Redefining Creativity – What it Means to create
What a Creative Path May Look Like
If you are new around here, I will quickly bring you up to speed. Over 15 years ago I started this blog. The main purpose was to provide a web space for my custom-painted furniture portfolio. I was running a busy one-woman business providing custom-painted furniture and just wanted an online space to showcase my work to potential clients. Let’s just say I didn’t look like this every day.
Fast forward a few years, I decided to rent myself a space at a consignment store to sell my furniture. To keep my profit margins higher, I started cruising Craigs List for Free Furniture (yes, this was pre-Facebook if you can believe it). When I exhausted this route, I started cruising Dumpsters for cast-off furniture. I soon found my love for all things Free and Dumped. I found I had an extreme love of rehabbing broken, tossed-out, left-for-dead pieces and parts of furniture and turning them into functional, beautiful pieces of furniture and decor. I love Junk! And I looked more like this. I started a series on my blog called Trashy Tuesday. Every Tuesday I posted what I had found for free that week (I still post this series occasionally, but as all paths we start do not end up where we originally planned, so many more doors have opened that previously did not even exist. I found I loved Dumpster Diving so much, I created a three part series of blog posts called The Complete Guide To Dumpster Diving, many thanks to the Nancherrow blog for suggesting it!!
Early on in my junking career, everything started coming together like magic. Chalk Type paints had been introduced to the U.S. at a professionally produced level. Through blogging I was introduced to Debi’s Design Diary and DIY Paint. At first, Debi and I were both working and writing/YouTubing for the same company. As time and companies and the Chalk Paint industry evolved, Debi started her own private label making 100% Natural Clay and Chalk Paint. An entire new world was born.
Because I have been in this industry for so long, I am blessed to witness some of the most ingenious and talented women and artists. I am blown away daily by people’s imaginations, the beautiful things they create, and the products they use to enhance our daily lives and beautify our surroundings. One of my favorite product lines is Iron Orchid Designs Furniture and Decor Enhancements. The beautiful products from Sally and Josi of IOD allow even a beginner (which I often still feel like) to create furniture, decor, gifts (think baby showers and cute onesies with stamps!), and artwork. The sky is the limit.
Shifting our Perception of Creativity
For years, my passion was Dumpster Diving, then repurposing things I found in the trash into valuable and beautiful items to sell. As with everything in life, my kids grew, my business grew in different directions, and I began to be limited in the time I had to flip furniture.
I had to place some of my passions on a back burner while I tended to other life responsibilities. Now at the Empty Nest stage of life, I am actively working to reclaim this time and passion for myself.
One of my favorite Trash Find Makeovers I did with DIY Paint and IOD Transfers
Who Gets to Define what is Creative work?
A perfect Yellow Rose from my Garden
Finding A Creative Community
Stepping away from a passion and stepping back into it with both feet can be intimidating. All the thoughts went through my head, “Am I too old for this now?” Aren’t there enough people doing this work already?” What do I possibly have to contribute that has not been done already?”
A collage I created recently in a Facebook Live
And the biggest one of all. “What if all of my creative ideas are just dried up?” These questions are what led me to think about the question of who gets to decide who is creative and who is not. Who gets to be the gatekeeper of creativity? The answer, my friend, is YOU. You, the creator, get to decide.
I believe we are all created in God’s image. My belief in a Divine God may differ significantly from yours, but we all are divine. And because we were all created from a Divine source that created the Universe, we, in turn, have creativity running through our blood.
I love this quote from Music Producer and Author Rick Rubin. “Creativity is not a rare ability. It is not difficult to access. Creativity is a fundamental aspect of being human. It’s our birthright. And it’s for all of us.”
One of the best ways to nurture your creativity is to join a community of like-minded people. Some of you beautiful readers have become dear friends. Some people I meet daily through my Facebook Page and Instagram Account. Others I have come to know through my YouTube Channel. I love my Facebook community; if you are not following me there, I hope you will; it’s a fun place where conversations often spark between creative friends in the thread of a fun post.
Some of my favorite people at The Turqouise Iris Journal Contributor’s retreat
My favorite creative community is the Creative Connection by Dionne Woods of the Turquoise Iris. I am blessed to be a regular contributor to The Turquoise Iris Journal. The women I know from this community have indeed become my family. A creative community, even online, is my favorite way to nurture and support your creativity. Whatever that looks like to you.
We so often beat ourselves up that we don’t “create” anything. We all create something every single day. We create our lives; we create the mood around us. We create joy for others if we choose to be kind. We create chaos if we spread our anger around. We create—you and me. We are creators. We need to redefine what it means to create.
What does creativity look like to you? How do you define it? What do you do in your life to nurture it? Leave a comment and share. I hope this post sparks some creativity in you. We are created to create, so let’s get creating!