NWF Community Spotlight: For the love of Creating

Blog post by Kierston Gittens, NWF Creative Specialist & NewWave Tech Web Manager

My younger self never had a problem putting pen to paper, or crayon to wall. I was caught on numerous occasions creating 2 foot tall murals on freshly painted walls much to the chagrin of my parents.

Throughout my youth I turned everything I could into an art project. I painted my room, bought and rehabbed dressers, and created a wall sticker that spanned 8 feet in height and 10 feet in width. I painted shoes and knitted a functional (albeit hideous) scarf for my aunt. Anything I touched ended up some shade of purple or blue.

It wasn’t until I started looking at the art of others that I began the dangerous, joy stealing game of comparison. Watching others create in ways that never would have occurred to me planted seeds of doubt in my previously bold artistic spirit. I began leaving canvas’ blank, notebooks untouched and trapping ideas in my head until they were good enough to be executed. Since my art wasn’t like everyone else’s – maybe it wasn’t art. Maybe I wasn’t an artist after all.

But the great thing about love is its persistence.

What I lacked in confidence and motivation I made up for in ideation and inspiration.

I was compelled, almost against my will, to keep creating. Just like the yellow brick road, creating was always a way back to myself when I went astray.

I can’t lie and say that I feel confident in my art everyday, because I don’t; but I aspire to. When I create I feel connected to others, the world, my purpose and myself; and that’s not a feeling I’m willing to give up.

Anything is a blank canvas if you try hard enough.