This is the place where I round up a corral chock-full of mixed media art, vintage collections, digital escapades, and some occasionally snarky observations about life with junk, books, rescue dogs and nearly-grown children.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

File Cabinet Archeology

My husband is out of town for three weeks, so I'm doing some file-purge work.  I am the pack-rat in the family.  I'm not to the point that I need to audition for that reality show about hoarders, but I have a tendency to save all sorts of things--as a mixed-media artist, I can find a use for just about anything.

 My "office" circa late 2009.
I don't have an official studio, so I store my paperwork, books and much of my art stuff in my "office."  Consequently, my office, as you can see above, is a landscape of bins and piles, framed by bookshelves.  I have a filing cabinet in another  that I have used to corral the overflow, but the contents are mostly mundane--school newsletters, recipes from Family Circle that I will never use, tourist brochures, old schoolwork by the kids, college application work for my son, church projects that failed to launch.  You get the idea.  All that has gone into the recycle bin, and I've freed up almost an entire drawer on a four-drawer cabinet, and I have one more drawer on that cabinet to sort.

Sorting my files has been like a visit to a thrift shop--little surprises pop up among the junk, and I have found some things I had forgotten I had.
Doodle from the bottom of a church council agenda.

Among the keepers I've come across during my sorting are doodles (I used to be a pretty fast sketch-cartoonist) and some vintage stuff--you know, stuff from the 1980s, like the KLOS Radio logo above.

Sketch of my dog, "Cross," circa 2005

 I have found a few things that bring back memories, like this business card from our favorite pre-kids restaurant in Redondo Beach, CA:
I have always been a writer, and I've earned my living with it, so I have research stuff from different companies I've worked for (not in this file cabinet), copies of brochures and newsletters I've penned (for pay and as a volunteer for  non-profit work), not to mention the drafts for three completed novels, bunches of poems and all sorts of notes, short stories, and character sketches.  That's all stashed in two other file cabinets, which are not on the agenda for this set of purges.
My high school graduation gift from my parents was this Smith Corona electric typewriter.
The image is cropped from the instruction booklet, which I found in my filing cabinet!

My goal is to clean up the floor of my office and get rid of old magazines, art supplies/junk that I don't intend to use, and to take an inventory of my incomplete projects and decide which I plan to finish.  We're also working on getting an upstairs "game room" ready to house my daughter's sewing machine.  We're going to be selling some stuff we no longer use--an electronic drum set and an electronic keyboard.  Once this post is up, I plan to set out some boxes for Purple Heart pick up tomorrow morning.  I have two big boxes of books to take to the Friends of the Library.
Remember Dr. Finklestein from Tim Burton's "Nightmare Before Christmas"?
This image is from a plastic bag I had used to hold ticket stubs.

I want my husband to see a noticeable difference in the house when he returns on August 21st.  So this is my way of getting some accountability!

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