We certainly are the sum of all our experiences; the people we meet, the things we read, the images we see accumulated over a lifetime of observing the world around us. But shaken together and poured out on the page, the images we paint, sing, write and dance will be as unique as God’s amazingly, diverse creation itself.
There will always be trends that are current, the zeitgeist that presses in on our individuality and subconsciously wills us to conform. Hegel, the German philosopher closely associated with this phenomenon, believed that ‘art reflected, by its very nature, the culture of the time in which it was created.’This is inevitable. Not something to be feared, rather celebrated as we enjoy community and the times in which we live.
It is good to be influenced by one another. Monet, Renoir, Sisley and Bazille met together in the sun soaked countryside to be inspired by light and nature in its purest form. They sat in cafes discussing, debating, spurring one another on - listening to artist elders like the brilliant Manet. But as they retired to their studios, they each still had his own unique painting style which is enjoyed the world over.
I notice in my own creative journey of the last 20 years, trends that have influenced me and altered the course of my creative expression. This is being human. It is impossible not to be moved visually by those around us. In these days of Pinterest, I am discovering an inpouring of images, everyday, that delight me and thrill me. They are helping to define what is unique about my own outpourings and develop it further. I often marvel at how awesome these images are - intimidated by their brilliance sometimes. But the moment soon arrives when I need to close the laptop lid and press on with my own mark making.
In that moment I have to trust that what I produce has intrinsic value simply because it is made by me and no-one else.The Message says’in Psalm 139, ‘you know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculptured from nothing into something.’I have a heavenly father who delights in my mark making. He loves it uniqueness. From first scribbles to finished piece. Remember how thrilled we are at every mark enthusiastically made by our children and how especially delighted we are when we discover they made it for us!
Pour it out on the page and celebrate it. Experiment. Make a mess! Try things you have never tried before. Then press into it, add skill, integrity and diligence to each word, note, brush stroke and dance move.
Make your mark. Make it your own. Make it for Daddy God! He loves it!!
Read more from Susie Poole on her website.
July 1st, 2015 - Posted & Written by Susie Poole