Tuesday, January 31, 2012

MUSINGS: The Beauty of Creative Risks

Risks.   We’re always faced with risks, personally and creatively.   No matter what the situation is when you take a risk there may also be an underlying fear.  There is fear to be uncomfortable, vulnerable, or simply not being accepted.  It’s the same when you create something from your soul. It requires you to be vulnerable...to take a risk. To stand naked and hope for acceptance and understanding...and with art many times we are asking to be judged. How terrifying!

Now, of course I can make a journal that requires very little thought...very little of myself and of course...very little risk. That also involves very little satisfaction. Of course, I cannot cater to everyone, so when I set out to make something, I make it for myself. I make things that I find beautiful, inspiring, and that speak to me... and as a result, when I create something I give a piece of myself  (Of course this has a dual benefit, if it doesn't sell...it's something I will use myself!).  For the most part, when you create something you are putting a sliver of yourself on display for the world to see. And if you are selling said item you are asking for another to judge its worth.

The same is true for custom made journals.  In creating a custom book, I try to put together the perfect quotes, images, etc, all to reflect the recipients’ beliefs, values and ideals.  A custom journal is suppose to completely reflect the owner, but I realized, while that is my aim, I am imprinted on every page of the book. What I put in...or leave out, where I place things, the materials used, the construction, the way I conceive the book and therefore that person...is all on me. It is through my lens; MY PERCEPTIONS.   No matter what is created you are offering yourself. You’re vulnerable.

Sometimes that vulnerability causes me to hold back.  It’s like lifting a veil to offer a sneak peek and so you have to decide, what should they see?  Like staring unflinchingly into a camera lens or into the eyes of another without looking away and asking the viewer to look in...to see YOU. I try to push those thoughts back when I am working and to create only for myself.  In the end that is when it is most satisfying... the pieces that I am most proud of are the ones that reflect me in some way… the ones in which I lifted the veil and beckoned the viewer to look in.  Maybe they will see a part of themselves as well; it will speak to them. If there is recognition, a connection, however small, is made. And when that happens and I have to ship a journal off.... there is a small tug inside. I send it off and think, "I wonder where you will end up?" ...I take that sliver of myself and send it off into the universe...and in that, there is vulnerability. There is risk. There is satisfaction. There is beauty.

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