Sometimes you have to try something new

I watched “Birth of the Cool” last night on PBS. It’s a documentary about Miles Davis. He has always been one of my favorite jazz artists, however I knew very little about him. This was a man who was not afraid to try something new. It became his trademark you might say. His life was not easy and he was not a perfect human, however he was truly the essence of creativity.
I have always felt that creativity has to flow, it changes and evolves and moves just like water. If it gets dammed up it stagnates and it dies.

“Sometimes you have to play along time to play like yourself.”

Miles Davis

I have been doing a lot to try to change my life lately and yet my creative energy has been somewhat stagnate. I can’t find the right flow and that feels a bit scary. And I don’t feel like “I am playing like myself” these days.

I have been trying new things. I found a book called “You Are an Artist, Assignments to spark Creativity” by Sarah Urist Green the other day and I am starting to take one idea a week and see how it can change my perspective and how I create. And as I said before, I am working digitally in Illustrator as well as traditionally on paper and just trying new ideas and new ways of seeing things, and making things. Opening my mind to new methods.
Last week I mentioned the idea of creating jungle animals in Illustrator starting with a lion. I have been working on this for the last week and the techniques are evolving daily. Here are some of the stages it has been through and I think it is still evolving.

Yesterday I read a creative brief for a job that talked about torn paper layering for ad creation and I wasn’t sure what that was, however, I love the torn edges of paper and I often use paper with torn or deckled edges for my art. I wondered if it could be created in Illustrator and I could totally imagine this lion being made of layers of torn paper. I found a couple of tutorials online, I followed them and I figured out a version of it for my lion. I love it! It has a loose and freer style then the drawings I have been doing and it really makes me happy to look at it. It feels fun.

I have always wanted to do a children’s book and this might be the medium I would want to use for that.

“Don’t play what’s there; play what’s not there”

Miles Davis

How is this improving my life, my future you say? I don’t know that it will. That’s not really the point is it? Building something new takes experimentation, you can’t know what you love or what you need unless you try new things, especially if what you are currently doing is not working. If nothing else this gives me new skills in using a tool called Illustrator which are key to employment opportunities right now for me.

Where is this blog going?

What I’m hearing from many of you is that what I write is inspiring you to think about your own lives and change. This is very exciting and I feel honored that I am able to give you that! So here is one last quote from Miles that I can leave you with.

“My future starts when I wake up every morning. Every day I find something creative to do with my life. “

Miles Davis

And you can too.

Have a Happy Day


The quotes in this blog are from Miles Davis and GoodReads is my source.

Published by cherylmcdonald

Thank you for taking a little time to get to know me. Making art has been my life, I love to tell stories through words and pictures. I am a multi-media artist working in photography, watercolor, various drawing media, and sometimes digital art.

4 thoughts on “Sometimes you have to try something new

  1. Our chat yesterday and reading today’s blog makes me think, it’s never too late to shift gears and try something new! Thank you for sharing your wonderful talents with us, you truly are an inspiration!!

    Liked by 1 person

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