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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A story of insomnia , intuition & creativity

“I believe in intuition and inspiration... At times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason” (Albert Einstein)
Hello everyone. This post is going to be a bit different because I really want to figure out a way to word my reasoning behind my art that actually does justice to my “whys”. I have several posts in the past where I am trying to explain this feeling, but those do not even get you close to understanding.  Last night I couldn’t sleep…again. Had it been a weekend, I would have gotten up to paint. I kind of wish I did because having a creative mind and all those hours to do nothing but think can be a confusing place.  I find myself thinking of the perfect way to describe how I feel when I am listening to music and feel the need to create.  I can’t really tell you why, I just KNOW it in my bones…. I came to the conclusion last night that it all comes down to Intuition. The whole concept of intuition fascinates me and I think that now since I am somewhat acting on my intuition… I am viewing it a bit differently.
Nights like this I lay there questioning why I am doing this? How do you know the difference between intuition or if you are just crazy? Then I go into self doubt. I have starting following some amazing artists on Instagram who are so good that it makes me second guess my own talents- but then I think that they are just drawing portraits of celebrities, etc… there is no heart involved…this makes me feel better about my own work...and the list goes on….
Are you confused and dizzy yet? Welcome to my world. I also lay there and think, is lee’s brain this jumbled when he is up and writing songs? Is that what was going on in that beautiful mind when he wrote “Don’t be afraid”, Because acting on your intuition and what you feel in your heart can be scary! You have to trust that voice inside you and not think about if there are people out there that will actually “get it”…..
All this thinking led me to checking out all the quotes on Pinterest also, which gave me the idea for this post. I found so many quotes that spoke to me and I thought they’d help me explain my reasoning to you. Are you ready?
The textbook definition of Intuition is the ability to acquire knowledge without inference and/or the use of reason the word intuition comes from Latin verb intueri which is usually translated as to look inside or to contemplate. Intuition is thus often conceived as a kind of inner perception, sometimes regarded as real lucidity or understanding.
Intuition provides us with views, understandings, judgments, or beliefs that we cannot in every case empirically verify or rationally justify
Intuition comes in several forms: 
- a sudden flash of insight, visual or auditory
- a predictive dream
- a spinal shiver of recognition as something is occurring or told to you
- a sense of knowing something already
- a sense of déjà vu 
- a snapshot image of a future scene or event
- knowledge, perspective or understanding divined from tools which respond to the subconscious mind
When it comes down to how I get my ideas for my paintings, I rely heavily on all of those listed above.  Every. Single. Last. One. This is how I just KNOW……. Isn’t that fascinating? I think so…. Especially with my last painting which wasn’t even based on a song?  Again, I laid there just over thinking and something just told me to get up and sketch….didn’t know why, just felt I had to. Then I wake up to find out that Lee was up writing a song. Ha-ha, excuse my language for a sec, but that shit is just weird….
These are the kinds of things that bring me to get lost in all these art & intuition quotes… I get lost reading these, I feel like they just “get me”….
Here are some of my favorites and a little insight as to why they speak to me as an artist…..
  1. “A good artist lets his intuition lead him wherever it wants.” Lao Tzu
  2. “Good design begins with honesty, asks tough questions, and comes from collaboration and from trusting your intuition.”
    Freeman Thomas
  3. “The painting leads the painter, and it becomes an intuitive experience” Ardath Davis
I love those. But #2 I think fits the best. The fact that I am painting honestly from my heart and what I feel and it IS collaboration. Maybe not an intentional, as I am pretty sure Lee does not write songs with the thought of how I’d paint it… lol... but you get my point. On a side note, how amazing would that be though? Lol.
Anyway, back to the matter at hand. Then there are quotes like this that take my brain in a whole other direction: 
“Intuition is an essential part of the whole experience of living. Although it will not help predict the future or how people will behave, using intuition as a guide makes life more rewarding. It helps you follow what seems to be the right path, even when social convention or common sense appears to tell differently” 
― Sylvia Clare
I read this and then start thinking about conversations I have with people regarding my art and them trying to rationalize it. (trust me, I have tried to rationalize it.. you just can’t)
So, there are very few people in the world that I feel “get it” when I talk. Mare is one of them. I do not feel weird telling her some of my inner thoughts because you seems to know exactly what I mean (and I cherish this, it’s rare, and again I can thank Lee for allowing me to meet her) We have talked many times about intuition because I KNOW that is what drives my need to create, but I still just don’t understand it.  Her explanation makes so much sense to me:
“Intuition is basically your heart speaking. Sometimes, your heart just knows more than your head does.  The heart usually defies logic... what it feels can't be explained, it just IS. Logic comes from the brain.... it kind of plays devil's advocate to your heart. It questions, causes doubt, makes you over-think. But which one is honest? Which one should you believe and trust? Is common sense always right? Does there always have to be a reason? Sometimes it's easier to follow your brain... follow logic. Is that where the honesty is though? I think following your heart... following intuition... although it may sometimes be more difficult, is where truth lies. When you follow your heart and intuition, everything that comes from that, is strictly FROM the heart. The heart doesn't lie. When you don't follow intuition, and listen to logic... I think whatever comes from that is "less"... it's been smeared. – Mare”
Here  are some of the questions I am asked on a daily basis by people outside of the Twitter word and FamiLee, my answers and also quotes that I feel answer those for me:
* Q: Why are you here? Why don’t you have an art job?
A: I went to art school and hated people telling me how to do things and basically teaching me to use my unique talent to draw exactly what other people tell me to. That is soulless to me and not what I want. I’d be miserable and it would take the joy of creating for me.   - I know intuitively when the work is right, no training can teach you this, it is simply a matter of feeling. (Robert Ryan)
*Q: If you do not want to make money off of these Lee inspired paintings, why do it? A: I do not want to make money off of Lee’s success. I do not roll that way, I do it because I love it and that is that. It’s the only time, oddly enough, that I feel like myself…..
And last but not least, I have been told by more than a few fellow, accomplished artists that I am limiting myself as an artist by painting only Lee songs. My answer to that is:  But that is all I want to do and it makes me happy.
End of story.

1 comment:

  1. This post is spot on!

    I hope I “get it” even if it’s a speck compared to you guys. There’s different seasons and reasons for creating, and yes, it’s not about money or having an “art job” and if you feel fulfilled by what you’re doing, there’s no way you’re limiting yourself. Thumbs up.

    I follow a lot of amazing photographers on Instagram. Some are only pretty pictures, but the ones that grab me for more than a few seconds are those created with the photographer’s unique intuition. They tell a story.

    Quote 2 on intuition , very true—that goes for any creative act…sure fits for writing! Bad writing is bad often because it lacks all or one of these three. Good writing too requires honesty, trusting intuition AND collaboration…via critiques from other writers/editors but also collaboration with your characters. Sometimes I don’t know where a story will go, but something will ring right, so I’ll go with it.

    What Mare says is right. Psychology has done some fascinating studies on intuition and the brain. We have a conscious mind (logic) but also an ever-aware unconscious, “intuitive” mind that sees what logic doesn’t. That’s how partly blind people can correctly guess the right direction some sticks are pointing in, though they saw it in the blind part of their vision. Logic is important, but intuition is huge.
    See more: http://www.dana.org/news/cerebrum/detail.aspx?id=2766

    Intuition also is one of the key dimensions in the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a personality type teller based on the psychological types described by psychologist Carl Jung and later, Isabel Briggs Myers. (Some might be familiar with the MBTI, having taken the test at work, high school or college.)