Friday, July 25, 2008

Red Shoes

This article caught my eye...mainly because I am a lover of red shoes....I think lots of us closet crafters can take something from it....

Who Says You Can't Wear Red Shoes?
By Carolina Fernandez (link here)

Who says you can't wear red shoes? Or chartreuse for that matter!

Have you bought into the notion that only a few select individuals in this world are creative? Or that the only people who can act artistically are artists? If you struggle with these beliefs, recognize that you are not alone. These concepts are broadly, albeit mistakenly, held by the majority of the world’s population. Even pop culture confirms this sentiment, as evidenced, for example, in the wonderful scene in Father of the Bride 2 when George Banks, played by Steve Martin, having just been told that he is about to become a father again in midlife, yells at his OB/GYN that men his age don’t become fathers! When the doctor informs him that Picasso fathered a child in his seventies, Banks screams: “But he’s an artist! Artists can do whatever they want to do!”

Chances are, you have grown up with the notion that intelligence—and creativity—are measured by a standardized test, like the traditional IQ test developed by Alfred Binet. When Binet came up with his test, he was actually trying to categorize schoolchildren’s potential for learning. This test was his attempt to objectively measure comprehension, reasoning and judgment. Modern day research, however, paints quite a different story of the validity of the measurement of IQ and of creativity. We now know, for example, that each of us possess at least seven measurable intelligences, ranging from mathematical to linguistic to musical to interpersonal, to name a few. Additionally, neuroscientists have found that intelligence is not only located in the brain but in cells that are distributed throughout the body.

So not only are the notions of intelligence and creativity out of whack, but our comprehension of our potential falls short of the mark as well. In short, our capacity for creativity—our brainpower—is much greater than we could ever imagine! You could learn seven facts per second, every second, for the rest of your life and still have plenty of room left over to learn even more. Pyotr Anokhin of Moscow University compared the brain to a multidimensional musical instrument that could play an infinite number of musical pieces simultaneously. In short, each of us is gifted with a birthright of virtually unlimited potential!

So just how do we tap into our unlimited creative power? And more significantly, how do we unleash our power of creativity out into the world so that others may benefit?

First of all, it is imperative that you figure out what in the world you were created for! You must determine your life purpose! Each of us was created with a combination of gifts uniquely packaged into a particular being and given as our birthright. Of the six billion people currently living in the world and the more than ninety billion people who have ever lived, that has never been, nor will there ever be, anyone quite like you. Your creative gifts, your talents, your personality, your mannerisms, your dreams…are unprecedented! No one else in the world can bring your ideas to life in the way that you can. So you must understand, first and foremost, the wonderful idea that God had when He created you, and that for which you were created. Do you have a feeling of destiny, of your uniqueness, of your purpose in life? This is the jumping off point, for if this is still unrealized, you will no doubt flounder with your creative gifts until you discover that uniquely designed purpose God had in mind when He created you.

If you are still floundering, expose yourself to lots of different activities and see what clicks. Dabble in something and see if there appears to be any natural talent. I have always loved the feeling of paint on my fingertips, and of dabbling with brushes and paints on everything from paper to canvas to fabric to wood. But it was not until six months ago that I had the opportunity to take a formal oil painting class to see if I could learn proper technique and develop the eye of a painter. Imagine my excitement to discover that I can indeed paint! I am able to take a blank canvas, mix oils onto a palette, pick up a brush and produce something that actually resembles art! Granted, heavy doses of individual instruction have been critical in getting my work to this level. But I have discovered an area where my natural inclination has met both a natural curiosity and a natural passion such that fruitful progress is being made.

Expose yourself to beautiful music. The genius of the masters will open your mind to increased receptivity for creativity. The research on the Mozart Effect is widely recognized as valid: you increase both intellectual and creative powers when you listen to classical music, particularly that of Mozart and Bach. Their music was composed with particular attention to harmony and melody such that the brain waves of the listener are beneficially affected and creativity flourishes! Expose yourself to great visual art. Visit museums. Develop an eye for aesthetics. You must develop respect for proper proportion, for symmetry, for balance, and for good line to understand good art. It is only by frequent exposure to the best the world has to offer that this can be assured.

Expose yourself to the performing arts. Delight in the creativity of opera and ballet, of great theater and of movies. Allow your imagination to stretch beyond its usual horizon.
Expose yourself to the world through travel. Taking a break from your typical daily scenery will free up your mind to enjoy different cultures, different accents and languages, different foods, different air, different smells, and different sights.

Study inspirational individuals. You want to be a better golfer? Study Tiger Woods. A better leader? Study Winston Churchhill. More creative? Study Leonardo daVinci.
Encourage productivity. One characteristic of creative people is that they produce. Geniuses never seem to run out of brilliant ideas. Bach wrote a cantata every week, even when he didn’t feel like it.

Think like a child. Get in touch with the child inside you. Look at issues in life and ask: “How would I look at this situation if I was six years old?”

Explore your dreams. Imagine. Daydream. Napoleon said that imagination rules the world. Imagine a world in which your creative talents took hold.

Seek out eccentric people. One of my friends is amongst the most eccentric people I know. She wore a mini-mini-skirt with “Pippi Longstockings” to my elegant birthday party, shocking my staid middle-aged friends who all traded their mini-skirts for mini-vans years ago. She gave me nail polish that changes color in the sunshine for my birthday gift, something most of us would have deemed more appropriate for our seven year-old daughters. She possesses a unique creative flair, without a thought for the comments of others. Her whole persona laughs.

Give yourself the freedom to act creatively. Let yourself act like an artist, whatever that means to you. If it means dressing in funk rather than Brook Brothers, so be it. If it means wearing sterling jewelry loaded with beads rather than 14k gold, go ahead. And yes, buy yourself a pair of red shoes. Or even chartreuse. And wear them. You will feel more creative instantly. Trust me.


eva birdthistle said...

Oh I love it!!!! I'm wearing red shoes, hee hee!

Neasa said...

Interesting post. I love red shoes and even bought DD a pair too. With glitter on!!!