The Importance of Play

As I typed the title of this post, I thought *hmm, have I used that before?* I looked it up, way back in 2009, I made a post titled “The Importance of Play and Accident”. In the process of looking it up I learned two things. One I have never used the tag play, and two I use the word play a lot. In the creativity course I am taking one of the lessons starts with the following:

“Play has a way of dimming the critical mind so we can try new things without judging ourselves.”

This spoke to me and really defined why play is important. Growth comes in those time we reach outside of ourself to try something new. I find the converse true, dimming the critical mind can make most things play and provide that space where true creativity and growth.   Think about setting aside all those thoughts of judgement and just play, you will be amazed at what you can do.

watercolor

Pooh Sticks, A water color by Rennata Tropeano. 8-4-2017  Watercolor on acid free Strathmore cold press 140 lb. Part of the daily themes for #worldwatercolorgroup

When is it done?

“Art is never finished, only abandoned.”
― Leonardo da Vinci

One of the downsides to creating a lot of artwork in a short period of time is the question of when is it done.  Once it is off the board it usually a start. The next question is sorting out those pieces I am going to offer for sale. Some paintings I look at and know that as they are, I am not going to offer them for sale. Some go in the pile to be prepared for sale, and some become something else. For those that I look at on the second view and decide not for sale, not for a card or gift, t becomes a question of what to do with them. Is it a matter of needing more work or should I paste them into my how I have grown book.  do they need more. The prepare for sale pile…. That is my big to do, so very many parts to that. Mounting and or framing. Photographing, Adding to the product data base. Add to website and/or list.  The painting and creating is the more fun part of it. When do you consider your artwork done?

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Reflections on the Journey.

When thinking about getting somewhere, it has always been about setting goals and getting there. But how do I define there? Where is there?  My journey has not been a smooth one, and I am still far from where I want to be.  I hit a patch of serious depression, where even getting up in the morning was hard. During that time I lost control of the web domains I had been building a brand upon. RennataTropeano and GrowingUnique. Today as I look at this, I could buy growingunique back for only $3695, which is not happening. RennataTropeano seems to have been take over by some alt Rennata, it looks like a personal blog, but with posts by the user gotham. But not me.

So, I loop back and gather myself again and start anew. Creative. No question there, being creative is the thing that keeps the depression at bay. Unique. I have always embraced that term.  Different is not okay in our modern society. Conformity is the norm.  Unique, however has enough style to be okay, so I have always sought to be unique. What is the direction that my creativity and artwork is taking?   A bit of magic and mystical, wandering to faery.  This led me to updating my mission statement. “Growing Unique is about my quest for a life that is unique, creative and magical. I enjoy helping people move from dreaming their life, to living their dream.”

I have become very interested in the links between creativity and mental health. I have not quite yet figured out how to fit that into my mission statement, but when I do, it will be there.

Furry Friends, a work in progress

When searching through my collection of images for the theme of Furry Friend this little black squirrel. I am enjoying this challenge of doing 30 watercolors in July for #WorldWatercolorMonth hosted by Doodlewash.comWIP Furry Friends, I have found that daily creativity is one of the best habits I can have. I start by blocking out 25 minutes for painting in the morning as a starting point. Many times it goes longer than that because it is going well and I am enjoying it. But, I seem to be more productive in other areas when after I have started with creating.  I am also taking a course on creativity from Coursera. One of the things that jumped out at me is a quote.

“To live is to have problems and to solve problems is to grow creatively” J.P. Guilford

I think process of working creatively also does the converse, it frees that part of your mind that solves problems, so you get more done as you spend less time looking for answers to the small things.