Being “chosen” to be an artist is an interesting journey.
To say the least.
Especially for some of us who come from very traditional backgrounds where there are no “creatives” anywhere in the family tree. Or family members and friends who are extremely creative, but choose to follow a traditional path rather than answer the call. Or, are creative as their hobbies.
We don’t ask to be chosen for the most part. It’s a drive, an aching, a yearning to create. It comes from so deep inside and without that you cannot help but follow the call, or suffer the consequences which frequently involves some sort of depressive state of some sort or another.
We create because we HAVE to. It’s like breathing. Most of us are unaware, or only vaguely aware of where it comes from. Why we have to create. We just know that we do.
It’s a precarious balancing act between trying to be “normal” like everyone else, and listening to what our muse is asking us to do. (Which at times includes painting at odd hours!)
I know it sounds cliche…but those who are true artists know what I am talking about. We struggle between our desire, no…our NEED to create what we are being asked to create by our muse, and eating at times. Most of us have little or no business experience and learn through trial and error.
Some of us get lucky and are represented by galleries who get this…and understand and completely welcome our new series. I honestly believe that these marvelous galleries are a gift from God, Spirit or the Universe, whatever you believe. They are the ones that know that these creations come from “that” place. That place of utter and complete connection with our own “god”. I’m very grateful to have galleries that know this.
I was very blessed at one point in my career to have been mentored by a very well respected and renowned artist who told me…”Don’t allow people to pigeon-hole you Paula. It will completely stifle your creative spirit. I’ve done it, and, honestly, I regret it.”
Whoa. Big aha moment right now in my life. Right now when I am following down a completely different path, or style of painting that I have never studied, nor ever dreamed I would be doing. After all, I was a painter of cows….wasn’t I? Or am I?
I have done a lot of soul searching around this. Do I paint what I am being driven, called, or asked to do? Or do I paint what I know sells? Do I step outside of my comfort zone and put my new works out there for all to see? Or do I continue to hide behind what I know to do?
All I know, is that my heart and my soul soars every time I try something new.
I have to sleep with my new paintings next to me so I can be amazed when I wake up and look at them, much as I used to marvel at the miracle my children were and are.
I created this beauty. Amazing indescribable feeling.
I feel renewed every time I step outside of my comfort zone and create something I have never created before.
Every time that I risk ruining a painting.
It’s a high that I cannot even begin to describe.
So, to those of you who have chosen this path – to be true to who you are – I honor you.
I respect your courage.
Because we are all in this together.
PS – the painting in this post is called “Strong Woman”. Aptly named – don’t cha think?