Pain. It is an artist’s muse. Though we hate what it is does to our physical being, loss of appetite, sleep, and the list goes on, a small part of us cannot help be fascinated by it because of the kind of work we are able to produce.
Artists thrive and feed off of emotional energy. Sadness, for me, is the most powerful emotion of all and as a result of dealing with it, I find myself creating my best art. I joke with my friends that I can only paint when I am in the extreme depths of sadness. Though I joke, I know that there is a grain of truth. It is a curse. I wonder whether I subconsciously crave these extreme emotions for inspiration?
It is as if I have a self-destructive, almost morbid force that makes me attract pain. Perhaps that explains why I subconsciously chase emotionally unavailable men with intense passion so that I can experience the fall. I am not sure, but it sure explains a lot about myself.
I both hate and love this part of me. Sometimes I wish I could always have a wall and protect myself from emotional vulnerability. I literally do not know how to do so though. I mean can artists create work that touches people on an emotional level, if we ourselves do not experience it to a heightened degree? Would we connect to that song, to that movie, to that painting if the source of its inspiration were not real? Perhaps this explains why countless artists are depressed, on drugs, or die young?
I am conflicted. I just hope that I do not subconsciously walk around with an invisible sign that says, please hurt me because I embrace it. That would suck royally. But perhaps that is what artists are here for. We are here to help the world recognize and bring to perspective through art, the mysteries of these so-called emotions that define and make us who we are. Maybe it IS a curse, but I would like to think of it as a gift.
What do you think?