Shelley Klammer : Living Into Your Creative Vision
Living Into Your Creative Vision
By Shelley Klammer
Connecting With Your Creative Vision
We all have a higher creative vision to live into. We all have inklings that pressure us from the inside, to be lived, and breathed, and created into this world. We all have an inner code that wants to unfold and create something in this world. Michael Meade speaks of our purpose in life as being our "Opus" or our life work.
Meade writes, "If a person doesn't face their fate, they may never find their deep resources and natural gifts. If a person doesn't risk their destiny, they'll never know who they are intended to be. Fate and destiny are the two agreements the soul must make and are the core issues we struggle with throughout our lives."
Facing our fate involves understanding and growing through the limitations and challenges within the family and cultures we were raised in. Our life's creative work is part of our destiny. It is what we want to learn the most about, and is indeed who we were intended to be. Our Life Opus or Life Purpose is what we feel intensely curious about, what we most want to study in life, and what we are passionate about being good at. Our Life Purpose is what Creator wants to create though us.
Life shows us clues as to what our passions are, and although our creative visions may not always lead to fame and fortune, or may not even be the main source of income, our visions imbue us with a life force and a vitality that keeps us engaged and passionate on a daily basis. Our creative visions provide us something to live into each day, as we attend to the practical requirements of our daily life. Our creative inspirations help us to overcome our shortcomings and struggles. Our visions offer us a window into the Divine.
A Creative Vision Takes Time
Living into our Life Opus takes a great deal patience, and involves many slow, faltering steps. Our life work takes a lifetime. In living into our life work we become what we are meant to become. We create what wants to be created through us. In the process of living into our creative visions, we must chisel away all of our conditioned resistance, and human heaviness to bring our Opus forward into life to heal ourselves, and to help others.
It is helpful to look back on your life for little clues as to what sparked your curiosity. For myself, from a young age I felt a need to understand art and creativity. My first clue came when I was 4 years old, and an artist came to rent the room in my grandmother's basement while he was in art school. He called me Shella Bella, and he drew quick, poignant sketches of my great grandfather when he came upstairs for tea.
After I met the artist in my grandmother's basement, I started to produce drawings in volumes, and I began selling my drawings for 10 cents around my neighborhood. I wanted to live into the process of creativity. I wanted to understand creativity from the inside out. You could say that wanting to learn about creativity was my Opus. I did not come here as a ready-made artist. I had to grow into the idea that I was creative.
As I grew up I understood that I needed to be creative in some way, but I did not get a great deal of encouragement or attention for my early artistic efforts. I did not get accolades from most of my elementary school teachers, that spoke to my having any sort of easy talent in the arts. But I was besotted with my grade two teacher who saw that I was creative. She recognized something deeper in me, and gave me extra creative challenges in class. With her, I became a devoted student, writing and illustrating far more, extra stories than was required for the curriculum.
I remember as a child of 8 years old struggling to draw realistically. I was not considered "talented" as an artist but I was dogged and curious. My only fumbling, grasping idea of my Inner Opus was the vague understanding that creative people understood how to draw. So I put myself on a rigorous drawing program. I remember drawing my grandmother's porcelain figurines, and struggling to get the proportions right. My paper was worn thin from erasing, but I kept at it for hours.
My realistic drawings never really flowed with expression or ease. They always looked a bit stiff and forced, but something inside of me wanted to understand creativity. And with no outside examples other than my early contact with the artist in my grandmother's basement, drawing was the only step I knew how to take.
It was not until I became pregnant with my daughter that I found a way of drawing that worked for me. I found a way to allow my connection to a Larger Creative Force to come through me. I finally understood that I did not like to draw realistically. I just wanted to express my truth through drawing. And so I began my intuitive way of drawing. My intuitive drawings expressed what I felt on the inside. They started out as simple doodles, and they became more sophisticated and expressive with time and practice.
Later on when I took over an art therapy program to facilitate art for the elderly, I learned how to draw from life in an expressive way, from an elderly client. She was a world-class sculptor who was wealthy, and never had to work a day in her life. She drew like Van Gough and she imbued each of her drawings with vitality, and then when she was done, she would say, "I drew that?" I was deeply inspired by her.