Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Just Because - A Bonus Blog

My next Living The Artist’s Way blog post on chapter 6 isn’t scheduled until next week. But I’m feeling called to share things with you this week. So this is a bonus blog!

For the past few days I’ve been feeling full of self-doubt and insecurity. I’ve been wondering where my art fits in among so many talented and inspiring artists leaving their creative mark on the world. I’m not the only artist with the message to love yourself, honor your creativity, and to follow your dreams. So how do I stand out? How do I shine my light within a community of so many other bright lights?
I took my feelings and questions into meditation this morning. I set my alarm for 20 minutes. But before it went off I was tying my shoe laces as I listened to my intuition to go for a walking meditation outside.
Here in Colorado the wild flowers are just now in bloom. As I walked, I admired (and collected) a variety of wild flowers. There were SO many colors, shapes, and sizes – just in my back yard. Imagine the variety of flowers throughout Colorado, the United States, and the world!
That’s when I got it! That God/Spirit/Higher Power (whatever you chose to call “it”) didn’t stop at just one flower. The variety of flowers is boundless. With hybrids, the variety of flowers is infinite. So if it’s true for flowers, and if you believe in Oneness like I do, than creative expression must also be infinite.

Following are some other thoughts that dropped into my consciousness during my walk:
Stop Comparing. Each and every one of us is a unique expression of Spirit and on our own path. No one else has lived your life or had your sequence of experiences that made you the person you are today. Your wisdom, your insights, your expression, your ART, are yours and yours alone. 
Redefine Your Definition of Success. It’s easy to beat ourselves up if our career, art or otherwise, isn’t as far along or as profitable as someone else’s. But we can’t define our success based on what others are doing or have achieved. 
What are your hopes and dreams for your art? Do you continue to experiment, play, and try new things? Do you challenge yourself to take risks and do things that scare you? 
Also, think about where you and your art were this time last year, five years ago, even ten years ago. I’m willing to bet, if you stop to think about it, that you have grown, expanded, and have a lot to be proud of.
Make Art Just Because. Don’t make art with the sole intention of marketing and selling it. Make art just for you. Make art that you find beautiful and inspiring. Then you may share it with the world. But not because you have to, because you want to. 

A bonus blog deserves a bonus creativity prompt!

Bonus Creativity Prompt: Mini Vision/Inspiration Boards
Feeling creatively blocked or uninspired? I know if I go a few days without getting into my studio I get stage freight at the idea of putting paint to canvas. To get my creative juices flowing again I’ve started to make mini vision/inspiration boards.  
What You Will Need:

2-3 old magazines. A variety is best.
Scissors (or you can use your hands).
One 8-1/2 x 11” sheet of paper. I like to work with colored construction paper.
Glue or other adhesive. I use Tombow MONO Adhesive, permanent bond.
A timer. I use the alarm on my cell phone.
1 hour of uninterrupted time.

How it works: 

Set your timer for 20 minutes.

Grab a magazine and turn it upside down. Yep, you read that right – upside down. The objective here is to get a different perspective. 

Start quickly flipping through the pages. Don’t think, just feel. Tear out anything and everything that appeals to you and evokes a positive emotion. It might be a color, a pattern, a word, or the (upside down) composition. Don’t judge. Just tear! 

Continue to flip through your upside down magazines and set tear-outs aside until your alarm goes off. 
Once your alarm does go off, set magazines aside and reset your timer for 20 more minutes.

Spread your tear-outs of images and words in front of you, turning them right side up. Notice if there are any themes. This is when you can start to edit, keeping only those images and words that most appeal to you. 

Start trimming the images and words with scissors. Or, you might feel called to tear the pages with your hands, leaving the raw edges. 

When your timer goes off it’s time to start gluing, so re-set your timer for the last 20 minute increment. 

Grab your 8-1/2 x 11” sheet of paper. White will do, but I find it fun to use a piece of colored construction paper. You’ll also need your glue or other adhesive. 

Arrange and glue your torn out and trimmed images and words onto your paper.  

Once you’re done, you will have created a mini vision/inspiration board that is unique and beautiful – just like YOU!



  1. How funny... I have been struggling with all of those same feelings this month too. I'll definitely have to try the mini vision board. :)

    1. Hi Dana. I'm sorry to hear you've been struggling too. But I'm happy you can relate. We're not in this alone! I do hope you give the mini vision board a try. They're a lot of fun!