Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fascination - Something You Can't Teach

Last night I was at the Main Street Gallery helping with the Art-cessories reception. It was a very nice reception with fantastic exhibits, home made refreshments and an opportunity to meet the artists who exhibit their work this month. Among the offerings are imported textiles and clothing, fancy feathered accessories, pottery and jewelry. The show will continue until the end of the year during gallery hours.

One gentleman, upon buying a copy of my novel Ancient Memories, asked me how I set about writing a book, and I am here to say, I really don't know. Basically, I sit down and take dictation, but that is only part of the process.

The first thing that happens is that I am fascinated by a word, a sentence or maybe an idea. That trigger, for better words, percolates in my subconscious for days or months until the story is ready.

That done, I have to submit to and trust the process that results in a story - whether as a poem, a song or an entire book. It doesn't work if I try to force the product. I have to be willing to let the story come to and through me and to believe the story has a reason to exist.

Coming home after the reception, I was talking with a photographer friend who said she cannot possibly teach anyone how to become a photographer. The want-to is present but the skill develops as it will - but (as with me) she can't share the process, because it just happens!

It occurs to me that true art is an expression of spirit that comes to us without warning, and that we have to allow the book, the photo, the painting to come through us in order for it to be shared.

I have an idea the work is the gift and that we are blessed by the ability to put our books, images and other art out there in the world because those things are a measure of our trust in life and our place in the world. The products of our various arts show how we grow - and isn't it a miracle?

I would love to know what you think about being an artist... so drop me a line and keep on the sunny side! Love, Terry

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