I’m starting a new topic blog that I will add to from time to time, more likely as the subjects come up. This will be where I share lessons I’ve learned along the way, techniques I’ve picked up or improvised with or circumstance that affect the creative process. You are welcome to comment and share any relevant posts either here or on social media. My wish is that this becomes interactive and informative! The first installment is below.
1st Topic: How Is Your Support System?
This subject comes up often in groups. Today it was more direct. Before I elaborate I want to get these questions out to you for your perspective. How is your support system? Are you getting the moral support that you need to help you pick up that banner and fight on? If so, please describe how you found it and tell what you do to reinforce that relationship. If not, please share how you recharge the will to push through the obstacles so you can move forward. Are there other forms of support that you have in your creative process? If so, can you describe what it is and how it impacts your creativity? In most cases it will be obvious but for the uninitiated this could be the creative lifeline they need to get to the next level.
I often run in to the situation where my vision and long term goals don’t mesh with others around me. Many people expect to see immediate results. If there’s no apparent progression they want to abandon the goal for something more secure. “This is a commodity and needs to show profit!” Actually, this is a long term investment that matures over a period of time. “When will that happen?!” It really all depends on when like minded people find the work and you interesting enough to want to be a part of it. It may take a short time or it can take years. To be honest, it can take more than a life time or not at all.
The question at this point needs to be,”Why are you doing this?”. If you’re chasing fame and notoriety you may find it but more often you won’t ever get the chance to see it. It’s a pipe dream. So, why do it? If you create then you know the feeling of being compelled to to bring things to life, into the world. For some, it’s a drive that can’t be ignored. Pouring ones being into something that speaks strongly to them is a very powerful experience that not everyone gets to be a part of. The higher version of this is when you raise a child up to become the person they are to be. This also happens when you mentor someone to bring them up to a new level. It’s very similar.
Why would anyone put themselves through this if there’s no guarantee that there’s any form of reward for all of the hard work? “Why not just create the things that are easy sales like impressionistic paintings, still life, animals or portraits? People will buy those?” There’s absolutely nothing wrong with creating any of theses, if that’s what you are compelled to do. I’ve actually even tried it for the sake of sales, because it’s what was selling. Except that mine didn’t sell….. at all…. It was because I didn’t have passion for that type of work. My vision is in Fantasy Art. I love the whole illustration process and making new creatures.
I feel there is so much storytelling and so little time to tell it. It will be done through images, illustrations of the world I’m building along with the creatures. I feel that they need to be presented to the world so that everyone will know their stories. The point to this is that it requires conviction to the work you want to create. Sticking to it all the way to the end for the sake of the story and the creations is the reward. Everything else can come after.
What’s your experience? Has your path brought you to this same point? Or, have you arrived at a different place?