I suppose there is something to be said about accomplishment. But it’s not accomplishments that gives me the sense of what I look for when being expressive through creativity. It’s the Release. The sheer emotional Release. They are two distinct, different things; accomplishment & Release.
Note to my Reader’s : The image of the work above is NOT mine. I chose a random image from searching on google. I cannot pretend, or by being silent let you think this is my splatter work. But it sure looked fun~
This is my latest self discovery; the one that maybe I was searching for during my week’s hiatus taken a few weeks back. Taking time from being creative in any way was weird. But I did it. I did not even cook and create meals during this week off. I pretty much allowed all my senses to be snuffed. Dulled. I find a sense of accomplishment in many things that I do. For instance I love to fold clothes. There is something calming and relaxing about the act of creating one fold into the another. There is kind of almost a craft to it. It’s an accomplishment, albeit one I even enjoy. But finding that emotional release in creativity is completely different. Finding that release through expression that the soul feeds on is not always as easy as dumping a load of laundry into the wash and dryer. Or even hanging them on the line to dry in the fresh air.
While reading my favorite blogs during my week hiatus there was no sense of urgency. It was a fabulous gift to one’s self. I highly recommend it. I took longer time to read some blogs than I have ever before, usually committing the crime of just reading the current post and running. It was a real pleasure feeling like I had all the time in the world, taking all the time I chose to do whatever I wanted. All except being creative that is.
And why not?
Really, if I think about it there is never anything in my life on a regular basis that should ever cause me to feel that sense of urgency. That’s part of my problem I’m discovering. Through this self induced hiatus from all that I do with my creative wings I am discovering something about myself; I do most things with this sense of urgent, impending, immediate need to finish. To get to the conclusion.To accomplish. I do enjoy the journey most of the time, I like what I am doing either in composing words, or composing with art mediums. I enjoy the “doing”. But I have just discovered that I do so with this feeling of “I have to get this done!” I have to accomplish this, and now!
It’s an anxiety I carry in my body, its in my shoulders that I find hunched up to my ears. It’s in my hands that I tend to squeeze tools too tightly like I’m about to lose the last paint brush or pair of scissors on earth. I sometimes come away from my desk having to pull my curled up fingers out of the fist that has been created while working. All because I have to finish it RIGHT now. I’ll stay up days and nights to finish a piece if its taking that long because I am unable to set it aside. Taking a break now and then, setting my work aside and coming back with fresh eyes would only be a good thing.A good thing I could use.
But I am unable to convince the person who is in need of convincing.
….uh…yeah….that person would be me.
I have come up with a bit of an idea to maybe slowly move me into getting away from this need I have feeling that I have to accomplish instead of release through expression. Which is what I am aiming for. Expression being released through my creative wings is what I am after here without feeling this sense of urgency that I must finish it sooner than later. Why can’t I just be mindful of the time creating and enjoy that?
Knowing how I am and that I will need to still be able to have the chance to work as I always have is important. Making changes while I am not thinking of doing thing except like I have always done is not going to help me at first. I will freeze. I have times where I absolutely crave working with paper, needing to express myself through my creativity. Any medium can be brought into the mix but paper has always been my number one passion. It was my first as a child and will remain my signature medium to the end. If that makes sense. Even water-color paper fascinates me in ways I cannot explain.
anyway,,, I digress….
My plan is to leave my normal work table as it is. I’m set up right now for creating greeting cards. I like to create a lot of my own elements too so I have a lot of supplies. I also set up a second work table in a different room. This table consists only of a few things right now. And that is part of my plan. To work with minimal tools and supplies at this table. Right now I have a bottle of white gesso, brushes, two 5″ x 7″ wrapped canvases, wax paper which I use to protect my work space, and magazine clippings I then encase completely in clear packing tape to create stencils for shapes I’m left with a water proof image that I can use on my collage for a stencil. What I chose this time for my image is a cartoon character that resembles pipi long stocking. The intent is to use something that has openings away from the image. In other words the tall body that I am using has space opening between her arms, and her legs, her neck, I will be able to see what the image is once painted around it. If I don’t have these open spaces the image is just going to look like a blob on the work. A blur. So practice first was necessary. I am going to use my pipi for my stencil while adding water-color around her body as the image. I’ll have the back ground painted and pipi’s image will remain clean and looking exactly like her image in sillohette.
That’s all I have planned.. The rest will come to me as I take my time and just enjoy the process. The release. No need to feel like I have to finish it any time soon. Or ever for that matter maybe never because this is my practice at attempting to create just for creating the release of my expression of passion for life I feel. That’s it! It’s not about accomplishing this collage, or the other one I have no plans for beyond the gesso layer I added to it as well. Every step is part of the process of expressing myself through the piece I will be creating layer by layer. I am enjoying the process and am feeling incredibly relaxed. In the moment, not thinking about what I think I should be doing next, or 3 or 4 steps ahead of where I am. It’s feeling very zen like so far, but I’m curious to see how well I do once I start layering some elements on it. Even the back ground normally causes me some state of grief. Not expecting it to marble the way it did, whatever it is I was not planning for.
Thinking only one way. Being more rigid like when you’re intending to be purposeful with your strokes or your cuts are all good in their place. And there are many times when its intended in my work. That’s my problem. I need to be able to let go sometimes and just not be so purposeful. “Let it just go with the Flow” as an old artist acquaintance of mine would say. He was a friend I knew in the late 60’s and through the 70’s. An articulate poet and an extremely different artist. I always called him a folk artist, it’s a genre I love. He created a spiraling piece out of wire that he took one long piece and twisted it gently into a big spiral with maybe 8 or 9 tiers to it, all graduating smaller and smaller until it was almost not open in the middle inside the creation. He then covered the wire with tie – dyed (would you really expect anything different?) cotton. He named it The Floam and he gifted to our first-born. Our little miss A. E. slept for a couple of years with The Floam hanging above her bed in lieu of a traditional mobile. To this day she has the fondest memories of the piece andshe voices how much she adored the idea of having the artwork of someone we knew in her room even as a baby. Our home is filled with fine art and folk art created by people in our life. It’s a good feeling to feel surrounded by these pieces. I wonder if they were done with a sense or a release of artistic expression, or a sense of accomplishment. Or maybe both.
Self Expression is a curious thing.