Sunday, June 25th 2017
Aug
2010
25

Discovering my artist’s way

Artists aren’t an “elite” breed; we ALL have the capacity to grow spiritually through creative pursuits

BY CYNDI INGLE — Remember the INXS song from the late 80’s, The Devil Inside?

Well I have a new take on the theme of that title: we all have an artist inside — and lately, I’ve discovered mine.

It all started when I got a new memory card for the sweet little Olympus digital camera I’ve been using for the past six years. Suddenly instead of being able to take 30 measly photos at a time, I could fire off a mind-blowing 3,500!

Not only did it give a new meaning to the phrase from American Beauty, Kodak Moment :) , it’s opened up a whole new universe of artistic freedom and ultimately, self-realization, to me.

This purchase meshed perfectly with a recent resolution to get out of my office for an actual lunch break at least three times a week. With a renewed interest in self-expression, I decided to explore the city I work in, snapping images as I strolled.

Walking around the downtown core of a metropolis which is transitioning from a manufacturing economy to one focused on education, healthcare, and arts and culture provides for many surreal juxtapositions.

Point-and-click skyward: century-old architectural adorns buildings. Ground-level: hidden treasure (or not-so-hidden trash).

shades-of-greyA brief collection of what I’ve discovered, courtesy of my fellow citizens:

* A pile of randomly arranged socks
* DVD porn, hidden in a snow drift
* A veritable panorama of “Beware of dog!” and one “Beware of Wife” signs
* The beautiful girls of Hamilton

Who knew that I’d also find a bong carved from an apple, or a culvert covered in obscene graffiti near my relatively upscale home?

My work-day photography journeys are really a form of meditation (although since I’m strolling around a city with crack issues, my mind watches my back :)

What I enjoy is the solitude of exploring at a natural pace. I’m present, and living for this moment, not dwelling on the past or thinking about the future.

Sometimes the scenes I shoot boost that sense. Recently, I visited a 200-year-old cemetery, which radiated an ethereal beauty and presence.

The photo at left shows one of its mournfully angelic statues, set among both blooming and decaying flowers.

This photo session sparked even more creativity.

Afterwards I used some of my cemetery photos, old jewelry, tarot cards, fabric and a metal box to create a shrine-like installation called “Say Yes to Everything.”

As I crafted, “Say Yes,” I realized that self-discovery creeps up when you least expect it.

A little self-truth: while I’m taking photos as a medium of self-expression, I’m also doing it to stroke my ego.  After returning from a photography pilgrimage my ritual is to rush to download the photos to my computer, post on Facebook, and email links to my friends and acquaintances. I enjoy the positive comments that flow back.

Developing a deeply-personal art has allowed me to rediscover an intimacy with my own curiosity and creative gene (a spark we all share). It doesn’t matter if we have formally studied art, are making money from it, or are defined by others as an “artist.” I believe an artist is inside of every living being.

Aboriginal people world-wide recognize this hard-wiring in humans much more than we in the industrialized world.  Each member of the tribe participates in singing, dancing and playing instruments.

Let’s embrace our birthright to express ourselves in the artistic form of our choice. As well as immediately making you more present, welcoming art into your life can be a healing experience that will propel you along a path to self-discovery. I’ve started to amble down that path, and it all began with a simple memory card!

Lately, I’ve been becoming more interested in taking photos of people, and in September 2010 hosted my first photography exhibit!  Check out the video that I created of my work.

It’s all a continuum of artistic expression that continues to grow.

Cyndi is the Community Manager for Soul’s Code and also works at the Hamilton Training Advisory Board as Project and Communications Coordinator.   She enjoys eating cheese, drinking wine and keeping it real in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.  Connect with her on facebook.

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15 Comments on “Discovering my artist’s way”

  1. I enjoyed reading this very much. I visited a folk artist on Whidbey Island, Washington, whose home was literally covered in her folk art. To those of us who are led to create, it is good to find others in the flow of their inner lives manifesting into different forms of art.

    Your writing style is crisp and simple. I like it.

  2. Cyndi you really made a impact with your story.

    It really hit home for me. That's pretty much exactly why I take my photographs.

    It's my expression of the way I see my city I call home.

    Great work !

  3. Really well written, keep up the good work, Cyndi.

  4. I see photography as a "way of seeing". Taking photographs and sharing them as you do on facebook can be less "egoic" then "mentoring". I rarely "manipulate" photos except to heighten color or contrast. They become a way of helping myself and others to see the world more deeply, to notice relationships (like the way a lone tree sets off a golden hillside or a wall of glass reflects another building). It IS meditation, heightening awareness. Keep it up!

  5. Spot on! Nice article, Cyndi!

  6. Yay Cyndi! Great article and art, and I totally get it. I've always lamented the fact everyone gets to play with arts and crafts in grade school, but in the real world it's so often only the official "artists" who do. Ever walk through an arts supplies store? Kindergarten heaven! I just got back from a vacation at the cottage where I painted pretty colours on driftwood, painted a picture on a rock, and carved a landscape in a bar of soap.

    Have fun!

  7. I have a friend who is a talented professional photographer who is unfortunately also quite elitist about it... as if you can only capture an interesting moment or special subject if you have been to school for photography. My opinion was the opposite... "what about the art?" was my point. It's about artistry, creative expression, and like you said, sharing with people who will appreciate it. All you need is an eye for interesting details and you can capture some fantastic images!!

  8. I thought the article is true about discovering the artist inside. I believe we get caught up with everyday things and mishaps that we take life for granted. Most artist' live life through their spiritual eye, but I believe when we connect with our inner child through art we discouver a world that is beautiful and harmonious. A compassionate spirit is reborn and a cynical spirit leaves. Life is than appreciated by it's simplicity and beatuy. That is what I noticed through the photographs not only are they beautiful but they speak out. Well done!

  9. Great site and great article on the “artist in you”… makes me want to post my 6378 images!!

    Keep on writing..it’s wonderful.

  10. Good work, Cyndi!

  11. Cyndi - love the article. I have had a passion for photography since 18 and with my new camera, I've found my artistic groove too, or again. What we have inside is deep.

  12. Your article and insights are great Cyndi! Exactly how I view photography now... the digital revolution is FANtastic!

  13. Well done Cyndi ! WELL DONE !!!!!!!!

    I'm proud of you

  14. I enjoyed reading this as well. I've been wanting to take pictures also, but I just haven't, I think I should start. There really is no time like the present :)

  15. Fantastic sharing.

    Thank you for the inspiration.

    Prayers to you in your path

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