Didn’t blog yesterday! A lost opportunity! However I did some watercolor and pen sketching. Good start… on getting back into it. And I studied mixed media a bit – got inspired by Squidoo lenses and YouTube videos and Pinterest. Fun!! I love mixed media, and will focus on that as I go forward with my artistic adventure. I’ve just moved my easel across the room and hope that will help me start making progress again. I have a lot of poster boards that I want to use… little ones… and I’ll use them all for mixed media practice. It is practice that makes art real.
Same with writing! Daily writing practice creates a sense of comfort with the skills involved. When doing a first draft, it is important to abandon the internal editor. “Aunt Mandy, go away! I’m writing!” Expel that editor and suddenly you can go wild with your writing and create something truly unique and daring.
I know someone who has managed to dispel the inner critic and be the amazing person that she is – the San Francisco recording artist (and photographer, and writer, and life-coach) LoriB. I have known her online several years, met her during NaNoWriMo a few years back, and met her in person last October. A blessing! I love unique and non-conformist people who are creative explorers, and that, she definitely is, in every aspect of her life.
Today is another opportunity to practice being that creative explorer personality… and let me tell you, friend, that’s all there is. We’re not about perfection and reaching the stars. We’re only about practicing the arts that rock our souls. A great resource that teaches that principal… and if you haven’t seen it – I very much recommend you get a copy while they’re still available: The 5 Keys to Mastery – one of my favorite inspirational and motivational DVDs, put together by David Lent and George Leonard, who also wrote a book by the same name. You will see great artists, scientists, athletes, and others explain how they focused their practice in order to achieve something great.
It is all about the focus, and the practice, and the love of your chosen art.
I have a friend who refuses to practice writing. He believes that someday he will wake up 100% motivated and will write a novel in a hot flash. I hope it happens for him, but all the novelists I know spend a lot of time practicing and learning what makes writing great. We don’t suddenly become great novelists. Most of us work hard for many years practicing and developing our writing techniques… just as with other arts.
After all, you don’t suddenly wake up one day to discover you can play the trombone like a virtuoso. At least, most of us don’t. I won’t say it can’t be done…
My intention this year is to focus my creative practice and I’m choosing to do that with mixed media, watercolor, and writing for children and teens. The art will be used to illustrate my books. I already have two books in progress needing these illustrations: Ciara and the Fairies and Oja. So for my work as a writer of children’s literature, I need to develop my artistic skills as well.