Monday, October 01, 2012

Opening the Cage Door.

I've had 2 weeks to decide what my next painting will be, and I've been stalling. It's not as if I haven't been thinking about it- it's been right here on my shoulder, along with ten other things that need my attention "RIGHT NOW."

What the heck? Painting is fun. Wait- actually it's more than "fun," it's cathartic. So I've been wondering why I have so much angst surrounding this. Before there was only excitement. I started to gather opinions from my FB contingent... then I heard it:

"It's got to be BRILLIANT."

It's the same thing that has me spinning my wheels in some other areas of my creative life.

See... I've had some successes, so now I feel pressure (real or imaginary) to be brighter and shinier than I was yesterday. To do more. To be careful not to go backwards and disappear.

I've sold a painting now - so the next one has to be REALLY good, or maybe it was a fluke.

I've had some wins in my acting career thus far, and people have told me that learning about my journey has inspired them to stay the course with their own, so I can't let them down.

Pressure.

Sometimes the creative muse will appear (and save the day) when you are most under pressure. But usually it appears when you are relaxed and open to receive. To play. To just be.

I've been working with Angela Ai for the past month. I don't even know how to begin to describe her class... maybe "therapy" via the physical (rather than through talking)? I don't know if I'm doing her class justice, so you would do better to check her out for yourself if you're interested.

Anyway - I believe that last week's class has led me to this revelation of how "pressure" is affecting me right now. I'm usually the poster child for "measure twice (quicky, please) then CHOP that ******* two-by-four!" but fuel is important. If you burn unclean fuel, you get impure results, and they leave residue. If I'm operating purely from a place of inspiration, the results will be different from those that come from operating from a place of fear. They may look the same on the outside, but not from the inside.

I think a combination of age ("time to be SERIOUS now"), and running out of money a couple of years ago really screwed with my head, and made me feel like it was no longer okay to approach things from a place of sheer curiosity. Every action has so much weight on it now.

So... I am giving myself permission to make mistakes. To screw up ROYALLY. To follow whatever creative whim that I have, without regard for the outcome. To not be "shiny." To be as publicly imperfect as I am privately. To be a student again, instead of a teacher. To have more questions than answers. And to ask them, however and whenever they arrive.

--Nicole

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