The Prompter Room

For Tuesday, October 13, 2015:

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes.  Art is knowing which ones to keep.”

(Unattributed meme on Facebook)

When was the last time you colored outside the lines?

Most of us of a certain age were taught that we had to conform to the lines, that certain things had to be certain colors — skies had to be blue, the sun yellow, grass green — and if we didn’t do the ‘right’ thing, then we’d made a mistake.  Oh, how I aggravated one of my art teachers in junior high school (aka middle school now)!  I wish I’d known then what I know of Picasso, Dali, Pollock, et al, but Mrs. Rose did not like my work.  She must have known of them, of course, but she was tied to conformity.

I wish I’d known then, too, that ‘mistakes’ can also be a form of exploration, that ‘mistakes’ can give one a sense of freedom.  Yes, we have to know the rules before we can break them — an age-old writing adage — but sometimes some of us are brave enough to skip even that step.  I wasn’t with art, and it’s something I’ll always regret.

For a long time I wasn’t with writing either. The older I get, though, the more I set out to make ‘mistakes’ — or at least I give myself permission to explore — and sometimes I can see glimpses of art in the results.

When was the last time you colored outside the lines?  How about today?  If you need permission, consider it granted!


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