With the coming of SPARK! I decided to post this quote sent me by a friend. As a child I enjoyed drawing and at one time considered becoming an artist. Turned out I really don’t have a gift for visual arts but while in college I found one artistic niche in ceramics and minored in ceramic art (pottery). After graduation I never felt the need to get muddy again but I have used that experience to appreciate the work of others ever since. I derive great pleasure from picking up a pot thrown by another skilled potter, running my fingers around its walls, and mentally reliving what it feels like to create beauty and utility from a lump of common clay.
Maybe one reason I never felt the need to continue potting is having found another way of being creative. On a major level teaching history (his story) is practicing the art of storytelling. And even with non-fiction there are those who can, and those who can’t, tell the story in a way that holds an audience.
My interest in writing is just another extension of the need to create. Writing is certainly an art form and while I may never write the great American novel I do enjoy sitting at my laptop most days and putting my spin of something that caught my eye or imagination.
I think doing something creative is a major factor in having a positive attitude about one’s self. I can still look at a simple slab box I made in my first ceramic class and feel a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. It wasn’t the perfect pot but it came from my imagination and my hands. This may not be the perfect story and it may not appeal to everyone. But, it came from my brain through the tips of my fingers. It is mine and when I click the “publish” button it becomes, good or not, my little gift to the world.
It’s hard to turn on the TV today and not hear something said about rising rates of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It is often said that one way of decreasing the odds of dementia is to keep the brain active and involved; use it or lose it. Well, that’s just what any form of art will do. Art can be very physical but in all its forms it is also a mental process. The brain must be involved in any artistic creation. With that in mind read the following and give serious consideration to bringing art into your life.