Wednesday, August 8, 2012

How to have discipline for making art

 Making art seems always to require the discipline to say “no” to all the little demons that bite chunks of time from my day.  When it comes to art making, often the easiest person to steal time away from is me.  There is always something that needs doing or cleaning, someone who needs a Journey Oracle reading or a shamanic drumming session, some meeting or gathering that needs my presence.  These are all wonderful things to give time to, and I love that my island life can have such variety in it—but where is my time for art making?  And why am I showing you a picture of a rusty shovel in a rusty wheelbarrow as the illustration for how to have discipline for making art?

 Because when we keep our ability to say “yes” to time for art-making, which means saying “no” to others—our discipline for making art becomes like rust which never sleeps.  The ability to open and fill the little cracks and spaces in our day with art is like how rust grows over the surfaces of exposed metal.   Soon enough those spaces in time join up, and like rust does, our discipline for making art fills our awareness.  Even though I am not able, nor do I want to, say no to every request of my time, like rust I am never asleep to my looking for an opportunity to create something with my hands.

On reflection, I also like that the picture I took this morning is of a shovel. Finding discipline in art is like using a shovel to dig down beneath the layers of should and ought to hit the bedrock of personal will, which is a taproot of healthy selfishness out of which grows my creative freedom.