Monday, November 21, 2011


In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Sylvia White shares her list of the 10 things artists should be thankful for. I have pinned the list on my noticeboard!

1. I am thankful that I am not one of the majority of people in this world that
wakes up every morning, goes to a job they hate, just to come home and do it all
over again.

2. I am thankful that when I am away from my studio, my ideas come with me, they
keep me company everywhere I go.

3. I am thankful for this passion that gives me so much joy (and angst) but mostly

4. I am thankful that when I have left this earth, I will leave something meaningful

5. I am thankful that I have a mind that can not sleep, I will never be bored.

6. I am thankful that there is a part of my life that nobody can control, except

7. I am thankful that no one in the world can ever take this gift from me.

8. I am thankful that I am brave, it takes courage to pursue my gift.

9. I am thankful that I am never satisfied, it forces me to move forward and grow.

10. I am thankful I discovered this list!

Paint brushes on browndresswithwhitedots Tumblr Blog, here.

Hats off to those artists who have to juggle their day jobs with their art .

Studio of Jimmy Rix. See Jimmy's work here.

Read articles by Sylvia White, the founder and director of Contemporary Artists' Services, here.


  1. Very very beautiful thoughts Robyn. I too will write it down and keep it where it is at reach always. Thank you :-)

  2. Great list! And very important to remember on those 'angst' days!
    Hope your holidays are filled with all the things you are thankful for . . .

  3. Thank you for posting this I am going to pin it up on my workroom door and say it like a mantra every time I go in to work .....x

  4. Love this list . . . I'm thankful for so many of those things too.

  5. I am thankful that you shared this list with us, Robyn!

  6. Robyn, I snagged this wonderful list myself off of Tumblr. I love it! I do work about 5-6 hrs, four days a week, but I am quiting more and more jobs until one day I get to paint full time!
    Kisses to Dig. xoxo

  7. Great list and oh so true! You must have just edited, I've just read and watched the entire "Not the Way home" and loved it, but now I don't see it! I am hankering for the bush, so could feel the warmth and small the openess! Thanks for sharing Di

  8. What a wonderful list! Thank you for sharing and keeping the positive alive:) Love the photographs into the insight of an artist's world. As an artist balancing a day job with my art...I can definitely appreciate how difficult it is.

  9. Great list.... and I add to that -

    I am thankful that my "day job" is teaching. I get to hang out with young artists or students who didn't know they had any creative ability and teach them how to follow an inkling and find a pile of gold.

  10. I am thankful my day job lets me afford paint, and I have the days after T day to myself in the studio!

  11. Yes, love this list.. and so apt to have it now with Thanksgiving coming.. though I know that is why you posted now.. so clever... my favorite one is that our 'job' is the one we love doing..

  12. I am thankful for all of this and more. I am thankful that you share your artsy thoughts with us.

  13. As someone who spent the first part of my life climbing the corporate ladder, item #4 really resonates with me.

    "I am thankful that when I have left this earth, I will leave something meaningful behind."

    I have more to show for the few years I have been a full-time artist than in the 30+ years I spent in the corporate world. YEY!

  14. PS i forgot to say that Sylvia White's website is a terrific resource for artists, on so many levels.
    thank you for the introduction.

  15. I love Sylvia White's blog. So much incredible information and inspiration!!!!

    Do you have Thanksgiving in S. Africa?

  16. Interesting post Robyn. I am always fascinated by artists who earn their living full time - it seems to me that the thing they have most of is determination - it would be so easy to relax and never get anything done.

  17. I am thankful for this posting and for introducing me to Sylvia White.

  18. thank you robyn... i too am so grateful to those who follow their inner voice - and share the poetry of their musings in a concrete way...

  19. Pure delight good to be reminded too,

  20. PS... adore the tumblr with ross lure's image... some of my fav aus artists ...
    just a wonderful find...thank you!

  21. most excellent thanksgiving list, Robyn... and I would add that I am thankful for the friendship of other artists as well... thank YOU!

