Lately I've come to a few new realizations about myself. One of the more recent is regarding how I've treated my inner artist: I have neglected her, subdued her, forced her to create out of her head and not her heart, and all around manhandled her.
Previously I thought working as a photographer solidified my identity as an artist (or, more honestly, I hoped it would). I was creating beautiful memories for people on some of the most important days of their life. Somewhere along the way, however, I realized I had stopped creating art, and was creating beautiful pictures that were detached from my soul.
I'm coming to understand how healing art is, and what role it's played in my own healing. I beginning to give it the respect it deserves. As I do this, and as I step away from "force-creating" to "following the creativity" it's flourishing right before my eyes. I'm painting, and video-ing, and sewing. And as I stop banging my head against a wall to create something I "have" to create for others, I'm allowing my soul to reattach to my creativity and the work is beginning to pour out. And I have a strong hunch the results will benefit others more profoundly in the long run.
Saturday I'm taking one of my first significant steps towards honoring my inner artist. I'm beginning a photo project I'm loosely titling, "The Face of the Human Spirit." I'm going to be using my Hasselblad camera (the first camera I ever bought with my own money), Kodak Portra 160 120mm film, and shooting in-studio portraits of people in the hope of exploring the human spirit.
I feel like the main word here for me is: respect. Am I willing to respect this part of me? I'm beginning to. And I hope to continue a little more at each step.
So I wonder... what parts of yourself do you find difficult to respect? How do you disrespect that part of you? What's one thing you can do today to begin to change that thought pattern? I'd love to read your thoughts in the comments.