I’ve read a lot about creativity recently; the expression of the soul.
Without it we fade away. With it we become the person we were meant to be.
I know people who are personally fulfilled because they have a meaningful connection to the world; a thread of fine silver links their heart to the intricate net of threads which hold the world together. I know others whose sparkle in their eyes has dulled.
Creativity requires commitment – a daily decision to stay true to yourself. That’s not always easy in a world of bills to be paid and people crying out for their needs to be met.
‘The Artist’s Way‘ calls us to make an ‘artist date’ with ourselves; to do something once a week to inspire us or physically engaging in the creative process. Personally, my best ‘artist dates’ are when I write or record. Although I have a day job (which also allows me to be somewhat creative), this ‘writing, recording and performing music’ job is phenomenally important to me. As Clare Bowditch says, ‘You don’t have to be just one thing, but you have to start with something‘.
Here’s me starting with something; I stepped out of my comfort zone and drew on my old Fender acoustic with permanent marker (gasp!shock!horror!). It took time and brazen permanent-marker-wielding-courage but was super satisfying; I brought something of myself into the world.
What makes your eyes shine? Jane Goodall tells a story about the way her mother encouraged her gift, her unique creativity, from a young age. Jane, at the age of 4, had been missing for hours while watching a chicken to see how an egg was laid. “Despite her worry, when mum, still searching, saw the excited little girl rushing toward the house, she did not scold me. She noticed my shining eyes and sat down to listen to the story of how a hen lays an egg: the wonder of that moment when the egg finally fell to the ground”.
Humans are naturally creative and there are a multitude of ways to create. Let’s participate in and encourage this human-ness wherever we can. Let’s get to local gigs (mine or otherwise!), exhibitions, poetry slams, house concerts. Let’s paint, write songs and stories, grow gardens, build go-karts, design comics. Let’s notice the sparkle in someone’s (perhaps even our own) eyes and follow where it leads. This is living baby!