Art and Magic

It seems that the universe is working some kind of magic for me at the moment! So many things are coming into my awareness that are teaching me some very strong lessons about my art and the way I think about it. Not the least of which was a great discussion at the moot last night on Symbolism.
For so many years I have not valued my attempts to express myself and seen nothing but imperfection in the things I produced, always comparing myself to others and never matching up in my eyes. But with a fairly new perspective, I think that was because I was always trying to control the piece and never let it speak for itself.

Art, to me, is communication of ideas and feelings, so the fundamental drive of an artist from my point of view, is to convey that feeling or inspiration that often hits you from both inside and out. It hits your head, your heart and your gut all at once and you feel compelled to share that passion with anyone who will listen, you want them to feel the same fire in their heads. But every time you put pen/pencil to paper or model a lump of clay the language used can often feel limited, not up to the task of conveying all that verve and gusto. To me in the past it seemed in order to reach out and communicate the things that had moved me so strongly, I had to find a symbolic language that anyone could access.

The problem with that kind of thinking is that everyone has their own internal symbolic language built from their own natures and their cultural nurturing. So I spent my time thinking and thinking and thinking and rarely doing anything for fear that I would not be able to speak clearly enough or in a language that people would want to hear!

Blimey! I tell you that is not a fun place to be and all self inflicted! If I want to I can blame my insecurities on my unsupportive parent, who never even passed a comment on anything I did except possibly to point out a number of flaws, but I think that is too easy a get out. I have been a grown up for quite a long time now and had three great kids of my own, all of which have grown up as very creative individuals and I managed to encourage them, why couldn’t I do the same for myself?

I think that I have finally found my own plain and simple truth, my journey has been to find the courage to not control the reaction from others by trying to second guess what anyone might want to hear and manipulate the image to that end, but to put stuff from my heart out there and hope that something I produce may speak personally to another individual. In truth my ego hopes others will see the depth of feeling I have for my spirituality, the natural world and mythical realms through the mediums I choose.

For me the Magic of Art is in the doing of it. In the process of exploration and experimentation you learn your own inner language and the more you use it the greater your vocabulary becomes and so the more confident you are to speak it out loud.

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  1. natzgal January 16, 2008 at 2:22 am - Reply

    Hi! I’m not sure how I found you, but your blog is beautiful, your writing so eloquent. And I love this particular post. Create for the pure joy of creation, create from your heart, from your soul. And the rest is sure to follow 🙂 And if not, well, it does not matter. Because you have made your soul happy. Namaste.

  2. […] January 15, 2008 by natzgal Sometimes I impress myself 🙂  and come up with eloquent pearls of wisdom.  And then I look at what I have written and wonder where the heck it came from.  One such example is from a comment I left on this post. […]

  3. cerrilee January 16, 2008 at 10:33 pm - Reply

    Hello Natzgal thank you it is great to share thoughts with people across the ether 🙂

  4. magpieschest January 18, 2008 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    Art as a communication tool is an interesting one. What the artist says in their piece isn’t necessarily what their audience reads – and is that wrong? Obviously from a commercial viewpoint it can be a problem, but from the artistic point it’s not so clear.

    I think the thought that you create for yourself and invite others to enjoy also is a nice way of working – rather than trying to think what others actually want to enjoy – is probably the best way forward; it certainly is less stressful!

  5. cerrilee January 18, 2008 at 6:22 pm - Reply

    hello Magpieschest,
    Art in all its forms is and always has been about communication if not about that then what else?! Before written words became a artform there were stories in pictures, dance and song all communicating the human experience transcending the boundaries of verbal language.
    I think the whole point I was making to myself when I wrote that blog was that, even though I may have something I feel I want to communicate, in the end not everyone will get what I am wanting to say.
    There is of course nothing wrong with that, but sometimes when you have an overwhelming wish to say something and you have put your heart and soul into it, it can be a bit deflating to the ego when it is not clear for others. But, and this was my own hard won realisation, it may connect with people on many other levels that I could never have seen and that is wonderful.
    Not everyone is blessed with confidence in themselves at the beginning of their artistic expression, maybe I am hoping that how I felt on my journey may connect with others who feel or felt the same way.
    It is good sometimes to feel a kindred with others who may have had a similar journey and resolved similar or maybe even different feelings.

  6. executivepagan January 22, 2008 at 3:16 pm - Reply

    Welcome to the world of blogging! I’ve been a fan of Damh’s music and your covers for several years; and it looks like you’re off to a good beginning with the blog as well.

    It’s so true, what you say about the difficulty in fully putting our vision into the art; all we can do is try our utmost, then release the art and let it fly. Whether others see what we intended, I think we have to trust that they will see what *they* need to see, as the Awen flows through them (and yes, I do believe that Awen plays a part in artistic understanding as well as creation – though this may be a bit idiosyncratic on my part?).

    Deep peace,

  7. cerrilee January 23, 2008 at 2:54 pm - Reply

    Hi Erik

    thank you for reading the blog stuff and the lovely feedback. I think you are absolutley right about the Awen, and I think for me the real problem is more about learning to trust myself to let go of my fears so the Awen can flow where ever it needs to 🙂

    bright blessings
    Cerri 🙂

  8. dovelove February 20, 2008 at 8:29 pm - Reply

    Awesome blog… Art and Magic, two of my favorite things 🙂 Hmmm, it never occurs to me so much (not consciously anyway) to care what other’s think of the result of my artful play. It seems to me if I do what I wanna, playing with the lines and colors (or words and ideas), the result will usually be something I love. And so often I find that there are others who love what I love 🙂

    But when I don’t love the result, yeah, it’s easy to see that I stifled my joy in favor of too much making it into something others might “understand.” Aka, too much control/fear.

    Also, it comes to me that everything and everyone around us is a mirror. If those around us aren’t understanding it, then maybe we aren’t truly understanding something about it… I don’t conjure up anything in the process, I just let it all come to/through me. The symbolism is always there, the Universe knows what it’s doing, heh 😉

    Self-Trust + Joy + Play + Fearlessness (Light-Heartedness) + Just a Dab of Control = Magic 🙂

    Yep, it’s all about trusting yourself and letting go of the fear. Of course, you knew that all along 😉


  9. cerrilee February 26, 2008 at 6:29 pm - Reply

    Hello Dove

    Thank you for the comments you made, I think that the feed back I am getting on this blog along with other messages in my life at the moment, are all so positive that they are giving me a much needed boost in confidence in the way I work with the Awen 🙂

    It is wonderful to connect with such creative and vibrant people!

    Cerri 🙂

  10. natnemeton March 30, 2008 at 9:38 pm - Reply

    Wow! I hear you, sister! I am exactly the same with my writing yet manage to, in the most part, have that confidence in the rest of my life! Anyway, for what its worth I think your work is fab, and you are fab. The artwork on Damh’s new album is stunning and your best yet, and I was gobsmacked by the beauty and resonance of your voice on the last Druidcast. Big love, Nat /|
    PS New to this blogging business, but totally addicted – I got a link to Philip’s blog from the camps group site and now I am away!

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