• Carolyn Land

TheMotivation Factor

“With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts”. Eleanor Roosevelt

Human beings are not born with a passive default mode.  Just as we are all born with the ability to create, it is in our nature to want and to move in a direction of something we desire and deem valuable. Motivation reflects something unique about each one of us and allows us to gain a valued outcome.

Restorative Calm

Restorative Calm


When we move in the direction of something we want and enjoy, it gives us a sense of wellbeing, personal growth, and a sense of purpose. If we are moved and enjoy what we do, we are intrinsically motivated.

When we couple intrinsic motivation with our creative selves, we find joy in what we do, and the work comes from our “heart”.  That is what should be inherent when we create. If we are doing it more for the external motivation, accolades, awards, and dollar value, it is probably going to be missing the “heart”; which is so important to creative work.

So where exactly does your creative motivation come from?  That is different for all of us.

It was a difficult week for me.  I had to make difficult choices.  I cancelled several workshops I was to teach later this Spring and my upcoming class. It was bittersweet in that I love what I do.  I enjoy meeting new people, building relationships with other “creatives” and I love seeing how other creative minds work.  I will miss that.  However, a reward came in the form of very warm notes of thanks for what I had done in the past. I sincerely appreciated those kind words.

A question came up from several people regarding motivation, ideas, and group support.  Then bloomed from them, the idea of a virtual “painting starter” and critique.  I will give that some thought.  But I want to share this…

We all have things we love to do, or places we love to go because they mean a great deal to us.  They bring us joy.  That is where you find your motivation. It is not in a class or workshop. Your motivation is what brings you to those places. Its that thing you need to express and you want to learn ways to let it out.

My motivation for creating stems from all things “nature”. I can walk out the front door in the morning and see a piece of a palm tree on the ground, and its lines, fibers, flecks of decay, become an abstract painting in my mind.  It is the lines, shapes, textures, of the natural elements that motivate my creative process.  All I need to do is walk in nature and I see all kinds of painting ideas.

Every artist must find that thing that excites them and become remarkably familiar with it. One exercise if you are stuck is: Close your eyes, take deep breaths, go to a place you want to be, and daydream. When you are done with this relaxing exercise, jot down what you remember most about the mental vacation you took.  After doing this a few times you will start to see a pattern. What is the feeling in that magic place you escape to? What is the subject you return to?  We all need to find our muse!  If you know what motivates you and understand why you are motivated and inspired by it, it will be easier to let ideas start and flow.

Stay safe, well, and create from what you love.  Carolyn

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