My world and my work changed forever when I realized my answer was: creative capacity.
What I knew then and what I know now is that when you recognize and develop your creative capacity you come alive, you discover your agency and you are able to break through limitations and open up possibilities like never before. This applies to your art, to your life and even to the world.
Pretty big claims, I know.
But I’ve seen it again and again.
Someone starts drawing and little by little they come back to themselves. With every drawing, sketch and doodle, they experience the creativity they are capable of. They begin to recognize their unique hand and express their own voice. It is undeniable that where once there was nothing, because of their creative capacity, now there is something. They develop the confidence that they can bring an idea into being because they have. Then, often without any conscious thought or intention, all of this begins to come off the page.
If I can create in my sketchbook, where else can I create?
If I can be myself in my art, where else can I be myself?
If I could bring that idea to life, what else can I bring into being?
Your creative capacity is a force of nature. Once awakened, it wants to find expression everywhere. You pick up flowers to draw and delight in the way they perk up your kitchen. Their colour inspires you to paint your bathroom a vibrant shade of coral. You’re inspired to pick up a book on colour theory and start changing how you dress. You start watching art documentaries and taking copious notes. You start listening to music again. You and your world come alive.
This activation of your creative capacity can also be unnerving. All sorts of things that seemed immutable suddenly become open to change. Now you want friendships where you do more than just listen. Though you’ve been okay in your job for years, now you can’t stop thinking about running your own business. You watch the news and when something distresses you, instead of turning it off, you think, what if I could make a difference? Do I have the courage to try?
Creativity is disruptive. This is one of the reasons we resist it and one of the reasons we’re often discouraged from it. It shifts the status quo. Creativity is wildly alive and expansive by nature. It wakes us up and shows us the magic we are capable of.
Once you know that you can create, the possibilities of what you create are endless
That’s why I believe that awakening your creative capacity is the beginning of everything.