There were many threads which ran through a number of the stories we told in CO_The Creative Couples Project. Common threads which seemed to be present across all couples. Creative confidence, or the knowledge that living a creative life is achievable and possible, seems often to have come from supportive families. Moreover, there can often be more than one family member with a creative gift as well.
In the chapter “The Budgie & The Deer”, Joanna Kambourian says “I was convinced of my career path from an early age. I was going to be an artist from day one, and follow in my Art Director fathers’ footsteps. Both my parents encouraged creativity in all areas of life, and I grew up drawing, painting and making things constantly, and it’s from these experiences that I have grown to view creativity as a mindset, or a value, rather than a talent or skill.” (p94)
Ali and Michelle, “The Turtle & The Meerkat” both spoke to us of that person responsible for lighting the creative spark in them. Ali says “My father bought me my first ‘real’ camera- a film SLR, after I showed great interest in learning about composition with an automatic” (p86)
Michelle says “My grandmother was the first person that I felt really believed in me and nurtured my creativity. She died when I was nine and I often think of her and want to make her proud” (p91)
Meg Ulman and Patrick Jones are Artist as Family, living each day as a creative family. Meg is also one of 4 creative sisters. She told us of their experience of returning home one day seeing their mother ‘journaling’, an experience which had a profound impact on Meg as a writer. “When my mum offered to buy me a notebook of my own it was as though a whole world opened up to me. And thus began my life as a writer” (p18). What a beautiful gift.
The journal. The creative seed for not only this book but for the creative collaboration of our own relationship began in journal form:
In our Introduction we told our story. “A month after we had been seeing each other, Cecile gave me a gift. More than a gift, it was a seed, wrapped in a story, tied with a thread of possibilities. I held it in my hands, breathed it in (along with the aroma of Tibetan Spice, scent of my new lover) and let my fingertips glide over the braille- like texture of the brown journal she had just given me. I tugged at the cord wrapped around the book, and opened to read the inscription:
And so this journal will be a gift to our own son, who will know that there are other ways of living and that the journey is at times as fraught with potholes as it is with smooth roads, but journal it and it will all make sense. CO_The Creative Couples Project is dedicated to a new dawn of creative living; as a creative family.
Are you a creative family? Was your first creative champion a parent, grandparent or other special person?
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