Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Songs We Must Sing

"Sometimes you've got to let everything go - purge yourself. If you are
unhappy with anything . . . whatever is bringing you down, get rid of it. Because you'll find that when you're free, your true creativity, your true self comes out.” Tina Turner
There has been a quiet sadness in me lately. A quirk, a frayed end, a little wrinkle on the sheet of my life. A speck of something...A smudge of unknown fiber...A tiny thorn that causes distress when I go about my daily tasks.
I've spent the past few months trying to zoom in on the source- to identify the root and pull it quickly out.
Then I realized a strange thing. It was not something that existed within me.
It was something in me that was missing.
For whatever reason- laziness, lack of time, depression- I had let my creative urges sink to the bottom- drown under the pressure and responsibility of life.
And in not to letting them breathe, I was actually smothering myself.
“There is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost.” — Martha Graham
Everyone should have a hobby- a creative outlet- a leisure activity that has no time limits or restrictions. You must be able to throw away the clock, ignore the phone calls, and let whatever is in you- flow. Until it stops flowing. Then you can go back to the kitchen and cook dinner or watch the football game or read a book.
Ignoring that voice that yearns for fun is like killing the kid within you.
“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” - Scott Adams
I used to always have some project in the works. Sometimes several at once. Maybe that's why there are a lot of unfinished ones.
But it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter if you have to throw the entire thing in the wastebasket-
it was time well spent.
Just as if you had lost a round of golf to your buddies. So what? You played, you learned, you enjoyed. You wouldn't refuse to play just because you thought you might lose. And it's the same way with art, with writing, with sewing, with woodworking- with any hobby. The fear of failure cannot exist.
I wasn't afraid when I painted my family room walls eggplant. (I love it!)
There was no fear when I decided that the dryer lint would make a great sculpting medium. (Although I was wrong.)
I didn't hold back when I decided I could write a blog and keep it going for a few months. (June will be 2 years).
Being wrong- failing miserably, or messing up doesn't matter. There are no rules. Nothing is lost.
I find that anything can be re-done, re-figured, re-painted or re-purposed.
Just wad it up and start over.
"Of all the people I have ever known, those who have pursued their dreams and failed have lived a much more fulfilling life than those who have put their dreams on a shelf for fear of failure. " ~Author Unknown
I started painting a new gourd this week. I don't know how I got started in that medium, but so far it has stuck. The only problem is where do you put a bunch of painted gourds? They are difficult to store, hard to handle, and make me sound like a weirdo.
"Oh, I'm the gourd lady." I smile.
Yeah. Sounds worse than the old cat lady.

(Click pics to enlarge)
“There is a very fine line between 'hobby' and 'mental illness'.” ~Dave Barry
This particular gourd started out with it's natural color.
I decided to add some lines and triangles. I put it on a shelf where I could go by it several times a day and look at it.
After awhile, it just wasn't working for me. So, I painted it an earthy red. Added some Indian symbols and stripes to it. Looked at it
for weeks and then realized it was never going to get finished because I didn't like it.
So, I painted it black.
Then added some color with a folded leaf design.
My husband told me it's not his favorite. Translation: It st
inks. That sorta bothered me. I thought about putting it away or starting over again. He has this mind set that if it isn't perfect, why bother?
But, you know- I am willing to keep going because I like it. And that's what matters. It's just going up on the shelf with the others anyway. Giant dust collectors.
It's not like I have to eat it, wear it, or drive it.

“A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man’s brow.” — Charles Brower

Just adding this simple craft back into my life has sealed the tiny cracks- has healed that little wound- has calmed my stressful soul.
I feel happier. More relaxed.
The dirty dishes may be put off till noon. Dinner might be takeout tonight. The dust on the woodwork may have to wait another day.
But it's not killing anybody.

“Today is life-the only life you are sure of. Make the most of today. Get interested in something. Shake yourself awake. Develop a hobby. Let the winds of enthusiasm sweep through you. Live today with gusto.” -Dale Carnegie
So- I'm adding more creativity to my life. Everyone should. Even if it's knitting while watching TV at night, keeping a flower garden, birdwatching, line dancing, co
loring or tinkering.
It is a part of everyone that needs to breathe.
Another of the ten resolutions made better.
“A hobby a day keeps the doldrums away.” -Phyllis McGinley

Today's Five Grateful Things:

1.Old friends
2. Faithful dogs
3. Clean underwear
4. Glue sticks
5. Yellow