There’s something special about the act of creating. It’s unlike any other feeling in the world. Bringing something new and worthwhile and beautiful into the world with your own two hands. Whatever the artistic endeavor, woodworking, painting, sculpting, quilting, there’s an amazing feeling that comes with holding something tangible in your hands that you created.
In today’s world of technology and fast-paced living, quality items made by hand are rare. Everything is automated and produced by machines. We are losing the ability and the skills to work with our hands to create. Working with one’s hands used to be an everyday occurrence, but it’s become rare, an anomaly to most people. With everything produced by machines, they lose value, and we lose appreciation for the true value of things. When you create something by hand, you realize the time, the skill, and the attention that it takes instead of having it roll off the assembly line and fall apart a few weeks later.
When you create something by hand, and this is true of any artistic endeavor, it has an effect on you as a person. Just as you’re creating your piece, the work is slowly and subtly changing you as well. It takes an amazing amount of skill to turn a wooden bowl, piece together a quilt, or craft a novel, and that skill does not appear overnight. It’s something you have to work for and keep training and practicing. This practice slowly creates traits like perseverance and patience and determination. None of these appear when you pick something up off the shelf in a store. These are valuable and worthwhile traits that are essential for our world and are slowly being lost. The feeling of accomplishment when you finish a project and can sit back and look at it and think, I made that, is a feeling we should hold onto.
Our lives are filled with hurry and the desire for everything to be instantaneous, but building up these skills to be able to create something wonderful slows us down so we don’t miss the amazing things in this world as life whirls by around us. Maintaining our creative endeavors has to be intentional, and I encourage you to cultivate yours, whatever it may be, and let it flourish.
By Melissa Blakely