For most of my lifetime I have taken art for granted. It seems silly to say especially when I confess that I had a mother who was an artist. Always having paint and canvas ready, frequent visits to museums and art openings, not to mention always being around a creative circle of her friends, I figured everyone must live this way. It wasn't until I was a grown woman living an 8 to 5 job behind a desk that I wondered what had happened...when did I stop creating?
Eventually…thankfully, I did take a leap of faith and jumped out of the rat race, creating my own venture. I opened a boutique, making a good portion of the products I sell. For a long time, I didn't think of myself as an artist; I was just doing what I needed to do to stay in business and keep myself solvent...whether it was designing jewelry one day to making soap the next, it just felt natural to create. More and more, I realize it was saving me; my creativity was (and is) providing for me daily.
These days I still actively produce for my shop but I now take time to privately create for myself too. It has become important to me as just six months ago I was diagnosed with cancer and I need art to help work through my recovery. Specifically, art journaling is my go to activity and when I am able to, I love gardening...it is the ultimate way to create (even Monet planted his gardens based on what he wanted to see in his paintings.)
So, if you ask does art save? My answer based in my experience is absolutely yes! More importantly, it is not the work I am leaving behind, it is the work I am creating within myself, and for this I thank art and the blessing of a creative life. Because, when we create we save the best work of art...ourselves.
This post is part of a linked collection prompted by Stephey Baker of Marked By The Muse, asking artists to express how art has saved them and asking them to give thanks. To read more from other artists, writers, and creatives click the link. All images are from my original collage work, all rights reserved.
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