See the Dream to Seize it: Week 8 in Sow the Seeds & Seize the Dream Free Creative Course #MondayMotivation #SeizetheDream

Your vision is your ability to see clearly . . . while your dream is what you are focusing your clarity upon.

Hello Creatives and welcome to Week 8 of Sow the Seeds & Seize the Dream 12-Week Creative Course.

This week’s module is designed to help you see the Dream that you are on the journey to make a reality.

You might be thinking, ‘hey, what is the difference between seeing my dream and capturing my vision?’. Here is the simple answer.

Your vision is your ability to see clearly the direction you want to go while your dream is what you are focusing your clarity upon.

In Module 4, we asked ourselves the questions that led us to clearer vision; why are we on this creative journey aiming for this creative goal. We created our “Vision Affirmations.”

In Module 5, we took things a step further by bringing focus to the direction we are headed. We looked up artists or writers, designers or athletes (whatever your creative goal dictated) and we made our “Creative Statement,” which is the voice or sound we what to share with others through our creativity.  (Stay tuned for my Creative Statment and the Artist that inspire me in a later article.)

Continuing with those you admire: “CREATIVE STATEMENT GUIDE”

  • Select 3 to 7 artist, writers, or people within the creative field you admire.
  • Describe the feeling that their work evokes in you.
  • Taking the list of descriptions, compile one, solid, creative statement.
  • Using this “Creative Statement,” Select one piece (be it a recipe, architectural rendering, short story, painting) that you think best embodies the statement you’ve created.

In Module 6, we took stock of what we had on hand and compiled our creative arsenal.

Now, if you haven’t created your “Creative Statement,” or found the piece that best embodies that, no worries. There is still time. Remember, to work this journey at the pace that is best suited for you. But do hold yourself accountable so you don’t lose momentum.

Also, if you find that there isn’t one piece of work that captures the statement you’ve complied, no worries there either. You can always create your own!

WHAT IS IT TO DREAM?

Dream: A dream is compiled of images, a state of mind, and a cherished ideal or aspiration.

In this creative course, vision is the lens and to dream is the beginning action.

ALLOW YOURSELF TO DREAM

Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry. ~Habakkuk 2:2-3

Dreaming requires concentrated thought. It requires you to take the time and allow your ‘vision’ to be seen in a way that is specific, so much so that you can repeat the dream over and over again.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in his famous speech, said: “I have a dream.” What I believe about that statement is that he took the time to be specific about his dream, and then he took the time to meditate upon it over and over again. By so doing, he was able to bring that dream to pass.

The Prophet Habakkuk had been given a dream and with that dream, he was instructed to write it down.

We, too, have to take the ideal image that we have for our goal, meditate on it often, and by all means, write it down!

CREATIVE FAITH IN ACTION

  • Look at your Creative Statement from Module 4. Begin to see in your mind (Dream) the ideal expression of what that would. Example: Are you seeing a series of romantic novellas? Are you seeing a series of paintings? Whatever it is, allow that dream to grow and do not hinder it.
  • Now, whatever you are seeing, WRITE IT DOWN! (Especially if you are feeling timid about what you are dreaming up, you must write it down so that you don’t psych yourself out about it.)
  • Create a Vision Board if writing is not what you need to do, or do both.
  • Continue to study the Creatives that inspired your “Creative Statement”. Refine things as the need arrives. The more you dream that more clarity you will have.

SCRIPTURE FOCUS

ADDITIONAL READING

COMMUNITY QUESTIONS

  • What does it mean to dream to you?
  • Are there any dreams that you’ve had in the past that you’ve given up on? Why?
  • What do you think God has to say about your dream(s)? Why do you feel that way?
  • What advice about taking hold of your dream would you give to a friend or your younger self?

Please share your wisdom and advice in the comments below.

FOR MORE INFO ABOUT THIS 12 WEEK JOURNEY, SEE Gearing Up to Prepare for Your Creative Success: Seeds We Sow

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Tuning Your Creative Voice: Week 5 in Sow the Seeds & Seize the Dream Free Creative Course #SeizetheDream #Goals #MondayMotivation #CreativeMotivation

Voice: Even as I create with freedom, I want to do so with purpose. I want to discover the ‘voice’ of that purpose and speak it loud and clear. ~Candice Coates

Hello Creatives and welcome to Week 5 of Sow the Seeds & Seize the Dream 12-Week Creative Course.

