Sunday, December 12, 2010

Have you ever thought about what makes a person creative. I know that some of us are born with God given talent to be creative, but what does it take to encourage us to tap into this creativity? I believe that everyone has some form of creativity inside them...even the people who can't even draw a stick figure. Some people are given an awsome artistic talent, but if it is encouraged, I think everyone has a little bit of creativity inside them. So how do we bring it out?

I believe in encouraging our kids to be creative. I feel that it is as important as reading, writing, and arithmatic. I know that there are those who would disagree with me on this, but I think that it is truely necessary if we want our children to thrive in other academic areas.

As a child I was encouraged to tap into my creativity at all times. There were always art supplies of my choice available to me. When I was 4 I made placemats by weaving yarn through strips of shiny stuff with holes in it....no idea what this material was and have never seen anything like it since. At the age of 6 I learned to sew. The first projects that I remember were pot holders and oven mits, a pair of pants, and a purse. Since then I have made clothes for myself and my kids. I have made costumes for my kids and my sisters kids. I have made gifts for friends and families for as long as I can remember. Over the years, I have worked with paper, making cards and scrap booking. I have cross stitched as well as knitted and crocheting. I have worked with wood to make Christmas ornaments for gifts and to sell. I have taken classes in photography as well as metal jewelery and ceramics. I have painted and drawn. My most recent media is stained glass. I have made many gifts from glass as well as supported my income during tough financial times. I took piano lessons, and played in the band in school (first playing the french horn and then the trumpet). I was in the flag corp and was co captain for junior and senior years. I struggled with math and I can remember my parents using sewing for me to understand fractions. You use fractions when you buy fabric. My parents used buying fabric as a way to make me understand adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing fractions. They used this same technique when I started algebra. It helped me make sense of something that I couldn't understand any other way. They used quilting as a way to get me interested in history. They used painting to help with chemistry. Even though I was an intelligent kid, I struggled in school. If it weren't for art, I don't think I would have made it through high school and I doubt I would have gone on to college.

I honestly can't remember a time that I haven't been creating something. Art has been my therapy over the years. It is my best time with God. When I am alone and creating, I can talk to God about whatever is on my mind. As a shy child and teenager, it gave me the confidence to be myself and know that it was alright to be myself. My talents have gotten me through tough financial times. Whenever money has been tight, I have been able to sell some of my creations to help out. I honestly don't think I would have survived some of the hardships I have been through in my life without being able to express myself artistically.

I now see my children following my footsteps artistically. They each have their own niche but they are all artistic and I see them become more confident in who they are through their art. Every time someone sees what they have done and like it, my children grow more confident in themselves. I have seen them use art to understand an academic area that they were having a hard time understanding. I have always made sure that my kids have had whatever art supplies they have wanted to use over the years. I have also always encouraged them to use their imaginations to create outside of the box. My daughters are now both going to school for 3D animation. The both draw and are constantly writing stories. They both have interests in other artistic areas as well. My son is interested in puppetry and photography ( I never know where my camera is!) All three of my kids are into anime and they love to create and wear costumes. I can't imagine my children without their creativity. I know that they all have artistic talents, but I also believe that if I hadn't encouraged them to be creative as they grew up, they would be very different people than they are now. I believe that some of the confidence they have in expressing themselves, comes from the confidence they have in their creativity. Some children gain this confidence through sports. Others gain it by excelling academically. Some need artistic outlets to prosper in life.

So tell me, what do you believe makes creative people? Were you encouraged artistically as a child? How do you encourage your children's talents? I would love for you to leave a comment....

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