The 20 Minute Club’s Second Ever Minutes!


Tomorrow is the little opening for my digital collage transfers that I’m showing at the Made With Love Cafe in Jersey City, so I’ve been a woman on a mission.

I spent a lot of 20 minutes-es making several new pieces for my show (which I haven’t taken pictures of yet or I’d show you).

But I knew it would also help me tremendously to use the 20 Minute Technique to work on one of the new drawings in my weather series that I’m terribly stuck on. That I want to dig deeper with.

So finally this morning, I set my timer and worked on the one I had worked on last week exactly one more time. And I’m so glad I did.

I mean, I still have no idea where I’m going with this drawing, but setting the timer and working on it anyway was hugely beneficial.

Why? Because I’m not where I was (which is excellent) and I can feel myself inching forward, even while still having no clear idea what’s really happening.

Just by trying different solutions to the-design-problem-that-is-my-drawing helped me progress, even without knowing if these latest marks/thoughts are right, and regardless of whether or not this particular drawing works out in the end.

Working on my artwork in this stage always feels like I’m feeling my way through a familiar room, but all the lights are out, and I have to pay attention with all my other senses.


And I’d also like to say THANKS, beloved blog readers, because knowing that I had to write this blog post gave me the gumption to turn on the timer and face that drawing at least one time this week.

Answering to you helped me.

It’s the accountability factor. (I’m planning to write more about this next week, but I wanted to plant the seed.)

Your Turn!

And now I’d like to help you! How’d it go for you this week? Good? Bad? Did you use the timer? 5 minutes? 20 minutes? I can’t wait to hear.

(The comments last week were wonderful and great inspiration for other people, so I also want to say THANK YOU to everyone who shared their 20 Minute Technique experiences–so helpful!)

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Categories : 20 Minute Club


  1. Yona says:

    Sarah..thanks for posting again…I am still working on the piece I mentioned last week but have had to resort to 20mins here and there… And I too feel as if I m inching thru a familiar but dark room..awesome analogy! Thanks for your email too and funny enough it was u who motivated me to update my blog… The partially done piece is in it… Will post again when it’s done. Xoyo

  2. Caren says:

    Just got my timer!:) Happy showing to you. I’m a special education schoolteacher and YOU are so inspiring for the teens.

  3. Sarah says:

    @Yona, so glad that dark room analogy made sense to somebody else! and Yay about updating your blog! I’m crazy about Oaxaca too and I your personal process with the day of the dead and creating your own version of the Frida half dead/half alive painting is really compelling!

  4. Sarah says:

    @Caren–Great first step to get the timer! And wow about inspiring your students–that’s so nice to hear!

  5. Sandra L. says:

    I used the timer to go through a stack of photos. I put them in my mother’s photo album. This is a project we started several years ago, and every time we would get together to work on it, we’d end up chatting, etc. I couldn’t believe I got the whole “1970s” stack into the album in 20 minutes!

  6. Sarah says:

    @Sandra-Perfect! And isn’t it amazing how much progress you can make in 20 minutes? I’m always so pleasantly surprised. :-)

  7. Laura says:

    I have used the 20-minute technique a few times at work in the last week to get myself going on things I had to write – a presentation, an article. I then used it again to do a few more rounds of work on those things. It really helps.

  8. [...] Your Friends By Sarah I can’t tell you how much I’m loving reading the comments (here, here, and here, if you want to take a look) that readers are leaving about the 20 Minute [...]

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