Creativity begets creativity – one woman’s story…

Creativity begets creativity – one woman’s story…

This is simply an amazing story that really cannot be summed up with any one title… but from my perspective its about creativity and what happens when you use it like a muscle….

Many years ago now, I facilitated a collage workshop… I credit collage with opening a window into the collective creative consciousness… and I recognise its power and its potential for acting as a bridge from here to there….. so when this new student – a  willowy charismatic woman named BJ walked in, little did I realise what she would bring to my life – I did not know then that she was in fact a soul sister, a kindred creative spirit that I would share a certain crazy sense of humour with. She was very creative yet she had taken a very different path in her life and given herself entirely over to the role of Mother – this workshop I think represented the beginning of reclaiming herself and her creativity.

She was a little apprehensive about the workshop,  and when I asked her about her previous creative pursuits she talked to me about quilting of all things. This did not resonate with me at all and I really didn’t get the vibe from her that this was at all her thing. She explained that her background was actually in theatre – so I knew she had a well of creativity within her but that door had not been opened for a long time.

But Collage did for her what it had done for me. It was a catalyst. It was like being led to the doorway of another realm – that realm was all about possibilities and infinite creative expansion. Who would think that a bit of glue and paper could hold that kind of power but it does. Some people find it in watercolours, posca pens or oil pastels – but my tribe seem to find it in paper and glue.

So the delightful BJ Long began her creative journey and she really excelled at this lovely naïve, intuitive style of art making. I have watched her develop over the years, he confidence growing slowly but there is always a process she goes through that involves her trademark one third meltdown where she will tell you she doesn’t know here she is going with it – she’s getting better these days as she recognises this staged process better and doesn’t give it too much of her energy… her style is raw, organic and textural but always involves a deeply meaningful story.

About a year ago, she embarked on the beginnings of her first major exhibition with two fellow artists who’s work resonated with her. The body of work that she created centred around her spiritual process and the honouring of women. In the process of creating this work, there became a very strong pull for BJ to begin to write. With a background as a performer, BJ loves the story telling process and what transpired throughout the lead up to her exhibition was a fully developed one woman play called “I am a Circle”… throughout this time, she also established a women’s circle. The aim of the circle was to bring women together in a modern day version of the red tent, where they could share, cry, grow, chant, laugh, cry and celebrate the sisterhood. I know BJ has told me that she used my own difficult experience around this time as a motivator to create the circle, but I suspect it would have happened anyway. But I an forever thankful to her for her compassion and kindness and acknowledgment.

What is so amazing is that the more BJ practiced creativity – the more that creativity came to her. It came from such a honourable place that is seemed to be delivered to her in abundance. The incredible Sarasvati – Hindu goddess of creativity bestows this gift when it is honoured. And I believe that is what BJ is doing. She is creating from a place of ‘giving’ and her reward is to receive this flow of creativity that pours out its natural energy…. BJ and I, when we spend time together, seem to experience a joint creative expansion…. ideas pour out of us like an overflowing vessel… we co-created The Creative Activists together, which was an ambitious altruistic ideology that neither of us had the attention to detail required to really get it off the ground but the power of our joined creativity means that we cant help but create….

People often ask where creativity comes from? Of course it comes from within and outward and perhaps even through us –  but it manifests like an energy – the best analogy I can come up with is people that work out in a gym put their time and energy into building muscle and in turn they become stronger – well building creative muscle is like that – you have to do it – and keep doing it and commit to doing it – you have to think it, breathe it, live it, make it…. “build it… and it will come”…. it doesn’t just show up on your doorstep uninvited – you have to work at welcoming it and recognising it when it does show up – and being grateful and thankful because it truly is a gift but one that is accessible to all – not just a chosen few. I think of where BJ started – and where she is now. It is simply amazing. It was as if her creative energy lay dormant and was waiting to be awoken…… well she has awoken it alright – and unleased an almighty beast!

So in honour of BJ and her glorious creative energy – I want to tell you about her amazing one woman play – it is for women only and her opening performance is on at the Brisbane Powerhouse Saturday 17th September. Please come – you are welcome. You can find out further details here – and please do because BJ can explain her story better than I can – I hope she gets a great deal of support – she has worked hard and I know it is something very special.

Here’s an introduction in BJ’s words … “At the base of the Yggdrasil (the World Tree), the Weavers of Destiny The Maiden, The Mother and The Crone have lost their way. Big Time. In the shadows the Beast lays in wait and the Yggdrasil is dying.

And so, the quest begins for a Woman to heal her ancestral wounds, reawaken her matriarchal lineage, reclaim her true self and restore Divine Feminine Energy.

This beautiful performance event invites its audience to hold the rim of the sacred women’s circle, deeply experience its mythology and honour the 9 Initiations of a Woman’s lifelong awakening through, story, song, music, movement, and theatre”

I hope to see many familiar faces at this performance which will be incredibly supportive of my dear friend and fellow creative – BJ LONG.