Artists are observers. That’s how we pick up how other people speak, their mannerisms, and how we can predict why they wear the clothes they do, and then use that fodder in our art. It is the smallest details that will sometimes make the difference for a reader or listener or audience member. So, as creative people, we play with how the tiny details fit together to construct the whole. Whether they are notes, words, brush strokes, seasonings, or graceful gestures with the fingers and hands, they all give information to the viewer about the artist, and when we, the artist, view our work, we come to understand ourselves and our perceptions of the world around us and how those perceptions define us. Take a look at what you’ve created, either recently or review your work from the past. How has it changed? What was being expressed? Were you able to recognize a phase you were going through? What conclusions can you draw about yourself as an artist based on your work? It’s these observations, of ourselves and others, that help us to be creative.
To generate ideas, to solve problems that are one of a kind or ones that no one has come up against before, requires creativity, and thus, courage. It takes great courage to not only follow the call, but to allow the Muse to lead us from our safe place into that which we are greatly exposed. Not necessarily physically, although that can be the case, but where it matters most, emotionally, our ego laid out for all to see and criticize. We can create songs, dances, sculptures, pictures, meals, poems, and stories about other people, about a time and place different from now, and we can work really, really hard to keep ourselves hidden. Has your courage grown by delving into the creative world, by following your muse? Courageous people are creative, or it could be the other way around, but being brave and making art are two sides of the same coin.
Writing, cooking, dancing, painting, playing music, photography, and sculpting are all dynamic endeavors. Every moment is just one more opportunity to create, to explore. All of life is an ongoing enterprise. Raising children, building a career, writing a book, investing in a relationship, are all expressions of courageous ways to dive into who we are and share our expression in this life. The question remains, how are you dynamic? Are there places where you have become a little stale? A little stuck? Entice your Muse to travel with you down those paths, either long forgotten or newly investigated, and see what you come up with. Don’t forget your courage! Or all those observations that help us create art, and our lives.