Practice makes me better at what I do. Not perfect; not even superb. But better.
What it utterly fails to do is to make me a better person. Not meaning morally superior or that I believe it should make me a genius or give me magical powers. Not that any of that wouldn’t be dandy! But really.
Thing is, new knowledge or skills gained through practice are not in and of themselves transformative. I still have the same silly obsessions, ideas and ideals, and flaws and fears. I’m still attracted to the same colors, patterns, textures, and shapes, not to mention that I have recognizable signature styles of line work and abstraction and the like. So I learn how to use new tools and materials, like my little iPad and its friends the art apps. And I still kind of draw the same thing over and over. Variations on a theme. That sort of thing.
And strangely enough, I don’t mind. It remains true, along with all of my other perpetual characteristics, that the end product of my art work is less important than the process. That’s the essential part. Does it make me boring and predictable? Very possibly. Does it mean I’m unteachable and irredeemable? Hope not. Does it matter in the grand scheme of existence? Not likely. The universe has more important things to do.
I do not.
I find it in a way comforting that we do things as variations on a theme. It gives us a kind of frame within which to play. I think my mind would suffer from constant overload without such a frame… I love your image, and most of all your reminder about the grand scheme of existence. That too is comforting, the scale, us as part of something huge. This post was the perfect thing to go with my morning coffee, thanks Kathryn!
What a lovely thing to say! Yes, I do agree that it’s both practical and comforting to have a sort of infrastructure to what we do. As creative people all know, it’s only too easy to wander forever down whatever side-paths catch our attention and never quite seem to ‘get there’!
Hope you’re having a beautiful, inspired summer.
So inspiring! I am learning a lot from you. Best wishes.
Very kind of you indeed, Peter! Thank you.
I love this post; it makes me feel more ‘at home’ with my own poetry ‘voice’ which sometimes gets on my own nerves!! But it’s the only voice I have! 😄 xx Love your posts Kathry; they’re always so thought provoking 😊 xx 💐
Don’t you feel, even when ‘reading’ your poetry internally, sort of like you did the first times you heard your own speaking voice recorded? It sounds alien to me still, in some ways, but [both versions] are as much a part of me as anything physical, so I have gradually become less judgmental of my voice/s and try to stick more to whether they’re *saying* anything of value. That can be tough enough! 😉 All the same, speaking in either sense is worth the struggle, when it allows us to connect with others and recognize our common fears and joys. You remind me of that every time you write!! 🙂
Yes! To everything you say. And thank you for your kind words about my writing ❤️
I just “calls ’em as I sees ’em.” 🙂
I think practice does make you a better person, using those materials and making variations those images is what you are meant to do.
And I suppose that my work is therapeutic as much as it is communicative, so if I repeat myself when I’m talking to myself it’s not necessarily problematic. 😉
I love the colors and the nouveau-ish look of that design, Kathryn (and, of course, the message too:0)).
So sweet of you, my dear Hermit! You spotted my Nouveau leanings, of course, which shouldn’t surprise me when you chose that wonderful curlicued tree for your avatar! 😉 Hope you’re having a lovely summer, Beth.