Here is one of my favorite books about how to maintain an authentic life as an artist. Sally Warner, an artist herself, writes to those who have lost their way and are trying to find a path back to a creative life.
Every artist I know feels lost at some point. You may feel overwhelmed by the noisy demands of social media. You may have recently gotten rejected by everything you’ve applied for. Or you’re lost in the confusion and stress of your own life, where too many people want a piece of you. What can you do?
In a chapter called “Strengthening Your Creative Resolve” Warner describes ten qualities that will help you continue to make art. These include endurance, perseverance, and flexibility, but her most original recommendation is for artists to value their own creativity.
For me, valuing your creativity means that you trust yourself and your talent. You are patient with yourself when you encounter obstacles, you celebrate your smallest successes, and you silence the inner voice who says that you’re not good enough.
You strengthen your creative resolve by allowing the art-making process itself to heal you and move you forward. You go back into the studio (or wherever you make art) and spend just a little more time every day reconnecting with your art practice. Even if you don’t have a new idea yet, honor your creativity by being present in your own art space. Touch your materials, make a sketch or look at your portfolio, write a few words or read an inspiring chapter in a book like Sally Warner’s.
Gradually your art will make room for itself.
Mary Edwards, Ph.D
Career & Life Coach for Artists
“Left Brain Skills for Right Brained People”
As an artist coach, I bring a unique combination of business knowledge, art world experience, and professional coaching skill to my practice.