The state of flow has been described as the mental state of being completely present and fully immersed in a task, and psychological studies have delved into what enhances this state and what types of personalities seem to be able to access it most easily, although how and why we enter this state remains rather mysterious. The experience of flow in the studio is one many artists crave as the source of ultimate joy and satisfaction in making art. But creative flow is elusive—it may appear without any conscious effort or disappear when you most want to rely on it. Today we talk about this state of mind, how to cultivate it, and the role it can play in your work.
Being focused and fully with your work is crucial to the state of creative flow. Without distractions or extraneous thoughts, you are responding with sensitivity to how your work is developing. Flow also tends to lead us to work in ways that are sensual and tactile rather than intellectual, although you may take breaks for more analytic thinking. It has to do with sensitivity to the materials you are using and your own coordination and skill in using them.
Although it's possible to enter a state of flow at any stage of your development, when your skill and your intentions are well matched, it is easier to find your creative flow. On the other hand, studies have shown that a certain level of challnge tends to enhance the flow experience. Having some intention for what you're working on can help channel your focus.
Although this creative state is unlikely to happen because you strive for it, there are ways to encourage it. One idea is to let yourself be fully involved with whatever media you are using, enjoying the process in front of you. Another tip is to create plenty of work so that you can feel less precious about whatever you're working on. A playful attitude, enjoyment of what you are doing is a hallmark of the flow state. You may benefit from background music and setting up your studio situation to avoid distractions, When the flow state starts to break up, accept that you are leaving it for a while. Take satisfaction in having experienced it but don’t stress about losing it.
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What's new at Cold Wax Academy?
Rebecca and Jerry have just launched their Fall quarter of live, online sessions with a special focus this time on member participation, plus informative sessions on a variety of other topics such as photographing your art work and using Procreate. This month also marks the beginning of Cold Wax Academy's 3rd year of teaching sessions, meaning that the member library now has over 80 recordings and other instructional documents available for members. To access this wealth of information and to take part in upcoming live sessions, please visit the membership page at ColdWaxAcademy.com and sign up for one of the two levels of membership available.
Please visit http://www.coldwaxacademy.com for more information.
Also-- stay tuned for information coming soon about Rebecca and Jerry's newest project, Espacio, dedicated to providing beautiful living and working spaces for artists and writers. Espacio's first offering is Casa Clavel, a modern, fully equipped house opening this September in the beautiful cultural city of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. You can learn more and make a reservation by emailing [email protected]. A dedicated Espacio website is coming soon!
Here is what a member named Sandy has to say about her own experience with Cold Wax Academy:
"Rebecca and Jerry have presented the most professional, authentic and structured approach to a creative activity I have ever come across. Their selfless sharing of all their knowledge and encouragement is a gift in my life unsurpassed."
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