A little something you forgot to consider

When you look at the world you see a combination of brilliance and dirt altogether. It makes you want to get out and explore every single part of it, every possible human emotion and at the same time, it makes you want to run to bed and stay there forever. It’s like being in a huge library with a billion books. You wish you’ll choose the most fascinating ones, those that will teach you a lot and make you a wiser person but still… you cannot know the ending in advance. There’s always a risk.  It’s scary – terrifying actually – but I suppose life can give you a few things that are worth the “pain and the aches of the outcoming fortune” in the words of the Danish Prince.

It is incredible that you have all these choices concerning who you want to become and how you want to use your life in order to contribute to society. But what most people forget to mention when they talk about the endless possibilities is risk and fear. The smallest choice you make has outcomes. There’s never a win-win situation. You always have to face consequences, responsibilities and stand up for the path you took and for the person you are today.

We chose friends, behaviors, careers, lovers, places to live in and even ways to approach situations. Every little thing is crucial but there are some choices bigger than others. These are the choices that will change your life. When you stand in front of a choice this big, I tell you, it’s scary. Nobody mentions that. Everyone goes on and on about doing the right thing but… when you’re actually standing a step away from opening one door or another, you can’t see “right” or “wrong”. You can only see the regret at the end of each way and you’re afraid of it. There are paths that guarantee security and others that involve greater risk.

street artist.jpg

Making the step is hard. But no matter what you have been thinking so far, no matter what all the voices around you have been going on and on about, you have to take a step back and put yourself in the microscope. I don’t mean endless hours of worrying and re-thinking – which is something I am guilty of, to be honest – but to really stand across your deepest desire and ask yourself “Where do you want to go?”.

This process is usually so hard because we forget to keep in mind the fear that goes with it. It’s what we forget to consider when we make plans. Fear is usually a huge part of our choices but it shouldn’t be. Go with your gut. There is an instinct inside every one of us, we’ve just learned to ignore it over the years while trying to rationalize everything.

Remember back when you were a kid? You took one look at a person and you knew if you liked them or not. You went to ballet lessons for a week to find out you want to quit and then you tried piano and Italian and none of those were right for you. You knew and you were not afraid to admit you changed your mind. Nobody would call you a loser. Then, you finally tried tennis or playing the tuba and it was fun. You couldn’t see the time to go to practice. That’s what we suppress over the years, our pure instincts. We learn to like what we should like but, how will we ever be happy if we don’t risk walking the road our heart tells us it leads to happiness?

Charles Bukowski said “Go all the way” and he was right. If you don’t go all the way, you’ll never know. It takes a huge amount of courage to stop thinking of every little thing that can go wrong and focus on your pure desire. Don’t be afraid of it. Take a step on the path your heart points at. There must be some reason. Show it some trust and you’ll eventually find out why it took you there.

Have a magical day,

glance at the sky

by Elena Ktenopoulou

“Creativity takes courage”

Once, while working in his atelier, Henri Matisse realized that in order to make art, you have to be brave and so he made the statement that ended up being the title of this article. But.. what was he trying to say?

The process of making something is known to work more as a relief rather than an act of bravery and as a person who studies art and tries to find her way as artist, I can say that it does but still, it is not the perfect activity for the fainthearted. But why? The answer to that question is what I am trying to approach here, although it is not an easy task nor there is a right answer.

Art is based on the experiences of the creator. They may not always be actual experiences, they can also be imaginary ones. So, even if the art is not realistic in a way that it depicts reality naturalistically , it is somehow based on it. Even when the artwork that is completely abstract or  something that presents the entire opposite of reality as we know it, it’s still coming as a result of it because the mind of the maker has been developed in a specific environment – whether they fit in or not – with specific characteristics.

art

The bravery of the artist comes when they dare to look at reality with bare eyes, no extra filters. I cannot describe this better than Plato did, more than 2000 years ago using the Allegory of the Cave. In case you are not familiar with it, while trying to describe how it felt to be a philosopher, Plato said that a group of people had been tied up in a cave since birth, with their backs turned on the entrance, unable to turn their heads while a fire is burning. As the sun comes in, form behind, the fire creates a reflection of everything that’s happening outside the cave on the wall in front of them. Since they’ve lived there their whole lives at this state, they consider this to be the reality. When one of them escapes and goes out into the world, he’s able to see the actual reality and the sun but when he comes back to tell the rest, since his eyes have gotten used to the light, he can no longer see the shadows, so everyone believes that he’s gone blind and they never take him seriously.

So, an artist, here is the person who escapes the cave and then depicts reality as he or she saw it. That demands courage and will power. But is it really a choice for the artist-creator? I think that in some rare cases it isn’t – a person is just born that way – but in general it is. Creativity is something that each person could have in their lives and even the slightest thing, like taking up painting lessons as a hobby or writing poems on your free time is a choice that takes courage. Mostly because you sacrifice time and energy for it. But not only for that.

Above all the rest, creativity takes courage because it always works as a form of exposure. Whether you are Michelangelo or the piano player for your church, you put yourself, your emotions and your personal work out there for people to judge. You have to be brave to stand fearlessly on a stage with all those sets of eyes focused on you with expectation and open your mouth to say that firs line of the play or play the first note of the concerto.

painter

That is the reason why, in my opinion it is essential for everyone to have a form of creativity in their every day life. Having a creative job or a hobby can test your limitation and expand your boundaries. It can help you learn so much about yourself and set you free in a million new ways. So, if you think you don’t have time for something creative in your life right now, you’re wrong. There’s always space for something to clear our soul. I know it takes courage but dare it and you’ll see what I mean…

have a magical day,

 

glance at the sky

by Elena Ktenopoulou

The featured picture of the article is part of a painting by: Robert Delaunay,
called: le poète Philippe Soupault (1922) – It is located in Centre Pompidou