For some reason the animals show up in my intuitive paintings. Here is another one - and to think I have never been to Africa. Maybe they just need a voice.
My Grandma drove a muscle car. It was a '69 Mercury Cougar - green with black interior that would burn your legs on a hot day. It had a push button AM radio. She wore big rings that rattled on the steering wheel as she rumbled through town. She was fiercely independent and well before her time. She had red hair, wore high waisted bell bottoms and read Prevention magazine way before the health food craze. She ground up egg shells for calcium, she could recite poetry from memory, she wore a beret. She always looked her best, dressed smart, and wouldn't be caught dead without lipstick. She was one amazing lady.
She was also very creative. In the early 70's, she self published a book by using a paper cutter, a xerox machine and a stapler. It was a huge research undertaking of the Indian Place Names and their meanings for the Olympic Peninsula in the state of Washington. My Dad did the cover artwork for her and sold the book in his gallery for $1 a copy. It sold out, many times over.
She taught me to knit, tat and crochet. She sewed her own clothes and she crocheted beautiful afghans which she donated. She did almost all of her home handiwork.
But, if you asked her, she would never have called herself creative and never thought of herself as an artist. Why is someone who is so full of creative fire so afraid of saying I am creative? Why so often do creative people lack confidence in their talent, their art? Its a good question i think. One that is deeply personal to each of us.
I think that often the creative spirit in us gets wounded deeply along the journey. There is an incident or a person that tripped things up along the way. Somewhere, somehow the creative spirit got wounded and shrunk away deep into the soul where it is afraid to come out for fear of being wounded again. Sometimes, all it takes is one negative comment to shut down the creative spirit. Its easier to hide than to face fear.
Yet, I believe that the creative inside really can't hide. It just isn't capable of hiding. Take the case of my Grandma. It must find an outlet of some kind even if we don't care or want to acknowledge it as creativity. "A rose by any other name, is still a rose".
Its time to come out and recognize the things we do on a daily basis, as simple as they seem, are creative and are a creative outlet. So no more hiding out - call yourself creative. Recognize your art in all the things you do. Call yourself an artist, because you are.