We got home last night at 10:30 which is super-late for us, but we were having such a great time, that we didn’t want it to end. The cats really don’t care how late I go to bed, they want me up by 5 and I generally oblige (because they won’t give up until I do). I sat at my computer and tried to think of something to write but drew a blank so I looked at real estate on-line, ate oatmeal, looked at a book with some gorgeous pictures of Easter celebrations…still no inspiration. …it is sort of delightful to be a little tired out from having a good time!
Posts Tagged ‘creativity’
Posted in Uncategorized, tagged cashmere blankets, creativity, critical voice, Mary Oliver, one day at a time, waste, What do you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? on October 24, 2011 | 12 Comments »
I’ve finally collected enough old cashmere to start my blanket. There is something that feels wrong about cutting into a perfectly wearable sweater (even though I am not wearing any of these, and bought them for the express purpose of making a blanket). A voice says, “What if you mess this up and then you have wasted 6 perfectly good sweaters?” I think that this is the voice of anti-creativity and it lies dormant until I try to do something new (with paint or fabric….or life). It wants me to stay safe; wear the sweaters or give them away. Those are its two options. It might also add, “You shouldn’t have bought them in the first place. You will probably never make the blanket. And if you do, it will be ugly, because you really don’t know how to sew, and you won’t use it…..”
I realize that I’ll never be able to banish this voice forever, but I can also see where I have permanently changed it, in some areas of my life, and that is encouraging and important to remember. When I first decided to wear brighter clothes, I felt ridiculous. I was really uncomfortable for about a month going out in public with such a different look, but now I find that I love it, and wouldn’t even consider going back. I had a function to attend last week, and as I was putting on my 9 month old blue suit (that I bought specifically for these types of occasions), my first thought was, “What possessed me to buy such a dull suit?”
So I’m making the blanket. The more pieces that I sew together, the better I feel. Someone posted a Mary Oliver quote a few weeks ago that said, “What do you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” and then, shortly after, I received a bookmark with the same quote on it. Sometimes it feels too big to think about what I am going to do with “my life” and I need to break it down into manageable segments. What am I going to do today, right now, with my life? Stay in the known or take a chance and create something new?
“Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvelous”.
I just finished reading , “Sleeping with Schubert” by Bonnie Marson, a fun story about a Brooklyn lawyer who suddenly finds that the spirit of Franz Schubert had taken up residence in her body, and overnight she can play the piano like he did. As I read it I thought, “This is the perfect summer read; light, fun, engaging”. I hadn’t heard of Bonnie Marson before and in the back of the book it said, “Bonnie Marson is an artist who has worked in many media–painting, drawing, photography, ceramics and mosaics…”
My first thought was, “Wow, she wrote a book, this good, without being a writer from the time she was 10?!” I had always felt like it was a flaw of mine that I did not stick to one thing and “perfect” it (steadily work at it my entire life). There seems to be an unspoken rule that if you are good at something, you must do it forever, even if you don’t want to anymore, or if you have not found “it” (the one thing that you are supposed to be good at in this lifetime), then you have missed out on your life’s calling and it is your fault because you should have figured it out, and it has to be something that pays and has a clear career path (which leaves out, for most of us, cooking, gardening, shelter/rescue work, bird watching…etc.).
I am coming to believe that the spirit of creativity is very fluid, flexible and fun, and that it can move us into totally new areas of expression …if we allow it. I also love the idea that you can become really good at something, maybe even great, at any age…even if you have never done it before, and just maybe you can be really good at 2 or 3 or 4 things…the possibilites may be limitless to what we can do (and enjoy) if we are open and willing to be swept along!
Below is a bit of Bonnie’s story that I found on-line. She was being interviewed about her success and her journey.
Tell us about a time when you were in fear about your creative career journey and you didn’t think it would go anywhere…
“I’ve made art all my life except for one little detour…
Divorced and needing a steady income, I took a job as PR director for a school district. This meant plenty of security, vacation time, and money, so I stayed nearly seven years. In other words, I’d been bought.
I wound up giving so much time and energy to work that there was nothing left for art. It all became clear to me during, of all things, a school board meeting. Deeply bored, I started thinking about art and realized I hadn’t painted or drawn anything in months. Okay, years. Then I calculated that I’d spent more than 200 nights at school board meetings. I quit the next day.
Did I have a survival plan? Vague notions at best. But, hey, attending 200 school-board meetings in one lifetime is more than anyone should endure. More important, I had let my art slide for far too long. If I hadn’t turned things around at that moment, I could still be lost in well-paid hell. I’ve never looked back”.