I AM AN ARTIST by Cheryl Cook
Some of you will remember Cheryl coming to the group well before Covid to give us a talk about her felting operations and gallery.
Following on from the blog that was penned by member Pam Reynolds recently where she talked about inspiration from other creative endeavours, Cheryl has kindly sent an article for publication in our blog titled "I am an Artist".
I am an artist
Look at a blank page, a blank canvas, a blank screen, a blank textile, or even a blank idea, and what do you see? A challenge perhaps? Potential? A scary prospect? All of these are things to face no matter what the blank medium is, and this fear is often talked about in many places. But what does an artist do? Pick up a brush, a needle, a pen, or pound a keyboard— much as I am doing now.
It has taken work to breathe myself into being an artist. Not a painter, not a felt-maker, not a maker, not a hobbyist, not a craftsperson, not an artisan. An artist, as held in my own heart, regardless of how others may see me. For being an artist has to be part of you. You have to believe it—and yourself—wholeheartedly in order to step over the fear of that blank ‘whatever’.
You have to build that part of you, layer by layer, that lifts you into a world of wonder. Build the frame and then be brave enough to step into the image of ‘artist’, where you have the confidence to strike out on your own, to communicate part of your soul, to share your creations with others who may applaud, cry, laugh, criticise, or simply ignore… and sometimes they might even buy! As Henri Matisse is cited as saying, ‘Creative people are curious, flexible, and independent with a tremendous spirit and a love of play ... The artist begins with a vision—a creative operation requiring effort.’
I want to be that person who has ‘tremendous spirit’ and who is willing to put creative effort into their life. I am an artist because I want to be one.
Many thanks Cheryl