red lines

Usually I don’t really have an issue focusing when there’s someone standing over my shoulder, just watching everything I do. I can tune them out really well. Lately though I’ve put a break on the art I’ve done because I felt completely blocked. I’ve tried now and again to get back to it but the moment I sit down with my paints or my pencils or even clay, I just freeze. Nothing comes. It has begun to frustrate me to the near point of tears though I try hard not to let it get to me too much.

I don’t know if it’s Quentin at times looking in over my shoulder or just briefly looking my way when I get started that stall me or not. I don’t even know if his presence is what stalled me just this morning. I did have my paints out, I actually had some red stripes painted on my canvas. I was poised, ready to add more to it when he did peek briefly into my studio. I suppose I should learn to close the door and put a ‘please do not disturb’ sign.

“Why red lines?” He looked over my shoulder, peering at the mostly empty canvas with its few red stripes of deep red colour, already beginning to dry they were so quickly pulled from the emptiness of my imagination and onto the canvas.

I blinked and I could almost see my desire to draw sneer at me from some corner of my mind as it fled and hid away again. I set down my palette and my paint brush, looking at what then looked, to me, like a big mess of nothing at all. “I don’t know. I thought it would be a good start to this painting.”

He frowned and looked at me, first from his spot behind me before he moved to stand beside me. He smiled faintly, or at least he tried before he was carefully pulling a second bench over to sit down on it next to me. I did turn to him, I knew very well it was impolite to not look at someone when they were talking to you.

“Painting hasn’t made you happy lately. I don’t think you’ve honestly drawn a whole lot, right?” I shrugged, glancing to the mess of red to my right and looked back to him. He had a point but I didn’t see the need to really answer, what would it have given me?

“I don’t know. I’m blocked. Nothing is interesting and I just want to not even think that art exists at all right now.” There, that had been out of my mouth. I expected him to gape or something but he only shook his head and offered me this faint little smile of his. I knew well enough he was only trying to understand what was going on in my head, I couldn’t blame him for just being himself. I loved him for it.

“Blocks are temporary, I bet that eventually something’ll hit you right in the face and you’ll be locking yourself away in this room and nothing I’ll say or do will bring you out of it. Come on, let’s step out of this place for now, it’s depressing you.”

It had been depressing me to spend time in my studio, if only because I couldn’t draw anything at all that seemed worthwhile. So I did step out with him. He made sure it was empty (Areli and Lavi both love to lounge in the window when the sun hits the room just right) and he closed the door securely.

I haven’t even so much as looked towards that door. I don’t know why I’m so blocked. I haven’t drawn myself to exhaustion. I haven’t spent endless hours just drawing until nothing else came. It just is like my need to be artful has dwindled over time. It frightens me. I know I love drawing, I love painting. I know I could love clay-working if my mind wasn’t stuck on being completely blocked from everything that might have been artistic.

It makes me sad when I realize I’ve thought about asking Eoghan to dig through my mind to see if he couldn’t somehow find whatever it was that was plugging up my desire to draw. To ask him if he couldn’t pull it free but I know he doesn’t like digging around in anyone’s head unless he has to. I know I can live with this block for a while more until it depresses me more still. For now I know I have other things to worry about.

The kittens are coming along wonderfully well. We still haven’t figured out any names for them. I know we will in time but I feel like nothing we come up with is good enough. Every name that pops up into our mind is either too common or too ‘lame’ as Quentin calls them. In time, I guess.

By the time evening has settled, I still haven’t even looked back to that door. I’m somewhat glad that I don’t have to cross it to get to the bedroom. This is getting bad, really. I will need to talk to Eoghan, even if just for some reassurance that I’m not going completely crazy.

Quentin, waiting for me in our bedroom, welcomes me with open arms when I step into the warm, candle-lit room. I laugh softly, the sound startling me. I can’t recall when I last laughed. It’s sad when you think that I can’t recall when I last laughed. It makes me worry a bit.

Though I have to admit that the worry is pretty much swept away for the rest of the evening and the night when I just settle in bed with him. Our life in the bedroom isn’t all that active. There are times when we’ll be feeling frisky but honestly we still haven’t breached that one wall and I don’t think either one of us is in any real hurry. We’re comfortable with things as they are now.

The candles in our room are all set in proper little containers so that the candles can burn down to nothing at all and we’re in no danger of a fire being started. Areli and Lavi both know to stay away from candles after they nearly set fire to the bed in the guest bedroom. An accident but still one with a tag of ‘lesson learned’.

It’s comforting to know I can just settle against him, close my eyes and forget about the world for a little while. I can just let my mind remember that I have him, that he’s the reason I have this roof over my head, that I have food in my belly every night. He’s the reason I can take a dip naked in our pool and settle against him on our floating mattress to just appreciate the quietness of our life.

Art is important but I know it won’t kill me to not be able to draw. What I’m afraid of, however, is that I know that without art, a little bit of me erodes away on a daily basis, as if I need art to be kept whole. I guess it’s like what I’ve heard of incubus and succubus needing sexual energy to stay well and alive. It’s weird, it doesn’t make much sense but that’s just how I see things.


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