The most important function of Art is not to Create - but to Inspire.
I'm a mother, a wife, a daughter and an artist. I say these things in that order because my family is the most important thing to me and their encouragement and support helps drive my creative spirit.
I have been creating art for as long as I can remember. As a daughter, I remember my mother providing me with the tools I needed to create. Pencils, paper, scissors and a great deal of patience as she learned that with creativity sometimes comes mess. I have never really grown out of my mess - there are half-finished art and craft works all around me; not to mention the stashes of art supplies, craft items, tools, yarn, fabric, sequins, beads, needle-felting wool and threads that I try to keep organised but which tend to spill out into unexpected places. I tend to think of my surroundings as a reflection of my mind - messy, flitting from one thing to the other, trying to keep my thoughts ordered and oh..there I go again, getting distracted by some other project that I just have to get done now!
As a wife, I do not envy my husband's task of trying to keep my creative passion from filling the entire house. He is the rock I lean upon - clearly living up to his name of Peter- and I wonder how I have ever lived without him. He props me up when I fall, drys my tears when life overwhelms me and has a way of knowing when I really need a hug. He never judges me, is always there and without him I would never be able to do what I do.
As a mother, I have experienced the world anew through the wondering eyes of a baby and a child. I have felt the pangs of adolescence and watched as my children have grown and begin to leave the nest. Letting go is hard, but they have taught me as many valuable lessons as I have taught them. Each one of my six children have been blessed with the creativity gene. My eldest daughter (you need to look at her work!) is a gifted artist, my second eldest works tirelessly on digital art projects and game design as well as having the ability to quickly learn coding. His creativity does nothing to dull his interest in maths and science - it does, indeed make his passion for the sciences even stronger. My other four children are developing their own unique creative styles. They all love to draw, craft and create. I think I have proven my motto to be true, as watching me create art has indeed inspired them to pursue their own creative purpose.
As an artist, I find myself unable to sit still for long - whether it is writing, drawing, painting, chart making, pattern designing, graphics manipulation, digital art, needle felting, knitting or crochet; I am always growing, learning from others and eager to learn more and more ways to create. Living with chronic pain has taught me the limits of my own physical body, but my mind is always thinking, designing, planning. Sometimes my mind sabotages me with depression, anxiety and doubt, but I have learnt that these things flow like the seasons, and by embracing my physical disability I am able to find a new creative purpose by working within the limits of what my condition allows. I do not always embrace it though - there are days when I yearn so much for the things that I will never be able to do again that it physically hurts. There are good days and bad, I reach the heights of creative energy and drive , I sometimes plunge into the depths of despair. Each time I learn that I am more resilient than I realised and again am able to find my purpose - to learn, to teach, to create, to inspire.