Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Stay Focused


I have been spending the week thinking about the questions Marissa posed to us this last week. The other night I sat down to write down my answers.  The more I wrote, the more I started seeing things a little more clearly.  The more I tried to really be honest with myself the more I started to realize where I was getting stuck. I ended up with pages of thoughts.  Now I realize that not all of you reading this blog care to hear this creative stuff, so I’ll try to keep it short. :)

There is something about creating.  To me it’s the process, the getting messy, or the experimenting with different ideas and mediums.  There’s something incredible about the way that everything starts falling together. Colors start working, elements start playing with each other, and finally you have a finished product that works, is beautiful and was created by you.  Starting from nothing but ideas in your head, and then seeing the finished product is so rewarding.  “It finally clicked” is a phrase that my husband told me the other day he loves to hear me say. Why? Because after days or weeks of struggling to get creative ideas to work out and becoming frustrated, and not feeling like I’m getting anywhere… there’s nothing like that mental click where it suddenly works and you know from here on out it’s pure creating.  He knows when that moment hits, that I’ll come in with a smile on my face, a sense of satisfaction, excitement about what’s happening and loosing all sense of time while working.

It’s the creating part that I love…. the gathering of ideas, the experimenting and the playing. But I’ve realized too through answering her questions that I have no focus. I like so many things, so many mediums, get so much inspiration all over that I have lost my focus. I’m not sure of what to do to really get sense of all fulfillment.

I’ve always had a desire inside to be using my talent for those things that God blessed me with this talent for. I don’t want to end up making my accounting for my talents and admit that I used it all for me and my gain. I want to say I used it for his glory, to testify of him and used it how he needed me and wanted me to use it.  But to me that’s scary, because I have been wondering what that is, and am not sure I know.  I have had this idea in my head of what it entailed, but last night I started having my thoughts go in different directions and I was wondering if I was already accomplishing it in more ways that I thought…. that I wasn’t going to need a drastic shift or turn in my creating. I’m not sure yet… thoughts that I really need to work through and think about, but that gave me hope. 
But in the process I realized I am REALLY stuck on the idea that if you don’t paint and draw with your hands, and do everything in the more traditional method that I can’t really say I’m artist. If I use a computer, or use different techniques to speed up my methods, that it’s not “true” art.  I think I’m stuck on this really. That it is a massive huge block to my art.  That others won’t think of me an artist, and that others will think I’m cheating, or that it doesn’t count.  Does it really matter?  Why am I trying to do things in ways that isn’t me or doesn’t make me happy.  I want to do things one way, but I don’t.  Instead I feel like I have to do it by hand, with real paint, and real pen and then what happens…. nothing happens because I feel completely inferior in my abilities to create with those to the degree that I want to. 

One big realization when I saw this huge block is that I am more concerned about “telling the story” or “teaching” when it comes to things I want to paint or create. I don’t care whether it’s all painted by hand. In fact I’d rather use tools that are fast and easy for me that let me get the subject out so I don’t have to worry about the technical aspect. I’d rather spend all my time and focus on the “story” part of it. Yet I haven’t been doing this… time for a change. Time to start getting focused. 

And success? That will be when I feel like I am being true to myself, doing what I actually like to do, in the way I actually like to do it without a care in the world about what others think about my techniques.  I’ll be successful when I can feel that I’m using this talent in the way God wants me to use it, and when I can use it to bless the lives of those around me.  To me that’s success.
I’ve been reading a book that goes so well with Marissa’s class. It’s called The Creative Entrepreneur.  It’s a great book. It has me asking questions similar to Marissa’s and a bit more in depth, it feels as if it goes right along with this class so far.  I love it when that happens.


Marisa and Creative Thursday said...

This is great Shalae. I loved hearing about the blocks you uncovered. I had never thought about that before, what really defines a "true" artist, is a true artist one that creates by hand vs. digital ~ so, so interesting. Clearly an artist can no longer be defined by any medium as they are simply someone who creates!

jacqueline said...

Oh Shalae, this is sooo inspirational and really pushes me to think further! Thank you so much for sharing and being an inspiration to me. Have a lovely merry happy day and love to yoU!

Kate England | Marmalade Moon said...

Thank you, Shalae! Very inspirational! I have thought too about the effort that goes into art work, if sometimes I justify my own work, more by how much effort I went to - rather than enjoying the simple ways I have to create...

Oh, and thanks for the book recommendation too!

Take care!

Erica said...

Hi Shalae,

I love your comments. I too picked up that book. Lovely, isn't it? I just need to spend some time someday to work through it. That's why I chose to take Marisa's In the Fish Bowl class. I like the interaction and the motivation to work through things.


Valarie said...

Hi Shalae,
You make so many valid points. I especially value the way you've uncovered and dealt with some of your blocks.
I haven't read the book you recommended but it is now on my list. Thanks again for so many great insights.

Caroline said...

Hey Shalae, I don't take you class ;) but it definitely sounds interesting. I can't wait to see what you come up with when you have found your way again and do what you really like. Now look at this blog, look at your layouts and collections. You ARE an artist. A REAL one! Digital or not! You are a true inspiration!

Dana Barbieri said...

This was a great honest post. I also need to get focused. The book sounds great. Adding it to my wish list.

Regina said...

Wonderful post. Thanks for sharing. I have been writing a lot to but feel like my thoughts are still very scattered. I am sure I will have a break through soon.

Thanks for sharing the book too. I will have to look for it at the library.

a fellow fishie