This week’s module is designed to help you fine-tune the creative voice that you want others to hear from you. The foundation of that voice is revealed in what you discovered when establishing your vision.

Whether you have the vision to be a published author, a sculptor, a cook, or even a person who has a desire to be a polyglot (someone who is multilingual), establishing your voice can be crucial to your success.

Like conditioned clay, the more you work with your creative voice the more you will discover what it can do.

I remember years ago when I was in undergrad, sharing my art portfolio for that quarter’s review with my professors. The review was a success but each of my professors had come to a consensus about my work.

They couldn’t tell ‘who’ had done it because it was all so drastically different. My ‘voice’ was singing in several different keys at once.

It took me several years to realize that my creative voice is a ‘chorus’ all it’s own. Even now I am building my author site and writing career around the theme of being a ‘Genre Jumper.’  I don’t just write science fiction, but clean-read romance, thrillers, etc.

But even with excelling within different genre’s there is still an undertone to my work that makes my style uniquely mine and distinguishable in comparison to the works of others. My voice remains clear.

SOMETHING TO CONSIDER ABOUT YOUR VOICE

  • Your voice is inherently unique: In Psalm 139 we are told that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” The word fearfully denotes a level of reverence, care, and awe. Who you are as Creative is unique. You are special and have something precious to share within the symphony of creation.
  • Creativity matures within seasons and so does your Voice: What your body of work looks like today, will not be at all what it is a decade from now. Look at the works of Picasso, Matisse, and others. How they began as artists in their youth, drastically changed during their middle years of life, but the tone of their voice remained the same. Your voice will mature and change, and become more malleable with the passing of time. Like conditioned clay, the more you work with your creative voice the more you will discover what it can do.

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHILE YOU TUNE YOUR VOICE

  • Give yourself the freedom to try new things: Remember, this course is about the creative journey. Just like when you take a road trip with a final destination in mind you give yourself the chance to see sites and experiences along the way, so too do the same with your creativity. Try your hand at different things. Shed the techniques that don’t interest you, but figure out how to incorporate the ones that do into your overall voice.
  • In each Creative Season, aim for consistency: Whether you are writing, creative visual art, or baking, aim for a themed body of work. Doing so will help you set your tone. Unlike my undergraduate portfolio review, allow your body of work to be unique among each piece but clearly related as a ‘family’ of work. Examples could be a ten piece study of bodies of water, or ten recipes from appetizer to dessert course all focused around swiss cheese. Consistency and cohesion is key to creating tone.
  • Consider the works and processes of those who you admire: Studying the work of others you admire can help you discover what sets your creative bells ringing, thus streamlining your tone. There are millions of painters but which ones make you look at their work with awe? There are millions of writers, but which ones move you to read their work over and over again?

CREATIVE FAITH IN ACTION

Continuing with those you admire:

  • Select 3 to 7 artist, writers, or people within the creative field you admire.
  • Describe the feeling that their work evokes in you.
  • Taking the list of descriptions, compile one, solid, creative statement.
  • Using this “Creative Statement,” Select one piece (be it a recipe, architectural rendering, short story, painting) that you think best embodies the statement you’ve created. We will visit this later on in future modules.

SCRIPTURE FOCUS

ADDITIONAL READING

COMMUNITY QUESTIONS

  • Who are some creatives you’ve most admired and why?
  • What creative practices would you like to adopt in order to shape and train your creative voice?
  • What creative practices are you currently implementing that are helping you to better tune your creative voice at present?
  • What advice do you have for other creatives struggling with the ‘creative sound’ they would like to make?

Please share your wisdom and advice in the comments below.

