Consistency has been the cornerstone of my artistic growth and business, but it's important to note that my consistency doesn't fit the traditional mold. So, hear me out as I invite you to join me in challenging the notion that consistency solely equates to this unyielding notion of hustling daily to succeed.
While I periodically write for blogging, my creative process for children's stories unfolds in swift, concentrated bursts. Some days, I find myself staring down at my laptop, unable to summon the writing gods I desperately seek (whyyyy!). So instead, I slam my laptop shut and wonder if I could make a go of it as an interior designer after rearranging the living room furniture for the fourth time. Yet on other occasions, I sit down and pour out the entire story as Milly or some other character comes galloping to the forefront and the setting comes to life. It’s a mad dash to write it all down before they’re off again.
There are even weeks when my creative output dwindles, or my creation habits transform into something new entirely. For instance, this past year I put the pen down along with everything else to learn acrylic-style painting that’s completely different from what I was doing as an illustrator.
Nevertheless, I consider myself consistent.
When the work becomes forced, the essence of creativity diminishes. The process of crafting something new and innovative requires a generous amount of imagination to really bring something to life, and that is simply something that cannot be forced.
Consistency lies in the tether that connects my goals to my art business. The muse is never far away, and my artwork remains an ever-present companion. This, in essence, is my version of consistency. I persistently pursue my craft, even when the progress appears agonizingly slow – like soooo slow... UGH! It doesn't mean that I write every single day or refrain from taking extended breaks from creating. Instead, my consistency is defined by the ebb and flow of my creative energy. Sometimes I experience bursts of intense creation, while at other times, I allow myself to step back and recharge. And trust me when I say, the creative momentum doesn’t leave with resting. In the gentle stillness of rest, ideas manifest.
Imagination thrives in an atmosphere of freedom, where ideas can bloom naturally. When we try to force the creative process, we stifle its organic flow and limit its potential. Creativity rebels against the constraints of compulsion and it sometimes cannot be summoned on demand or adhered to a rigid schedule (or maybe it can and I’m just too much of a rebel! Hah!). Either way, it flourishes best when we’re willing to embrace the unknown.
Rather, creativity thrives when we allow ourselves the freedom to wander, daydream, and delve into the uncharted territories of our imagination.
By embracing this recent new understanding of consistency, I found a sustainable rhythm that fuels my artistic journey. It is not about adhering to a rigid routine, but rather staying true to the essence of my craft and honoring the natural fluctuations of inspiration. I’m throwing the ‘hustle’ mentality out the window along with the darn pantyhose! Join me.
Be brave. Trust the process. You will make momentum.