Who inspires you?
Who did you ever encounter in life that impacted you in such a way that made you want to try to do what they were doing? Or maybe caused you to sit under their instruction and learn more about your craft?
Sometimes when I'm feeling a bit stuck or stagnated in my own creativity, I can open up a YouTube video and watch someone else draw. Or go to an art museum or show. Or join a club or group where I can interact with other artists. Or spend an afternoon in the library reading and looking at children's books. Seeing how others have done it. Getting a big dose of inspiration.
We truly need one another. Actually getting the work done is very isolating. So take regular breaks to go check out what everybody else is doing. Artists need to be around other artists. We need to soak up each other's influence. It's a good thing to give to other artists. It's a good thing to receive from other artists. Then we all go back into our studios with renewed energy and passion and freshness. We need each other.
But there's a gotcha' in all this ... artists and other creative types are notoriously self conscious creatures. All humans are, I suppose. But creatives can be much more so. It's just part of our nature, because one of the gifts we got from our Creator is this ability to be introspective and to ponder and study life's meanings and how we fit in and how other people fit in. It's a valuable gift that adds meaning and depth to our art.
But we can get a bit carried away.
A wise person once said:
“Don’t compare yourself to others. If they’re doing it better than you, you could end up bitter, resentful and envious. If you’re doing it better than them, you could end up aloof, haughty and arrogant.”
Pride and envy will kill creativity.
Balance and perspective is the key. And self acceptance is where it starts.
You're not the best. You're not the worst.
The world won't stop turning when you go away.
But the world has added value because you're here. So do the rest of us a favor and take ownership and responsibility of everything wonderful your Creator planted in you. The rest of us will be watching you and getting inspired by the wonderful work you do.
When you get stuck and stagnated, we'll return the favor. Step away and come spend time with us and check out what we're doing. Then go back to your studio refreshed and with renewed vigor.
And we'll all get better together.
And if you're ever having one of those self conscious I'll-never-get-it-right days, click here. We ALL have those days!