Creative people, artists, are among the most generous people in the world. You may not believe it because they prefer to be by themselves, and they need more solitude and silence to work in their creations. However, nobody exposes herself so much as an artist does.
Just a moment ago, I have lifted my eyes from my laptop screen and looked at the wall in front of me. Pinned to it is a reproduction of Raoul Dufy’s “The Artist Studio“. It’s as if the artist opened the door to his most private room, and let us in to have a look at his unfinished paintings, at his life as an artist. Isn’t that generous of him? Because, how many chances do we get to visit a famous painter’s studio?
These days, I am also rereading one of my favourite books on creativity: Eric Maisel’s “A Writer’s Paris“. What we have here is someone sharing with us his life as a writer in Paris: the places he loves to write in, the museums, shops, cafés, and street markets he likes to visit, his writing blocks, his family life, his moments of doubt and his moments of triumph. Isn’t that generous of him? I know many families whose members don’t share as much personal information as Mr. Maisel shares with us in his book.
It’s the same with actors getting “naked” in front of their audiences, or singers singing about lost love (remember “Songs about Jane” by Maroon 5?). The thing is that artists decide to be generous with their emotions, perceptions, visions and ideas. They choose to expose themselves to their public’s judgements, knowing that such judgements can be really harsh.
Because of those acts of generosity, art and artists should be respected. You may think the story is rubbish or that your five-year-old nephew could draw better landscapes, but you can’t deny that artists have to be brave to expose themselves as they do. Overcoming their doubts and fears about being judged by us is truly generous.