Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Creative Imperative

Dear Terra,

today i heard about 30 seconds of a CBC radio piece from Venezuela. the person they were speaking with was talking about each person having "a creative imperative" to do their best to make his/her life a work of art.

art is made every day. it can be astonishing, beautiful, monstrous in content or proportion, but the people who create it are the same species as those who don't, or think they don't.

i get a lot of props for writing, performing and promoting music. but i often find myself setting people straight when they congratulate me on my "talent" and claim that they could never do anything of the sort.

i do art because i love it, and i've been doing it long enough, and working at it hard enough, that i'm getting pretty good at it. and i love to spread the word, letting folks know what a joy it is, encouraging everyone to try a little, or devote their entire lives to creating bold new things.

we all have the ability to bring more beauty into the world. paint your house with four colours instead of two. plant flowers. sing harmony. put your niece's drawing in a frame. look at the world through a camera lens. design what you knit. make a video of the song your friend wrote. start a literary salon at the used book store. be enthusiastic. admire art. congratulate the artist, not on her talent but on her work.



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