This month is Rembrandt’s birthday. He produced approximately 600 paintings, 300 etchings, and 1,400 drawings.
I read here, that his most famous painting (and largest at nearly 12 feet by 14 feet) is The Night Watch. It is also acclaimed as the greatest portrait of the Dutch Baroque era and was popular even in its own time (rather than after his death).
“Seventy-three years after its creation, the massive painting was moved to Amsterdam's town hall. However, it was too big to fit the wall where it was meant to hang…(so)…the painting's canvas was cut to better accommodate its new home.”
Seriously. Yes you read that correctly…they cut off both ends of his most famous painting just to make it fit a specific space.
It seems to me those experts treated his painting carelessly, not as the precious object that today’s experts say is literally priceless.
So what does this mean to us? I think it means that we can certainly stop taking our own art creations too seriously.
There are 2 aspects of creating art: the process – the doing – and the product – the finished piece.
When we place too much emphasis, worth and value to art products, then we can only be happy when the product meets our standards.
But what if we did not focus on the art product at all?
What if we chose to believe that art is something we DO not something we HAVE?
Then our focus would shift to the process of art making. And the process of creating is when all the fun happens. It is all about unique self-expression, play, discovery, exploration, learning, etc.
That frees us up to celebrate skills developed, experiences gained, knowledge obtained and the relationships we build with our fellow creatives along the way.
Now doesn’t that sound a whole lot easier and loads more fun?