I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to live a creative life. Recently I completed an online course with the marvellous Pip Lincolne of Meet Me At Mikes called “Inspiration Information”. I highly recommend this course to anyone. So I’ve been trying to come up with practical ideas to incorporate creativity into my daily life and am discovering how important this is to my well-being.
Now, my every day life is quite creative – I run an online crafty business, I own a bricks and mortar shop selling lovely crafty bits and pieces, I run creative workshops, I write this blog. And yes I consider myself very lucky that I am able to make a little money out of these creative endeavours. It certainly isn’t at the stage where it pays the bills but it is a nice little top up.
It is however VERY hard work and while most of the activities associated with my life are creative, not much of what I do is actually for me. From Pip’s course I’ve learnt how important it is to incorporate some ‘me stuff’ into my daily routine .. fun stuff .. just because stuff! PLAY! Remember that? When we were children it was a very natural thing to do. As we age, other priorities take over and we forget to play and more importantly we forget the importance of play. Play and making stuff is good for the soul. It’s good for you and the people around you. It makes you a nicer person. It has meditative qualities that are similar to other stress reducing activities like yoga, tai chi, exercise, meditation.
It is not important whether you think you are an arty, creative person (I personally believe we all are) it’s just a matter of tapping into that ‘right side’ of your brain again and have some fun with it. Don’t worry too much about end results – try to get lost in the moment and let that carry you. My suggestions would be to go to an art shop, a newsagent, a craft or $2.00 shop and grab yourself some cheap supplies to start with. Play around and get a feel for what you like working with. Collages are a great start and can be incorporated into things like art journals.
Art journalling is a wonderfully creative past time – just think of it as a visual diary. Do you remember as a teenager keeping all your angst filled notes about your life in a diary and scribbling little doodles and images to fill in the spaces? Well, that is art journalling.
Some fun stuff we’ve been playing around with at home.
|Ava and I having fun expressing our creativity.|
|And of course I had to create a paper cut|
|I made a Mind Map – this is a pretty rewarding exercise|
|Ava created an art gallery|
|The girls get their creative on|
There are of course many, many other ways to incorporate creativity into your daily life including gardening, trying a new recipe or better still coming up with your own recipe, creating a pretty space in your house, visiting an art gallery or museum, sewing, going for a walk and taking some photos. Whatever you choose just be sure that it is something just for you and something that you enjoy.
After doing this online course I’ve discovered that I am now intentionally making time in my days to do a little something for myself and this in turn has crept into the rest of the family’s life. When my children see me painting then they get all of their supplies out and start playing (yes even my 15 year old son). This is having a wonderful effect on our family life.
I’ve even signed up for courses that I normally wouldn’t have made the time for. Recently I got a call from a local friend who is running an art journalling class (of all things!) and asked if I’d like to come along. I started with all the usual excuses of being too busy but then remembered the importance of making time for this sort of thing and I am so happy I did. It is specifically for women and mothers and will explore things such as – our connections with others; what it is to be a mother; our dreams, hopes and desires; and stories passed down from our elders. It will run once a month for the next eight months and I figured I can surely take that time out of my busy schedule for myself.
|The fabulous Kathryn Shewring and Aimee Stanyer of ‘Playing with Possibilities’ at the beautiful Cooran Hall|
|Collage artwork from the Art Journalling Workshop (yes the kid’s played as well).|
|So many materials to play with.|
I am really looking forward to exploring my creativity further and am excited by where it might lead. All I know at this point is that I am a happier person than I was a couple of months ago.
Do you incorporate creativity into your daily life? What kind of activities do you find enjoyable?