View Full Version : crazymakers

11-09-2000, 02:14 AM
In addition to being a full time artist, I am involved in a regional art group(president)which provides an art center and gallery, adult and children's workshops, and juried exhibitions. I enjoy the volunteer work and know that the time is well spent promoting the arts in an artless community.
The term crazymaker really struck a nerve with me since this organization breeds them.
To set aside time to work(colored pencil) and direct these community efforts is an exercise in avoiding sabotage from these personalities described in AW as crazymakers. The energy required to avoid and protect one's space and focus from these disruptive characters could be used in a more productive way.
How do you deal with fellow artists or friends who require total attention from others dealing with "their" crisis of the day? By the way, everyone gets to have have an occasional crisis.
One of our members, a textbook variety crazymaker, can make one phone call that creates a chain reaction resulting in hours of phone interuptions. She is satisfied and powerful.
I realize the term is used in the creative block context, but blocked or not, these personalities cut in our productivity.
Anyone have war stories?

11-09-2000, 10:41 AM
I deal with crazymakers in a variety of ways....one...voice mail. When I am in my creative spirit...I DO NOT answer the phone. I don't care who it is. NOTHING, short of death, is that important to take me away. I will deal with them when I feel it is appropriate. I even unplug the phone so the ringing doesn't disturb me while I am painting. (but usually I have the stereo up so loud, and am singing while I paint, I usually don't hear it anyway!!)

When someone is in the habit of continuing to dump projects or other things on me, because I am good natured, I had to learn how to say "No". Your artist time is very important...even essential!!! At least it is to me..and my well-being. I NEED my art...to be happy. It is a part of me. Sure, there are other things that are important as well, and I try and make time for them....but I always try and not neglect my art.

When crazymakers invade my territory, I retreat--usually inside myself, feeling put upon and overwhelmed. This is bad for my creativity...so in order to protect it at all costs, I may seem unreachable to some. But it is a necessary thing. So...in order not to feel "boxed in" or stifled, I opt for simple things...like voice mail...or plein aire painting...in which to enhance my creative spirit...and not worry about the messages or the problems.

It will take awhile to get used to....but it is worth it. You will be happier and more creative!!

Hope this helps!!


11-09-2000, 05:16 PM
I know of this one, and i know it well! I have always been the 'rock' for many people. I think it's because i am compassionate (at least i think i am) and people have leaned on me most of my life. I have allowed it, so i have to fix it. It became most evident when, in conversation, my nephew said "Do you have any idea how many people's worlds center around you?!". I thought about that and was surprised. Nancy touched on a very important part of the cure by saying "NO". It is not so easy to do at times but if you don't learn to say no nothing will change. There are people in our lives that demand so much of our time and drain so much of our creative energy with thier own agendas that it's a miracle when we get anything drawn/painted. We are nurturing everyone but our selves if we allow this to be. Saying no may seem selfish to some but i now do it & feel less guilty about it by remembering that if i'm not creating, i'm not happy. If i'm not happy, i can't truly help anyone. I have had to put some distance between myself and a few of my friends. They may not understand it but i have to do it. If not, i become my own 'crazy maker'. I've learned that not everyone is as supportive of my interests as i have been of thiers. It's a sad fact but true. I told one person in particular that i'd be a bit less active in his life because i really needed to spend a lot of time on my art. He said "hey, that's great, i think i'll use that time to work on my music" well, i did & he didn't. He continued to come around at times when he knew i'd be painting. I had to sit him down & tell him that this time of day is off limits because i am working. Our friendship is not quite as close as it once was but that's a sacrifice i had to make. I have a girlfriend who whines incessantly about her most recent lost love. I now ask my husband to make quick phone calls to her if i need to have contact. He'll call & say "Cheryl is working but she wanted me to ask you...." She's starting to get it! These changes may seem harsh to others but it's the only way to deal with it. If honesty doesn't work a little space will. If all else fails, sick the crazy makers on each other! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif one of my favorite tricks. "hey, you know so & so has recently been through a breakup too, i'll bet he'll have a lot of insight for you. Here's his #..." believe it or not, this one actually worked for me. hehehe. Sorry guys, but i could ramble on about this one. It's such a huge issue for most of us!

11-10-2000, 08:11 PM
I always let the answering machine take the calls while I am painting. I return the calls when I am ready, and I set up something to do during the calls--like making sandwiches, folding clothes, washing dishes, peeling vegetables, mending--some simple (no brainer) task. That way the crazymakers on the phone do not interfere with my painting time, and they also do not take away from the time I must allot to do household tasks. I bought a 25ft. cord for the phone, just for this purpose!