For as long as I remember I have been creative. Most children are; creating pasta and fingerprint art for their loved ones, coming up with their own stories and role-playing with their toys and just letting their imaginations run wild. Some children, however, retain that courage to create into their teens and adulthood and some even make careers out of it.
I'm not sure what sparked it in me, but I grew up as the "artistic one" writing and illustrating my own stories and drawing whenever I could. As I grew I learned that my father used to draw and my aunt wrote poetry. Now as an adult I see how creativity had manifested in my other family members through photography, dance, cooking, and even seamstressing. I guess you could say it is in my blood.
Over the years my creativity has been mainly expressed through writing and drawing. During my teen years, I filled several notebooks to the brim with poetry writing a total of over 300 poems. I also became obsessed with journaling, filling 7 journals with my innermost thoughts and feelings. I remember one year for my birthday I BEGGED my mother to buy me this Italian leather journal. The next year, having filled the original one, I begged her to get me another but this time in red. You could say I was somewhat of a nerd, and hey, I still am but I would not want to be anything else. I am passionate about creating things to put out into the world and enjoy challenging myself and learning new things. Visual art, in particular, has a very unique way of challenging a person as you can read and study as many books as you want but without actually practicing that skill, you will never get better. This is also somewhat frustrating as it can take years to get to a level that is personally acceptable and you can spend your life developing your craft and never feel like a true master. But I am always up for a challenge so decided to make creating into a career.
As a professional creative, I find that I have spent the last several years creating for others but not for myself. I became so caught up in building skills for jobs and clients that I let creating become a...dare I say it...job. After giving my all from 8-5 and then running a freelance business during nights and weekends I had nothing left for myself AND I compounded this by making excuses every chance I got. "I am too tired", "I am burnt out". And while both of these statements were true I had no one to blame but myself. I allowed the world to take away the joy of creating because I did not set boundaries and I was running a race I thought I had to run to be "successful"...whatever that is. But luckily I have come to a major realization. I am in control of my creativity.
I choose how much to give when to give and if I even want to give at all. I have learned that not because a project presents itself means I have to jump at it. I can be picky. I deserve to be picky. Because for me creativity is not just a job. It is my literal lifeline. You know those Snickers commercials? "You're not you when you're hungry"? Well, I am not me if I am not creating. And for me to carve out time to create for myself that means have to be selective in working with clients, I have to set boundaries and stick to them, I have to insist on deadlines that fit MY schedule and not allow others to rush me or try to make me fit within their calendars and I have to just say no sometimes out of self-preservation. I have to surround myself with people that VALUE my creativity and realize that this isn't just a hobby or a career, it is my life. And I can't feel guilty about that anymore, I refuse.
So here we are. Welcome to my blog about a Creative Crucian, me. Here I hope to showcase my creativity in all the forms it takes; graphic design, painting, drawing, writing, cooking, gaming. I also hope to focus mainly on how growing up Caribbean, more specifically Crucian has shaped my creativity. I am excited to finally make this a reality and hope you will follow me on this journey.
The Creative Crucian