Chapter Six of The Creative Call by Janice Elsheimer is full of creative insight and wisdom. As I read the chapter I kept stopping to underline, circle, or highlight passages. Janice divides the chapter into seven sections with four exercises for the reader to do. Janice covers issues that we face when we desire a life as a creative artist. Many of these issues are not that difficult to address.
There is so much meat to this chapter that I feel that if I truly wrote in length about each chapter section the post would end up being much too long. So, I will limit myself to a brief summary of each section. You won’t be able to get the full understanding of the chapter without reading the book itself.
So, here are the sections with a short explanation:
Serving the Work: We are all servants of God. As we serve Him through our creativity, we need to consider that being an artist is a work. It is a work that God wants us to pursue diligently. We need to schedule time for this work.
Modeling Child-Like Behavior: Drawing on the child within we can come up with some inventive and playful ways to be creative. I recently wrote an article about thinking like a child. Click here to see that article.
What’s So Hard About Getting Started: This is a question I ask myself on a continuous basis. I find myself putting off my creating because I need to do the wash,help a friend or any number of reasons. Why is creating the last thing I allow myself to do? Where did I get the idea that creating was play time? I need to remind myself of the first section of the chapter. Creating is the work of an artist, so stop doing what Janice calls the “avoidance dance”.
Facing the Fear: Oh, my goodness. Putting your work out there for others to see is difficult. Your work is a part of you. You have put your heart and soul into it. But, through experience, I have found that it gets easier each time. You learn to not listen to every comment people make about your art work. That fear of rejection and failure can cause some artists to stop dead in their tracks. Praying for God to help you overcome your fear and to deal with it better each time will help.
A Sense of Space: As artists we need our own space to work that is our alone. I never really knew how important that was to me until the last few years. I have been moving a lot lately. The first thing I think about when I move is where am I going to work. Where will my art room be? If there is not room for me to have a room to myself, then I am on the look out for a corner, a nook, a place where I can leave my artwork and know it will remain undisturbed. We need to let our family members know how important this space is to us as artists.
Banishing the Critic: The inner critic is our worst enemy. I feel it is harder to get past the inner critic than it is outside criticism. The inner critic can do damage and cause you to stop creating. Don’t let that happen. Pray for God’s help when the inner critic raises its ugly head!
Attending to the Work: Janice says we can not wait to be inspired. We have to act. We have to be ready. We have to create. As we create we will find the path, the inspiration, the direction we are to go.
If you haven’t read Chapter Six, I hope you will. What I have written in this article is what I got out of the reading. I know others will have a different take on the chapter. So leave some comments. Tell me what you liked about the chapter. Tell me what you struggle with as an artist. I would love to know what your thought were as you read.
I will end the article with a quote from Chapter Six:
We must start producing, and, as we wait on the work, attend the work, serve the work through our own particular mode of the artistic expression, we become open to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in our art, in ourselves, and in our lives.
Here are links to the previous articles I have written about The Creative Call: