Between puffs on his cigarette, years ago I heard Kurt Vonnegut say,
Everyone should practice art, for art enlarges the soul.
I am not completely sure about that, but I know that as a creative person, if I am not creating something, I do not feel fully alive.
Genesis it says earthlings are made in God’s image. If so, than we are all creators. I don’t know about you, but even rearranging furniture fills me with a pleasant inward glow.
My own creativity may come out in cooking, writing, or gardening. Most often it comes out in the creation of characters and stories and in production of audio. Most recently I turned my creativity towards silly TikToks videos which serve as my travel journal for my time in South Africa.
Arthur C Brookes in an Atlantic article, Art Should be a Habit, Not a Luxury, writes,
Engaging with art after worrying over the minutiae of your routine is like looking at the horizon after you’ve spent too long staring intently at a particular object: Your perception of the outside world expands. This refocusing enables what the Stanford neuroscientist Andrew Huberman calls panoramic vision, widening our perspective of true reality by allowing us to see more. In addition to increasing awareness of the broader world, Huberman shows that narrow vision heightens our fear response, but widening our perspective lowers stress.
Art can be a solitary pleasure or escape, but for me it often engages me with others. In fact, as someone who struggles at times with social anxiety, art creates a bridge to help me connect more deeply with others. Whether it is through one of my stage shows, a meal I prepared, or TikTok videos, each of these creative outlets require others for the art to be fully realized.
What about you? In what ways does art and creativity appear in your life? What role does it play?