1. to bring into existence
2. to produce through imaginative skill
3. to make something new
This week I've been thinking about what it means to create, and how I can encourage others to be more adventurous in their creative lives. I think what prompted these thoughts is my new coffee mug, my wife pointed it out in the store, and I immediately knew that I wanted to buy it. The behemoth mug holds just over 16 ounces of warm sweet java and the definition of the verb "create", in bold lettering, is written around the circumference. Each morning I can contemplate my creative tasks for the day while savoring my awakening beverage.
Of the three definitions above, number one and three seem to be the more obvious choices—the concepts that spring to mind if you were asked to define the verb, but the second is the most important to me in answering the question: how can I encourage you, my fellow working artists, photographers, writers/bloggers, musicians, composers, quilters, DIYers, crafters...
To create something is "to produce via imaginative skill." A wonderful definition that captures the idea that being creative takes time, effort and acquired skill and some imagination. Nothing happens overnight that is meaningful to us, but we can learn to be more creative by working on our skills - practicing our crafts each day and striving to be the best we can be in all that we do.
I have been producing painting videos over the last year. Over that time, I have had a variety of different problems that I have had to overcome: lighting, video quality, audio quality, editing skills, editing time, format, video length... note that none of these are my actual painting skills, just everything that goes along with running an art channel on YouTube. Of course, while I have been acquiring these other skills, I have improved my painting chops through my weekly mental effort of analyzing my process to explain and teach others what I am doing on my canvas in a clear and precise way.
Creativity "is an imaginative skill," making something in a way that is unique, perhaps similar to, but not directly the same as something created by another. Using our imagination to see a finished piece in our mind's eye, or to free-form create, allowing our intuition to guide us through the process without fully knowing the end result. To me, producing something that is new or original is an exciting thought... we should enthusiastic about our weekly opportunity to explore our art forms, to be daring, bold, to be open to totally failing (happens to me on a weekly basis), and fearlessly striving towards our goals.
I really do hope you have a fantastic creative and artistic week!
I will be sharing this week's creative effort of mine on Wednesday: a lovely little ocean sunrise painting, so be sure to stop by here again!
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