Do I Want To

You've had the feeling before: the crackle of potential, excited by Possibility, knowing you can create a dozen different things by week's end...if you wanted to.

Just a few minutes ago on Facebook, a fellow Tarot deck creator (artist Judith Mackay Stirt, Cook's Tarot) said to me:

Ars longa, vita brevis

This Hippocratic aphorism offers a lot to ponder.

Life is short, but art is forever.

There's not enough time to do all that we want to--or even all that we are able (pushing ourselves, ignoring our families and forgetting to eat, notwithstanding). 

And our art may (or may not) "live forever". But what of it? When we pass, we won't be here to enjoy the fruits of our labor--or any posthumous accolades.

Just because you can doesn't mean you have to. Even if you happen to be brilliant, talented--a genius.

Who said we have to live for others? Slave at our art for the masses or posterity?

It's one thing if you have the passion and stamina to do so.

It's another if--for whatever reason--you've lost your "want to".

Sometimes, living life artfully--infusing everyday acts with creative flair (or just writing poetry for your own edification)--is enough.

Maybe, more than enough.

Stuffing Mix

Filling the Cup

Some days, it's perfectly fine not to "make something".

We're humans, not artesian wells. 

First, there must be something "inside" that fuels our making--a core to shape our art around.

If we're empty, our art may be shallow. Or not ring true.

What, then, do we "fill up" with?

Nature. Beauty. Love. Art from other Heroic Journeyers (paintings, poems, novels, songs, sculptures, food). 

How do we "fill up"? Rest. Relax. Open. Receive. Partake. Absorb.

We must have life experience to inform our art.

Many of those come when we're still--when we allow our "soul cups" to be filled with the stuff of life. 

Snowcone Large
Snow Cone © Janet Boyer

Forcing Life to Mean

Why another blog? Why this blog?.

Answer #1: Recently, I emerged from a severe and serious “meaning crisis” related to creating. The specific causes don’t matter, really, but the questions they provoke do:

Does my work matter?

Why bother?

Who really gives a shit (other than me)?

Is it worth it?

Am I just wasting my time?

Vg bluesThanks to the love of my little family, friends and a book titled The Van Gogh Blues: The Creative Person’s Path Through Depression by Eric Maisel, Ph.D.—as well as my decision to “force life to mean” (to quote Maisel))—I’ve experienced an epiphany:

My creative choices must stem from a personal creed—my very own declaration of meaning and purpose.

Not from expectations.

Or supporters.

Or haters.

Or the marketplace.

Or fellow Creatives.

I must decide what life means. What my art means. What I mean.

And I did that by asking:

What is my truth?

What are my principles?

What are my desires?

From that, I created a personal creed, a sturdy rationale for living and creating.

So answer #1 is that I’ve birthed another blog because, as an extrovert, I often need to “see” my assumptions, explorations and conclusions to form a feedback loop. An online journal, if you will.

Answer 2: Why this blog? For a long time, I wanted to blog about creativity, but I couldn’t figure out a satisfying, encompassing, personal angle.

Until now.

Emerging from my meaning crisis, I’ve becoming acutely aware of other hurting Creatives.

We live in a mean, jaded, shallow world full of pessimists, haters and malcontents.

But we’re not them.

We are Creatives. Destined to light fires, change perspectives, inspire visions and hold up a mirror to society.

We matter.

We are the beauty in life.

Creo is a Latin verb whose older and original meaning is “to make grow”. Literally translated, Creo means:

  1. I create, make, produce
  2. I beget, give birth to
  3. I prepare, cause
  4. I choose

So I decided to call this blog CREO, and snagged the domain name Creo.Life.

Here, I will share how I prepare, create, choose and birth.

And I hope Creo.Life serves as a beacon (or warm blanket) to other Creatives on this Heroic Journey of making art and making meaning.

Rose Buds
Rosebuds © Janet Boyer