This extraordinary set of powers we learn to suppress as we get older and allow life to get in the way. It happens to most of us, we forget that we are born with this incredible power and ability. We slowly allow it to fall away from what we believe we are capable of. Without imagination, we would live in a world without ideas. Imagination allows us to be different from the rest of the living things on earth and to create something that a moment before it never existed.
For many years I taught parents and teachers the skill and art of face painting as an entertainment. I was lucky enough to travel to many parts of the world doing this, working in faraway places with students from the US, Bermuda, Australia and painting with children in Tanzania. In every class, there were always a number of adults who would joke with me about their lack of artistic talent. Over the course of their instruction, I have witnessed moments where they would enter a zone and creativity was once again remembered. They would start creating free-flowing designs and allowing a free spirit loose that would uplift their confidence and creativity.
I always found it remarkable that educationalists have this knack of putting the expressive arts to the bottom of the scale of education, sticking to the three R’s which is great if we all want to end up living our life working in a factory production line.
Why should we allow our creativity to be locked away? Now proven to be detrimental to our health and mental needs, the three R’s could stand for Reading-Writing and Ritalin. The evidence is there in the research. A university study that looked at degree majors for leaders of companies in the Silicon Valley shows that only 40% were for maths, engineering, and science, however, 60% were in arts and humanities. So, is IT a science or an art as some would suggest?
Do educationalists think that our imaginations are only linked to producing creative art?
Of course, creativity is not just for artists, Imagination is not just for writers, poets and actors. We are all born visionaries and if we do not use this power, we become blinded to the power of our capabilities. Our education system is at fault here which leads to panic amongst parents who become focused on getting their kids to pass exams and fit into a mould.
But what happens to those of us who do not fit into the mould that society wants to squeeze us into? Those who have dared to be different and refuse to stay with the script. Well, that is easy to answer.
They are the visionaries, the dreamers, the futurists, the thinkers, the theorists, the problem solvers. They make things happen because they are not afraid to follow a path never taken.
You only have to look at the successful people, the world has produced. who refused to not fit in and dropped out of education. They have achieved using creative thinking and by not passing grades. For a lot of people who are faced with boundaries, the lack of exam passes restricts their way forward. They are made to believe they are not good enough. Society misses out on some amazing opportunities. If it could just open its eyes to those people who have retained their power of imagination and give them the value they deserve.
Somebody once wrote; imagination is our final sanctuary. It can also be our safe place, where peace exists, and love can flourish.
In order to have imagination, you must learn to become a visionary. There is an image in your mind. Add some colour to paint the picture and words to become the building blocks of a scene, from there you craft the illusion and from there you can make it real. Starting in your sub-conscious, where commitment and belief sets you on your journey, you decide who you want to be, what you want to achieve, and you stick to it. Closing this door creates a barrier to a life of future and better things to come. If we cannot see it, how can it ever exist.
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Working alongside artists in the Art Cafe has confirmed how we are all so different. We have events running every month in The Jalon Valley and would love you to Join us. If you are an artist who would like to showcase your work please get in touch with me so we can arrange a meeting.