Here were some questions that we were asked to consider:
1- Do you consider yourself a creative? Why or why not? Do you consider yourself more/equal/less creative within your circle of influence?
I do consider myself creative, probably more than those in my circle of influence. I find joy in the simple things of life (ie. fresh-cut flowers, colorful plates, a gorgeous sunset, great design, foam from my bubble bath, doing vinyasa yoga, etc.). I don’t think you necessarily have to be involved in the arts (visual, theatrical, performing) to be “creative”, although its been a plus for me since I studied Art History in college and grad. school, am very right brained and tend to gravitate towards things that are artsy. All you need is an open mind that is willing to learn and be stretched by every ounce of adventure.
2- How do you nurture the creative spirit- within you or in others?
I am a photographer, and even before I had my Nikon D80 DSLR (which kicks ass), I would snap pictures of the most random things because I saw a spark of beauty in it… this puzzles most of my friends, but then they would be impressed as most people overlook the moment/object I captured. I also have an adventureous spirit and have traveled all over the world, so I definitely think that rubs off on people and has encouraged some to do the same.
3- What draws you to certain modes of expression?
As a child, I always had a natural inclination to colors and doodling. I liked to draw people, places and narrate a story to go along with my drawings… so that quickly birthed into a passion for graphic design/commercial art in high school and some of college… then, to fuse my passion in writing, I took on a major in Art History and leaned towards Art Criticism… and finally, I was able to interact with real people from faraway lands through my travels around the world and take pictures of people, things and places different from my own. I’ve also experimented with scrapbooking, music and dance in the past, so I guess its all about finding your niche and what you excel at, as well as what you feel the most comfortable doing.
4- Do you think anyone can be creative? How so?
Anybody CAN be creative. I think its necessary to have both a critical AND creative outlook on life, but of course more on the creative side, because one can then focus on exploring ideas, generating possibilities, looking for many right answers rather than just one.
5- How supportive should society be of creativity, especially with the current global economic downturn?
Society should be more supportive of creativity especially now that the economy is spiraling downwards. I hate that the first thing the government cuts when there is no extra money to go around is the arts… in many cases (I’m not talking about those multi-million dollars per painting auctions at Christie’s and Sotheby’s), art is NOT a luxury, but of great matter. Art is a catalyst that wrestles with the deep questions of life in order to inspire the community to engage the culture that is and create the world that ought to be. This should be accessible to everyone, not just those with extra cash to spend.
In conclusion, I think capitalism, linked with our consumer driven society, has caused a lot of creative damage in the world today. The more things are reproduced, the easier it is to access them and the harder it becomes to use our own [creative] minds to think for ourselves. Furthermore, its much easier to go out and purchase a bunch of meaningless gifts than to take the time to make something and adding that special touch to it. With the holiday season quickly approaching in the midst of our failing economy, it is still easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping and in some ways, inevitable. I do think, however, that there are ways to combat these behaviors:
1.) Go to your nearest crafts store and get some supplies to make your own Christmas cards; your family/friends will appreciate it more because rings authentically of YOU
2.) Engage in fair-trade shopping and celebrate the creativity of your brothers and sisters in a developing country
3.) Give the gift of food or experience: for those of us that couldn’t possibly use another pair of Christmas socks or sweater, why not bake a panettone for them or have them indulge in a bath bomb from Lush?
4.) Even if you don’t have money to support your usual “luxuries” in life – ie.) daily Starbucks addiction, happy hours, eating out… you can always make your own fun by having people over for dinner, going jogging (free!), spending time with your pets or making your own movies. The possibilities are endless!
The key is not to let negative attitudes block you from living a mindfully creative and extravagant life. Coming to think of it, inserting a bit of creativity in your day-to-day living is not a bad idea, especially now that winter is quickly approaching and finances are tight!
Happy Creative Living! 😀