Creating something of beauty, or something better than you imagined yourself capable of creating, is extremely uplifting.
I speak from personal experience here, having recently started art classes with The Seasons Art Class. I dropped art at school when just 14, in order to pursue more “academic” subjects but I’ve frequently found myself looking at flowers or landscapes and wishing I could capture their colours, shades and contrasts. In truth I’ve always had a hankering to paint a picture I could frame and say “I did that”.
Just 4 weeks into the course, I already feel proud of what I have achieved. The course litertaure describes the class as “a life changing journey” saying to participants “you will find yourself noticing colours and shapes like you’ve never done before, you’ll be inspired by everything around you, you’ll notice the perspective of buildings and objects, the shadows and light on objects, and you’ll start thinking about how you can manifest these visions before you on paper!”
How true! I hereby apologise to everyone I’ve met in the last few weeks for staring at them to check whether their eyes really are half way down their heads (generally yes) or for raving about the spectrum of colours in blooming gardens.
I’m very chuffed with this drawing, completed this week. The course has already given me confidence not to be intimidated by a challenge. And if I can do it, then anyone can.
I also find it interesting that my heroine, Lady Henry Somerset, believed in what she called “the moral effect of being able to create something of beauty” when she set up embroidery workshops at Duxhurst, her village in Surrey where inebriate women were cared for. If I can feel uplifted by my efforts, just imagine what it must have been like for a poor woman from the Victorian slums, brought low by poverty, overwork and alcohol abuse, to find herself producing delicate embroidery which was subsequently sold in West End stores.
A hundred years on, creativity still works its magic on the soul.