“What moves those of genius, what inspires their work is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough.” ~Eugene Delacroix
I’m not claiming genius for myself by any means, but what I can relate to in that quote is the “obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough”…
A while back I wrote a blog about the evolution of design.. and how many of us who design (whether visually, fashion, interiors etc) are continually improving upon our own designs. I am discovering my art/designs are growing, breathing, living things which evolve into new ideas, I am constantly doing this… am I the only one? One fledgling idea grows and reaches its maximum potential but not before it gives birth to the next morphed, better, improved, idea…sometimes, it’s not even better or improved but it’s a lateral growth that evolves from one idea to the next new idea.
Herman Melville, American story writer and novelist said, “It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.” ~ I could not agree with this more. Often times, I see a GREAT idea from another designer and think “WOW!! I could totally make that…” but I won’t. Do you know WHY? because I respect that artist’s creative domain, I may take an idea and think “Wow, that’s an awesome idea, how could I do that differently?”… other designers (and I use this term loosely) out there are not respectful of who is pioneering an idea… they often just want to make a fast buck, the almighty dollar pilots their designing and to me, I’d rather die a slow death with needles stuck in my eyes than design that way. I’d never want to follow in another designer’s shadow. I’d never want to be that dead inside that I had no creative ideas or original ideas of my own… that is a sad and somber existence in my opinion.
(image of Dante’s Inferno: Purgatory)
I love the fire in my belly… I love my minds’ eye and the creativity that comes from it… I can’t imagine walking through life with blinders on and not being able to “see” what is coming from my innner creative soul… to me, that would be a living hell… or pergatory. I NEED to let my soul pilot my hands into my art/designing, I need to produce living, breathing pieces/designs that have come from the wellspring of creativity inside me. To some, this WAHM, small business owner thing is JUST THAT… a business… an opportunity to make money… but not to me, it’s about so much more than that… it’s an extension of my heart, of my soul, of my mind and the NEED to let that pilot what I do. It’s about the creation, it’s about the design, not about the money…
I have been told SOOO many times I need to charge more money for my designs… that they are awesome & I’m not getting what they are worth… and this is a personal business struggle for me, because I want to share pieces of myself (and that is exactly what my designs are) with other people, with as many people as I can. Everytime I make a costume, a dress, or a flower embellished headband, I think about who it is being made for…where it’s going…what they will feel when they open the box, what their face will be like watching them try it on for the first time, I imagine their eyes lighting up and a smile coming over them… and THAT is why I have a hard time charging more for what I do. Yes, I work HARD… I put in MANY MANY MANY hours a day into my business, but it’s emotional and not just physical for me.
This is why I think people appreciate what I do, this is why I think people come back, because I sell them a piece of my soul, everytime I make something for them! and it’s apparent in the quality, and care that goes into each and every item.
In closing, when you have a moment, ponder this amazing Ansel Adams (American photographer/visual artist) quote,
“Millions of men have lived to fight, build palaces and boundaries, shape destinies and societies; but the compelling force of all times has been the force of originality and creation profoundly affecting the roots of human spirit.”