An Artist’s Date

I went to the Tweed Art Gallery last Friday on an ‘artist’s date’. Artist dates are one of the techniques described in the book, The Artist’s Way, to foster your creativity.  I found it very inspiring and enriching which is the point of artist dates. I have started that book twice, gotten as far as chapter seven and am yet to finish it. ! Third time lucky?

There were so many different types of art on display at the gallery, different methods, techniques and subjects. The Border Art prize showed off local artists work (including my friend Dave Hickson who won a prize).

It seems that anything goes. Some pieces I looked at and thought ‘ I could do that!’. Have you ever been in an art gallery and had that thought? The difference between the artists hanging on the walls of the gallery and me, are that they have acted on their creative ideas and shared them with the world.

IMG_1365For many years my vision of my ideal life has included expressing myself creatively through words and art. I have hesitated from lack of clarity about what and how.

During this gestational time between the end of my old job and the birth of the new one, I am spending time being with these creative urges AND the resistance I feel. Things are beginning to shift. It has been my desire to understand and do it ‘right’ that has been getting in the way, I have wanted to do it perfectly! Why?

Partly it is my innate desire to do things well and thoroughly. However below that is the desire to avoid pain, to avoid the pain of criticism, or perceived, even expected criticism. This is old programming that I need to lever out of its crevices, to free myself up. Thank-you to this aspect of myself for keeping me safe when I was little and you are not necessary anymore. All books about writing, and I have a few on my book shelf, talk about the need to separate out the creative voice from the editor. They are two separate functions.

Fear of not writing well has been getting in the way of writing at all, or at least not very much. Similarly I have IMG_0157been feeling intimidated by a blank canvas or page, unsure of the ‘right’ thing to do.

It is liberating to be with that resistance gently, to see it, listen to its concerns and gradually allow the creator inside me to create just for the sheer joy of creating. Because when I take a photo, or write something or draw or paint it feels GOOD. There does not need to be any other reason to do it than that. My focus has been too much on what others might think. Surely the purpose of creating is self expression and joy.

I came home from the gallery and wrote four blog post drafts. It was like a tap had been turned on and the ideas were flowing out so quickly that I resorted to speaking into a recording device as I could not type fast enough. I feel a small opening, a crack appearing in the wall. It is not about what I create or produce that matters, but that I do it often. The more it is given permission and allowed the more it flows. Ahhhhhh. That feels better!

 

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