FOR MORE INFO ABOUT THIS 12 WEEK JOURNEY, SEE Gearing Up to Prepare for Your Creative Success: Seeds We Sow

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

The Beauty of Blinders: Taking Sight of Your Own Creativity #CreativeEncouragement #Creativity #Individuality

BLINDERS:

  1. something that obscures vision: something that prevents clear vision or understanding
  2. eye covers for horse: a pair of flaps attached to a horse’s bridle, one beside each eye, to keep the horse looking straight ahead.Microsoft® Encarta® Reference Library 2003. © 1993-2002 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

In terms of art and creativity, the first definition of the word for Blinders is very negative. Art, after all, is about giving vision and making the obscure more understandable.

But as an artist and as creative people, there are times where Blinders are a necessary tool that we should employ within our journeys.

Real art is not about competition it is about the newness of authenticity. Authentic creativity speaks not only for the artist, but to the artist as well as the audience, and comes from a place within.

Blinders that cover our eyes from distractions, things that keep us from our vision, and looking ahead, staying on the path, are very beautiful and worthwhile.

When you start creating, developing your motion, the thing that you do not want to do is to think, “How can I be different from the person next to me?” When you start your creative process with that mindset being your base or foundation, (and many of us have) you keep yourself from tapping into your true creativity.

What you are essentially doing is looking ‘outwardly’ at what the person next to you is doing, and you are taking what they have created, and have made that your foundation or base. You are putting icing on an already iced cake.

Your individuality begins from within it doesn’t take root from without…”

Digression. Spring-boarding off of the work of others, using their vision as a tool or muse, is one thing. It’s a means of learning. This is not what I am talking about here. I am talking about creative competition and anxiety which is the knife that cuts the throat of many of fantastically creative people.

People who run their creative race with the eyes on the competition never reach their fullest potential. They begin the race with a goal in mind and never reach the finish line because their eyes stayed on the ‘horse’ in the other lane. Ultimately, they ended up crashing and burning, trying to be like the one next to them but never becoming the best expression of themselves.

Real art is not about competition it is about the newness of authenticity. Authentic creativity speaks not only for the artist, but to the artist as well as the audience, and comes from a place within.

When you look ‘inwardly,’ which is a revelation (even if someone else’s work has led you to do so) and you get a new creative revelation that is authentic that speaks from the core of who you are, then at that point you can really  begin to glean from the creative wisdom of others.

From there you can take aspects and concepts of what others have created and from there say, “How can I use this expression and make it my own?” while still holding on to your own individuality.

You create your own lane and forge a new path of inspiration.

Your individuality begins from within, it doesn’t take root from without…if that makes sense. It requires taking an introspective glance into the dark places deep within ourselves and learning our own true voice and song.

Many do not dare dive that deep for fear of what they will find.

We as creatives shouldn’t look around and think “How can I be different?” Instead ask yourself “How can I continue to be me, learn who I am as an artist,  and continue to climb each rung of this ladder of creative enlightenment. How can I rise higher by getting a hand up by other artists and creatives by gleaning the wisdom that they have already produced?”

I hope my words were understood and have given a bit of encouragement to help you soar even higher.

Thanks for reading! And keep it Creative!

~Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!

Is It Really That Complicated?: A Quote Day 3 of 3 Day Quote Challenge

Don’t make change too complicated, just begin.” 

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And this is exactly what I intend to do, begin. For a long while now I have had this feeling that change was coming; change in my personal life, change in my future, change in my writing and art, and of course, change with my blog.

When I began this journey, I started it with the intention of harnessing and fanning the flame of the creative light that had reawakened in me in November of 2013.

I believe that I have done that, so much so that it has become a raging fire. The thing is, now that the embers are greatly ablaze my purpose seems to have changed.

What I needed in the beginning for this blog, (blogging daily, creating random sketches, free writes and musings) is not necessarily what I need now. Now I need to be more focused. I need a strategy to bring about my desired success.

file000786402730For over a year I have been going on about finishing Ascension Graveyard. I have hinted to my desire to create pieces of art that are more focused and directed. In order to do that I must change my approach in everything.

My allocation of time has to change, which leads me to what I see happening with Icameforthesoup. Basically, I need to go on a schedule. I actually began said schedule today.

Wednesday! Wash up Wednesday is what I am calling it. Basically it means do the laundry mop the floors, scrub down all toilets until they gleam, etc.

Give me a break, I am trying to get excited about all the not-so-exciting stuff that we have to do.

