Do you often find yourself feeling unfulfilled or uncertain when you create? Maybe you feel the need to create something new and different, maybe even something exciting and new ("Come aboard, we're expecting you".... - The Love Boat theme song) - Ok, I'm sorry, I just couldn't help myself. Who else watched The Love Boat? In all seriousness, this was and at times still is me. I have to remind myself of the following...
The artists I follow and admire dearly all say " just start making and creating....just start". I honestly had the hardest time with this. I would start and create art that I saw others making. I would measure my success as an artist by what they were making. Was it close, how did it compare? At first, I focused solely on my skills. Was I good enough? Don't. Do. This. Instead, pay attention to how you feel as you're making and creating. What about the process brings you joy? What ignites your curiosity? What do you love about the process? Is the process sparking new ideas? What comes easy to you? When do you feel that spark of excitement? Is there something here you want to maybe take in a different direction?
Pay attention to these things, and make note of them. Why you might ask? Because as time progressed I realized I wasn't feeling fulfilled as an artist. Yes, I was super happy that my skills were improving to the point where I felt I could make the things I was learning from others. But, I wasn't feeling fulfilled. Why else would we put ourselves through imposter syndrome or resistance if we weren't searching for something more? We want to feel fulfilled and know that what we are doing matters if not for anyone else other than ourselves. We need to embrace that expression and the beauty that fuels it as well as the beauty that comes from it.
I believe we all go through these steps in the evolution of our creativity. The need to feel that you must create something new and never seen before simply means you have yet to find what excites you. When you experience joy, curiosity, happiness, and peace; when you listen to the whispers from deep within, you'll know you're creating something new and never seen before. Because it comes directly from you. You may take various techniques you've learned and mix them together in a way that is meaningful, soulful, and exciting to you. Or you may discover a process all your own. How do you get to this point? Yes, you have to start, and then you also have to take note of the thoughts mentioned above, as well as your own emotions. The good feelings, the happy feelings, the excitement of possibility feelings, etc... By starting I mean actually playing, creating, discovering, and asking yourself the what-if questions. Our brains need the actual process of making, creating, and listening to our soul's stories through the physicality and expression of art. This will lead to making your very own art in whatever medium and fashion that may be.
I will say this though - there is nothing new under the sun - it's all been done in one way or another, so take that pressure off of yourself and create from you, just for you. There is peace and possibility in taking a step back from the scrolling world and listening to your own intuition and guidance.
It is in these moments that you will begin to see that God does indeed care about your creativity. The insight and possibilities that just appear are from somewhere within but also beyond yourself. For me, this is actually the ultimate fulfillment as an artist; I become quite giddy. As I am typing this out I'm realizing I need to remember this over everything else. There is so much to get wrapped up in. We have so much information coming at us always, in life and in the art world. Do it for the process and what that teaches you about yourself as well as God's unfailing love and care for you. Then, you will find true fulfillment as an artist and maybe even in life. ;)