I have returned from my art absence for nearly 18 months. I talked and thought of all the things I could do in clay or paper but could not muster the energy or time to do so. After becoming utterly frustrated at my former job, I went interviewing with various companies during lunch. I worked uber hard and made sure to dedicate my existence for 4 months to maintaining my sanity and blowing through a massive workload without being allowed overtime. My hard labor and dedication paid off when a company, literally next door called, me back to interviewed me. I thought the first interview was a bit awkward, but the manager seemed sincere and highly intelligent. I filed it away that it was a good place to work, but they probably wouldn't want someone like me. To my surprise, a week later they offered me a second interview with the manufacturing director. I was allowed a tour and was utterly amazed at some simple applications of technology likely unheard of ten years ago.
Trying to fathom the vast wealth of scientific and artistic knowledge out there, I notice how much our world has changed in the short span of ten years. Buy anything at your whim, search for things that took days to find. My mom kept dial-up far longer than most people would have (2009), so I truly value what is available to me now that I live on my own and save a small chunk of my income for good internet. I now have time to slow down, enjoy meals and other pleasant things. I chose a longer lunch break so I can relax and learn and read (get home later, but it works out). I have also invested in higher quality food (standard groceries, small quantities of good foods, avoiding the cheapest). The new diet and change in work stress has done wonders for my health - my hands are now completely free of dermatitis (although I now have wrinkly palms, but that may be from overuse).
I now realize my temporary lack of artistic motivation is due to the general education away from creativity and imagination. I now know how much it hurts someone to say "you'll never make money at dance/art/humanities..." Well, now you can't make money in science either. Hard work is how you get money, and what you do to make it is up to you. And, oddly enough, my grandfather probably made more than any of my parents or cousins, and he is an artist with out of this world drawing and watercolor abilities, worked for the Mayo Clinic, and has changed surgeons' ideas of the human body. Why not what we love in a way that can change our world for the better? Why not have educational merger between art and science in such a way to promote creativity, or treat all subjects equally, or have trade schools be an achievement rather than shunning anyone who can't graduate? If you are interested, please check out this TED talk: [link]
Regarding my new job, I now work at Intematix in Quality Control. It is a wonderful company geared toward providing quality phosphors for high quality lighting. I am happy to say it is a dream job for me. To do anything that has a subjective, artistic quality mixed with quantitative science is truly amazing.