"Every child is an artist. The problem is staying an artist when you grow up"- Pablo Picasso
As children I believe we all loved to create something. Maybe it was just mud pies, or squiggly lines on the wall with crayons. Sure, we weren't all writing symphonies. But we loved to make things with our hands, even if it just seemed like messes. And I think as children we knew that what we made had value. We would give our masterpieces away, share with others, and show mom and dad. As adults we became realists, and entered the comparison game. We can't help that we have bills to pay, and jobs to do, and other mouths to feed. But we can help the negative tape we play in our heads. Or maybe that's just me. You know, resigning yourself to one role in life, assuming you must accept a tiring stagnant state. Assuming whatever it is that you make, is made better, by someone else.
To quote a fellow creative and maker (Lilah Higgins at The Higgins Creative) "We were made to make good with our hands. Maybe when people said "change the world" they were really saying, "Go make good with your hands". The world needs what YOU create with YOUR hands.
Why all this ranting about being children and making art?
Because, creating is a major part of who I am and something I desperately need to do in life.
Embracing that fact has been essential on this journey of recovering hope since last summer.
You see, I've been making since I was old enough to hold something in my hands. I would fill sketchbooks by night , on road trips, and after school. I would try to recreate scenes and animals from books at the library onto my paper. I would contently scrap book for hours in my room. Paint, glue, and glitter were frequently found embedded into the carpet of my childhood rooms. During my tween years I started a business. Hannah's handmade crafts. I made and sold cards, ornaments, sandals, bath scrubs, you name it. Via craft fairs, family and friends. I sent myself to summer camps for several years, paid taxes, and had money to buy Christmas gifts for my family. Then about the time I started High school I was accepted into a distance education art school, and did that for four years until I graduated high school. I discovered and learned and loved so many different aspects of art and creating. Color theory, color schemes, ink brushing, cross hatching, stippling, typography, lettering.
(creative journey continued)
This all came to a halt while I did an internship out of state after graduation but kicked back into full mode when I came home to plan my wedding. Like any bride and young girl in love I was ecstatic for the Big day. And I was super excited to MAKE and PLAN everything for the big day. With 6 months to plan, a small budget and big vision, I crafted my little heart out. I heat embossed and colored over 100 invitations by hand, made a cake stand, table decorations and centerpieces, wedding banners and signage, etc. It was a perfect day, surrounded by the people I loved, and lots of handmade details.
It would seem that since art school, and wedding planning I have tried so hard and failed to get back in a creative whirlwind. Life has been a little busy. After graduation and the wedding, I started a full time job and career in catering. When we celebrated our first anniversary, we also celebrated the arrival of our son who was due in just a couple of months. I had a part time creative job at the paper source for several months when we were first married that I loved. Making window displays, doing product demos, and helping clients with their art projects. I let this job go when I found out I was going to be a mommy and had to continue the full time catering job. No more 2nd job for fun.
The various places we've lived have provided an outlet for creating in some small measure as well as life's celebrations, baby showers, birthdays, etc.
Being a creative as a married, twenty something, working mother is alot different and difficult than as a single, non working, young adult. But necessary and essential to who God made me to be nonetheless. So, I am giving myself and you dear reader permission to make and pursue your creative dreams. Maybe you work, maybe you parent, or go to school or it's all of the above.
God made us to make, and making is important even if it's in the midst of responsibilities.
I've had more responsibility as a working mother and someone overcoming health challenges than anytime previously in my life. I work hard to provide and take care of my son, to pay off medical debt and pay for things we deem necessary for life ( food, water, shelter, car insurance lol).
But as I approach my one year "cancerversary" (cancer free in Jesus name!) I have made more space or rather pursued creative opportunities in my life. In the midst of mommying and working I started and completed an online course for wedding planing, I attended a hand lettering workshop, and have a creative small business conference coming up. I've also been dreaming, scheming, and networking with like minded creatives and am currently hoping to launch a small business later this year.
I don't believe we were made to do it all, I believe we were made to do a few things well.
Creating is one of those things I do better than others. I believe I am a much better and happier, wife, mother, worker, person, and human when I do what God made me to do.
If you have just 30 minutes and $5 dollars to invest in your creative soul I highly recommend reading and purchasing Lilah Higgins wake to make e-book.
Someone finally gets it, or rather someone finally gets US!
If you are still doubting your passion to create and artistic abilities, I'd like to leave you with this quote from Conscious magazine, issue 4.
"Art is an impossible force to reckon with that unites, heals, rebuilds, and empowers with endless possibilities. It is so much more than just visual stimulation".