Friday, September 21, 2012

99/365: Own Your Creativity

Today I made:
a list of creative acts...

photo by Nicole Spotofora, my sweet bee
I use the term "art" pretty loosely around here. Mostly because this "here" is mine and so is most of the art that adorns it. Not to take away from the finely tuned skills and efforts of trained artists and craftspeople who have studied art and design and spent their time working through the creative process, but the creative life is not just for those people. I don't believe that creativity is a special gift or talent bestowed upon the chosen few. It is accessible to all of us. We are all artists in our own right. We all have the spark of creation in us; we were born with it. It's not going away. This I know from experience: our idea of what an artist is might cause us to shy away from calling ourselves creative and from granting ourselves the time to develop our creative interests, but it's never too late to reconnect with the spark. It's never too late to decide to own our creativity. Little by little, we can make our way back to our own truth and find a way to express it. The need to express ourselves is in all of us and that is all that is required in order to begin.                   You are enough right now, just the way you are.

After a silly amount of questioning the validity of my own art, I decided to accept the following: art is a great number of things to a great many people, but in our own personal creative lives, it only matters what it means to us. Our own relationship with our art or with the creative source that feeds our inspiration is what drives us forward to continue on the creative path. Your art is what you make it, just like your life is what you make it. We must trust that we can create that which will bring us joy.

To me, art is anything born from the collaboration between my hands, heart and mind. It is my personal one-of-a-kind truth in the moment. It is my way of expressing my understanding of the human experience or the world around me. When we create, when we make our art, we are manifesting our visions, our instincts and our deepest desires; we are giving of ourselves. I believe that we move toward a more authentic version of ourselves when we create. The truth comes out. We can even choose to share that truth. When we create our art, we are bringing something special, beautiful or meaningful into the world that didn't exist before we created it. Now that is pretty darn cool!

My 365 Days of Creative project is helping me to discover and give credit to all the surprising little ways we can tap into our creativity. I'm certain I'm leaving many things out, so please add your ideas in the comments below. Let's give ourselves countless ways to bring more art into our lives and honor that spark, just by being aware of the ways we are already creative.

50 creative acts, in no particular order:
solving problems at work (how are you creative at your job?), cooking, gardening, decorating your home, photography (including amateur picture taking), sewing, knitting, crocheting, styling an outfit, hair & makeup, jewelry design, scrapbooking and card making, writing (journaling, poetry, blogging, friendly correspondence), drawing & doodling, coloring, painting, sculpting (play-doh counts), planning a party, acting, improv comedy (in the living room with your friends), spoken word, singing (in the car and shower), playing an instrument, composing and compiling music (yeah mix tape!), dance and creative movement (say yes to impromptu dance parties!), planning a trip or a play date, crafting with kids, designing the perfect lesson, building things (blanket forts, lego lands and popsicle stick birdhouses!), stretching your budget, MacGyvering your way out of a fix, knowing just what to say to your friend...these are all creative acts.
Please partake.

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