Friday, March 18, 2011

The time it takes...

I used to be someone who took life as if it were a curve banked for speed. The goal, as far as I could tell, was to get things done first and fastest. Decisions, including huge life questions, like who do I want in my life, where to live and how to pursue a career were made at lightning speed. Without a deadline, could I even exist?

I can't pinpoint the moment I started slowing down - was it burnout? Age? The sudden realization that I didn't have a clue where I was going even if I was breaking the sound barrier getting there? Some time in the past decade, the deceleration started. It scared the hell out of me at first; I thought I was losing my edge. Becoming irrelevant, soon to be left behind in the dust of all those younger, sharper people out there Getting Stuff Done!

But I find I have finally learned the value of letting things unfold in their own time. It's a revelation. Staci and I push the peanut forward, one step at a time, learning what this theatre wants to be and needs to be, as we go.
There are moments of urgency and frustration, sure. Like how to write a meaningful mission statement that doesn't rival War and Peace in length. But things inch along, feeling solid and purposeful and right.

I'm grateful for a slower pace. Guess I am embracing snail wisdom right now. There will be time to call the jackrabbit back later, as we get closer to opening night, Right now, I am reveling in the process!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Sometimes all it takes is a little tilt

On the last day of February Jayne and I met at a friend of hers at Old City Java in Knoxville. Jim Owens is an actor and artist originally from Detroit. He and his wife lived in Knoxville for awhile ("I worked a lot" Jim said) and after exploring Los Angeles and San Diego he and his wife have recently moved back to Tennessee.
The reason we were meeting was that Jim had volunteered to work with us on a logo for the Flying Anvil Theatre. Why? Maybe he's crazy. Maybe he finds meeting middle-aged women over espresso exciting. Or maybe he's one of those talented and generous artists that I cross paths with in this business who remind me how exhilarating the process of creating art can be.    
You know what? Maybe it's all of the above.
However, even before I met Jim, I saw his work. Bold, colorful paintings and prints lined the brick walls of Old City Java. Jim paints what he terms "car-noir" - a combination of sexy autos and stylish women emanating attitude from Hollywood circa 1950.
And his work is amazing. 
Here's his website. Check out the goddess print. Cool, huh?
Speaking of cool - Jim had brought his Mac and we played with images, fonts, sizes, colors, words for the logo.  We drank more ice tea. Jim and Jayne discussed the wings, which Jim had originally hand sketched on the back of a napkin.  Jayne liked the left wing.  Jim advocated for the right wing. We joked about political leanings but quickly went back to the art. 
After about an hour Jim got an idea and put a tilt on the word "theatre."

 - and yes, yes, yes. Heavy, light, flying, tilted, serious, whimsical. Perfect.
We plan to put it on everything - shirts, hats, shorts. Maybe I can finally talk Jayne into getting that tattoo she always said she'd get. Someday.
At which point we'll put on our heels, slap on some lipstick, rev up the old Caddy, and varoom!  If we get lucky enough we may even get to pose for the next Jim Owens print.
Hey Y'all - watch this!