  22. robyn, something for use to share and remember for sure. maybe those people are toiling up that ladder to success have lost sight of where the ladder will lead then...once you get to the top, the only place to go as they say, falling back to the bottom. my favorite is #5. I am thankful that I have a mind that can not sleep, I will never be bored. I do fall asleep looking out a window where now only the tree's skeleton is silhouetted against the night the wind moves the branches I can see shapes moving, reforming into newer/different shapes. it is like a slow motion film in real time...only the mind controlling the reflections. thank you as always for a lovely post

  23. 10 things we should all keep in mind... thanks Robyn.

  24. Wonderful list and I agree completely although I can easily add being I have a work table that is messy, chaotic and welcoming to just stuff! Thanks for this list and beautiful photos of other messy magical tables.

  25. Brilliant - thank you! Just what I needed this morning!

  26. so many aspects of our lives to be grateful inspiring list, but really only a beginning, don't you think?

  27. so much
    to BE
    thankful for...

    xox - eb.

  28. That's a wonderful list Robyn, thanks for sharing.I'm making a copy to keep.

  29. R-absolutely correct - so much to be thankful for. Thanks for the reminder. I read some words by the Dalai Lama this morning that said something along the lines that It is often good to see the big picture of life and the globe as it helps us keep our individual lives in perspective - I think this is pertinent to your reminder about our art opportunities. Go well. B

  30. thank you for this wonderful list, Roby. It's so important to make yourself aware from time to time of all the things that enrich our life.
    Because it's so easy to forget and to take everything for granted. To listen too much to the "inner censor" and to devaluate our own creativity.

  31. Interesting log, dito list in wich I recognize a lot except in line 3 I read "much joy (and angst)" if 'angst means fear. I'm not afraid. and 4. Frankly speaking "I don't care" ;-). Everything Ok with you after that turbulent holyday?

  32. Priya, how lucky we are to be able to express ourselves through art or writing!

    Judy, we don't have holidays at this time of the year but I do remember all my blogging friends who celebrate Thanksgiving. It's a reminder to be Thankful for so many things.

    Artymess, I've been reading the list all day!

    Kathryn, my list is getting longer.

    Kim, glad you enjoyed it!

    Annie C, fingers crossed for full time painting soon. Digs is in the dog box again. The two dogs had a terrible fight early this morning which was quite frightening since he is so powerful and Bella is so small.

    Di, the link is still there. I wonder why it disappeared. When I found Not the Way Home a few months ago I also read the whole blog from beginning to end. Loved all that open space too.

    Painted Lady, I remember how hard it was balancing the day job, children and art. Hoping you find more time do do your art.

    Valerianna, your job must be very rewarding and your students must be grateful that they have an enthusiastic teacher who enjoys her job.

    Leslie, yay for Wednesdays and Fridays!

    ArtistUnplugged, thank you ... I was pleased to receive Sylvia White's newsletter which had some wonderful tips for artists as well as the list of 10.

    Donna, we have the best job!

    Lisa at Greenbow, .... and I'm grateful that I have readers of my blog :-)

  33. Rebeca, I often wonder what took me so long. Life certainly changed for the better when I became a full-time artist and all my fears about earning a living from my art were unfounded.... so yes I am very thankful that I took the plunge.

    Art at Chesterfield, glad you enjoyed the list.

    Mary, we don't have Thanksgiving in S.Africa but I have so many blogging friends who do so I find myself celebrating it anyway.... without the feast.

    Weaver, procrastination can be a problem but I find if I'm doing something I connect with I don't want to relax. There are the days when the work doesn't appeal to me and that's when I have to push myself.

    Carole, I love it when readers find something new on my blog!

    Mairedodd, how wonderful that we can read each others blogs and be inspired daily.

    Sophie, oh what a wonderful find indeed! When I first discovered the blog I was the only reblogger and couldn't understand why but I suppose nobody knew about it and I just happened to stumble upon it.

    Cat, yes I am thankful every day for this wonderful community.

