Henry Miller wrote, “Art teaches nothing except for the significance of life.” We very rarely know how important art is until we know how important life is. A note to marketers constantly maligning the hair color of the audience: let’s sell tickets to the people who want to stir their souls. I love to talk demographics and psychographics probably more than even your nerdiest music friends, but appreciation takes time and understanding. Artistry, my fellow divas, takes even more time.
Your Day 26 Challenge for this 29 Days to Diva is to Choose Life Experience.
Choosing a career in the arts is choosing to go into battle. It is going to be unyielding. It is going to be painful. Some of those closest to us will not make it. We will suffer and we will experience glory. And yet, unlike the fighter, we choose to discard our armor bit by bit the farther we crusade.
There is nothing more bleak to hear than, “an artist must live a poverty-stricken and tortured life.” It simply isn’t true. What artists need is to live life abundantly. Art is more than just the composition or the performance. It is about what art does to us. That is artistry.
Be a collector. An artist collects life experiences. I wish that you didn’t have to feel pain, divas. But, at the same time, I know we all have. We cannot escape the bad; but, neither can we escape the good. I hope that you will actively seek a flood of positive life experiences to soften the blow of the heartrending ones. Beyond the emotions, be a collector of ideas. We cannot physically live out our lives in a practice room. Make the time that you spend outside of one more valuable to the next session.
The smartest people I know are the people who can make connections. They make the world so intertwined. It is riveting. Keri Smith, in that wonderful book How to be an Explorer of the World, wrote,
3. Everything is interesting. Look closer.
7. Notice patterns and make connections.
11. Create a personal dialogue with your environment. Talk to it.
12. Trace things back to their origins.
To breathe more artistry into your life, begin making more connections. I don’t mean that in the networking with people way. But, make more connections between all the things, people, places, and ideas you know.
There are only seven true plots in the world. How we tell the myriad of tales born from those plots is how we reveal our artistry. If you are still learning the basic plots, do not fret. Be the lure for thunderbolts and sparks in your life. Say “yes” to things outside of your known world to expand the reaches of your collections and connections.
Artistry will turn your work into a galaxy. You will be full of constellations, planets, and energy. People will gaze up and wonder about what makes their own world turn. Some will even try to decipher and explain what it means. But, that will come with time. Onward, little divas, onward.