Sharing Creativity| A boundless gift we can give freely
The many forms of creativity
Creativity comes in many forms. I grew up in a household dominated by a family business, where creative problem solving was a regular guest at the dinner table. Interestingly, neither of my parents had the luxury of actually pursuing a creative career path when they were growing up. For parents who remember WWII and other such global tragedies, it was all about getting a job – thus my father encouraged me to be an accountant or an engineer. I did neither. I chose to complete an English & History undergraduate degree and later an MBA in Marketing – somewhat of a compromise. However, they did encourage us to have a creative outlet as a hobby. My brother and I dabbled in theater, piano, dance, and took summer classes. Later I turned to writing and ultimately jewelry design to pursue a separate creative path. My mother truly had a creative soul that came out later in life in the form of humor and innovation where she wowed her fan club with presentations on the importance of laughter and left me a book of her “Ideas” that will take a lifetime to absorb. She was so excited about my hair jewelry business, she completely changed her hairstyle to wear my barrettes. My father, a true engineer at heart is still baffled, but fully supportive nonetheless!
Despite one’s upbringing, creative pursuits are still not part of everyone’s personal or professional DNA. That’s actually good news. It opens up a wide range of opportunities for those of us who are blessed with some creative strain. Given the mental and physical challenges of our current global climate and health challenges due to the CV, I don’t know what I would do without the chance to go into my studio and immerse myself in jars of sea glass and the treasure hunt to find just the right pieces that fit together for a piece of jewelry. I feel blessed. Likewise, my husband can sit down and lose himself at his piano. In the ideal scenario, I am motivated when people actually purchase my work, but in the meantime, I am finding other ways to use my creativity and a good part of it is SHARING. This comes in many forms and here are my observations which I hope inspire YOU to do the same.
It’s not just the end product, it’s the processWhen you create art, you rarely end up with a result that you expect. That’s part of the joy. Interviewing artists recently for @1623Studios #ArtWaves I am learning more about each person’s process. The process creates an emotional… Click To Tweet
When you create art, you rarely end up with a result that you expect. That’s part of the joy. Interviewing artists recently for a new collaborative show @1623Studios #1623ArtWaves, I am learning more about each person’s process. The process creates an emotional roadmap from which the viewer can benefit. I have started down that path with my own work – a rather simple idea, but one that would allow my clientele to semi-customize the pieces that I have started. Artists who are capable of sharing their process in some way can provide inspiration for others and also break down the barriers for those who might not understand the end product. I could write a book on a piece that I morphed over the last year until I finally got it to work right! I will reveal it when we launch the new Cape Ann Artisans brochure.
It’s time to “dabble”
Many people wait until they are retired from the “real world” (whatever that is) to pursue their creative interests. Some are lucky enough to do it in parallel without sacrificing income. Either way, the stillness and forced isolation of the current environment is handing us this opportunity on a platter. Pick up that paintbrush, oil up that sewing machine, plant that garden, pick up that needlework, glue those old pieces of ceramics together or start writing that book! It could be life altering or simply a great way to stay mentally stable.
Take your work in new directions
If you already have your creative legs in motion, this is the time to step it up a notch – open up the Pandora’s box of creativity and let it rip. I’ve heard this from a number of artists who are amazed at what’s showing up on the canvas. It’s also a great time to sign up for an online class to learn new techniques. If you don’t do it this time around, at least use the time to do the research. If you are commercially oriented, there are many classes underway to hone up on your digital marketing skills. My good friend and fellow artist, Beth Williams set up her online store. I managed to photograph ALL the work I have in the studio, make some different types of jewelry (new hair forks & a ring), add gifts (soap dish, paper weight) and get it onto Flickr and I hope to even learn more about the functionality of my digital camera. I know there much more I can do to improve the photos of my work.
Help others find their creative spirit
This is the ultimate way to share creativity. If you have a strong creative bent, offer to coach friends, family, and colleagues who want to explore their creative side. Once they choose the path, and start something, stay in touch and offer feedback, examples of others who have done something in their genre, articles that might be of help. Just pointing out to someone, hey, you always coordinate colors so well, did you ever think of putting them together on paper? Your voice is beautiful, have you ever recorded anything? Cooking is a great form of creativity. My 83 year old father has taken to using “HomeChef” to wow his wife with newly minted cooking skills. It’s never too late!!!
Just return to or increase the volume on something that makes you feel good
Beside my creative business, I have plenty of creative hobbies (defined as things that no one will ever pay me to do) – cooking, sewing, gardening, and decorating that give me a sense of accomplishment. Thanks to YouTube, one can find videos on nearly everything online. I have been so impressed with entertainers (famous and not so famous) who have opened their doors and are singing from the balconies, or giving concerts online. I was completely touched by the raw and real One World Together at Home virtual event. My husband has been playing his piano on family video calls, and I have taken to making masks just for family and friends to ensure their safety, and sharing all my favorite kitchen creations around town with my friends who have rigorous remote work schedules or child care duties.
The bottom line is that creativity is a gift that most of us have deep inside even if we don’t know it. We can all help each other today and always by motivating each other to find it and pay it forward in one of many ways. It might be fun to make that creative “to do” list and check in with it a year from now!