This week I had several fulfilling days, sharing time with a variety of different women, ending up at lunch for a sketch date one day with another artist. We did not get any sketching done. There was some catching up to do, and then, some great conversation. In particular a subject we see thrown at us constantly from the myriad articles, blogs, podcasts, books and on….that tell creatives to “follow your bliss”
Roll up your pants, I’m going to get deep today:
At first, not everyone understands what or how to find their bliss. That is okay! The path to figuring this out is singular, not plural. Once you’ve determined that which brings you joy, is followed with attempting to define exactly what kind of painter, writer, etc., am I?
I am going to go out on a limb here, and share my pretty simple, no bullshit theory.
- Be open & curious and in no rush-try many mediums, and styles, materials
- Keep painting
- Give yourself permission to fail.
- Learn from each of those failures
- Journal/make notes of things you see happening in your own work, (i.e. brush stroke styles, go-to brushes, styles of work you’re drawn to, color preferences, favorite subjects, etc.-each of these are clues that help you grow
- Keep Working (it’s ok if that means sketching in a journal) (worth repeating)
- Last, accept that your art (whatever it is), like everything else about you, is uniquely yours, embrace that, and know nothing can change that, unless you let it happen.
It rarely happens overnight. In fact, most of us take a while, a few bruised knees and egos to figure out our artistic voice. Simple, right? Hell no it’s not! Just keep working…
I am, I think, for the first time EVER, experiencing a complete creative immersion in the 50+ stage of life. I am focused completely on my painting. No time constraints, No trying to please someone else, just me, and my art supplies. It is a beautiful thing.
Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time. ~Thomas Merton