Wednesday, May 09, 2007

A Creative Journey

Today I spent the morning in my son Ryllan's grade 4 class— starting an altered book project with them. We were so impressed with how well the kids were able to sand the board book pages and paint them with gesso that his teacher and I quickly decided that perhaps we could do more than one altered book at a time. So of course, I then came home and began playing with ideas and soon the "board altered book project" became a "wall hanging project" like the one here. (I used a favorite quote from Rumi as the theme and experimented with how to use the board book pages differently than in a rebound book.) So now we will alter a hard cover children's book for our "book" project.

This really made me aware of the process of creativity and how sometimes (or perhaps always) we need to allow ourselves to be open to what might happen and trust that where we end up will probably be a good place. (Sometimes not, but then you find out what doesn't work). Its just like going on a journey and not taking a map with you. My brother and I used to do that sometimes- head off somewhere without a map and laugh "Hey, thats what road signs are for!" Watching for the signs can sometimes be challenging, especially in the creative process but it does keep you in touch with the moment. Often when you have a set of instructions or a map, the focus is on arriving at the end, getting it "finished" or getting "there" — not the creative journey itself.

I really have to applaud my son's teacher for being such a fantastic supporter in this as she allows me the freedom to not really know where we are actually headed with our projects, she says she justs trusts me. That's such a great feeling.

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