Creativity and the need to create ‘Perfect Art”

Exciting, my first real Blog!  My name is Brenda Molyneaux and I’m not exactly sure where I’m going with this, but for today I want to share a few realizations I’ve had in the last few weeks regarding my creativity, or lack thereof, to be more precise.

First a little background about me:

I love the idea of creating beautiful works of art.  I love the materials it takes to create.  I am addicted to pens: standard ballpoint, roller ball, felt, calligraphy, gel when they work; pencils, I prefer the softer B pencils, but still own the H, pencil crayons, water color and standard, crayons for coloring and encaustic painting; paper: drawing, painting, origami, tracing, velum, home made, wrapping;  paint: acrylic, water color, house; glue, okay okay, you’re getting the idea, I’ll stop listing all the options available within an artistic medium  but here are a few more of the things I love love love: wire, beads, fabric, canvas, wood, rocks,magazines, and of course the books that teach how to use all these amazing materials!

I also get great joy when I get a good deal – on anything!  My quest is to spend the least amount of money possible when purchasing artist materials (or any other item I might need – or not need (she says sheepishly)).  Needless to say, I have            A LOT of stuff!  I get them at garage sales, closing out sales, liquidations stores.  I am a hunter, gatherer when it comes to art supplies!

I am also a hoarder!  I hate to get rid of anything because I “might need it someday”.  Oddly enough this comes true whenever I try to de-clutter, downsize or simplify my life!  Or at least these are the times I choose to remember.  In reality there is no way that every item I’ve gotten rid of I needed at some later date.  But there have been times, and I HATE it when that happens!  By the way, hoarding is a learned behavior, my parents both hoarded what they felt was necessary.  Mom was probably worse than Dad when it came to hoarding.  She hoarded food, shoes, clothes, cosmetics (an Avon representative, need I say more?) Dad only seems to hoard whatever will sit unnoticed in the workshop, so he doesn’t appear to be a hoarder and can mock those of us that have their stuff out in plain sight, but I know better.

I’m also a perfectionist.  You would never know it when you met me.  My house isn’t pristine and spotless (how could it be with so many good deals laying around!), I don’t dress up, wear a lot of make up, push my kids to get straight A’s, try to keep up with the Jones’.  My theory is, if you can’t do it perfect, don’t do it at all!  I also believe in the old adage ‘If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything’.  I try to live by that, which is probably why I’m so quiet!

Okay, like I said at the beginning, I love the idea of creating beautiful works of art.  But I put off doing that on a regular basis.  I’m going to blow my theories of why I put off creating right out of the water, for the whole world to see, so that maybe I will get off my butt and start doing something I know I’ll love.

  1. My favorite excuse was usually that I’m “too busy”.  To busy cleaning, working, writing (don’t get me started on that!), cooking? Nope, more like too busy finding any reason possible to leave the house and visit someone, wander the store aisles aimlessly looking for good deals when all I really needed was milk.  It’s only been in the last few weeks that I’ve looked at this excuse realistically and been honest with myself so I see how false this one is.  The next couple are more likely the real reasons, but still false in there own right.
  2. I don’t want to use my supplies, because I might need them for something “important” at a later date.  This is my “inner hoarder” talking.  There was a time in my life when the kids were in elementary school, that times were tough and I felt I had to be careful not to use all the supplies because I wasn’t sure I’d be able to replace them if they needed to use them later.  I was thinking ahead and it was reasonable.  That’s not the case anymore.  I know if I ran out of something I would be able to just run out and buy some more…even if it wasn’t on sale! Gasp, I know right?!  So thank you to my friend Lyndsay Blais who told me to thank that “inner hoarder” for being there when I needed her, let her go and know that if there is ever a time in my future when I need her services I can call her back!  What a wonderful idea.
  3. My third excuse comes from a combination of my “inner hoarder” and my “perfectionist”.  I don’t want to ‘waste’ my supplies on something that isn’t beautiful.  So I’ve let go of my “inner hoarder”, now it’s time to say good-bye to my “perfectionist”.  How do I think I will ever be able to create something beautiful if I don’t practice all these techniques I’ve read about?  I’m a firm believer in the power of visualization, but there needs to be hands on experience too!  An athlete can use visualization to enhance performance, but I’m guessing only after having physically performed the task. Also beauty is in the eye of the beholder…there are as many perceptions of beauty as there are people.  There was also a couple of passages in Julia Cameron’s “Walking in this World”  that made me realize the foolishness of wanting to create something perfect or nothing at all.

I’m not sure where we got the idea that in order to be “real” artists we had to do things perfectly.  The minute we see that word “perfect”, spontaneity goes out the window. – We’re so respectful of  “great” art that we always, chronically, sell ourselves short.  We’re so worried about whether we can play in the “big leagues” that we refuse to let ourselves play at all.

– Here’s what I like about God: Trees are crooked, mountains are lumpy, a lot of his creatures are funny-looking, and he made it all anyway.  He didn’t let the aardvark convince him he had now business designing creatures.  He didn’t make a puffer fish and get discouraged.  No, the maker made things – and still does.

I like that and no matter what your spiritual beliefs are I think it still works, the world was created somehow, and we are a creation and we create our lives every day, I figure, why not just create and see what comes of it!

I’m reading “Walking in this World” while taking a workshop given by Tenaj DaCosta of  www.beingu.com .  I want to thank Nekolina for challenging me to use some of my supplies a couple of weeks ago, because I took that challenge and started an acrylic painting!  It’s an angel of course, but that’s a whole other story…..

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