I've been having a conversation with myself about creativity...specifically, MY creativity. Not for one second do I believe such conversations are unique to me, I understand that this issue is common. Like other creatives, I spend quite a bit of time searching for my muse, listening to podcasts, reading books, etc., so I know that my creative state of mind is pretty much the norm. Sometimes I'd like to blame creative stasis on my ADHD, my age, my curmudgeonous, or some other part of me, but that's just a cop out. This is just the "norm," a part of the creative process.
I've told myself that creativity is a fluid process, a tidal river that isn't routine or regular. I've answered myself by describing some endpoints or conclusions about my creativity...no, endpoints is the wrong word. I've discovered describable boundaries in my creativity. I'll circle back to them in a paragraph or two.
Currently, my craft is most influenced by David duChemin, George Nobechi, Michael Kenna, and Cole Thompson. Their work and their creative energies are the desert rain drops on my suppressed story. Listening to their talks and studying their works (sorry, Cole) reconnect my creative spirit with my reluctant doing self.
I make things selfishly, to lift up my own joy and happiness. The story or the poem or the image or the print is not what rings my bell but rather the bell ringing happens during the process of the making. Consequently, I'm anxious about trapping myself in a creative "La Brea Tar Pit" or echo chamber where I might be captured into doing the same things over and over and over again. By emphasizing the process instead of the end I may not change my boundaries, but I have made them softer, more accessible, and less restrictive.
After all of that, "Where am I now?" Well, for today, anyway? First, selling stuff has never been important but has been a bit of a nagging presence with the thought that to be successful I should sell stuff. I'm over that. I no longer need to maintain a FB store or stress about hate mail I receive or insensitive nationalistic, racist comments sent to me in response to an image or comment I post. I will keep my personal FB page and post images and stories. I will continue to enter gallery juried exhibitions. I appreciate when others enjoy my work and exhibitions provide another channel for that in addition to this seldom viewed website. But, I am a terrible procrastinator. Hmmmm, that's not right...I'm a GREAT procrastinator! I love to put things off. Gallery exhibition deadlines are very helpful to keep me on track and paying attention.
So what's changed? Not much really. Suspending my business FB account on Aug 1 is the only real thing. I have a slightly better handle on the creative me. And I am pretty sure I will continue having creative conversations with myself. I'm not a great listener, but I'm learning.