My illustrations are a reflection of my inner child. I can remember drawing my own characterizations of animals since I was in Kindergarten. When I was in the first grade I won a poster contest about listening. I drew animals with big ears. When the teacher announced to the entire class that I had won, I heard a classmate say, “We all know her Dad drew it.” I was horrified and heart broken. It’s true my Dad can draw, but he didn’t help me, not one bit. Already being fearfully shy, I didn’t know how to express my distress over the comment and began crying right there in front of everyone. Over the years I have realized how precious our creative lives are to us. I try to express this vulnerability as well as beauty in my art. My intention as an artist and writer is to encourage people to express themselves creatively and become more resilient to criticism, especially that dreadful inner-critic.
How are you using your creative life? Do you feel like you have one? I’d like to reassure you right now that you do. When was the last time you engaged in a creative project just for the joy of it? Sometimes I feel like we put so much pressure on ourselves to create something amazing that we never even start. It’s true there are a lot of amazing creations out there. The other side of this truth is that these things were created because a whole lot of other things (things that may not have been so great) were created first. So, take the pressure off yourself and create something for the pure joy of it. No expectations. Just joy.
Bonnie Kelso writes and illustrates books that celebrate diversity, creativity, and all the special qualities that make each of us unique.
Vitalize Your Creative Life is a workbook based on a series of classes I designed based on creating from the energetic space of your inner child. In this workbook, I encourage you to rediscover the creative kid inside of you by coloring, scribbling, and even drawing stick figures. This is a very approachable book for people who want to begin exploring their creative life in a playfully spiritual way. Read more…