I literally cleaned for a good 8 hours today which meant I barely made this blog posting in time…I tend to move slowly when it comes to cleaning…am I alone in this?

I digress.

As far as scheduling for the blog goes, my plan is to check in daily, but to do postings of my own on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. This way I am able to maintain Monday’s Muse, Blog Battle Tuesday, and post my results of Monday’s Muse, while giving me time to create more focused projects to share in between.

I have so many novels begging me to complete them. So many images floating in my head asking me when I will settle down and give them life on canvas or paper.

Taking the time to shift from what has been awesome and yet familiar can be nerve wrecking, but it doesn’t have to be complicated.

So that is where I am, my friends. I am not going to over think things or over complicate them. Icameforthesoup is about exploring untapped creativity, and that is what I intend to do…just with a more structured strategy.

With that in mind, I leave you with a bonus quote:

Write without fear. Edit without mercy.”

I plan to be doing a LOT of that as well.

Cheers!

*To read the previous day’s quotes, click DAY 1 or DAY 2.

Keep My Eyes: A Quote & Encouragement

I can’t seem to ‘see the forest for the trees’, so I will just keep my eyes on You.” ~Candice

There is no other place I would rather be than walking alongside Yeshua Jesus. But sometimes, storms blow in out of nowhere, blocking the Son’s light, and even blocking out much of the faith that seemed so readily available when there was no storm at all.

I find myself, in these moments, having to “remember my training” if you will. It is very easy to panic when a trial hits, and instead of standing your ground, you run for the hills. Lately, I have just been scratching my head.

…having done all else, stand. (Ephesians 6:13)

Confusion doesn’t help either. You feel so tossed and driven that you can’t tell up from down. In these moments it is best to simple stand…and wait on Him, and say, “Amen. Your will, not my will.”

The answer to my recent prayers, in the midst of this particular storm (and its a doozy) is to “Keep my eyes on Him.” Sounds easy enough, but I equate the difficulty of doing so sometimes to trying to keep one’s eye fixed on Jesus while looking through the peep hole of a door in the midst of a hurricane…Not saying it can’t be done, because He doesn’t ask us to do things that He hasn’t enabled us to do, just saying its been a struggle.

Romans 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

What makes the struggle even more difficult is not being able to see the beauty on the other side of the storm. I think about Peter when he walked on the water with Jesus. Peter began to sink when he took his eyes off of the Master and looked at the storm. The thing is, walking on water even in the sunshine requires our focus and gaze to be solidly fixed upon Him. (Matthew 14:22-33)

GE DIGITAL CAMERAThe storm however, has such a way of calling our attention away from the Giver of our peace and way from trusting His word.

Sometimes I just want to give up and walk the other way. Not walk away from Jesus, but walk away from the battle that has caused the storm, forgetting what has been promised upon completion of enduring.

Sometimes I feel rubbed raw and the peep hole to Jesus seems to shrink.

It is only by His Grace and His under girding that I continue to stay above water and keep my eyes on Him at all. My eyes stay fixed and focused because at this point He has cupped my face and put His forehead to mine.

I meditate on Hebrews 12:1-3. For the JOY that was set before Him He DESPISED THE SHAME and ENDURED THE CROSS…for me…for all of us, even though He knew so many would not receive Him, He did it anyway.

I don’t have to like my trial. Truth is I hate it, a lot. But I have to look to Him and keep looking ahead. I have to remember the Joy that is set before me. He never said it would be easy, but He promised it would be worth it.

I have to remember that my present circumstances and pains are not even worthy to be compared to the glory that shall be revealed when this is all said and done. You have to believe this for yourself as well.

You have probably heard many believers say, “I am going through.” We have to keep going to make it through. As I encourage myself not to faint, I also encourage you. Your trial is a road not the destination. Victory is ours if we just keep our eyes fixed on Him and not let go of the hope and promise, for our hope will not be failed.

Keep your eyes on Him and keep seeking His kingdom first. Everything else will fall into place, just as He said it would. (Matthew 6:33)

Psalm 20:5 May we shout for Joy in your Victory, arrayed by standards in the Name of our God. May the Lord fulfill your every wish.”

~Poiema, Poetry in Motion