Susan Schroder Arts
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A Humorous Look into The Reality of a Fantasy Artist

The Reality of a Fantasy Artist

The Reality of a Fantasy Artist

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2. The Realities of a Fantasy Life

Sometimes I think I’ve got Life all figured out. 
At 54 years of age, it seems reasonable to assume I would be in a stage of serene, organized living.
But when the noise and chaos of a family of nine people and two cats come crashing down all around,  
it reminds me  –with determination-- how I may never have Anything all figured out.  
My family consists of my 2 kids, my daughter-in-law, 3 grand-kids (ages: 9 yrs, 2 yrs, and 8 months), my husband,
my 81-year-old Mom and me all in just over 2000 square feet of house. 
                                         There is no such thing as quiet time here.
And just to keep things interesting, I feel certain our black cat, Merik is attempting to kill me…
in the dark hallway…probably with a lead pipe. 
To be clear, I am not the primary caretaker of my 3 grand-kids.  They have a wonderful Mom and Dad
who are devoted to their well-being on a full-time basis and take on every situation with skill and love.
My son and his family are staying here while starting a new business, and, for the time being,
we all live together, and we are all part of each other's lives. 
There may be only one thing consistent in this household:   There is never a dull moment.  
     -In my house, it’s not uncommon to hear my two-year-old grandson running at top speed through the house,
repeatedly yelling,  “Can’t take my ‘willy’ out!”  
     -Or for me to be cleaning footprints off the ceiling (Yeah…that’s a real thing here). 
     -My eight-month-old granddaughter constantly growls very low and very loud.  I’m pretty sure I heard her hissing yesterday. 
It’s both hilarious and unnerving. (Undoubtedly, it’s a dubious plan hatched by the cats to convert her over to their side).

So, that picture above of me working in my office is pretty accurate.   
And, in case you were wondering, all those things ARE metaphors for actual things.

*Sigh*  I read  Teri Windling’s  Myth and Moor   blog.  If you’ve never read it, you should.  She has breathtakingly beautiful posts about mythical art, writing, and many topics. Interspersed throughout are also photos of the magical English countryside where she lives.  It seems like the most picturesque ideal of a mythic lifestyle.  And, Yes-- I  suppose  I’ve often imagined my own life as a fantasy artist to be this beautiful, “Dartmoor- countryside” kind of magical.                                            --Terri Windling is writing the script for the life I thought I would have one day!                                      (Okay…I now realize I have probably been living vicariously through her blog posts.) But, I am a fantasy artist, after all… I mean, if you’ve looked through my website, it   says   I’ve been a professional   Mythic   artist for 35 years now.  So, at first, I  thought  I also wanted to write blog posts that showed the beauty of my fantastical life and fill it with incredible art hinting at secretive places filled with Faerie wisdom.               

*Sigh* 
I read Teri Windling’s Myth and Moor blog.  If you’ve never read it, you should.  She has breathtakingly beautiful posts about mythical art, writing, and many topics. Interspersed throughout are also photos of the magical English countryside where she lives.  It seems like the most picturesque ideal of a mythic lifestyle.  And, Yes-- I suppose I’ve often imagined my own life as a fantasy artist to be this beautiful, “Dartmoor- countryside” kind of magical. 
                                        --Terri Windling is writing the script for the life I thought I would have one day!
                                   (Okay…I now realize I have probably been living vicariously through her blog posts.)
But, I am a fantasy artist, after all… I mean, if you’ve looked through my website, it says I’ve been a professional Mythic artist for 35 years now.

So, at first, I thought I also wanted to write blog posts that showed the beauty of my fantastical life and fill it with incredible art hinting at secretive places filled with Faerie wisdom.

           
 

But let’s just admit it…that’s not my life…it’s not even close. 

