Brad Blackman examining works-in-progress while drinking coffee

How do you push through? Habit.

A look at my habits and the first 30 days of #the100dayproject

You know me. Sometimes I need a challenge to keep myself going. So when I saw #the100dayproject floating around on Instagram, it sounded like the right thing for me.

Brad Blackman examining works-in-progress while drinking coffee

Daily log for the100dayproject: I'm at day 30, but I've only been in the studio 10 of those days.I may have only been in the studio a total of ten times the past 30 days, but I still think it is the right thing for me. I haven’t been in the studio every single day, but that’s okay. No, it isn’t ideal. Yes, I’d like to be in the studio every day just like I’d like to work out every day. Do I need more discipline? I know I do. But things come up all the time.

My grandmother passed away not a week after I started the challenge, and it took a few days to get back in the studio after that. That’s been a more difficult adjustment for our family than we expected.

Then the kids finished up their school year, and we as a family had to find new routines. We are still figuring that part out. So it’s somewhat slow going, but at least it is going.

We did take the kids to the Frist Art Museum (formerly known as the Frist Center for the Visual Arts) on Memorial Day and I got it on video! They recently rebranded and reopened the newly renovated Martin Art Quest.

And so far I have worked on three paintings. That’s a lot better than zero, right?

So yeah, despite the apparent lack of studio activity the past month, there’s a lot happening beneath the surface. Lots of ideas swirling around in addition to normal family stuff. The ideas are not really all that well-formed yet, but they’ll grow. I keep sketching and writing.

Abstract landscape with pink and orange sky Abstract landscape with yellow and purple sky and a high horizon Abstract landscape with yellow and blue sky and jagged red horizon

I just remind myself that while things are slow right now, they won’t always be. And when things get busy, I know they won’t always be that way. Life is always in flux. But I cling to routines like my morning coffee and Bible reading (and if there’s time, painting and a quick workout).

What do you do to stay grounded when things are constantly changing, or when things get slow?