    Henrietta, yes, we will never be bored! There is so much still to do and so little time.

    Jo, silly that we need reminding .... but we do!

    Mary Ann, my list is growing longer too and like you I love all my stuff!

    Caroline, it's a good list to wake up to. Glad you enjoyed it.

  34. Laura X... indeed. There is so much more that we can add.

    eb, I am thankful for beautiful photographs that make my heart race ;-)

    Embellisher, enjoy!

    Barry, yes seeing the bigger picture does put things into perspective.

    Sue, glad you enjoyed the list. It's great that we are part of a community that focuses on creativity.

    Wim, we are discussing the next Wild Coast holiday and certainly hope it won't be turbulent. I'll let you know :-)

  35. Robyn, that is scary. I know that feeling, my Bella is in the dog house too because she attacked Zoe. I think we have to rule with an iron fist :-). Dog training is not easy! Good luck. kisses to Bella too. xoxo

  36. After this strange past months, i am grateful to be Loved. Grateful for my inner life, its such a great companion. I feed it, It feeds me. What a great great journey of self discovery we are all on!

    Stoked about Thanksgiving! Greatful for you and this word, Thanda.

    Tell Mr. Dig behave or no treats. :) Freckles or no.

  37. You are so very sharing....Thank you Robyn for bringing together art, talent, beauty, determination, forgeing on and all else good.. I am grateful to know you.

  38. "..I am thankful that no one in the world can take this gift from me".... that is a truly wonderful statement! powerful!

  39. robyn, this reminds me that my cash job and my heart job may someday intersect more completely, and in th emeantime, thanks is in order...always

  40. thank you! just posted this list over at the Sew forum on Spirit Cloth siting both you and Sylvia.
    here's another gem I was given by an artist friend on the weekend "Success is going from failure to failure with undaunted enthusiasm!"

  41. Hi Robyn, one has many things to be thankful for and it is so nice to acknowledge them... thanks for sharing Sylvia's list - a must to pin on my wall, for sure!

  42. It worked- what a good list. Feeling upbeat and grateful now.

  43. Here I am juggling away and I am ever so thankful for your blog, the one that keeps me inspired and reminds me that in this crazy world we are currently living in, there is SO MUCH BEAUTY which brings us all happiness and hope.

    THANK YOU, Robyn!

  44. Wonderful words and uplifting as well. I love the second one, that when I leave the studio, the ideas come with me, I am so thankful for that. Beautiful post Robyn, I hope your thanksgiving has been wonderful. We are winding down here. And back to work tomorrow.

  45. So much to be thankful for, as always.
    I'm very grateful that I no longer HAVE to have a day job and could retire.But I still struggle with making the time for art. So much life,,,yet so little time.
    Such an excellent, thought provoking post Robyn, thank you!

  46. What an inspiring list. It really puts what we do in perspective. Thanks!

  47. Mansuetude, ..."grateful for my inner life, its such a great companion" .... this comment sent me off into my own thoughts. When we slow down and go within so many of life's little problems can be ironed out. We just need to make the time. Thanda.

    HHnB, indeed!

    Gwen, thanks so much. We are lucky to have each other in the blog world.

    M Violetta, I lingered over that statement too. "I am thankful that no one in the world can take this gift from me".

    Velma, wishing for the time when your cash job and your heart job are the same.

    Mo Crow, "Success is going from failure to failure with undaunted enthusiasm" ..... we artists know all about that don't we? If we didn't dust off and start afresh we would be miserable.

    Kim S, it's a very handy little list to keep one uplifted.

    Shayla, the list has that effect on me too every time i read it.

    Karen Cole, thanks so much!

    Thanks Neva :-)

    Roxanne, it's such a true statement isn't it? When I leave the studio the ideas come with me.

    Babs, I think reading about art helps to keep you in touch until you find the time to make art.

    Seth, exactly! The list puts it all in perspective.

  48. Looks like it's list creating time. Thanks for sharing this.