Discover more from Pass Along Songs
The Courage to Feel - Part I
“Vulnerability is not weakness; it's our greatest measure of courage.” - Brene Brown
In last week’s post, I shared “Vincent,” Don McClean’s masterful and moving song about Vincent Van Gogh. I also shared a personal story about being told that I probably wouldn’t receive recognition for my creative work until after my death. To be clear, I linked the two not (as some assumed) to equate my situation with Van Gogh’s, portray myself as a victim or dip my toe in the waters of the tortured artist myth, but to bring up a subject that is near and dear to my heart and offer up a challenge.
The need for creative thinking, expression, and encouragement in all aspects of our lives. This includes:
Modifying our education system so that kids get the tools and support they need to explore their creativity;
Making a conscious effort to acknowledge and reward creative, outside-the-box thinking in the workplace so that it’s possible to make a good living as a creative professional (see links below); and
Allocating more funds to the arts in general.
Refuse to buy into the “starving artist” trope. Another of the many ways my parents, guidance counselors, and teachers tried to discourage my creativity was to tell me:
I would starve.
I was egotistical to think I was a good enough artist to support myself.
Artists are needless expenses on society.
It was the last one that really got my goat because what everyone seemed to be missing was the gift that creative people bring to the table. No one who’s dedicated to their craft - whether it be music, woodworking, glass blowing, writing, painting, dance, or game development - is interested in being superficial or shallow. We are interested in being honest, daring, and vulnerable enough to explore life through our unique media and share the results with others. This is both singularly courageous and vitally important to humanity as a whole if we hope to survive the mess we’ve gotten ourselves into.
As Brene Brown says, vulnerability is our “greatest measure of courage.” It takes a singular act of courage to make yourself vulnerable to the creative process and then dare to share what you find with the world. That’s what we are celebrating here and what we will be exploring this week through the theme of “The Courage to Feel.”
The first song I am sharing this week is an act of defiance. It is my own answer to the tortured artist myth and is entitled, “Defying Gravity.” This version comes from a 13-year-old girl who dared to believe in herself and her voice. Let’s have a listen.
So tell me:
How were you raised to see creativity?
Were you encouraged to explore and apply your creativity in practical ways?
What role does creativity play in your life today?
If there was one thing you would like to do creatively, what would that be?
Let the discussion begin!
Study Reveals Global Creativity Gap: https://news.adobe.com/news/news-details/2012/Study-Reveals-Global-Creativity-Gap/default.aspx
The Matter of Creativity in Education: https://www.teachthought.com/education/adobe-the-matter-of-creativity-in-education/
The Science of Creativity: https://www.apa.org/gradpsych/2009/01/creativity
Copyright 2021 by Jena Ball. All Rights Reserved.