My photo for me, art and photography.

Monday, 27 July 2009

An Artist with RSI. Fun Times.

Good combination, huh.

Ok, well it seems RSI is a fairly common injury, but there doesnt seem to be a great deal of information out there for people like me who use their hands outside of the typing world who have RSI... either that or I'm not looking in the right places. This RSI has been going on for far too long and I am absolutely fed up with it, so I'm taking drastic action and cutting out as much crappy typing and unnecessary use as possible (as of the start of last week). This is pretty hard to enforce, as I'm pretty isolated where I live.. I don't live out in the middle of nowhere (sadly) I live somewhere MUCH worse... the suburbs (!). My parents nag me saying I should go out and make new friends, but to be honest, I don't want new friends - I'd just like to be able to see the ones I already have a bit more often, but everyone I care about lives miles away - Scotland, Yorkshire, and two of my best friends are travelling in Peru and Australia - so my computer really is my portal to the outside world! Sad, probably more than slightly geeky, but true. However - I have discovered Skype! so I'm keeping touch with them over that now instead, so minimal typing required. Huzzah!

My weapons are what I call a 'granny wrist splint' which is one of those heavy duty wrist supports with velcro and a metal stick along the bottom, so my wrist doesn't move around too much; Volterol, deep heat, hot water bottles, ice, and massage. All well and good.


Most normal people don't put their wrists what I put mine through. Stretching canvasses really does put a lot of strain on my wrists and I'm such a perfectionist/stubborn person that I like to do it myself because I know what I want, and I know how to do it - my canvases have to be extremely taut and I don't trust anyone else to do that for me (and it's far cheaper to DIY than to buy premade). I have canvas pliers now which are a godsend, but after stretching a canvas yesterday my wrist swelled up a fair bit in protest. To take some of the strain off, i thought i'd use the stapler with my left hand....

I say 'thought' because I have pathetic hands and i physically can't push the handle down with my left hand. I can just about do it with my right.

Fun times.

Hopefully this splint thing will help me get better faster. When I went to see my physio a few months ago she didn't want me to wear one and said if you must wear something, wear a tubigrip.
HAH. Like a tubigrip helps when you're stretching a canvas.

1 comment:

Miranda said...

I too am an artist with RSI! It really is a massive pain in the well, arm (sorry!:). I buy my canvas stretched - its the actual painting that has done it. I now use a crutch to rest my arm on which works quite well, however it does limit my movements and means I struggle to paint anywhere apart from at home (I haven't taken the crutch out yet!). Its really depressing. I have found that the only way to get through it is to take breaks every 20 - 30 mins (especially in the morning, when your body is at its stiffest!). I also spend 10 minutes warming my upper body up with various arm and wrist exersises which are essential. I am going to see a osteopath in a couple of weeks who is apparently really amazing - lets hope so.

Anyway, its good to share such an annoying problem with others. If you have any tips, let me know!