What is a Barrier?

Perspective Drawing with Ruler

We all suffer from a barrier or two as we struggle to find balance in our art and every day lives.  Trying to run away from them is futile, if we do, they stay with us.

Barriers could be fear, hesitancy, anger, prejudice or something of your very own.

The following barriers are sometimes common to artists:

Holding on to an idea, such as being original.  The idea of your work being original can become your own hell.  When the goal of originality becomes your focus, your idea is no longer original.  The artist is merely trying to be different. Originality actually means “coming from the source” and is enabled by craftsmanship, skill and diligent practice, not by trying to stand out in the crowd. 

Being full of ourselves. To be full of yourself creates a boundary completely governed by our feelings and ideas.  When we are full of ourselves, our best art cannot flow, the muse has no space to enter.  Your boundary crowds out her space.

Being attached to our creations. Let your work go with a bow.  This way you release your artwork in recognition of the knowledge and skill you have learned in the process of creation.

If we are over invested in our work, our judgment goes out the window.  We see only perfection and evolution stops.

You are only a temporary custodian of your work,  do it for the world and are pleased to pass it on and evolve through the learning process even further.

Anger  Your work may be dynamic and exciting but in reality it could be filled with anger. The creative feedback group (see previous posts) will hastily enlighten you regarding this aspect.

It helps to paint anger deliberately, feel it and see it in your work in order to become empowered enough to let it go.

Painful experiences. This is a rich place to take a look at yourself and sometimes the only way to get through a barrier is to become the barrier itself. This may be the last thing you want to do.  Becoming cathartic by imagining you are the painful experience yourself then proceeding to work is a powerful way of moving through this barrier. Use of metaphor may also help you put your painful experiences down.

Working with barriers can’t be rushed, it only comes together through time and patience. The creative feedback group (see previous posts) can provide powerful insight into your progress through their assessment of your work.

Do you have any unusual barriers to your artwork and have you a knowledge of how to work with them?  Please comment if you do.

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