Time and time again I tell my art students, they should be ready to take the risk of creating something, with the chance it could turn out wonderfully or terribly. I tell them there is no having successes without the risk of failing.
This summer I took on my own challenge, which honestly was scary. I had built up a lot of pressure because I haven't created art intentionally for 6 years, pretty much since art school. I'm also an art teacher, so man the pressure it on!!!
Here are a few things I learned to keep in mind and hope to carry on through out this school year, as I continue to make art.
1) Once you have an idea, act on it right away.
A few times this summer, I had a spark of inspiration which somewhat made sense with my theme (ish) and just went with it. It felt so good just to dive into the making without thinking. Just making felt so good. It's hard to stay motivated. So, when you have the inspiration, utilize it or as the Germans would say, "Nutz es aus!"
2) Take time to make.
I had the luxury of taking 3 whole weeks to create art here at our home in Heidelberg, Germany. I know many of you don't have this much time or space. But, oh man, it felt so good to designate time and space for my creative work.
Throughout this school year, I am hoping to take at least 4 hours a week for my art. I have long days at school, but I have a few days off a cycle which should give me some time for my art. How much is realistic for you?
3) Keep the inner-critic at bay.
I was creating new work this summer, trying new things. It's only natural that I wasn't a master at it in my initial attempts. My mind flooded with critical and discouraging thoughts.
The most eye opening things I noticed when creating this summer. Having a critical discouraging voice in your head while creating is detrimental to the beginnings of the creative process. I am so used to being critical. I have been teaching art for a few years and it's my job to give kids feedback and tips for improvement. Shutting off that inner critic was super tough. If I would have let the thoughts take over, I wouldn't have created anything this summer. There is a time to be critical, but when just beginning something, it's best to be open and just make.
4) Share your progress.
For me, sharing tidbits of what I'd been creating on instagram.com was a real encouragement. People's comments and likes helped me to see that people were enjoying seeing me create and were liking my work. I was surprised at the reaction a few times because again, my inner critic had won a little bit and I thought everything I created was shit. Share what you're doing with others, whether it be family, or friends in real life or on the inter-webs.
I hope to keep these things in mind as I continue to be a creative risk-taker this coming school year.
Thanks for reading lovelies!