Encouragement: A High Calling
"From the fruit of his lips a man enjoys good things..." Proverbs 13:2
Another kind of influence (see The Process Of Originality), and to me the most important kind to a creative person’s life and work, is encouragement. I don’t discount the other artistically molding experiences of course--they are important--but to touch someone’s heart to the degree that they are inspired to go further is indeed a high calling.
I look back in regret sometimes and think about the things I’ve said just as a joke. To someone struggling to accomplish, struggling to go further, the humor is lost; it is, in fact, taken to heart. I used to think that my words didn’t matter, that what I said would not be taken seriously. But, truth is, words do matter. We are a sponge, even as adults we soak in what people say.
If you lose your vulnerability to being hurt by criticism, you lose the very vulnerability that makes you able to be an artist. Julianna McCarthy
I know as artists we are supposed to try and shield ourselves from negativity, but that is impossible to do entirely. To be human is to be vulnerable.
I look back also and think about the people who have encouraged me. There have been many and I am thankful beyond words for these wonderful souls, and because of their influence, I strive to do the same in my life
Recommended Reading: Kirsty Hall's Up All Night Again