'The Tanglewood' by Amber Caspian

'The Tanglewood' by Amber Caspian

Friday 15 July 2011

Creativity Unblocked

The main reason for starting a blog was to find a way to pull together all the elements that make up me and get through a creative block.  I have long had a difficult relationship with my creative self.  For some reason I have trouble even getting into the canoe let alone riding it along upon the river of creative flow.  With writing it is different; I have never experienced a serious ‘wounding’ by anyone, not at school or from any other source.  I’ve always felt free to simply write whatever comes into my head, and this has been enhanced by my job in a publishing house writing copy and checking artwork, and during both my Art degree and counselling diploma.  It feels peaceful and relaxing, soul expanding and exciting, I love it!

However with painting it all feels so different.  I am tense and nervous, find it hard to settle and not judge myself.  So why do it?  Again because I love it!  I love the fact that I can do it; put what is in my mind down onto canvas and paper.  Love the fact that occasionally I will do something I’m really happy with.  I do enjoy it but at the moment I feel as though I am the hunter stalking my prey.  Creativity is hiding in the hedgerow, running off at a pace, skulking in corners trying not to be noticed.  We observe one another from the corner of our eye, trying not to engage but all the while yearning for that moment when we can meet and spend time in each other’s company.

I mentioned ‘woundings’ and yes this has happened to me.  Perhaps due to being a sensitive child I took them badly and now they have formed scar tissue, so the creative muscles won’t stretch and flex as they normally would.  I think I have forgotten them and then I hear that teacher’s voice or get a flash of memory from some other incident and am crushed again.  I look with envy at other artists who seem so prolific and long to have that ease and flow, but I have had that experience too!   Usually when I haven’t been working I find I pick up paper and paint without thinking, turn to material and thread in a heartbeat, doodle and design without anxiety.  Perhaps there is a clue in that...

So to honour the fact that I have begun this blog to bring together all my creative sides, here is an image of one of my paintings to get things going.
'Spinning the Dream' (c) Amber Caspian

This painting has had several titles over the years but I have recently settled on ‘Spinning the Dream’.  An oil painting based on a dream I had of being in a dark place suddenly illuminated by a spider hanging on a thread in front of me.  The spider transformed into a silver perfume bottle and emanated an unusual perfume, which I could actually smell in the dream.  As I painted it I felt in touch with an empowered magical part of myself, hence I am wearing rich robes and my hands are held up in a gesture of 'creating'.  It took about three years to paint because I was training to be a counseller as well as working and didn’t have much spare time, however it progressed with me and I feel reflects the growth and emerging spirit within me.  It also was the first painting I had finished in a long time that I felt brought together many of my influences and inspirations into a cohesive image.  I am still very pleased with it now.

1 comment:

  1. Even seen smaller on your blog and not in person; this painting exudes such power and intensity. And of course beauty.