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  • Leo Aram-Downs

Normality

One big takeaway from this project so far has been a kind of discovery about how I value routines. A lot of the things I want to try and achieve with this can only be achieved when there's already a foundation on which they can function. Simply put, it would be a lot harder to focus on making art when if I was more worried about paying rent. I've also come to understand that this ability is kind of a privilege. It's a good thing that so much of my life is currently under control that I can dedicate so much cognitive and physical energy to just relentlessly making stuff I care about, and this high level of normality is something I think I might have taken for granted up til now. This has been a week full of abnormal events that have shaken structure I forgot I had in place. With a combination of a heavy workload, illness and some pretty emotionally occupying life stuff, it's been a very odd week. But it's definitely kicked into perspective I value this idea of routine and how much of one I'd established without knowing it.

This will differ from person to person, but for me there is a sweet spot between regular routine activities and novelty. Too much routine and I start looking for breaks to it, and too much novelty and it can very quickly feel like everything is coming apart. And this has been a week of much novelty and serious lack of routine. Maybe my structure isn't strong enough, and it's clear that these blogs aren't actually part of my structure yet. They happen contingent upon the rest of my life being consistent enough to accommodate an activity like this, and that's kind of how I want it to stay for the time being. I couldn't imagine being able to write a piece of content like this while also having health, money or just life problems. It would feel like a weird betrayal of what my priorities should be.

Overall, it's a good sign that I'm able to worry about things like this. It's a huge privilege in a lot of ways but I hope it's one I'm taking advantage of. I also know there are going to be times over this year where my regular patterns will be hugely altered, for better and worse. If that gets in the way of something like this, that'll just be life at that point. That isn't to say I'm not enjoying this project, it's been amazing so far. I've just become more aware how much this relies on my life being fairly stable.

May you all find a suitable level of stability to accommodate artistic crises such as this!

Peace.

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