Do you use time wisely? Are you making new stuff? And sharing your art on social media? Are you using free segments in your crammed schedule to your best advantage for creativity, exposure and community-building? Or do you surf around “for inspiration”, killing time that might be better spent making something? As Tim Gunn says: Make it work. And as Dr. Larch says to Homer throughout the John Irving book The Cider House Rules: Be of Good Use.
I’m writing this post to myself. #fingerwagging
For Pete’s sake, don’t let your wandering artist’s eye guide your only spare hour! Convince and cajole that meandering mosey back to your art supplies to grab something to paint or draw on. If you *must* surf social media, make it “be of good use” and post something related to art. Share it. Find your people. Gather your tribe. Commune with your ‘hood in the art space that exists online. Write something about what you made today. Interact. Be your authentic self – which is just a trendy way of saying “pretend you’re talking to your best friend”. Get out there and be the whole, unguarded, you-ish, essence of you.
So, that’s a conversation I have with myself when too many non-art To-Do’s consume the days and weeks. Me and my inner voices, arguing. Can you relate? What does yours sound like?
? ? ?
Opportunities exist in human connections; reach out and say something to another artist. You may hear about a new tool, technique or show opportunity. What are you struggling with? What did you successfully hurdle today? Where is your next show? Which upcoming project in your list has you most excited? When will you start ? Share an artist who inspires you. Write about what you like in their work (without bashing your own in comparison).
If you do have a spare hour, allow me to share my very own finger-wagging inner-voice with you, so perhaps you’ll be encouraged to grab your creativity by the shirt collar, and wrestle it into making something – even if it’s just for 45 minutes, and then, reward yourself by using the last 15 minutes to share what you’ve made on your favorite social media platform. I will if you will. Deal? Here is a great article about re-charging your creative mojo.
Creative thought helps us innovate, make connections we hadn’t seen before, break open problems, and create not just works of art but “arts of work” – work-related products and ideas that don’t just solve strategic problems but also surprise and delight. ~Dana Asher
I wish I could say I’m not sure what Dana Asher is talking about, but I know it well. I’ve slogged up the Hill of Fear, and I’m standing inside the ‘big picture zone’ the author is referring to, waving at you to step over the threshold and come on in.
Because, you know, we really need to get back to work. Here’s a list of six ways to get back in touch with your creativity.
What did you make so far in these first 20 days of January? Me? Nothing. Nada. Zip. The obstacles to art-making occupy a fat list this month. But I’m chipping away. How about you?
See you in the next post –
P.S. You can subscribe to get each post shared on this blog via email. Sign up here (it’s free).
In Oct 1959, Andrew Wyeth sat down to write a letter to his son Nicholas who was away at school. He looked up and saw a basket of apples illuminated in crisp fall light & sketched the scene on the letterhead. He wrote “Dear Nicholas”. That’s as far as he got; he went to his studio, found a 13×13 panel and painted the basket of apples in tempera. ~F. Sweet