Recently, I've begun a journey into a new book called "The Artists Way" by Julia Cameron. It is billed as "a spiritual path to higher creativity." I would never have heard of this book if not for some people in my [fa] FINE ART Photography Facebook group asking if anyone would be interested in going through the book's process together and sharing our results. I was intrigued by the idea, and for a procrastinating soul like myself, being accountable to others is a great way to ensure that I will meet my goals for my 52 project.
The introduction to this book alone is beautifully written and inspiring on it's own. Already I am armed with a handful of helpful quotes to inspire me in times when I feel uninspired and dull. My favorite so far is this:
"I am here because art brought me here. Obedient I came"
This book has got me thinking a lot on creativity and on how we come to create. My own thoughts follow- and I am not parroting the book, though some of what I say may collaborate, and some may contradict. I don't know, I haven't made it past the intro yet. :-)
Firstly, I believe that when we create from our hearts, we return ourselves to childlike innocence, but with the benefit of our adult skill and adeptness, and tempered with the sophistication of experience. But we approach art and creativity with all the vulnerability of a child in a big scary world. When we create, we are bringing forth an untapped part of our souls, that has no armor in this world. When we offer our creations to the masses, we are like doting mother's sending their firstborn child off to school. Anxiety and foreboding vying for position at the top of our hearts, but followed closely by hope and pride.
Which brings me to my second point. I have no patience for self appointed "Masters" in the artistic community, who stand back and judge other artists based on skills alone. I have no use for someone who is farther along in their journey, but refuses to use that hard earned knowledge to help another artist who may be struggling find their footing. Judging your work against a fledgling artist is about the same as giving a trigonometry test to a high school student and a toddler and being proud that the high schooler got a better grade. Instead, gently reach out to those who you feel could benefit from constructive criticism and kindly point out how they could improve their technique. I cannot stress KINDLY enough. Saying something harshly, however well intentioned, will do nothing but set another creative back. I feel that creativity is an energy as powerful as any and doing or saying anything to quash someone's creativity is an act of murder in a way. You not only bring negativity into someone's life unnecessarily, but you might have just dealt the death blow to someone's dying passion for art. Instead, offer resuscitation when you can. The more well thought out, quality work that is put into the world enriches the Creative Collective Soul, and each individual artist who calls themselves a part of that collective. Why wouldn't you reach out to help someone when you know it will in turn help you grow as well?
My Fellow Fine Artists
Tammy Zurak of Z Photog Studio | Memphis, TN, USA | Fine Art/Illustrative Photography Gallery:
Pam Korman of District Photography | Philadelphia, PA, USA | Fine Art Photography:
www.bonniealrifai.com Fine art photography
Handy Andy Pandy