Well let me start from the wider perspective and then narrow it down to me, as an individual - the hard bit.
We are all creators of some sort. We all create something, whether its mathematical equations, latte art or architectural designs. What we use to create, i.e. numbers, coffee and pencils, ENABLE us to make. They are our means to express, therefore, we cannot be defined by the object we choose to create with, however, can be categorised by them. We can state if we specialise in a material, technique or subject, but these subjects and titles don't then define our creator-ship either. We are closer to answering 'what makes me a creator' based on what we choose to create.
I categorise my creator-ship as a visual and conceptual design. I utilise illustration, design and poetry. What INSPIRES me as a creator is my daily experiences, my surroundings, my growing self-knowledge (great book by School of Life), and the chance of being put here to exist in this specific time. I am interested in human psychology and our ability to think, judge, perceive, assume, predict, aspire and be inspired. I then respond to my human experience, emotions, thoughts and narratives, through graphical paintings, 'design-drawings' and paintings. But these interests INSPIRE me to create, they don't make me a creator. In fact, to ask myself why do these interests inspire me, may offer more answers.
Inspirations aren't necessarily 'chosen', they kind of choose you. They're probably more connected to the idea of association, how we connect and relate things to our past based on familiarity, comfort and immediate emotional reaction. My particular interest in psychology and learning of self, is largely from observing the domestic relationships throughout my upbringing, and my experiences around them. My biggest realisation was accepting that my past-self has a lot to answer for my current-self, just as my current-self will have a lot to answer for future Lizzie. The fascinating journey of getting to know who you are, is that you have to start with who you were and where you've come from, whilst considering where you want to go. The good and the bad from my upbringing is a common source of inspiration for many creatives, and no matter how similar they may of been, everyone will express themselves in different ways. Even so, individual experiences should never be shunned as irrelevant or not-as-worthy as another because they will always be a significant part of you.
The style I choose to best express myself can be viewed in many ways; contemporary, graphic, simplistic, minimal, hard edge, concrete etc. My choice to turn to this kind of art was totally genuine, from a place within. I began by challenging myself to leave my meticulous, over-analytical self behind and just create authentically, automatically and instinctively. What I create are not only pieces I liked aesthetically, but are also a process and objects which ignite a physiological response in my body of absolute relief and satisfaction. This emotional release of chemicals I had induced myself was a clear sign of the type of creator I was becoming.
My drawing talent has been apparent from a young age, but just as Picasso could draw amazing realistic forms, he chose to follow a style that matched his ideas of self-expression. He chose what satisfied his ideas and communicated his vision, hence his successful choice to paint abstract, bold and expressive forms. Our physiological response to the subject of what we want to re-create and our methods of artistically representing them, better defines our creator-ship, than our technique/style.
Some people are more moved by colour than others, some are more moved by suffering than others, some are more moved by books than films. Now I look at the answer to this question differently. Now I see that whilst we all differ, being categorised is not a negative thing. For example, there are many feminist, activist illustrators who use Posca pens who can be found under these categories, and their individually lived experiences have brought them to such subjects. These individual life experiences we often disregard within ourselves as unimportant 'in the grand scheme of things' or 'compared to another'. But it is this collective of experiences and ideas which make a movement and prove that such categories have purpose to exist. And no feminist should want to remove or dispart him/herself from a movement for the sake of being 'original'. Being a part of a group beautifully made up of unique experiences should be motivating, because without your members, it would most likely suffice to exist.
I guess, I'm not sure which group I am a part of yet. Something around self-reflection, poetic narratives, and emotional acknowledgement. I comment on social injustices of people and the environment, I talk about my worries and confessions, my good, my bad and to-be-improved self. I mostly talk about me with the aim of getting to know myself better. So I guess...
What makes me a creator is that I don't know myself yet.
So with every passing day, I continue to listen to myself and my actions, continue to learn, change and keep creating in response. Never narrowing, always refining.
I also acknowledge this daily new me will never be solely personal. She will be shaped by her surroundings, experiences, what she sees, hears and smells, who she interacts with, the colours, the weather etc. In addition to this Lizzie's thoughts, reactions and emotions of the day, these will always be a conscious and subconscious inspiration to her art. The moments of pause which see beauty in silence and in chaos. Having those moments to stop and be within myself. Allow my outer-ears to muffle and my inner-ears to absorb all sense of hearing. To listen to me, to see me as a viewer of myself (a very buddhist meditative idea). To understand there is no correct or consistent way to feel, but to also recognise the triggers in my world which allow such behaviours to arise.
I use these inspirations and ideas to be a visual and conceptual creator.
Thank you for reading,
Now off to The School of Life Shop near Russell Square to meet my best friend, read and start showing my face before asking for a job there constantly until they give me one!
Have a great day!