and magazines. I have a fair bit of work done for children's publishing - both for my books and the books of others.
But I also have shelf-loads of sketchbooks and scrapbooks and I have folios and plan chest draws full of artwork of various kinds. I have stacks of canvases and boards, some with paintings on, some primed and waiting.
But added to all this, I am a writer. In fact I am first and foremost a writer now, in terms of income, and many of the people I work with are fairly oblivious to my other life as a visual artist.
So as well as all those sketchbooks, I have notebooks - some going back thirty years. I toy with the idea of typing them up in the times when I have nothing better to do, but that's probably not going to happen.
And of course that leads on to that other great store of stuff - my computer(s). I have file after file after folder of stuff going right back to when I first started, still in the default type on Word - New Roman was it?
That stuff doesn't take up as much space, but it bothers me for the same reasons - it is a great lumber room of half-forgotten things with no clear way to see what's in there.
So I am trying to open the odd notebook and open the odd folder to try and see what I have there. There are stories I came up with that stalled because I couldn't resolve them or knew they weren't what my publisher might have wanted. I want to look at all that stuff again and see it afresh.
Who knows what I might find?