As I mentioned in my last post, creatively, it’s been a slow time for me these last couple of months. So I made a decision over the summer to sign-up for an e-course called Creative Courage, taught by Stephanie Levy, hoping to propel out of my creative rut and learn from other artists around the world as they pursue their artistic dreams. What I didn’t expect was to discover a vibrant community of artists, writers, teachers and makers, encouraging one another as we shared our goals, successes and failures. My heart awakened to that need for creative community in my own life as I began to explore the daily activities and readings (this is the 4th week of the course and it’s been wonderful so far!)
One day while reading about fear of failure (and reflecting on my own when I create), I stumbled across this slide show about the 8 creative types. It was interesting to meditate on where my own strengths and weaknesses lay, and got me thinking about what my own creative formula is.
If I had to describe my perfect day, there are a few key elements that would need to exist, and I realized these are also the precise things that are necessary for me to create art. So I did a little bit of doodling to get the juices flowing, and not worry too much about what I was actually making.
Firstly, I need my time with God.
Creating art is a deeply spiritual activity for me. My skills, inspiration and purpose flow from God and so creating art becomes an act of worship for me, just like singing or praying might be for someone else. What does my time with God look like? It could vary, but will most likely include reading scripture and a daily devotional. It might also consist of listening to a sermon podcast if I have some extra time, and often I’ll journal about whatever I am meditating on that day.
Once I’ve added this component to my day, I find I also need time outdoors. I’m learning that this is also a spiritual activity for me because I am very fascinated by the intricacies and wild beauty of nature. I believe God communicates timeless truths through nature, and being among it all stirs my heart to receive inspiration and wisdom from God.
It is these two activities – time with God + time outdoors – that will supply me with an endless source of inspiration which I pour back out in my art as an act of worship.
So why the creative dryness in this season? I’m discovering it is a lack of one or the other of these elements, in addition to the chokehold that a fear of failure can place on creative expression. As I’ve gone through each week of Creative Courage and explored these areas further, I sense my art will begin to move in a new direction, and I’m excited to see what that is!
Have you ever given thought to your creative formula? What do you need to create?