 

      I just have to turn my head from side to side from where I’m sitting right now typing these words. There are half-eaten bananas scattered around and more toys than Christmas morning spread across the floor on an everyday basis.                                            And   “piles.”    I couldn’t even tell you what is in all these piles that just exist – everywhere .       My daughter recently bought some quality noise-canceling headphones so she could get through her college work-load.  I tried them on one day with some beautiful music being wirelessly transported to my ears.  I nearly fell into a coma on the couch as I closed my eyes and all the crying and jumble around me just disappeared.  (Don’t worry…I’ve already put those headphones on my Christmas list).       But, eventually, there came a day --it was a day that I had a revelation.  I had been cleaning something gooey off the couch and sat back down to the standard evening before- bedtime-craziness.  I watched  my  son twirling  his  son like an airplane around the living room.  My granddaughter snuggled up next to me, and my baby granddaughter was cooing on her Mom’s lap.  The room was filled with laughter and smiles.  It was a perfect moment.  I breathed in deeply and realized that we had thousands…maybe millions…of those perfect moments each and every day.        This Life  …the one I wake up to every morning in all its glorious chaos…this Life is   My Magic  .  And all these people in it are my inspirations.  I   am   surrounded by faerie magic and secret doors, magic potions in coffee cup cauldrons, goblin sneezes and even snail slime.    

      I just have to turn my head from side to side from where I’m sitting right now typing these words.
There are half-eaten bananas scattered around and more toys than Christmas morning spread across the floor on an everyday basis. 
                                          And “piles.”  I couldn’t even tell you what is in all these piles that just exist –everywhere
     My daughter recently bought some quality noise-canceling headphones so she could get through her college work-load.  I tried them on one day with some
beautiful music being wirelessly transported to my ears.  I nearly fell into a coma on the couch as I closed my eyes and all the crying and jumble around me just disappeared. 
(Don’t worry…I’ve already put those headphones on my Christmas list).

     But, eventually, there came a day --it was a day that I had a revelation. 
I had been cleaning something gooey off the couch and sat back down to the standard evening
before- bedtime-craziness.  I watched my son twirling his son like an airplane around the living room.  My granddaughter snuggled up next to me, and my baby granddaughter
was cooing on her Mom’s lap.  The room was filled with laughter and smiles.  It was a perfect moment. 
I breathed in deeply and realized that we had thousands…maybe millions…of those perfect moments each and every day.
     This Life…the one I wake up to every morning in all its glorious chaos…this Life is My Magic.  And all these people in it are my inspirations. 
I am surrounded by faerie magic and secret doors, magic potions in coffee cup cauldrons, goblin sneezes and even snail slime.  
 

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And, you know what? 
My life is filled with incredible magical art. 

I stopped caring about all the piles, all the noise, and, yes…even the homicidal cat still slinking in the hallway. I stopped caring that the 100 square foot addition we added on last year (in a desperate attempt to add more room) is still not finished –or that no matter how many efforts we make, the leak in our roof may simply be un-fixable.
I care most about ‘sweet-(all natural)-gummy-flavored’ Imp-Kissies, Fairy-snuggles on my
‘soft-as-a-bed-of-moss couch,' and the ‘better-than-anything-spit-up-filled’ pixie-baby giggles
and smiles I get – Every Single Day. 
                                I am lucky to live in such a breathtakingly beautiful life.
And I care about putting all this fantastical wonder into every piece of artwork or story that I create. 
                   I love every second of my world and would not trade it for any other life.

So, as I contemplated my new website design, the idea came to me in the midst of a particularly harried moment of crying, mopping blood up off the floor, and exploding diapers that this is the blog I have to write:  The Reality of my Fantasy Artist Life…A blog about both art and life-- together. 
I’ll be exploring what drives me, what inspires me, including all the ‘ups and downs’ as my everyday life collides with my creative, magical career.
And…just maybe… it will help keep my humor alive and my sanity intact.

    

P.S. I think I’ll keep reading Terri Windling’s Myth and Moor blog, though…just in case there are changes around here, I’ll be prepared for any alternate version of a magical life.