Last year, if you asked me if I could be creative every day, I’d laugh and tell you that I usually create something once weekly or sometimes fortnightly and that I couldn’t possibly find time to being creative every day.
Now I realise I would have been lying.
I can be creative every day. I’ve done it. I have a huge pile of paintings to prove and I look at it with amazement, I wonder why it is so often that I beat myself up for being a rubbish artist – I get up and paint for me every day, even if I have paid work to do on that day. I do realise now that I need to believe in myself and remind myself that constantly.
Why am I doing this? Discovering Crystal Moody and her inspiring lifetime project last year, I was always thinking how amazing it is to be able to paint every day and that I couldn’t possibly do that – I have a business to run…I have commissions to do…I have lots of things to do.
Toward the end of the year, I was beginning to realise that it is possible to be creative every day like Crystal, if I simply find time. Just an hour of my time. I could wake up an hour earlier. I could find an hour to paint instead of watching TV in the evenings. I could organise my day better or work smarter so I have an hour to spare.
That is it. It is already 6 months. And I am not finished. I am making this my lifetime project too. I am not finishing the year putting my paintbrush down. No way. It is a great habit to have.
Of course, it is not all perfect. I struggled. I bunked off a few days. I doubted myself. And this is okay. We are human beings. We need to cut ourselves some slack. The main thing is that I keep learning and grow as an artist.
These are what I’ve learnt in the last 6 months:
- You get more comfortable with your own creative skills – the more you create, the better your work gets. If it doesn’t, keep going and reflecting.
- Your mood and stress improves over time while you keep creating.
- You understand yourself more, and what you love. You notice the recurring theme in your work and better appreciate whatever it is.
- You connect with and inspire people when you share your daily creations, even if you are unhappy with what you made. Your work couldn’t be more natural and authentic.
- You realise you are not perfect but it is okay. Embrace your imperfections!
- You get braver with getting started and using new materials.
- You get fewer and fewer burnouts. You really get into a creative habit – it is no longer a chore.
- You feel guilty for skipping few days. You look back what you’ve done so far and stop punishing yourself. Then when you skip a day again, you smile and carry on.
My mental health isn’t the greatest this year, but without creating I could be worse off. Creativity is keeping me sane and I don’t think I’ve really realised how it is good for my mental and emotional health until recently.
I’ve had people telling me – “You are so talented, I wish I could paint like you and I can’t paint.” Thank you but you can. Just go and start. You don’t need to be talented to be an artist.
Learn more about me and my daily art here.