Artistry: Ways to Nurture the Creative Side of Your Life
I'm in the entertainment industry so writing comes naturally to me, whereas if you asked me to stay focused on a science experiment.... Well, my eyes would glaze over.
My neighbor, a homeschooling mom (and former first grade teacher) is always doing some fancy science experiment complete with volcanoes and exploding stuff for her sons’ school. Me? I haven't been interested in science since I was forced to dissect a frog. So what, I thought. The frog has blood and inner organs too. It was totally anticlimactic. What did I learn from it? Nada.
But Plato, Voltaire, CS Lewis, and all the other philosophers? Ah...now that kind of knowledge, is what made my soul sing. I love artists. And I love how you truly feel as if you're giving back to the world, when you give to them.
So today when I’m teaching my kids, we are heavy on the arts. I teach my two sons about how to write books, create poetry, rap songs, art on canvas. I also teach a class in inner city schools for Junior Achievement, and that's heavy on creativity as well.
It's about being who you are. About living your most creative, authentic life. And sometimes, it's only about being told that it's possible.
Do you want to make a movie? Why not? I know several moms who are successful grassroots filmmakers. It's easier than you think. You want to write a book? You can do it! I’ve written 29, and I’m here to tell you that you can too. You want to start a photography business, or become a painter? Just do it. Carpe diem. Seize the day! Go out and buy paints and a canvas.
Embarking on things you're passionate about just takes passion. And the biggest gift you can give your kids is the ability to know that they can do anything they set their minds to! Anything is Possible.
Are you a creative parent?
One person I know who falls into this category has focused on nurturing the creative side of their kids. They sing at night before bedtime. They have a verbal family statement that they say every day, together, while holding hands. It goes something like this... "We're strong, we're warriors, we are focused on loving and lifting others..."
Their 8-year-old daughter writes, sings, and plays her own original songs on the piano. She's got the voice of an angel, and a music producer friend who heard her, told me she will be "bigger than Brittany, Miley, or any of those stars." But the most remarkable thing about her is her ability to capture the heart, pain, and struggles of others in the lyrics of her music. Her songs are about love, pain, and joy. She's a 38-year-old in an 8-year-old body. After visiting their home I found myself in awe, learning, and marveling at their unique ways.
At times my husband & I have hired professional artists to come speak to our kids and teach them about painting on canvas. We've had a concert pianist come in, and teach basic chords. We've hired a professional guitarist to play, sing, and perform at our parties. We've hired a homeless band, to play beautiful worship songs at a fundraiser.
What can you do?
If you'd like to nurture that creative side of your kids but it doesn't feel so natural, start simple.
- Have your kids write a book. Start by telling them to write a story with a beginning, middle and end. It's that simple. Ask them to draw the words on one page of a writing journal. Give them a specific subject, such as trees, or dogs, or summer vacation, to write about.
- Make a movie. Use your phone, or video camera, to make a movie. Give your kids a specific subject, and guide them though the process of making a movie. Again, start with a subject. If you're going to make a movie about cars, for instance, use real cars and toy cars and first write a script with a beginning, middle and end. Keep it simple. Example: This is my car. It goes fast. It drives to Colorado and back. Record your child standing beside a car & video a map of Colorado. Well, you get the picture! You don’t have to be Steven Spielberg. But you do have to teach the basic concepts, and from that you nurture creativity in your child.
- Make the world your canvas. Build self esteem and nurture creativity at the same time by giving your kid a blank canvas, some paint, and...being quiet. Let him paint, and then give only positive feedback, no matter what the result!
Your child could be the next Picasso. Or, you could be the next great American filmmaker. Start today! Remember, anything is possible.
Have you done any of the above? What are some of the ways you have nurtured your creativity, as well as the creativity of your child(ren)?
Tammy Kling is a life coach, advocate for the homeless, and international author of 29 books including The Compass. She's the mom of two boys, an avid trail and mountain runner, blogger, and adventure travel writer.
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