Thursday, October 02, 2014

Thursday Confessional #12 - Five Things I'm Afraid Of As An Artist

Cloud #3 
Acrylic on Board 
6" x 6"

I painted this yesterday and today the weather and clouds very much feel like this. Bright, brisk and windy. I went for a long walk and if I closed my eyes I could picture waves crashing on the beach it is so windy. Fall has arrived in full splendour. 

Again I'm playing with the paint marker. Hit it with water in the cloud areas before it could dry just to see what would happen. Having fun with it. 

Onto the confessional....

Fear is something I grapple with mostly in my head. I'm not super scared of the world around me (except heights). It isn't terror so much as extreme discomfort, maybe of failure, maybe of lack of acceptance... even though intellectually I know those things don't matter. I guess it is a heart thing. 

Here are some big fears I struggle with in my art:

1) Breaking the rules - I love knowing my boundaries. Limitations are almost creative boosts for me because I enjoy the challenge of doing things where I need to make good even though there are finite limits. Mostly this a good skill that has many practical uses (especially when working with limited time, money and resources) but lately I butt up against a boundary because I want to travel from A to B and I'm not always equipped to scale that wall. Most of it is just because the rules are so deeply embedded I forgot they were there. Creature of habit I guess. 

2) Compartmentalisation - Speaking of boundaries, I love shoving genres, mediums, styles into their own little boxes. Think of a giant waffle... that is my art brain. I have a lot of respect for mixed media artists but I struggle to go there. (Again, it my head... my hands know how to mix it up... my head goes "nuh uh!") I'm not sure why I'm afraid of playing in that regard, I just am.

3) Commitment - Right now as I look at my options, I find I'm afraid of committing too much to one thing. Be it a body of work, a possible selling partnership, working with arts organisations... All of those scare me a little in the sense of "is this how I'm to spend my creativity?". I'm actively seeking guidance here because I know that when I make a commitment, creativity explodes. It's just the committing to the right thing that trips me up. 

4) Wasting Time - Oh this has put a halt to so many creative rabbit trails. I have a fear of noodling and experimenting (see also "breaking the rules") because wasting time feels risky. Although I know it isn't a waste of time, rather more of an investment for future creativity. Part of that fear comes from the working with limits mindset, often time has been short during certain seasons so trying to produce the best work I could came at the price of innovating. I need to face this fear now that time is way more abundant. 

5) Wasting Money - Again, limitations forced a model for me to work from. (Although years ago I prayed that God would always provide me with supplies to create - which He has) My head equates time with money and wasting one, wastes the other... I'm really trying to shake this one off and trust. I helps that I have some small streams coming in to cover supplies, hopefully this allows me to let go further. 

So, my hope is by laying these out it allows me to recognise and reflect even more. Knowing what I'm afraid of sure helps me to see it when I let negative self talk get in the way of creating even more creatively. 

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