A few weeks ago Rebecca posed the question on Facebook, “what has your art practice taught you? Are there things you’ve learned as an artist that help you with other aspects of life? There were a lot of responses that were deep, insightful and passionate. Today we’re going to talk about this topic and some of what the artists said who responded to the question.
What does your art mean for you as a person living your life? How does what you do in the studio lead you to be a better person or have a more fulfilling life?
I realized in posing the question it is hard to separate out studio practice from the rest of life, or from who we are as people. But thought it would be interesting to get other artists ideas on this.
May lead to future podcasts, let us know if you’d like to more about any of these ideas
reading the answers was uplifting/ how deeply these artists feel about what they do, central to their lives and who they are.
Answers ranged from the somewhat concrete (such as learning to see and pay attention to the world) to others quite spiritual or soulful. A lot had to do with self-esteem, sense of accomplishment, learning to see things through.
Probably most people could have gone on at length as their statements were pretty concise and pithy. Not an easy question to sum up, covers a lot of ground.
The root of the question: Consider the person you are when making art -- can you and do you access that in dealing with daily life. If not, can be a huge challenge but awareness is a start.
some natural, organic change over time though--because you are living it in the studio, a big part of your ife
patience, letting things unfold, living with some uncertainty.
Letting things go, moving on
Is there carry over?
These can be big issues—and what we learn from art practice is ongoing—we can glimpse it but forget, over and over. But still there may be progress over time.
My own response: my art practice
In terms of personality—has made me more trusting and optimistic about life in general –that endless cycle of trial and error and coming through in the end—still learning
the big picture--how I process life’s experiences, a loop of input and output, leading to overall deep satisfaction, sense of living a full and self-reflective, life –integration of inner and outer experience.
Creative practice and healthy emotional life:
Happiness, sense of purpose in life
self-knowledge --increased self-awareness on some level: authenticity, what is your true voice; trusting in intuition
Self-confidence/self-acceptance /knowing yourself and what you want, what is right in the moment. Helps with business side too.
Ability to be happy in solitude and treasure alone time/learning to dedicate your studio time
Spiritual aspects: connected with meditation practices, being present, sense of deep gratitude
Focus on the moment not the outcome, valuing the journey
Humility, letting go, learning that sometimes things turn out best when we step out of the way and stop trying to control everything
Being willing to try and fail, take risks, value of what is learned the hard way
problem solving—how to overcome obstacles, “thinking laterally”, letting things evolve
really seeing the world around us in both visual and conceptual ways
Wrap-up: the question tapped into people’s passion for their work—and how much a part of who we are it is. Every one of us can be grateful for what our work brings to our lives in positive ways.