Making Order Out Of Chaos ~ Just Doodle…

You will have hard days.

You will be told that you should “make art” because it is “so healing.”

You will be terrified because you “can’t draw a stick man” and “don’t have a lot of money for expensive art supplies” and surely, “you’re really not an artist.” Yep. Been there, been told that, thought all those things, and knew that I was never going to “be Georgia O’Keefe” but do you know what? Neither is anybody else.

Do you want to be “the greatest artist in the whole universe” or do you “just need to get SOME kind of relief from stress, anxiety, depression, and more?” If you are the latter, come sit by me, bring something to draw ON and something to draw WITH. It matters not what, a cheap sketch book, a composition notebook, paper from your printer, cardboard, paper plates, anything cheap or free, available, or easily gotten — if you want to go all out — at the Dollar Store. I have even painted with cheap fingernail polish from the Dollar Store, whatever floats your boat. Pencils, crayons, little kids art supplies are cheap and fun to use.

Find a comfortable place to sit, or a place you feel secure, your safe haven. I am in my studio at my work table which is a mess as always (See bottom of post!) but you might be curled up in a corner of your couch, your bed, or at the kitchen table. It doesn’t matter. Just spread your stuff out around you and get comfy.

For me because I’m bipolar and my mind can go in 27 directions at once it helps me to have something to listen to to take care of the noisy side of my brain while the doodly part of my brain doodles. Tonight I listened to two hour long podcasts from The Good Life Project that I mentioned yesterday. I finally did listen to the podcast with Glennon Doyle Melton, and also listened to a wonderful podcast with Liz Gilbert. And I doodly-doodly dooed. First in black and white, then in color. You might listen to music. You might, as I often do, just want it quiet, there are no rules except your own.

Today I had a day that started out very sweet, coffee with my dear friend Noni, and then she left and I kind of got scared and went numb. I spent the afternoon in my Big Chair with my pugs alternately reading and napping. At 5:00 I thought, well, gee, maybe I really should get up and DO something. I took the dogs out, dispensed meds to them and to me, gave them a treat and sat down here with a bottle of ice cold sparkling water. It is now 11:02 p.m. and I have not yet even gone to Facebook all day long. I finally got the dogs dinner, made my dinner and then sat here like a stone. I knew I had to get a grip on myself. I opened my giant sketchbook, got my markers, turned on the podcasts, and just doodled.

I don’t have a lot to say tonight. I’m about to go back to the Big Chair with the pugs and read until it’s time to turn out the light and go to sleep. I just wanted to share a little something with you before I head out of the studio for the night. And as you can see below, a sketchbook or something you can doodle in can be a calm oasis in a stormy sea, or a kind of lost day, or in the midst of chaos or your too messy desk that you are always depressed that you can’t get/keep cleaned up. Don’t worry about it. Shove stuff aside. Just doodle.

I’ll come back tomorrow to chat with you again. My desk won’t look any better but I’ll make room to do what I have to do. That’s all you have to do. It’s all okay. Everything’s going to be alright.



September Blogalong Challenge With Effy  Day 17)

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  1. Oh thank you for this!!! I have been telling myself for a couple of years I was going to sketch or something and I still haven’t. I don’t know why. But this looks so easy and fun. You are inspiring me. I forgot to write my blog today and it is 11:33pm. LOL

    Thank you again <3

  2. So glad you posted this!! I’ve been really down on my arts lately just thinking it isn’t good enough. You remind me to just get creative and let go of any stress around it. There will never be another Georgia O’Keefe but thank God you are here Maitri! Your writing always inspires me just to keep on keeping on and to keep showing up for myself. Bless your heart!

    • Oh sweet Kathryn, take the pressure OFF yourself! Doodling uses a different part of your brain than trying to “make good art” does. It is relaxing. You can feel silly and like a little kid and just have fun. There’s no way to do it wrong, you just play, draw squiggly lines and shapes and color them in, or whatever occurs to you in the moment. Keep me posted. I’d love to hear from you again. Just doodly doodly doo and have fun! 🙂

  3. Ah…lovely. Art is a gift, to yourself, to the world. I write and take photographs. They are my art. Old camera. Doesn’t matter. Joy in a box. Pleasure in a word. It’s all good and it all heals the soul

    • You are so right Cathryn honey, and I truly love your photographs and your writing, they are wonderful! May we each keep on in our own way to do what we can to bring peace to our hearts and beauty to the world. I love you Cathryn… <3

  4. ADORED this view of your desk, lovely. <3 Mine so often looks JUST like that. 🙂

    • Thank you Effy honey. Never trust a tidy desk! Ha ha ha! And thank you again and again, many times over, for this blogalong, it is helping me so much… 🙂

  5. i remember when i was living with steven at ska’s garden, we each had a sketchbook and would draw with colored pencils. i went thru a phase where i was writing and drawing with my left hand (I’m right-handed) to “develop the other side of my brain” and when i look back at these old sketchbooks, i smile. while “primitive,” the drawings show my joy in life, my love of nature, my open heart. thanks for the reminder, once again, maitri

    another fun thing to do is make collages: tear up old magazines, choosing images that appeal, arrange, paste down, then put whatever words you find to capture the essence of where you are. i’ve been doing collages since college, and always offer them in my lifestories classes as well

    • Ah Katya, I would love to have been able to see pictures of you at Ska’s garden, it has such a romantic picture in my mind and I know what you mean about the left hand but Lord Child I’m just a gettin’ goin’ with my Right hand!!! And yes I have always loved collage, done it in my journals and my classes, and have a pile of magazines here now I plan to use in just that way. It is wonderful fun! Thanks for reminding ME of that! I love you honey…


  6. Your big chair and pugs sound so gorgeously comforting <3

    • They are Rachel, they really are, I don’t know what I’d do without them. We are safe and happy and cozy in our little nest… <3

  7. I SOOOOOO love your desk with Post-It notes and colorful art…Post-It notes are priceless! When I feel overwhelmed that I have to produce ….I do my self talk stating…..I don’t NEED to do anything at all except have a peaceful mind, the rest is just a bonus. Thank you for sharing❤️

    • Thank you so much Ellie honey, 😀 and well, my desk is surely a mess alright, but somehow in the middle here it is like a nest and I feel cozy. No matter how many times it gets all cleaned up, organized, and pretty I always seem to have things crowd in so that there is JUST ABOUT enough space for me in the middle and it’s how I feel safest and most comfortable, like I said, like a little nest. I guess we all have our ways! Love you honey….

  8. Oh Maitri I love your art!! Thank GOD you aren’t another Georgia O’Keefe!! We wouldn’t be blessed with your whimsical, touching artwork! I have had many upheavals in life the past few years. Wanted to give up, hide, etc…..I so appreciate the way you express yourself in your writings…. I think you have given many people hope, the feeling of being connected, of not being alone in our struggles. That is a magical thing……..

    • Thank you so much dear Mary, you are very kind. I haven’t been able to draw/blog the last 2 days because I’ve had to be out both days and that really takes it out of me, I will be writing about it today. It means so much to me to hear that I have been able to give another person the feeling of not being alone, truly that’s what I want to do. You telling me that has meant the world do me and helped me on this late-starting day when I am feeling ill at ease. We all help each other. I appreciate it so much… <3

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