Creative spurt

20 Feb

I have a good friend who is a visual artist; I think of her primarily as a visual artist, even though she has “day job” as a teacher.  She does mostly watercolour paintings, but dabbles in other types of art, as well, and she’s always working on something.  It would seem strange if she didn’t have some kind of project on the go (more often several) at all times.  I get the impression that most artists are like that.

I, on the other hand, seem to get creative in spurts, with periods of drought in between.  There were the two years of high school where I used up reams of paper generating poetry like the angst-ridden introspective teen that I was.  The year in Germany where I got immersed in music, writing flute and piano pieces, performing on piano with a chamber orchestra, trying my hand at percussion.  There was the scrapbooking phase (which I hope to get back into sometime, especially as I have a crapload of money tied up in supplies) and the short watercolour phase.  Then there was that thing where I started doing a bit of travelling around the NWT as a singer.  After a couple of years’ hiatus where I got kind of busy with, you know, a baby, I’m back into a music phase now.  It feels good.

I don’t know if there’s anything I can do to smooth out the peaks and valleys, or whether I should even try.  I tend to be the kind of person who focusses a lot of energy on one thing for a while, but then new things come along and I’m off in a new direction.  But I sure do miss it when I’m not in a creative phase.  It stretches me and I learn so much. 

I know that when I am in a creative phase, other parts of my life are positively impacted.  The semester in university where I had a full (and tough!) course load, was holding down a job, plus had a major supporting role in a musical production, well, I thought I was going a bit nuts with all the commitments, yet I got the best marks I ever achieved at university.  (I know, that was 10 years ago now, but it still stands out in my mind.)

The past few months at work have been huge improvement over the previous time.  Partly it’s because I’m finally settling into the position and getting interesting projects, but I think it’s also partly because I have a better balance in my life, having a creative outlet.

I’m going to be “outletting” a bit this weekend at the Sourdough Rendezvous festival.  The organizers asked YWIM to have a few women perform at the main festival tent from 3:30 to 4:30 on Saturday afternoon, and I’m going to be one of them.  With four performers over the hour, we’ll probably each do about 3 songs.  I’m rather nervous, to be perfectly honest, and haven’t entirely decided whether I’ll be doing all original pieces.  It’s not like I’m taking a huge risk, really, but it feels like a big step for me.  So here I am stretching again.  Yeah… it feels good.

5 Responses to “Creative spurt”

  1. Chris February 21, 2008 at 6:21 am #

    Good luck! Wish I could have seen you perform. 🙂

  2. Nita February 21, 2008 at 2:30 pm #


    I’m in the planning stages for a show at the YAC next spring (2009). I’m bringing in a 3-piece Arabic band and the dance show will be to live music. One of the choreographies I’ve been thinking of will require someone to sing a mawaal…(what’s a mawaal she’s thinking, right?) Does this pique your curiosity? Would you be interested? You have a great voice for it. A mawaal is a vocal improvisation – you’ll hear an Arabic singer vocalizing on one or two words such as “layali” or “habibi” or sometimes no words at all. Very beautiful. And would certainly stretch you in this creativity phase you’re in!

  3. fawnahareo February 21, 2008 at 7:34 pm #

    Nita, I’m so flattered that you would ask me to do this! I’m scared to actually say yes without learning some more about it, but you have definitely got me curious!!!

  4. Tine February 22, 2008 at 2:11 am #

    That’s wonderful, Fawn – good luck !! (I’m sure you’ll be awesome, though …)

  5. asheya February 23, 2008 at 5:21 pm #

    How did the performance go? Sorry I couldn’t make it out – we overdid it this morning with the dog races and the airshow, and were so exhausted! I look forward to hearing about it!

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