“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” ~Walt Disney
So, I’ve decided to dip my toe (and a paintbrush) in the water and explore some new interests. I seem to be craving more self-expression, and while my main mediums have been writing and photography, I’m venturing out into new areas like painting and a different kind of creative writing that I’ve always wanted to try.
It may not seem like that big of a deal, to pick up a paintbrush and play around with water colors or explore new ways of using words but these are big steps for me. During the water coloring class, for example, it was amazing to feel how anxious I got from just choosing a color from the color palette. I stayed with it though, and after awhile, I began to relax and allow inspiration to come, and little by little, I was able to let go of the fear and start to create without caring too much about how “good” the result would be.
It was hard to juggle all the different aspects, choosing the paint, being afraid of making a mess, simply going for it, and then allowing for something to appear on the page without too much judgement. What I discovered is that I learned a lot about myself through the process of simply trying.
The creative writing assignments were somewhat easier since “performance” wasn’t required. The process, however, was just as enlightening. As I followed the steps, creating a list of words from chosen category, and going to an area nearby and writing every detail I could about the setting, I observed my thoughts and feelings. My inner critic was quick to jump in and make my mind go blank and tell me that my vocabulary was of that of a five-year-old, but I pushed on and allowed for the possibility for something else and slowly the gates opened and new ideas started streaming in drip by drip.
It’s funny how I expect myself to be an expert in something that I have never tried before. It’s amazing what kind of standard we hold ourselves up to and how we stay in the “safe zone” and avoid trying new things simply because we will suck at it. We stop doing things just for the fun of it and don’t have the patience to take the time necessary to allow ourselves to learn.
What I learned is that when I let go of striving, and stop listening to the voices that try to stop me, even for just a short while, something new is able to surface organically. I may not be Picasso or Earnest Hemmingway, but what I created came from within. I was willing to dare and try something new, and that’s worthwhile in and of itself. Note to self: Rome wasn’t built in a day!
Silky, prickly, wavy, glossy, glistening
Airy, frothy, fuzzy, feathery, patchy
Seamless, smooth, reflective, transparent
Rough, dense, uneven, hazy