Finding Your Creative Voice. 
Be the Architect of your Future: Issue 21
12th October 2020

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Paul Fairweather 2020
Hi <<First Name>>
Welcome to my 21st Newsletter. Leading up to the momentous number 21, I had a few weeks off to collect my thoughts. This issue is about finding your creative voice.
The illustrations this week hark back to a series called "Everyman" (formally Fat Men Dancing). 

“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” — Vincent van Gogh

And episode 9 of The Common Creative Podcast is now available!
"In Tune with Creativity"
The Common Creative
My next online INGENIOUS LEADERSHIP masterclass is a lunchtime short course, pun intended. Only $59.
All you can think  buffet of inspiring ideas. 
Finding your Creative Voice


Do you remember the feeling you had when you raised your hand in class to make a suggestion?  Or the very moment when you posted a love letter and the envelope dropped into the postbox? When you pushed the button for your first (and maybe every) social media post? It is the feeling you get when you first show someone a drawing, or share an idea, or build up the courage to suggest your view in a meeting. It is when you hold up both your arms and say, “Look at me!”  The feeling is hard to describe, but I think that almost everyone has experienced it. It is not simply fear,  though it can be debilitating. The closest word I can come up with is Frisson: 

A sudden strong feeling of excitement or fear; a thrill.

Frisson is the feeling that is both a combination of fear and excitement. It is at the pivotal point of every creative process when you put yourself out into the world.

At the moment of pushing the button, opening your sketchbook to someone, stepping up to the mic to make a speech or sing a song, you are in a state of suspended possibility. How is this going to work out? It is at this moment that the emotional state changes and there is a need to dig deep into self-belief.

From that moment, how the world perceives your work is, to a great degree, beyond your control. Of course, you have a better chance of success if you target your concept to your tribe or known market, but ultimately the great unwashed is a fickle mob. You are only as good as your last success.

The Agony and the Ecstacy Watercolour 
Paul Fairweather   2020

Once you expose your creative self to the world, ultimately you may have little or no influence on how you will be perceived by it. Now is the moment when you need to dig deep into self-belief, but what if you get a positive, negative or possibly the worst scenario, no response at all? As Oscar Wilde said: 

‘There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.’

The trick is to maintain a healthy dose of self-belief and move forward. Take on board the feedback, but don't let it define you. Dig deep, even if you get a great response, and ask the question, “Is what I have put out into the world a true reflection of my creative essence?”  Now is the time to stand Akimbo to make yourself appear bigger, to show a certain level of arrogance, to say that you are ready for whatever is going to come back to you.

Akimbo Watercolour
Paul Fairweather 2020

At times, there are successful artists of all types who abandon a hugely successful style that their audience is begging for because their work has moved on. On the flip side, there are endless stories of artists who have pursued work that was appreciated by no-one or a tiny audience, often to become hugely successful after their deaths.

The Australian children’s book author Paul Jennings received a polite rejection for a magazine article he submitted when he was 13 and didn’t have the courage to submit or publish anything else for 25 years.

David Byrne, the frontman of Talking Heads, was rejected from the middle school choir because they said he sang off-key. 

Sadly my own experience was closer to Jennings rather than Bynes, and during the dress rehearsal for a school musical, I was singled out and told that I was singing flat, and I had to mine. As a result of that public humiliation, it was decades before I had the courage to try again, sadly with a very similar effect. It took another decade or two before I reached a moment of frisson and set about finding my voice.

So La Watercolour
Paul Fairweather 2020

This week in ‘The Common Creative’ podcast, Chris Meredith and I explore the idea of frisson via a story about my journey in learning to sing.

This short lunch course offers a healthy serving of   Clever, Inventive and Original Leadership skills with a side of Creative Thinking.
Wednesday 4th November 2020 12.00 pm to 1.00 pm
“Thank you Paul Fairweather for showing me that anyone can open their mind to achieve anything when they put their mind to it. I now have some creative confidence and this has assisted me in thinking harder on other possibilities. Like achieving my personal goals in a more creative way outside my normal directional thought and processes”.

         Ralph Woods

“The creative energy behind the detail Paul provided was a refreshing change to training sessions I’ve been involved in the past. I gained quite an insight into how to think differently and how to plan for my future both professionally and privately to achieve the goals I set. I enjoyed the involvement in the workshop and felt I gained clarity on how to tackle the pragmatic challenges whilst considering a creative vision for a better future.”

        Tania Coward



I’m here to help, whenever you’re ready!

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