Object Dar't

June 14, 2011

Creativity is simply "tapping into"...

Life is what it is; ups, downs, obstacles, lessons, heartaches and joys. There's no way around it. I've written previously about the fact that I noticed early on in my painting that certain thoughts and feelings came out on paper.

At first, the things I seemed to be obsessed with (weather patterns actually!) just seemed to bubble out of me. But then I went through a period of transition - learning how to create almost daily - which put a demand upon me mentally that I hadn't expected.

I found out that the process of creativity can't be forced which is probably why so many people can't show up to a blank piece of paper. It's too daunting. And I think that mainly has to do with the fact that at this point in time, there is no such thing as a truly original idea.

What I discovered though is that inspiration and insight are the gas for the engine that is creativity. For much of the past year, I have simply painted what I loved in the moment. Something that made me feel the urge to express my love for the places around me in a non-verbal way.

But recently, I've had my first experience in expressing an emotion. Even insight. With the passing of my father, has come reflection, insight and growth. Because we were estranged, it felt a bit like peeling an onion. Pulling back dried, layers of shedding skin,and then getting down to soft, supple layers that still contained the sweet, pungent juice that both make you cry and frustrate you. However, when I reached the heart of the onion, I simply felt love and forgiveness. And I began to put that down on paper. Even as I painted what I had sketched, I continued to reflect and gain insight. It was an amazing experience that could have never happened through any conversation.

And so I look back now over the year that I've been painting, I come away with an understanding I didn't previously possess. Creativity isn't genius of showing up to a blank page and coming up with some great idea which you then must execute well. It's simply your thoughts and emotions about the life that is happening both around you and within you that just leaks out onto the blank page. And it's easily done if you're just brave enough to pick up your pencil or paints.

martha's vineyard paintings

martha's vineyard prints