Wednesday, February 4, 2009
The Creative Impulse
A while ago, I made a painting. It was nothing much, just something I had recreated. Something that had caught my fancy. Basically as an amature painter, I tend to capture (or should I say recapture), paintings that somehow seem to me as unique and a tad different from the conventional things we see.
And hence after painting a couple of them I decided to put them up on the wall, so that my friends could have a look and give me their opinions. And so, after the usual formal compliments I thought to myself, "Great! I suppose it wouldn't have made a difference worth a shilling even if I had hung a Rembrandt on the wall. Pity no one even realised that the frame is crooked."
Now I am not the least bit cross with my compatriots. I daresay had anyone of them invited me over to have a look at their new motorbike, my response might have been equally lukewarm.
I suppose each of us have our own individual patronage.
Now, getting back to the event, there was this girl who glimpsed at my paintings.
And it was just a glimpse, not even a brief look. Soon upon her brief observation, she blurted, "why are you studying medicine? You ought to have been an artist."
Now I suppose I ought to have taken it as a compliment. But that didn't quite register the way she expected. Of course being the gracious host I mumbled a "thank you", and that was that.
Later on I began writing this blog. The main reason I started a blog was so that I could rediscover my passion for writing. To basically rekindle something that was long lost to me.
I sent my blog link to one of my friends, while chatting online who remarked, "wow, you write really well, why are you studying medicine? You ought to be an author."
For me it was déjà vu all over again.
So according to the assumptions previously stated, since I am a student of medicine I should be absolutely devoid of any creative ability.
Its sad when you think about it. Just because you have entwined yourself to a professional course it is assumed that you must be rid of any creative yearnings whatsoever.
But then, when I think about it, I do believe that there is an iota of truth that lies there.
Creativity is something inborn. It happens to be one of the most satisfying and self gratifying things that one can do for oneself.
Nevertheless its something, not all of us manage to hold on to. A few make their fortunes out of the art they possess, while the remainder opt for other occupations.
Now, not everyone can opt to become an artist, but at the same time it doesn't mean just because you have chosen a different line of work you need to be rid of the creative impulse within you.
I have no intention to abandon medicine, but nevertheless, that doesn't mean that I need to stop painting or writing.
Unfortunately not many realise this fact. I am not talking of the commercial aspects of selling your art. I refer to the sort of satisfaction one gets when one views one's creation with pride. People end up strangling the artist within them thinking it might come in the way of their career and their families.
But it is never so. Art is the mere expression of ones inner soul onto a material medium. It is like revealing oneself to the world by other means.
You need to be with yourself in order to invoke the artist within you. We spend much of our days engulfed with work, with family, and when we are tired, we forcefully subject our minds to the mindless entertainment that television offers.
I suppose on that account no man is ever left alone. Even for a moment. Creativity needs solace. It needs solitude. One has to rediscover oneself. For through time, almost all of us have lost ourselves to the constant ramblings of humanity.
I suppose when one is alone and not engulfed in any sort of activity, away from chaos, away from all the noise, the endless chatter, can one discover what he or she is truly capable of.
It seems apart from being an exceptional scientist Einstein was quite a decent violin player. He would play his violin, not in order to perform before the masses, but to grant himself solace from the chaotic world outside.
I wonder if anyone remarked to him,"why are you a scientist? You ought to be a musician."
One doesn't need to be creative just to chalk out a living, or because one is terrible at doing other things. Ideal creativity has no specific purpose or aim. Like I said, its just an impulse. A spark of light to brighten our dreary lives. Ideal creativity for some rests in their minds getting better with age, just like wine in a cellar.
You need not quit your jobs to be creative. Being creative happens to be a part of you, just like breathing and walking. It can be anything, say like gardening, carpentry, music, pottery etc.
We spend a great deal of our lives by engulfing ourselves with pointless activities. We all have but one life to live (at least the one that we are aware of), and its a pity that we discredit ourselves by spending a great deal of our time watching mindless dramas and reading about some actress who dumped her third husband. There is much more to life and living than all this.
One needs to be with oneself to be able to realise our true potential. Its stupid to let go of our lives, our creativity on account of the ridiculous dictates that society imposes upon us.
Let us not be the prisoners of our actions.
To be creative is to be free.