“Life beats down and crushes the soul and art reminds you that you have one.”—Stella Adler, and she was absolutely right on that one.
If I could add anything to that phrase, it would be the word “still” after the word “that”. Isn’t it odd that we can go through so much–both good and bad and the artists are the ones that motivate us or evoke tears? When I say “artist” do you think I mean someone with a paint brush or a camera? Then you are only partially correct. I’m referring to those who can create worlds with their pens as well–or the actor or actress that can allow a character to come through them like a shaman allows the spirits to breathe through them.
All of these can move us to tears, inspire us, make us angry as hell or even, for some strange reason depending on what is put out there, can cause us to tell the world to go screw itself for a day. I love a good psychological roller coaster ride when I watch a film which is why a lot of the 80’s flicks for the teens didn’t impress me too much. However there are two exceptions: “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” and “The Breakfast Club“.
Now what happens when the artists go through such crap that they don’t want to create? It is not that hard to answer. Those closest to them and those who support them should rally around them and send them love. Yeah, that’s right–LOVE. You know, that word society likes to associate with the “f” word a lot? However it means so much more than that. For those of us who love putting the word to paper, writer’s block is what happens to us if we fear not measuring up, or something has happened that has mummified our muse.
They key to the cure is to encourage the writer to keep writing, the painter to keep painting, the photographer to keep snapping pictures, the actor or actress to keep acting and the singer/songwriter to keep on singing and composing. Let them know what they have done for you and how they have inspired you. Sometimes those who tell them their work is crap are nothing more than corporate “yes” men. If we are the ones buying the work, we should be dropping lines on occasion.
When they inspire us, they also do remind us that we STILL possess a soul as well, do they not?
A few of my friends are really going through some crap right now. They are always on my mind and in my thoughts. If I could reach out across the distance and hug them or let them simply be free to vent, I would. I’ve been in places where nobody else would want to tread, that is for sure. Instead of hardening me, I have become more empathetic about many things. Given what I have survived and come out of, I would say that is a good thing because I could have easily become anything BUT empathetic toward my fellow-man/woman.
Some people have seen a few snippets of my life. Some were there and watched me go through it. I often get asked how I survived it all and kept my marbles. The answer a simple. I grew up in an age where it was one thing to wish those who hurt you into the “cornfield” as depicted by the “Twilight Zone“. It was (and is) quite another to send them there. No individual is worth the creature one would turn into if they actually carried out such thoughts–but then again, thoughts can become “things”, right?
Well they nearly did when I was 12–and the scenario was NOT a good one. Therefore I’ll save it for another story with another vile creature of a villain that will either get killed off in a horrible way and/or will learn what it was like for his/her victim to suffer. There is nothing like the pen to describe these ebbs and flows in our life cycle–but it is so much more fun to carry out our fantasies in fiction.
If your life feels more like it is ebbing than flowing, then maybe it is time to pull out the pen again or the brush and go for it! Have a good evening!