DodhersResilience in the creative process: how can we feed it?

We live in a technologically advanced but emotionally primitive world; a world in which we often keep the feeling and the living totally at a distance which, instead of mutually supporting and helping, they hinder each other. However, we must not forget that we will be much more resilient, the closer we will be able to keep our feeling with our living. When we take a photograph, so when an artist creates, consciously or not,...

We live in a technologically advanced but emotionally primitive world; a world in which we often keep the feeling and the living totally at a distance which, instead of mutually supporting and helping, they hinder each other. However, we must not forget that we will be much more resilient, the closer we will be able to keep our feeling with our living.

When we take a photograph, so when an artist creates, consciously or not, we transfer a little of our existence into the image, through our feeling and through the attractive impulse towards what we are capturing.

 It is impossible to create something without drawing on what we have lived, perceived, felt, experienced. Creating is projecting ourselves and projecting our inner landscape through and thanks to the persevering exercise that is necessary to master the technique. Creating is therefore consciousness and instinct at the same time.

If it were that simple…! unfortunately there are harmful contaminations, destructive and disrespectful criticisms, comparisons, the need to be understood and appreciated by others, the need to assert oneself, competitiveness, laziness, rejections … and the picture breaks down, the tumor of uncertainty and fear finds space in us and we freeze, we fall down, we distance ourselves from what we feel and our inner landscape becomes muddy until we no longer see the essential.

RESILIENCE

When we live this situation, we should have the courage and strength to look ourselves in the mirror (speaking metaphorically or actually doing it). The mirror is the closest fiction to reality that we can get, and I use it to find the necessary resilience and to realign what I feel with what I live. If we get used to fully inhabit the imperfect part of our life, if we accept our fragility and use it to blossom colors, shapes, perspectives, lights, thoughts, ideas; if we do this and if we have a good basis of creative exercise, it is possible that negativity turns into possibility. Slowly, slowly some shy buds of our inner landscape find the courage to open up to life and offer the strength and power of the creative act.

But… how to feed this necessary and essential resilience? Personally, I have developed some techniques that help me to maintain the passion and the desire to go out and take new photographs, develop them digitally and create new images; I use these techniques to find the gestures and routines necessary to create … I share them with you, in the hope of being able to help, but also to know what you do when you experience moments of creative “block” or creative abandonment.

  1. ART CALLS ART – Maintain constant contact with art, for example, by visiting (if possible) a “live” exhibition (I mean, in a physical space), or even on the internet or through a book. However, try to avoid artistic proposals made by those who belong to our “social circles”, so as not to fall into the comparative effect. This type of activity helps us to ask ourselves questions; activates a process that is necessarily introspective and that for this reason forces us to submerge ourselves in our chaos, rearranging ideas, thoughts, memories.
  2. OPEN AND WIDEN YOUR GAZE – awaken curiosity through an attentive gaze at what surrounds us, supported by a mind open to innocence (in this, my son Luka with Down syndrome, teaches me every day the wonder of enjoying small events that happen), to doubt, exploration and to travel (understood as a digression from the usual)
  3. LISTEN TO THE SILENCE– you have to allow yourself calm, reflection, slowness; you have to let the thought flow until you reach inner silence; we must appreciate and praise the apparently useless knowledge, deepen in the slowness of our personal “rituals”. All this, seeking silence, enjoying silence, listening to silence. For me, the best way to get there is by immersing myself in Nature. Nature is harmonious power, it is the mirror of our littleness, it is a continuous interaction with life and death
  4. SOCIALIZE – I am not referring to social networks, I am referring to direct human relationships, to true friendship, to altruistic help for others, to social volunteering, to doing “community”. All of these are forms of love. Both Love and Art allow you to experience the sensation of coming out of yourself, in an attempt to recognize yourself; an ecstasy in which you first get lost, and then meet again
  5. MAKE PHOTOGRAPHS – it seems absurd, however, in the darkest or most apathetic moments, if we force ourselves and begin to do what we most like to do without any pretense of results and without any kind of project thought, it not only helps us to restore a balance, but it can sometimes offer us both conceptual and technical inspiration

Inner Awakening

TAKING HOME

For an artist and especially for those (who are the vast majority) who struggle to escape from anonymity or for those who create without being lucky enough to have explicit feedback from almost anyone, being resilient is the quality we need most to continue our journey and persevere in our artistic passions. Consequently, we must know how to cultivate resilience, avoiding deepening the distance between what we live and what we feel.

It’s not easy at all, I know! But I don’t see alternatives! As my mother used to say to me: “help yourself, God helps you”. It is a long exercise and a daily work that is not easy to carry out, but in which it is worth investing will and time, because the result allows us to go back to doing what we like best: creating images that are the projection of our inner landscape.

It is totally a false myth to think that inspiration is a pre-condition for creating; if we think this, we are leaving the reins of our life to “others” or at least to external factors that very often could act against us. The wisest and most pragmatic alternative is to work in our creative work, regardless of whether we are inspired or not. I believe that creating is much closer to routine than to sudden enlightenment. Consequently, the better method to overcome creation blockages is inside us and very close to a routine rite that could be supported by virtuous practices that in my case are: keep contact with art; cultivate an open gaze; listen to the silence; socialize in real life; continue to make photographs.

Photosatriani

Photosatriani

I am a curious of life with idealistic tendencies and a fighter. I am a passionate photographer who had to develop a strong degree of resilience to keep my passion against the current of life. I believe that shadows are the necessary contrast to enhance the light. I am a lover of nature, silence and landscapes (rural and urban). My photographic history is quite silent publicly but very rich personally, studded with some great satisfactions such as: published photographer in 1X; honorable mention in Pollux Award 2019; commended in IGPOTY 2019 B&W section; highly commended in IGPOTY 2018 Abstract section; selected in 2014 for Descubrimientos PhotoEspaña and in VIPHOTO. Group exhibitions in: Atlántica Colectivas FotoNoviembre 2015 and 2013; selected for the Popular Participation section GetxoPhoto 2020 and 2015; ”PhotoVernissage (San Petersburgo) 2012; DeARTE 2012 y 2013. A set of my images belongs to the funds of Tecnalia company in Bilbao, to the collection of the "Isla de Tenerife" Photography Center and to the EspacioRAW collection in Madrid. [Website]

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