Monday, July 05, 2010

Lucky Charm and the Compulsion to Create

Lucky Charm in Orange and Gray
felt, cotton fabric, thread, embroidery floss
27/100 in 100 Creative Challenge

I made this last week during my night of creative activity. I whipped it up as a little good luck gift to go along with a print I sold. I wanted an ornament or charm of some sort and this is what came out.
Here's the back where I embroidered the word 'Luck.' Since taking this photo, I also frayed the edges of the cotton a bit more. I like the ruffled look and was willing to lose the cohesion of the paisley pattern for the worn look. But I can't show you a photo of that, because I up and mailed it already. So the luck has gone out into the world.

Also since that day, I've done pretty much no artwork. I had to work and I got tired and the Fourth of July holidays came upon us, but really, the truth is, if I don't work, if I don't create, I start to get really anxious and cranky.

If I am not working, I feel like I am not done. Maybe that I am disappointing the universe, that I am not living up to my own potential, that I have something imperative to do and must keep moving.

I do not know if any of this is true. I suppose it is not true. Even creative people deserve to enjoy their down time, or take a weekend off.

And yet, if you are a creative person, who finds joy in making things and creating beautiful things, then does it necessarily follow that if you are not creating things that you should feel bad? I'm wondering if some of that compulsion to create also turns into fear and anxiety that keeps us away from creating sometimes.

I think there are some crossed signals in that. I know I am not the only person who feels like they need to stay creative, to always stay busy. Maybe it's falling slightly out of balance. Maybe it's some crossed signals in our psyche.

Maybe it's just part of the process in being a driven creative type. Maybe we're obsessive, sometimes. I do feel compelled sometimes. Without that obsession or compulsion, would we even be creative people?

Do you feel the need to create? Is something pushing you to photograph the world around you? Are you compelled to pick up that journal or pen or brush. Do you HAVE to write every day? Does the anxiety of creating sometimes keep you away from your work?

Sometimes I wish I could just be a regular person and enjoy a lazy day without feeling like I am incomplete and should be writing/painting/drawing. What about you?


Anonymous said...

Sometimes I want to create something, but I am too tired from my day job and caring for my family, and I begin to feel guilty for ignoring that artistic part of myslef that needs to be fed. Does that make sense?


Brooke said...

I hear what you're saying, Rowena. Sometimes it feels as though it's never enough. I feel such a compulsion to make and create and produce, that even on a day off, it's not a day off. The only time I have respite from this feeling is when I travel, or just after I spend a very wonderful and full day in the studio! Or hang a show, or get into a show...

I think a lot about this ~ I would like to have more peace about the balance of give and bring ~ to feel more peace about how I need to absorb and see, observe and experience, in order to make things. I can't just go, go go. I know this in my head but still struggle with really feeling it in my body.

:) Brooke

Anonymous said...

OH don't give up! Being a "regular person"...well it's not you! I understand the need to create. Can you find a way to do a little at a time? Doodle?

Your charm is more than charming! Cool!

Jessica - Domestic PDX said...

Yes, I definitely feel the need to create and it often gets in the way of doing other fun or mundane, but necessary things. The anxiety doesn't so much stop me, but adds an element of pressure (hurry up -- don't waste any time!) that is sometimes quite counterproductive. Oh silly me. :-) I like your charm.

Stephanie said...

Love the luck charm what a lovely surprise for the purchaser.

I'm most creative late at night when no one is around, the house is quiet and peaceful. I do find that even if I'm not creating ART I'm creating something... a lovely meal, an orderly garden, a clean kitchen etc. I think that everything we do has a bit a creation in it. So there really isn't any down time just times that are deflected to some other form of creation. Hum, I hope that made sense. :)

Creating with words is something I can do really well sometimes and other times...not so much.


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