It is interesting to investigate how we make
creative decisions, and how so many of those decisions are based on our
perceptions of, or fantasies about, how others will feel toward our work.
Perhaps this is quite normal for social beings used to negotiating a world of
other social beings.
|Sunset Reflection by John Hulsey, photograph.
As a society, we give each other permission to live
largely as we choose as long as we stay within a system of defined laws. We
also give silent individual permissions countless times throughout a day for other people's personal quirks and pursuits, and in many cases forgive minor
trespasses upon what we might consider our turf. But are we giving enough
permission to ourselves to create as we would choose?
When it comes to drawing or painting a work of art that we
intend to show others, it is only natural to subconsciously consider the
"other"--the audience--as we develop our ideas. But this tendency can
also be a hindrance to our creativity and growth and to our process of
developing a unique voice. Likewise, successfully selling artwork in galleries for some
years can leave an artist feeling trapped by that very success or the art techniques he or she uses and unable to explore
new creative directions.
How can we achieve the freedom to go where our
creative imaginings take us? It is a matter of giving ourselves permission--not to dream, which is part and parcel of being a creative person--but to fearlessly
act. How many times have we harbored great ideas within, never giving them
form, until one day we hear about someone else who has expressed their crazy
ideas out loud and suddenly we decide it is time? In that moment of decision we lose the fears that have
held us back. It is then that our long-nurtured dreams feel so right that they
seem to flow out of us effortlessly. This kind of creative breakthrough can
take our work to a new level or in a new direction.
Perhaps the highest obligation for creative
artists is to constantly give ourselves permission to voice our wildest
imaginings. The response to the question, "What if?" should always be, "Why
not?" Does this resonate with you? Leave a comment and let us know, and we hope that you will
join us for more interesting and informative articles and interviews on The
--John & Ann