Vision and Craft
It all starts with vision. Sometimes, we are just playing and suddenly we feel lit up from the inside, our thoughts and movements seamlessly merged in a flash of insight.
We could be wonderful wordsmiths and craftsmen, but without vision we are not making art.
It is not a matter of "Art," as intended in the art business circuits where the mystique of "great art" is upheld, not least because of exorbitant amounts of money. I am talking about seeing and feeling through our unique experience and making it resonate with our audience, so that our individual why can be shared and recognised.
Our art has its own rhythm and harmony, its special beats, a unique pulse that comes from being true to our vision, from finding and nurturing our own voice.
We may have spent years practising our craft. This is good. For vision gets clarified in the forge and in the workshop. But even if we need to practise and learn our craft, our inner urge towards creation is always pristine. It is the originating spark of our creative work, our primary motivator.
We learn the craft in the best possible way available to us in order to serve the soul, not the other way around.
Sometimes, the vision may be blurred and all we have is practice. At other times, our level of craftsmanship will still feel limited and stunted to express our overflowing vision. Yet, the vision will guide us towards the best solution and approach.
In the dry days, when I feel uninspired and inert, I have learnt not to be hard on myself, to accept that I am not in the flow and, therefore, that I am in need of preparation, of flexing my creative muscles. Thus, I practise some more, if only for a short time.
On the other hand, there is no set rule to cultivate our vision. It depends on what makes us feel playful. Play is the key: finding a new sense of enthusiasm and playfulness helps us to retrieve and re-ignite our vision.
In my case, reading, shape colouring, poem sketching, listening to music and a walk in the countryside are all good remedies for a dry spell. It is important to start out, instead of dwelling on our sense of frustration. Before long, our inner light switch will be on.