Do you have a creative artist in your life? Living with such a person can be a challenge. I refer to those people who make up stories that become books, plays and scripts, or who have the mental images that transform into drawings, paintings and sculpture, or performers who love to act and sing for the rest of us. In other words, the individuals who would rather die than abandon the pursuit of their art.
Even though we all possess certain traits that allow us to be creative in many ways, most of us don’t actually pursue an artistic career. Fortunately, for the rest of the world creative artists are in the minority. Artistic talent if nurtured or preserved can be a driving force. What complicates things for the artist is that at some point, the product of their creativity must arrive at the intersection of acceptance and commerce if they are to be considered successful.
That tough accounting is also a sticking point for the families and friends. Even if initially a creative artist receives compliments from those closest to him or her, they must still prove that others find their work compelling enough to generate financial rewards. That standard of success may not be so important to an artist. The pursuit of excellence and satisfaction with the work they create may be the primary reward, or just achievement of recognition.
I don’t pretend to know what goes on inside the mind of a creative artist. But they are different souls. They usually march to a different drummer and possess deep sensitivities which helps to make them who they are. A simple gesture goes a long way on your part. A compliment or acknowledgement of their efforts is terribly important. Even if you don’t understand what they are doing, ask respectful questions. I think an artist would welcome your interest. But in the rare instance that they don’t, pass the word, a text or a link about their work — in fact, do that anyway. And don’t commit the mortal sin of ignoring or dismissing their work. I have seen the deep psychological pain this causes, particularly when it comes from family. Remember that old adage, “treat others as you would wish to be treated.”
Life would be pretty dull without the creative artist to smooth our way and bring interest to the world. If you live with or are close to such a person, keep in mind that they are part of a larger community of creatives and even if they don’t inspire your awe, then at least give them respect.