A heart statement
As I have gone along this path of continually coming back to my ‘why’ for doing art I realised that the question of why art? almost felt rhetorical for me. Art wasn’t a why question but a because… statement. I know this seems a bit semantic but this shift is key to understanding why I do what I do.
When I asked why I eventually kept coming back to the same three things which was great but if was somehow not complete. On my morning walk, I found myself listing all the reasons I create in my head.
- I create because it feels good
- I create because it is what I’m good at
- I create because I can
- I create because I love the feel of paint on my fingertips
- I create because it if joyful
- I create because it feeds my soul
- I create because my imagination wants to play
- I create because it is playful
- I create because I love sharing art imaginings
- I create because it is how my heart speaks
- I create as somewhere along the way art saved me
- I create because my art makes people smile
What I discovered was that by shifting the why question to a statement moved me from my rational head to my explorative heart. Using a sentence starter prompted my intuitive self to play with the idea of what it meant to me. This simple shift freed me to explore the idea of creativity in a way that went deep into my personal why in a way that was living in the present moment. Each time I responded to the prompt “I create because…” I chose a different answer that went deeper into my inner reasons for creativity. By using this prompt I found my why, with a flow and ease that wasn’t present when I attempted to explore this question from the traditional approach.
I needed to step fully into creative play so I could be in my heart space to understand this. WHy feels like a need for justification and I don’t want to justify my art. I want to be immersed in the feeling of it as an experience and a way of sharing stories that come from my heart. As I write this post I realise that my resistance to the why question was that so often we are expected to justify why we do what we do. When our heart is in charge there is often no logical justification. My art is all about feeling and to say it feels good is not really an answer to why but when I shift to a statement it makes perfect sense. I guess in the end I have always followed my intuitive heart and as I step more fully into my artist life every day I am discovering that art is enough. For me, there is no why question in response to art, as for me art is not about logic but about how it feels. To respond to a feeling space is personal and becomes a statement that is about that connection to art. Art that is heart and soul-nurturing that is all about connection and relationships.
I know that some art is conceptual but that has never been a space that I desired to explore. Art that does not touch my heart and only communicates with my head leaves me cold. I want to be moved by the story of an art piece. I am reflecting on and exhibitions I saw at Hiedi yesterday. The main room was full of conceptual art and even the write-ups on the walls were about separation and keeping my distance from the art. Then we went to the photography exhibition that felt like entering a sacred space with these beautiful landscapes with indigenous rock art. And then was my favourite…Mirka Mora exhibition that invited you in with a sense of joyful play. In the end, it is about how we respond to art personally. For some, it is all analytical and viewed as an observer but for others, it is about a soul journey of connected spaces that invite us to enter. I want to add joy and heart connection just as Mirka has added joy to my world.
I invite you to play with the idea of what art is for you and why by exploring your own connection to creativity in all its forms. I do believe that we are all creative in the different spaces of our lives whether it be in a job such as a parent, a teacher etc or a hobby we love whether it be writing, gardening, cooking or visual art etc. A simple exercise is to journal your because… prompt at least 10 times and with each answer choosing the next response. Trust the first thoughts and feelings that come up as that is usually your intuition.
I create because…
Share your comments and thoughts. Be playful and see what wisdom your intuitive heart shares as you step into the space of art and what it is for you.
Love and blessings