creative time

2 04 2011

I recently read a lovely & thoughtful piece by Patricia Zapata of A Little Hut on making creative time in your everyday schedule (she calls it crafting time, but I think it applies to any creative endeavor).

Last autumn, a friend and I organized a Craft Night Out for a bunch of friends. Our social circle had had limited social time available, between committments to work, family, and other scheduled events. Personally I needed to work on a craft swap project and wanted to catch up with friends, so this was a fun way to combine the two. Self-serving? Probably. Fun, relaxing, and productive? Definitely.

A theme might have been fun, but our creative interests barely overlap and we didn’t want budget or materials to affect participation. We made it a craft-of-choice evening, letting each person bring whatever creative push they needed at that moment:
knitting projects
photo editing with laptop
discussion of writing a research paper
making seasonal paper garlands
doodling with crayons
It wasn’t a lot of time, really, just a couple of hours. Yet it worked – just the deliberate act of opening up that time for creative thought and action in a communal setting.

Simple yet life-affirming.

I’ve had the urge to organize another Craft Night Out for this spring. Ironically, I’ve been holding back because of scheduling issues and now – right now – am realizing that’s slightly ridiculous and I just need to do it. Choose creativity. Choose friendship and community. Choose life (not the Trainspotting kind, the joyful kind).

We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.
-Frederick Keonig

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