Like other artists and craftspersons, I follow others’ blogs and belong to a bunch of social media groups where we share our work, challenge each other, and generally stay connected with the creative community worldwide.
I am struck by how often we diminish ourselves and the creative process by qualifying our posts by saying “just playing with . . . [color, media, paper, ideas—fill in your own here].”
I have come to realize that I am NOT JUST PLAYING. In fact, I am engaging the Spirit within me. I am giving expression to feelings, observations, and the impulse of creativity that has lain dormant for such long periods of my life. I am
fighting with letting go of the demons of my past, the voices that told me my work was not good enough, a pastime not worthy of responsible, mature attention. The belief that art is a frivolous pursuit “just for fun”—the message that child’s PLAYTIME is over, that it’s time to get back to establishing a relationship and a home, making babies, learning a useful/productive/profitable trade, establishing a ‘legitimate’ career. You name it; the message had been something like, “Put down your crayons, kid. Playtime is over.” No wonder I stomped my feet in frustration and resisted for so long. Sadly, the resistance was mostly futile.
So I suppose that we do find some comfort—even triumph--in allowing ourselves to “play” now. And, since we earned our money and love to spend it now, we buy tons of art supplies and books and courses and . . . well, we collect and “play” with lots of adult (that is, expensive)
art supplies toys.
To my fellow creators of all things whimsical, beautiful, imaginative, wondrous, colorful, personal, and inspired, I say this: Let’s banish ‘just playing’ from our thoughts and especially from our posts! Let’s stop diminishing the creative Spirit within and instead let’s celebrate our world, our uniqueness, our playfulness, our amazing expressions!
Whether great or small, every creative expression deserves our respect; especially by respecting ourselves and the time we spend documenting our observations of the world around us, our inspiration and imagination. Our ART is a gift we give to ourselves and the world. Give it proudly and often!
|from IndiaMissions, etsy.com|