Saturday, November 26, 2016

Developing Your Creative Voice

A few years ago I brought this art quilt to a small critique group I belonged to.

One of my friends commented that it was different from my other work, but “It still looks like you!” I took this as a very high compliment. It meant I was using techniques, ideas, elements, materials, and themes that were truly my own. I had a unique creative voice.    

Artists often struggle to find their own artist voice. Sometimes people say if you make tons of art eventually you'll develop your own style. That’s part of it, but it’s more than that.  

I came across this quote from St. Francis.

He who works with his hands is a laborer.
He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.
—St. Francis

To develop your creative voice, I think you have to fully incorporate your head, heart and hands.

Thinking about these ideas and my experience easing into my own unique personal style, I developed several exercises and ideas around the concept of creative voice.

I put them together in a 29 page workbook includes exercises to fully explore how to use all three -- your head, heart and hands -- in your creative pursuits. It includes prompts, lists, check lists, word-webs and other ideas for artistic exploration. There are follow-up tips for every exercise. Plus specific ideas about how to use what you learn by completing the exercises in the workbook. 

Here's the Table of Contents.

It's available as a pdf download or a hard copy in my Etsy shop. Several of the exercises can be completed over and over as you continue to build your creative muscle and explore possibilities. (The pdf download will let you print individual pages as desired.)

One of my favorite exercises is the "Like List." When I've used this exercise with students, they instantly realize they have more of a creative voice than they thought -- and they have some words to describe it.

Are you ready to put your head, heart and hands to work? 

Download the pdf here.

Or order the spiral bound workbook here.

Did you notice I didn't use the phrase "finding your voice?" It's not hidden! You don't have to find it, you just have to develop it.

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