Create Today - Episode 1
Beth: [00:00:00] Hello, my creative friend. Welcome to the BDI Create Today podcast. This is a podcast where we'll uncover and discover the who, what, where, when, why, and how it means to be creative or have creativity, and together we'll explore the extraordinary impact creativity has on our lives. In our heart, mind, body, and soul.
And if we haven't met yet, I'm Beth Buffington. I'm a licensed artist, digital illustration instructor, and a creative coach. But mostly, I'm someone who is curious about how creativity weaves its way into nearly every corner of our lives. So each week, we are going to look at one of the sparkly facets that make up the treasure that is creativity.
So join me each week to hear random stories about how [00:01:00] creativity impacts my days and listen to evidence I've found that shows that science backs up the importance of creativity. And then you're going to meet some people who have some pretty cool stories to share about their own unique creativity. So my hope is that you'll find new creative knowledge, or you'll feel more confident about what you already knew about creativity.
And then, you'll start to add more creative experiences to your day to make yourself. A happier, healthier, and more confident creative. And if you're a creative with a business or a side hustle, you might just find yourself feeling a bit more successful.
So, for today, we are exploring this question, who is creative? And I can tell you with complete confidence that creativity is not a [00:02:00] luxury that is limited to a gifted few. And it's not just a hobby to fill idle hours in a day. And would you believe? Creativity is a necessity that when used consistently, it can help us stay mentally and physically happier and even healthier, and it can strengthen our brains, our decision making processes, and it can help us through times of grieving, stress, and trauma.
Now, I want you to think about yourself for a moment. And your friends and your family and your acquaintances and think have you ever heard someone, you know, or have you ever said, well, I'm not creative or well, I'm no artist, but we need to allow ourselves to see the creativity in ourselves and see it in others.
[00:03:00] Creativity is there and it's important that it is seen.
In our world today, we are badly in need of more compassion and understanding, more acts of kindness, and I think it will help a lot if we can rethink our thoughts about creativity and who has the right to be creative. So let's get started rethinking our thoughts about creativity. To do this, let's start by backing up a moment and think about children.
You know, kids, they know they are creative and they're not afraid to express it. Children love art and are confident when they're painting and drawing, and they are quite happy telling the story of what they've created to whomever will listen. And they are proud of their work and their creativity.
Here's an example. Last week, I spent [00:04:00] a day with my grandson, Will. He is six, and he was showing me a painted clay medallion that was strung with a string of yarn, so he could wear it around his neck. Now, he had worn this medallion to my house the week before, so he could show me what he had made and he wanted to show his grandpa, too.
And the day I was at his house, that medallion was still being worn by and admired by Will and his little brother Sam. So while I was at his house that day I asked Will to tell me about how he made the medallion. And he started off like this, Well, first Grandma, and then he proceeded to tell me every single step.
the process it took to make the medallion. He carefully explained what the teacher said, what he did, what the teacher said next, what happened next. He told me everything about what he did, how he made it, and how he [00:05:00] made it so good, and how it turned out so well, and how really proud of his medallion he was.
We talked about this medallion for a long time, and it was fun to hear him so excited about what he had done in class, and also be confident and happy about this medallion that he made. Now, in all my grandchildren, I see this. It's exciting to see the creativity that is naturally inside them. But here's the sad thing.
As children grow, creativity, does not grow with them. It tends to fade.
And it, it breaks my heart to think that the will I know now who is in kindergarten this year, that by the time he gets into fourth grade, sixth grade, eighth grade, that this creativity that is so innate in him right now, it's going to have to fight to stay in the front seat with him.
And that's because. [00:06:00] The societal norms of our world, sadly, slowly strips children of their creative confidence. So now let's, let's take a look at ourselves for a moment and think about your own childhood and your creativity that you had when you were little. Here's just a couple stories from my childhood.
When I was in grade school, during the summer, there weren't any video games or internet or smartphones to play with, and daytime TV was not always my thing. So I spent a lot of time Just creating fun, right?
I bet you did too. I remember that I turned my wagon into a covered wagon that was also sort of a food truck for lack of a better term for attempting to sell lemonade to my neighbors. It was also used to pretend great portions of the Little House on the Prairie books. A lot of my [00:07:00] stuffed animals traveled the pretend prairies in my covered wagon as I pulled them through the streets and sidewalks of my neighborhood.
And I remember spending a lot of time wrestling with coat hangers to bend them just so to make the bands for the covered wagon. And I think there was some sort of blanket that I put over those bended hangers to provide the covered part for the wagon. I can't really remember how the final result ended up working or if, if it was ever really successful, but it was super fun and it was a creative challenge for my friend and I to figure out how to make our covered wagon idea a reality.
Now, I also remember spending hours on the hottest parts of the day, sitting in my bed during the summer, drawing made up family portraits using markers and drawing paper. And each family that I made [00:08:00] up had a story about who they were, and I made up the personalities for each of the family members. Some of the families had a lot of kids or they had strange pets.
