Lifelong Learning & Creativity

There’s a seemingly infinite number of subjects and skills to study and master. Even attaining an “almost perfection” in just one discipline or skill may take an entire lifetime. I’m unfortunately one of those people who have an interest in a diverse range of things, and thus proficient in none. I don’t think I can honestly say I have devoted my all to one thing, or that I’m “good” at anything..

Ideally, I’d like to be able to study all kinds of things all my life rather than build a career/s out of a specific degree or skill. Study it, work a little in that industry, move onto something new. Sounds somewhat irresponsible and nomadic, huh? Also explains my mediocrity at everything.

Study wishlist:

  • graphic design
  • photography
  • filmography
  • music (history & culture, notation, composing, performing – vocal, piano, guitar, electric guitar, bass, drums)
  • dance (choreography, performance)
  • acting
  • literature (writing fiction)
  • art (history & culture, drawing, painting)
  • Christian theology (ANY/EVERYTHING)
  • baking (patisserie and boulangerie goods!)
  • nutrition
  • dermatology
  • immunology
  • more detailed study of pathophysiology, pharmacology, psychology, and education

My list has mostly creative arts subjects, then some health-related subjects so it’s clear where my interests lie. I haven’t studied any creative arts and I think sometimes that your creations (eg: a short story you wrote, a picture you painted, a song you composed) should stem from you as you are, without any previous education. It seems more pure and unbiased since you haven’t studied different schools of thought or researched notable people and their works.. although of course your “work” (/creative-expression-bomb?) may seem crude to an intellectual of the subject.

A secret I was told by someone special about improving on any skill is:

“Do it daily.”

Obvious enough. We’ve heard it before regarding habits and character-building – but it’s true, and applies to developing creative skills also. The person who told me this had vastly improved on the skill they were practising and enhanced their creativity, and I’ve been able to witness it by following their journey. It made me profoundly realise that it’s possible for me too. No more “I wish I was that good at _______”, add more “I can become that good at _________”. It’s only a matter of effort and time.

As a continuation of my personal quest to be disciplined and better at some creative arts, I think I’ll use this blog to update things I’ve done or made. It would be awesome to have collaboration and sharing.. but only a few friends read this blog-babble of mine. Which is also a good thing since I’m so dang shy and self-conscious about this! >__________________<;;

Creative to-do list:

  • 1/2 page of drawings daily
  • 1 composed song weekly
  • 1 written short story fortnightly
  • 1 choreographed dance monthly
  • 1 recorded video monthly
  • take camera out at least once a week and photograph

I’ve doodled and coloured a few pages before, composed about 40 songs (many unfinished), written a few short stories, and never properly choreographed anything or recorded anything. Sooo.. should be “interesting”! It’s probably the worst possible time to start this what with weekly major assessments, quizzes, and clinical placements coming up then finals.. but there never is a perfect time. Annnd the underlying point of this blog is to be productively unproductive!

If you’re inspired to improve your creative arts skills but struggling to start or continue, I’ll share this golden knowledge and encouragement by Ira Glass which changed my creative life and attitude. Another inspiring reminder is this article by James Rhodes.

I believe that God has gifted each of us with different lives, personalities, and abilities to be delved into and offered back to Him as joyful praise and to bless others while building His kingdom. Especially fitting as today 나트륨’ (‘Natrium’ in Korean) visited our church and performed songs from their album. Here is a performance of theirs. The man in the middle is a vocal professor (the others 4th year musical students) and he shared his testimony about using his God-given musical abilities to compose and perform songs even through physical suffering (due to what sounded like congestive heart failure). He also encouraged us to use our gifts in worship, and to take back the creative arts by directing it all, and all the audience, to God. Also, with help and prayers I finally decided to join a cell group and which one: Dance cell/ministry! 🙂

It’s been a very, very long time coming for me to take these active steps to practise these arts, because I’ve always been keenly interested but so lacking in confidence and true passion. I’m nervous but excited to see how I improve over time and hope you’ve been inspired to begin developing and mastering your own interests!

Let’s do it!

No more crawling out of bed at 4PM!
Don’t crawl out of bed, spring out for the new day!

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