Don't get me wrong, I just finished my 22nd year as a visual arts teacher in a small rural Pennsylvania school district. And I love what I do. There is nothing like the feeling I get when one of my students accomplishes a challenging task, creates a stunningly beautiful piece of art, or just feels stronger about their place in the world because of the work we do together in my classroom. Did I mention that I still love what I do?
But maintaining a classroom environment with that kind of drive and energy can sometimes make me forget about my own creative self. Between my advocacy as a local and region union president, my work with
|It is appropriate that this original post|
celebrates our 300th post on the NEA
Fine Arts Caucus blogsite. WTG Sue!
Over the years I have recognized that my art making energies seem to experience peaks and valleys. So I allow myself to have those times when I am not as actively engaged in creating in-depth time consuming pieces. I have learned that just because I am not in the studio cranking out art doesn't mean that I am letting my creative mind rust away. On the contrary, those times are often when I am generating ideas, doing research, or allowing myself time for creative play. If I don't allow myself those down times I am actually less productive in the studio.
That said, I have been in this valley too long! I have decided that over the next two months, I am going to do my warm ups. So every day, I plan to spend at least 15 minutes doing something that is entirely selfish and productively creative...either getting my hands a little messy in the studio or working on those rough drafts of the stories for books that sometimes wake me up in the middle of the night in the hopes that getting back in the habit will push towards a peak and out of this valley. This post, is Day 1.