Lessons learned from the artist process:

In order to create something, you have to let go of any semblance of control. Color outside the lines, fumble around, fall, fail, make mistake after mistake. Get messy. It’s the only way you’ll find your way to the finished product.

But first, you have to give yourself permission to be imperfect- and that is no small feat. Allowing yourself to be imperfect means facing all the demons of your past, the ridicule of school children, the cold shoulder of family members. Echoes of memories, loneliness, the black sheep. Whatever your story, your inner artist will ask you to embrace your vulnerable heart. “Let it all go”, Art asks you. You cannot let fear cannot stop you, nor ghosts from the past. You are older and wiser now, and you can rewrite your story. Rough draft, after rough draft, after rough draft.

The only thing you, the artist- as- human, can know, is that when the creative spark moves you, you MUST do this thing. The thing that you cannot even see yet but that keeps telling you to bring it to life. A poem, a story, a dance, a piece of furniture, a career change…the web of creation is limitless. And when it catches you, it keeps you up at night. Fascinated and infuriated, bringing whatever it is you must create from imagination into form, trying to get it just right. It sets you ablaze with passion and vitality and despair all at once. You have to know it. You can see it and feel it and almost taste it, that thing you must create, that you know is right there, waiting.

Keep digging, and you will recognize the gold when you find it. Because it’s YOU.

 

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