Saturday, 21 June 2008


A couple of days ago, I received a message on Flickr from someone called aniuszka. As she said to me,


my name is ania and i´m doing a research about chaos on the desk. i would describe myself as a very messy and chaotic person. in my diploma work i´m dealing with the topic how to handle chaos in an effective way, but without getting neat.
i saw your chaotic desk picture on flickr and would like to ask you for help. i would be very happy you could answer me these quetions. it would help me a lot!"

At first I wasn't sure how to take this. Does my workspace look that chaotic? Well, yes, of course it does :) I'm glad she contacted me, because it is a subject that interests me. As a very messy person, I am fascinated by tidy people's homes, and how on earth they keep it that way. Tidy people, however, aren't hoarders like me. I can't throw anything away! As a result of this, I am frequently looking for things and just not finding them. This is of course the worst place to be in a workspace. Anyway, he's her questions and my answers:

1. is your chaos a problem for you or do you handle it well?

Most of the time it is a problem to be honest! Although I like to think that creativity is born from chaos, I imagine the opposite is often true. I don't believe in all the rules of Feng Shui, but I do believe in the basic idea that energy can flow better when there is less clutter. To look at mess can be quite stressful and claustrophobic. If my home was tidier, I know I would be a calmer person.

2. why does your chaos break out?

The simple fact that I own way too much stuff! I'm a hoarder, and, like most people who hoard things, I'm always thinking that all this stuff could be used for something. Being creative doesn't help there - I'm always thinking I could make something from it all. I try to live by a waste not want not philosophy, but that just means that some of my studio resembles a landfill! It's not that the chaos breaks out, it's more like it never gets reined in.

3. is there something you always know where it is, something you´re never searching for? and is there something you´re always looking for? if yes why?

Yes to both. The items that I use the most are always where I can find them. For example, I keep my paints and brushes on my sideboard, and my beads in a box under the window, right next to where I use those things. Other items also have their place and they always get put back there. However, it often seems hard to find those items that I don't use so much. The solution, of course, would be to have a place for everything, rather than just a place for some things.

4. how do you find the things you´re looking for? have you got any strategies or methods? or do you know any alternative search-for-method?

I agree with the saying "A place for everything and everything in its place." even if I don't yet follow that philosophy. That would be the best method, as I wouldn't have to search for things at all. At the moment though, the best way to find something seems to be retracing my steps. Where was I when I last used the thing? Where might I have stored it last time I tidied?

5. could you imagine something that helps you finding what you´re searching for?

The aforementioned "place for everything" philosophy would be the most help to me.

So I have been inspired to organise my studio. It's a long overdue task.


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