Some families were incredibly tall or had weird and wild hair. I made up and drew things in the portraits that also showed the jobs of the parents and the activities that all the kids did. I remember one of the portraits was of a family who actually were late to the photography session and they weren't quite dressed.
So like the mom still had curlers in her hair. The children all had bed head and were partially dressed in their pajamas still. And I drew them with their eyes wide open, really surprised, like they weren't quite ready for the photographer to start snapping pictures. I remember that at the end of the summer, I had a very thick stack of family portraits, and I have actually no idea what happened to all of them.
So I wasn't afraid to build things. I wasn't afraid to draw [00:09:00] things, and I was only limited by my imagination and the supplies of art and other things that were available and that I was allowed to use to draw or paint or build my ideas. I remember using a lot of paper and pens and cardboard, pens, pencils, markers, crayons, tape, pipe cleaners, rubber bands, coat hangers.
It was just about anything that my mom would let me use. And now I imagine that you have some fun stories in your childhood of the wild and beautiful things you created.
So my friend, now here's a question for you.
Are you as creatively free now as you were when you were a child? Do you have that same feeling of creative confidence that you had when you were younger? Or do you find that now you're a bit cautious with your creativity because of what you think others might say or what they might think [00:10:00] about you?
Do you decide some days whether you're creative or not by comparing yourself with others who you might see on social media? It seems as we get older, decisions are made about who gets to wear the label of creative or artist. And I think we often feel that not all are welcome at this creative table. So when did we decide creativity is an exclusive domain of only the uber successful or what is perceived as the super talented artists and writers and musicians?
Why do we strip away the confidence of creativity that children are gifted with when they are born, when they arrive into our world? Maybe it's because we decide only the super talented have the right to be creative [00:11:00] and who my friend decides Who these super talented folks actually are in the world, right?
Who decides that It could also be that creativity is a little bit on the elusive side. It's not something that we can hold, and it's not something that is readily seen like building muscle when you exercise
I think it's sometimes easy to lose hope in the creativity that we have. And that it's easy to begin to believe that we are either not very creative or that we used to be creative or that we are not creative at all.
My friend, this podcast is all about debunking preconceived thoughts we've made about our creativity. And how it affects our lives.[00:12:00]
Now let's take a moment for a word from our sponsor. And hey, that would be me. Did you know that growing your creativity is as easy as learning something new? Are you ready to experiment with your creativity like you did when you were a child?
Let me tell you about all the fun that the Create Today team is planning for the month of January. Yes! We are starting on January 22nd, and you are invited to come to one of my free Procreate workshops. My workshops are carefully designed to introduce you to some fun Procreate brushes and techniques to create a super Lovely illustration.
This year we're going to be creating some delicious snacks, and one of those snacks is going to be a donut. The workshops are a great way to have some creative fun with me and learn how you can create digital art with Procreate [00:13:00] and strengthen your confidence as an artist.
This winter there will be two different workshops. There's a date and time perfect for you. So come and enjoy how you can draw and paint with Procreate on your iPad whenever or wherever your imagination calls.
I can't wait to see you at my workshops and then sign up for some deeper exploration with the Winter 24 class of my online course Learn the Art of Procreate.
This course will teach you everything you need to know from the foundation Up to creating your unique art on your iPad, you're going to learn at your own pace when you have time, and I will always be there to cheer you on.
rEady to increase your creativity? Hop onto my email list. All you need to do is go to www dot bdi create dot two day [00:14:00] T-O-D-A-Y, and get on my email list. That's www dot BD dash create dot DY.
Now, welcome back. Now we are going to take a look at what creativity is. Now I think most people. They're familiar with the metaphor of creativity being a flame. So let's examine that metaphor. Creativity is very much like a flame that flickers within each of us, but we all know that a single puff of wind can blow out a candle and that pouring water on even a roaring fire can douse the flames.
And we all know that fanning a fire or adding an accelerant will increase the flame and its heat. So, now let's take a peek at one way that you can become aware that there is actually a flickering flame. creative [00:15:00] flame inside you. Let me tell you about a book that I love. We are going to be talking a lot about this book in this podcast.
It's a book called Your Brain on Art by Susan Megsiman and Ivy Ross. You're going to hear me share about the science backed facts that are shared in this book. It is fascinating and it is a really encouraging way to know that the creativity that you are doing is doing more for you than just create something beautiful.
In the book, they talk about aesthetic chills. It's a reaction or a response to a typically creative event. And it can be experienced when you are making art or when you're the beholder. creativity. Now Wikipedia gives the definition for aesthetic chill as a psychophysiological [00:16:00] response to rewarding stimuli including music, films, stories, people, photos, and rituals that often induces a pleasurable or otherwise positively balanced affective state and is accompanied by.
skin tingling or chills, sometimes along with goosebumps and pupil dilation. So, I was curious when I read this and I learned about acidic chills, I was curious about what triggers an acidic chill for me and how that chill affects me personally. So, I'm going to share one of the types of chills that I discovered in myself.
