• Carolyn Land

Finding the New Normal

Go into yourself and test the deeps in which your life takes rise; at its source you will find the answer to the question whether you must create.”                                                      Rainer Maria Rilke

Cosmic Symphony

Cosmic Symphony                        Mixed Media


We all come into times of challenge in life for many different reasons, not just this pandemic, and they throw us off our course. In the end it is not the challenge that will be remembered, but how it was handled.  Sometimes its good and other times, you look back at and say; “What was I thinking”? The moral dilemma of, “I woulda, shoulda, coulda?”

Most artists always lament that they do not have enough time to do all they want. Yet, here we just had a block of time and many of us filled it by doing nonessentials that we really had no passion for just to keep busy. I know! I have “iPad thumb”.  Yes, it was relaxing and easy to play word and block games on my iPad to escape. And, my iPad was also my connector to my family, friends, and students.

I guess that life altering events do that to us. They make us fill time during the gaps in life, when there is that absence of fixed elements in what was our daily life.  Perhaps it is the difference between the kind of something that we are used to doing, and the new “normal” we are moving into. We are all anxious about it.  But, I know I do not want to just fill time anymore.

I am passionate about creating, about playing with, textures, colors, shapes, and lines.  I see these elements in everything I look at; the miniature cosmos of aliveness on the moss of a rock, in the refection of light on the foam at shores edge, or in the texture that runs up and down a tree and makes patterns in the bark.

I love the feeling I get when I am playing around with these art elements and arranging them into something new.  Without being able to create art, to practice this passion I love, in some form in my life, there really is a void. I read this line about love and passion by Ottessa Moshfegh this week.  “Without it, life is just doing time”…Idle busyness.

Making art, teaching art, writing about the creative process are important to me and I need to adjust these things to the new normal.  It seems many of us are in the same position…carving a place for our passion and our work in a different setting. I know that having a positive orientation towards change will help us all get through this and establish a new normal we can live with.

First however, we have to know and accept what things we can control, and what we can’t.  We need to recognize that disruptions are going to occur, and that by being creative and innovative; which may entail learning new things, we can initiate a plan. There is no one right way to do something anymore. This “new normal” requires us to reach deep down and find our inner strength, and do our best.

Is your creativity alive and well?   Have you found a place for your passion in the new normal?  Share your thoughts with us.  Stay safe. Carolyn

Every human has four endowments – self awareness, conscience, independent will, and creative imagination. These give us the ultimate human freedom… The power to choose, to respond, to change.” Stephen Covey

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