When you think about creative voice, what comes to mind?
Do you think about how your favorite filmmaker has a style you get plunged into from the opening credits?
Or how that one restaurant you love always manages the exact right flourish?
Or maybe you think of Yayoi Kusama's polka dots, Ansel Adams's landscapes, or Adele's soaring vocal prowess.
These are all examples of voice that we can feel and experience as soon as we call them to mind. But how well do you know your own creative voice?
When you think of your own work, do themes come to mind? Do you feel familiar with what you love and why? What motivates you, what fascinates you, and what drives you forward creatively?
Knowing ourselves deeply is key, both to creative confidence and motivation. When we're connected to who we are creatively, creating flows more easily and feels fun, invigorating, and intrinsically motivated in whole new ways.
Knowing and owning ourselves roots us in our work in unshakable ways. To get a deeper sense of who you are creatively, try journaling around some of the following questions. You can choose any that call to you, and see what comes of them.
1. Own who you are
What are your values, creatively?
What past projects are you proud of?
What has shaped you as a creator?
Where do you see yourself going next creatively?
2. Lean into what you love
What are the influences that have shaped your creative work?
How do they show up in the work you do now?
What patterns do you notice in your work over time?
What have been your obsessions or fascinations, creatively?
3. Embrace your curiosity
What are you curious about these days?
How might you learn more about it?
Does it have any connections to work you've done in the past?
To things you've been curious about in the past? How so?
How might you play with the ideas coming up for you, and make something?
How could you make, make, and make some more as you play?
What would be a low-stakes way to try this idea out, so that even if you fail, it's okay?
5. Celebrate the suck
Failure will happen. How can you be cool with it when it does?
What ways can you embrace mistakes as you try things out?
How has failure actually served you in the past?
How might it serve you again here?
6. Admire your own work
What work have you done in the past that you still love?
How can you give yourself credit for the success of that work?
How might you find a way to enjoy that work? (Listening to it? Hanging it up? Getting the feedback of others who you know love it?)
As you consider the questions that call to you here, what themes emerge? Do you feel you know yourself a bit better as a creator? Has any sense of inspiration emerged as you mulled these ideas over?
Drop me a line and let me know! I always love to hear from you!
And if you'd like to dive more deeply into honing your creative voice, I'm teaching a workshop this week that will give you practical tools for doing just that. Check out the details below!