This aesthetic chill happens to me when I am the beholder of something creative. And so here's a story that will give you an example. And you know, I would love to know [00:17:00] when and where this happens to anyone else. So if you listen to this and you're like, Oh my gosh, that happens to me when, please let me know.
So this past weekend, I went to my granddaughter's dance recital. My granddaughters are four and six, so you can just imagine the sparkly cuteness I was witnessing on that stage. But while I was watching my granddaughter run and leap about the stage, I got what I have decided was an aesthetic chill. And here's what happens.
It starts as just like a swell of contentment in my chest. I think we all can understand what that means. Let me know if you don't. But it's just like a feeling of well being and it, it actually feels like there's a warmness, a swelling right around my heart. Does that make sense? And then this feeling sort of travels upward and I get a very sharp tingling in my nose.
It's really sharp, just like when something bumps me hard on the [00:18:00] nose you know, it doesn't really hurt, but boy, does it tingle. Does that make sense? And then that makes my eyes water, just like any pop on the nose would, right? And they water big alligator tears. So once my nose starts to tingle, I know those tears are coming.
And I haven't found a way to control that. Now, in a world where we would all embrace everyone's aesthetic chills, I think I would just let those tears flow and people would look at me and they would nod and they would think to themselves, she's having an aesthetic chill. But that's not the world we live in, right?
So I try, when this happens, to keep that emotion, that ecstatic chill, I guess is what I'm now deciding it is.
I try to keep those tears on the down low because like on the day of the dance recital, I know there were a lot of folks in the audience that probably would have been thinking yeah, the kids are cute Beth, but why are you crying?[00:19:00]
Now I can think of my watery eyes and my tingling nose as an aesthetic chill. And I know that this is a reaction I'm having and I'm feeling creatively ignited. And that that's a good and healthy emotion, just plain and simple. So from now on, when my nose tingles, I'm going to appreciate the goodness that comes from this creative emotion.
And I'm going to ride through the goodness. that it's creating. And we're going to talk more about how creative emotions are processed and how they are beneficial in an upcoming episode. So stay tuned, my friend. Now I have felt this kind of aesthetic chill watching the beginning of the Chicago Marathon too.
My husband is a runner and When I go to the races at the beginning of the race, there's a gun that goes off, boom, and everyone starts running and watching all those people [00:20:00] begin their race. I know that each one of them has a story about why they are running. Many have come back from an illness or an injury or they're running in memory of someone special to them.
Now, trust me, I'm not a runner, but I know all the work that goes into training for a marathon because I watched Tom training. So, watching all these people begin the race, hey, it makes my nose tingle, people, and it makes my eyes water. And now I know that is actually an aesthetic chill.
Now that I've had some time to think about this, I've decided that this aesthetic chill happens to me when I'm witnessing hope for the future and I'm seeing possibilities in people's efforts, like people running and children dancing. The creativity is the dancing and the running, but I think the chill for me comes from the meaning behind the movement.
[00:21:00] That hope, that's the thing that makes sense to me. Now you might have sensed an aesthetic chill like this, watching a good movie or listening to music or listening to the words of a song that have touched you. I would love to know your experiences. Becoming aware of aesthetic chill as a thing. That is connected with creativity.
That's helped me realize this is an example of creativity being ignited. It's a real thing. And how fun is that? Now, whether you're someone who is aesthetically feeling chills daily or just occasionally, or you can't think of a single time you felt chilled. Do not worry, this podcast is going to bring some thought provoking ideas to you each week about what, where, why, and how creativity can be added to and used [00:22:00] in your life.
So if you're a seasoned artist, you're going to be able to realize how creativity can help you feel happier and healthier and less anxious or stressed in other areas of your life.
aNd if you're someone who has struggled with the label of I am or I am not.
An artist? This podcast will give you reason to be proud of your creativity and become more creatively confident as the artist that you already are. And if you're someone who thinks, I don't have a single creative bone in my body, and you know who you are. This podcast is going to fling open the gates to creative possibilities and allow you to engage with your creativity like you did when you were a child.
Pretty exciting, right? Oh, my friend, I am so glad you are here. [00:23:00] Welcome to the Create Today podcast. I'm glad you were here today and I can't wait to see you at my next episode. And imagine, just imagine what you can create today. Until next time, stay creative, my friend.
Oh, and here's one more note from me, your sponsor,
interested in exploring your creativity with Procreate on your iPad? Get my free kickstart video. It's going to give you a beautiful tour of how to use Procreate to create your own art. You'll get information about brush libraries, layer and layer options, explanation of the tool icons, and so much more.
Interested? Yes you are! Go to www. bdi create. today backslash kickstart to get my free procreate kickstart video. You'll also be [00:24:00] able to find the kickstart video in the show notes.