Creative Life Force

You have it.

Whether it’s a flare or a flicker;

a surge or a trickle;

an ebb or a flow,

you have Creative Life Force.

We all do.

Here’s a little picture, no bigger than a handkerchief, with an absurdly long title.

small painting Sally Swain

Title to be revealed…read on…
Sally Swain © original art

Want to know the title? Get ready. Grab yourself

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What if you don’t like your picture (in art or in life)?

You could ditch it, rip it up, scribble over it…you could adapt adapt adapt.

What if there’s a gulf between the astoundingly beautiful vision in your head and the muck that’s appearing on the canvas? This is The Gap.    

Creativity lives in The Gap.

If you keep going, you have two fundamental choices.

  1. Keep trying to make your picture (or life) resemble the perfection of your imaginings. This likely leads to a wrestling match with your Inner Critic, your art-esteem, your materials, your existing picture (or life).

    and/or you could…

  2. Adapt adapt adapt. Follow your brush or gesture or what’s already appeared. Surrender to the Art of Emergence. Trust the process and the flow of your picture (or life). This option is far easier said than done. It goes against the grain of all we’re taught in our outcome-driven, get-it-right-or-die dominant culture.

Neither of these choices is right or wrong. Much art-making (and life) is a dance between Continue reading

Blogbirth – Three Baby Elephants or Ten Million Microbes

It’s been a long pregnancy.

In the time it takes for maybe three baby elephants, five whales or ten million microbes to be born, this blog has been gestating.

Why so long?

Desire and fear in equal measure. Let’s have a quick lesson in the Physics of Creativity According to Sally Swain.

Often as we come closer to fulfilling a burning dream, to honouring our creative yearnings, to saying YES to our authentic, alive, tingling selves, there’s a backlash. The equal weight of fear kicks in. It can be a tidal wave of doubt demons or the quiet ooze of avoidance and excuses. E might equal mc squared; I wouldn’t really know. But I do know that over twenty years’ experience of working and playing with my own creative process and that of others reveals that the Great Stultification can equal the surge of Creative Life Force. Continue reading