The arts have long been a significant part of my life. I currently spend five nights a week creating and promoting art in various forms; visual, musical, culinary, wrting, and even dance. There are a few lessons I'd like to share out that I've learned from my experiences over the last few years.
What you create matters. It is not enough simply that you create art in some form, though I do believe that everyone should. Whenever I'm creating, I have a continuous thought repeating in the back of my mind, "everything means something". Whether or not it was intended to, every stroke of the brush, every step of a dance, every word in a story, means something. It can hold the meaning of the purpose you give it, or it can hold the meaning of your apathy to do so. This touches on a topic for another journal, that good art should wreak of layers upon layers of intention. It's the kind of creation that should require time to study and urge the desire to do so.
Where you create matters. The arts, in every form, were meant to be shared and enjoyed with other people, and this needs to happen in order for any kind of significance to be in your work. A masterpiece hidden away in a closet was a waste of an artists time; it means nothing beyond the memory of the individual who created it. For many artists, this means getting over fear of judgement to put your work out there. I have no advice on how to do that. Just get over it, I guess. Your worst judge is yourself, as you've already judged your work and decided it wasn't worthwhile to even share with others. I think it's sad, and a terrible misconception of the meaning of art. The things is, none of this is about judging, with the exception of actual competetions.
This is why it matters. Art is culture. The paintings, songs, stories, and whatever else we create today are forming the culture we live in and will curve the course of the future. If you create terrible art, you create terrible culture. If you're making unintentional art without meaning and significance, that's the kind of culture you're creating; unintentional, without meaning and insignificant. The the kind of world you will live in. But, it works the other way too. The culture we are making can be curved and shaped in any direction as it grows through the art we create. It's much more than making a pleasant aesthetic or good sound. What we create changes the world around us. I can promote values like honor and respect through the way I dance with someone. I can alter someone's mood with a song. I can shape opinions through stories. I can inspire adventures with an image.
Think about it the next time you create something artistic.
Everything means something.