Creativity, like beauty, is sometimes “in the eye of the beholder.” A homemade greeting card with hand printed sentiments looks cheap to some people while to others it says the creator means to share a heartfelt idea with more than just a dollar bill. Many, many people are mistaken when they believe they aren’t creative. We are all creative to some degree every day. It’s a matter of how and collecting the ideas into something meaningful to someone else.
“I’m sorry that our country and the people do not consider the arts as vital to our well-being as, say, medicine. Suffering is unnecessary. It doesn’t make you a better artist; it only makes you a hungry one. However, to me the acquisition of the craft of writing was worth any amount of suffering.”
~Rita Mae Brown
I wish I could draw more than stick figures. Somewhere in my grade school days, I remember a teacher saying, “Your handwriting is perfect, but the picture of the cat leaves something to be desired.” I didn’t continue to practice my drawing after that. Today when I journal and want to illustrate my writing, I still feel frozen and hear, “I’m not good at this so don’t try.” And I cut pictures out of magazines and collage instead. It’s another means of creative expression, but I still wish I had been encouraged to continue drawing or at least left alone to discover my limits. Oh, well, onto plan B. Write. The teacher said my penmanship was excellent and that’s where my energies went. Stories, posters, poems, letters, you name it, I wrote it. And then I decided I wanted to be a teacher.
“…the creative process is an artist’s industrial secret. Why clue the competition? When times are hard, the ‘divine flame’ gets one invited to dinner and written about by art historians. Why jeopardize one’s insurance?”
In college for my teaching degree it was important to come up with interesting ways to present the same old information to students. Writing was my go-to option and lo-and-behold, the evaluations and letters of recommendation I received from my college professors said, “Joy is very creative.” It was too vague a statement to me like people who say something is “very interesting.” It’s a veiled meaning for odd. Yep, creativity is odd? That’s one negative message I refused to hear.
“Art does not take kindly to facts, is helpless to grapple with theories, and is killed outright by a sermon.”
Must be time for me to stop trying to justify creativity and just be creative. Do you consider yourself creative?
“Be well, write well.”