Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Why Am I An Artist?

Why am I an artist?  Someone asked me that recently and I replied with my usual, "Because it brings me joy!"  Then another wise person asked, "But what does that mean?"  And, that sent me onto a new trail that looked something like this:

Why am I an artist?
Because ...
  • It's fun.
  • It makes my spirit sing.
  • I love seeing colors and shapes come together in new ways.
  • It surprises me when new things show up.
  • It takes my breath away when beauty shows up.
  • It proves that I was wrong when I thought I could not do art or be an artist.
  • It shows me that there is a river of creativity waiting for each of us to step into it in our own way.
  • It reveals pieces of myself that I didn't know existed.
  • I often don't know where things come from or how they got into my camera and computer.
  • It feels like a sacred gift from the Creative Force.
  • It makes me feel part of the Whole, connected by strands of beauty through the act of making art.
  • It is my prayer for the world, my small way of sharing the joy and beauty that has been given to me.
It is my prayer for the world.  The person who originally asked the question said we'd get a jolt when we hit the core reason of why we're an artist.  This is where I got my jolt.

I encourage all of you to do this exercise ... you can substitute whatever word is appropriate to you for the word "artist" ...  writer, mother, teacher, doctor, politician, singer, butcher, baker, doer of whatever you love.

Eden Maxwell, author of An Artist Empowered: Define and Establish Your Value as an Artist-Now, initially asked the question that launched this train of thought as part of the SmARTist Telesummit.  Ariane Goodwin, founder, organizer and host of this incredible gathering of artists and art marketers, pushed my thinking even further.


  1. Love this post!!! Especially the creative force idea.
    If I don't create it isn't good! I think being an artist is such a gift. :)

  2. I really like this post Joyce. I love the parts about finding things in yourself that you didn't know were there, and the surprises that tend to turn up, and that it's a prayer for the world. Those three for me are key. Thank you for making think about this question. Now my answer will be more thought out and graceful after reading this if I am ever asked that question. Before, I would have just answered "well it sure ain't for the money". LOL. But no really, thank you.

  3. "It is my prayer for the world" -- wish I'd said that!!!! :)

    Love it.