One man's exploration in finding himself and his search for light, beauty, desire and art.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
My ongoing question has been: “Are we born to be artists or is it something we learn?” If anyone has any thoughts they would like to share, please comment. I know I was not really born as an artist and growing up in a family of engineers, there wasn’t much creativity. Then, growing up on a cattle ranch in western Montana there wasn’t much exposure to art. I know as a kid I liked to color with crayons and was very good at staying within the lines. I think somehow I have always been drawn to color. I was always prone to approach things from a different perspective and tended to do things outside the norm. In retrospect many of those approaches would be considered gay. So do gay and being an artist go hand in hand? Am I gay because of my creative difference? Perhaps a touch of artistic freedom tends to accentuate both personality traits. I certainly know a lot of wonderful artists who are straight. Growing up I didn’t know what gay was and I didn’t know what art was and yet somehow have been affected by both. So does this mean I am genetically predisposed, contributing to both traits? I do not recall hearing about any other gay or an artist for that matter in my family lineage. But of course growing up in the west, both of those ideas may have been taboo unless you were Charlie Russell of course. Yet, both traits tended to be outside of the norm of my functioning world. I guess what it comes down to is that, I have always lived a creative life. I am beginning to think creation isn’t only about art, but an attitude by which we choose to live. It completely surrounds us. For instance to garden, you are affecting the way plants grow, look and take shape on the Earth. Though some people may only plant in rows there is beauty in that creation. The way we dress, makes a statement about who we are, it’s still a creative choice. The car we drive adds to that image. Home furnishings, we can’t live without, more essential choices, more expressions of creativity. So in a sense we are all imbued with an artistic license or at least the possibility to make choices, whether we use it or not is another matter. Personally I think there is something creative in everyone, though I think most choose to ignore it. Growing up there always seemed to be a fear and phobia about being an artist. The myths being; that we would be poor, or socially unacceptable, possibly different, perhaps with a fear of being labeled gay. I certainly know that it was frowned upon in my family and growing up it seemed such a struggle. Things have certainly changed, because now I have become all those things and I think my family adores me because of my difference. It has been a long journey to understand this. Perhaps they always saw it and it was more of an internal struggle to accept it within myself. I guess I have always felt the creative impulse. For the most part I have become what I am by learning and studying the process of others, by being inspired by things beyond myself, but mostly by being fearless to reach for things that I didn’t understand.