Pearls from artists* # 553

April 5, 2023

Starting a new pastel painting

*an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.

We think of the procrastinator as lazy and inactive, but procrastination is active. Not to get all psychological and heavy on you, but procrastination is actually “active avoidance.” I like the word active because it shows just how powerful your avoidance tendencies are.

It takes all kinds of forms – writer’s block and disorganization are two of the most common. I’ve known people who have mild forms of it, and I’ve known people who are absolutely crippled by it, who never accomplish what they set out to do.

… the most heavy-handed thing I can say is: If you procrastinate, you are only robbing yourself.

Anna Deavere Smith in Letters to a Young Artist: Straight-up Advice on Making a Living in the Arts – For Actors, Performers, Writers, and Artists of Every Kind

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