Perfectionism Kills Creativity

“With your bold projects, you’re allowing yourself to make mistakes; out of those mistakes you will find masterpieces.” – Kellie

This is a part comment I got on my last blog post (from my wonderful Tia Kellie) and it made me feel a little bit better about what I’m doing. About this project as a whole, missing days, and generally feeling like I’m a little uninspired.

What a terrible time to feel uninspired, too! Here we are, 13 days into the project, and today the 7th photo was posted. Something feels like it’s not adding up, am I right?

So, to remedy this I did what I normally do when I’m in a little bit of a rut. Not a full insane “dug myself a six foot hole” rut, but just a little rut. I went and I looked back at some of my older work. I looked at stuff from my last 365 project and realized that I really loved a lot of those photos! They were composed nicely, lit well, not always just from this straight-on angle that I shoot most of my photos at now. There was creativity in the simplicity. I was inspired because everything around me was so new.

So, naturally, the only logical thing is to try and go back to those roots, right? Maybe not worry so much about giving everything a square crop, or expanding every photo. I already had accepted the fact that if I tried to come up with a clear concept for each of these photos I was going to go literally insane by the first of the year so I accepted that. Now, it was just getting back to finding beauty in the simple things around me again.

day 5

Something that I find so incredibly simply beautiful is the natural curves on our bodies. Even on our arms, legs, necks, there’s beautiful contours and shadows. This has been something I’ve been noticing non-stop for a few weeks. My idea was to hone in on that and try to find my simple inspiration from that.

The photo above, and the photo below, are about celebrating that. The photo above is actually pretty much a sister photo to this picture. It’s where I got the inspiration from.

The picture below is all about how light plays on our bodies. All the different highlights and shadows and places in between make us so unique and different and beautiful. Why not show that?

day 4

So, I took these two photos and simply just let things happen. I let the idea of concepts go, if editing would “work”, how interesting the end result would be, I let that all go. I edited the photos without really thinking about it and once I was happy with it, I was done.

Then, I decided to go and edit the photos I didn’t wind up using from the second photo.

day 6

Lo’ and behold. A photo that means something, has good color, has great light, has a story, and is edited the way I love editing.

Creating is funny. Being an artist is weird. You make decisions and then quickly go against them and it makes you question what in the hell you were doing in the first place. But, at the end of the day, you like what you like and you have to express yourself differently to give yourself a new challenge.

In the coming photos I will still most definitely be putting the beauty of bodies in the forefront of my mind, but I will also most definitely let go a lot more. Art is art and it comes out in funny ways and this project is certainly teaching me that.

When you look in the mirror today, take a good look at your body and love it for how unique all of its different textures and curves are. Tell yourself that your body is art.

Spread love.

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