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                                The Joy of Creation 

By: Iran Lawrence

Summary: The artist operates in the field of creation; an enlightening journey unmatched with any other field of activity. Yet, we often find very apt and skillful artists unable to paint, sculpt or write and enjoy their passion in creating what they love. Here is a summary of what constitutes a burnt-out or the inability to continue; and how to stay on the top of the game of creativity.


    Anytime we take a look at someone who keeps creating the same product over and over again - no matter what his activity is - we find someone who is unhappy about what he is creating. This is a condition that occurs when one's attention and concentration becomes fixated on one task and he ultimately finds himself faced with "debris." This is when creating becomes an automatically a counter-creativity resulting in an accumulation of unwanted "particles."

    When the debris accumulates and he doesn't know what to do about them, and since he is still in a creative mode, he distracts himself from it by trying his hands in something else that doesn't appear to have - in his estimation - a whole lot of debris. In the field of arts for example, one can easily abandon sculpture and adventure into painting and soon departs from this debris strewn area as well.

    When obsessive or prolonged creation continue to flow in one direction, the resulting product becomes deteriorated. The creation in this direction comes about because one never exercises his ability of being there before his own work comfortably and perceive his own creation objectively and be his own audience, as part of his creative process. Confronting his own work is seldom an essential part of his computation, and he does not take responsibility for his own creation. When he creates without confronting, after a while he says, "Well, I just can't do this anymore." What does this mean? It means essentially that he can't take responsibility for his creation anymore, he doesn't care to know about it, which means loss of control of it all. Hence, we hear such cliché narratives as being "burned out."

    The panacea for all the problems in creativity is the artist's own ability to confront his own work; naturally and with objectivity. Any great artist who has gone into a decline, he has done so due to the absence of these two very pivotal factors: Confronting his own creation and taking full responsibility for having been the full source of cause for the effects he has produced in his work.

    He over-creates himself past the point where he should stop and stand back to confront his work. He continues to create beyond the point where he should realize that his effect has reached a sufficient level. Any time that confronting is turned automatic in creativity, results become non-optimum. For fresh and joyful creation to occur, one needs to learn how to unfix his attention and concentration from the monotony of creation in one direction and diversify it by engaging in other creative activities simultaneously, to revitalize himself and his imagination to ensure his mental and physical vigor for his next round of creative work.

    An excellent maxim for any artist to follow is to learn how to create his main work intermittently with a few other fields of his interest. One cannot create optimally in any field without his personal and intimate experiences in a variety of other endeavors, especially essential to the life of an artist.

    Taking a breather from time to time and engaging in multiples of creativity is what makes each creation a fresh new joy. Painting for instance, is a creative process where big, solid, massive things in nature are translated into the nebulous realm of imagination and through the thinness of thought, expressed on canvas.

    Art is a communication medium; thus, it follows the same laws of communication. Too much originality in art, beyond the boundaries of general agreements, blocks the flow of communication to the viewer and throws the audience into unfamiliarity and disagreement. Communication contains duplication of what is being originated or forwarded, whether it is sonic, textual or visual; and "originality" is the foe of duplication.

    Problems or lack of understanding in arts occur when techniques exceeds the general accepted level of workability for the purpose of transmitting the message. The quality of communication in a work of art is far superior to the technical expertise by which it is created. Thus, perfection of technique should never occur at the expense of the message in what it is communicating.

    When we are standing before a work of art that invites our attention, the instantaneous feeling of joy we feel as a reaction to the pleasure we feel through the understanding of what we perceive, and the various interpretations that we engage in, by talking about it and completing it as our own work of art, are the signs of finding ourselves in the presence of a successful work of art.

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