June 29, 2016 by Jess

written by Sarah Fagan, The Umbrella's 2015-2016 Artist-in-Residence

Lists are a way of life for me. There is forever a growing grocery list on my refrigerator, files that list and track my expenses on my computer, and small notebooks dedicated to lists such as "art ideas" and "movies to watch." There are so many small pieces of paper littering my desk/kitchen table with daily lists of things to do that I imagine the fire department would advise me against ever lighting a dinner candle. 

But then there are true list-making times of year that take lists to a new level. A time when there is so much going on, both big and small, that there need to be lists to prioritize my lists. Now is a list-making time of year.

There are two months left in my Umbrella studio and in the cottage next door. Lists of paintings to finish for my August show compete with lists of library books to get and read while I am conveniently living across the street. And then there are the big ticket items like applying for gallery representation and finding an apartment to live in come September. There is much to do: but once written down, I am confident it will be done. Lists propel my life forward. They feel safe, like I know some of my future. Their checkmarks track time, and serve as a journal or biography.

I was once told that folks of my Myers-Briggs personality type (INTJ, if anyone is wondering) like making lists because we like to cross things off of lists, like to make our accomplishments visual and visceral with great big checkmarks. This all sounds quite active, and I think I like to believe it not so much for its innate truth but because it makes me feel in charge of my lists, while the alternative might be to feel consumed by them -- like my poor flammable desk.

The lists are made, and now I power forward. 

Write June blog: Check.

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