My creativity shut up shop for the Christmas period. I could sense my focus slipping as extra festive activities took hold. Rather than wrestling between the two I gave myself a break. I let myself off the hook.
Creativity is often seen as an easy kind of self indulgent luxury. Those that feel they have not been bestowed any creative talent imagine the enjoyment and loveliness of making pictures. Perhaps it does come easily to some, but I would imagine that like me plenty of artists procrastinate, heading off down the path of least resistance, that is any other activity except creativity.
Even washing the car has an easily perceived outcome…you wash it, it looks clean. With shopping, you shop and hey presto you have food you can cook with. What about a bit of decorating? Assuming you buy the right paint, paint it on in a sensible fashion, the room looks completely renewed. Having done all these things before there is no real danger of me straying into unknown territory and making a complete hash of this lot.
As for creating art, well only hundreds of decisions have to be made as you progress, tiny but important ones, the outcome of which make or break the painting. One of the hardest decisions is eliminating your options, what should one do next? And when things are not going right do you keep on with it or bin it?
It might be that I have too many hats to wear, a bit of a jack of all trades. I have a background in accountancy, I know how to use a drill in hammer mode, or wire in telephone connections, I quite like cooking and I love the knowledge my computer wants to bestow on me, and for me it is easy to find reason to do something else, something that thinks itself more essential than art.
So enter creativity as a discipline. I gave myself a Chrismas break, now I have to reintroduce my creativity. Like a daily supplement. It needs to be rated as essential, like fruit, or vitamins to let it grow, grow, grow.
Today being the first day on my renewed creative path I have gathered some ideas and started on something new. There are polar bears, hares, wolves and owls, cats and mice. Harvey the Aardvark is still hibernating, but only for a short while, he will be back soon.
Wishing anyone taking the time to read this a very Happy New Year for 2014. And for anyone wanting to be creative and not quite getting around to it, do a little bit each day and make it essential, just like your daily fruit and veg.