Friday, May 29, 2009

Hope in a Bookstore (& Now the Internet!)

Books & Tulips © 2005 Dianne Poinski

"She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain." Louisa May Alcott

Reading has given me endless hours of pleasure and insight. As a young girl I would come out of the bookmobile with a pile of books, anxious to get home and lose myself in another world. As I got older I discovered that in addition to entertainment, books were also the most direct way to learn just about anything. I remember checking out a book from the library on “Teenage Grooming” once I got the green light from my mother about wearing makeup.

Through the various stages of my life, books have helped me a great deal. Bookstores represent hope and excitement to me. I walk in and instantly feel like anything is possible! Then came the Internet and now information is available just by Googling a word or a phrase. Free and instant “self help”!

As part of an assignment in the blog class I just completed, we were instructed to set up Facebook and Twitter accounts. Ok – I thought, this is good. A great way to stay connected, and as an artist I can feel pretty isolated at times. I have enjoyed meeting new people online and getting to know them through their blogs and various online postings.

What I didn’t see coming were Facebook “Friends” and Twitter “Followers” tempting me with links to articles, blogs, and even, the biggest bookstore on the planet! All places I can go and learn how to be a better artist, photographer, friend, parent, entrepreneur and the list goes on……………… I don’t want to miss anything, so I click away. I feel constantly challenged by my inability to stay focused and do the work I need to do.

The only thing saving me from becoming a complete “internetaholic “ is the fact that I have declared my studio a “no tech zone”. My home office is where I do the bulk of the tasks necessary to run my business. This includes anything that requires my computer and since my photographs are processed digitally, I spend a great deal of time in front of my monitor. My studio is where I hand-color all my photographs, teach workshops and show my work. The only piece of technology allowed in there is my IPod.

I have heard many times that to avoid this problem you have to schedule your “online time” during the day. Since I am very resistant to schedules and I am pretty sure I am not the only one out there suffering from “information overload”, I will just keep on checking Facebook, Twittering and Googling until I find a solution that might work for me.

P.S. I am always looking for new “Friends”!


  1. I agree - it seems like keeping the computer out of the studio helps. Maybe because the internet provides an "instant gratification" it becomes addicting.

  2. I am so with you on this Dianne - books and the internet can be truly addictive and often pull me away from getting on with 'my own work' LIke you I don't have an internet connection in my studio but unlike you it is not a completely NO TEch zone as I often use the my laptop there for my 'work' - thank goodness the 'wireless' range doesn't reach to my attic studio! I too find the support as an artist pretty amazing! Thank you for such an insightful post and the beautiful tulips! Oh and I just love that quote

  3. Thank you! I knew this was a topic that people could relate to. Now it's time to get off my computer and head to the studio.

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