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Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Creative Gene

"Asking someone to help you create is like asking someone to salt your food ~~ it has to be to your taste."  *Edie Brickell*

When I heard that it clicked with me immediately.  And I was reminded of times when well-meaning folk have tried to "help" me be creative.  For the longest time I thought it was just my stubborn nature that rejected their advice. I know better now.

A friend walked along with me on a little photo shoot while we were vacationing together one time.  It took a lot of patience (something I am not known for) to bite my tongue every time it was suggested "Oh you should shoot that ~ from this angle." "Oh come over here, get that."  "Oh stand here."

In my head I'm screaming, "You're so good ~ why don't you pick up a damn camera and just do it yourself?"  

Did I mention patience is not my strong suit?

And it is why custom orders of my little Whee Ones® et al are challenging for me.  I almost always say yes to an idea and am usually pleased at the end result ~ particularly when the customer is pleased.  But it's difficult.  When I create a product I make a sketch and design a pattern.  I tweak a lot and usually make a couple of prototypes before I see sitting in front of me what I envisioned in my head.  So when I have to create someone else's vision ~ well, it is really a challenge.

Some are easier

than others...

All that being said, I have learned recently what it means to be a collaborative artist ~ to work with people as part of a team.  It was challenging, yes; but really rewarding once it all started flowing.  I learned so much not only creatively but personally.  Although it was I who took images from a page and brought them to life, chances are I won't be credited with design. But that's part of the deal.  And how things go sometimes.  And how we learn to take things to the next level next time.

So I've learned I can do both ~ I can work alone and I can work as part of a team.  Both are rewarding in different ways.  In the end I am just grateful that I have this creative gene (thank you, Mom) and I have so many artistic interests I really could use more than one lifetime to master them all.  

Oh, and that quote at the beginning of this post?  The one from Edie Brickell? She is a singer/songwriter who just happens to be married to Paul Simon. For 20 years. Yeah. That Paul Simon.  Her statement was in response to a question asking if his music influenced her music.  

She's awesome.

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