I never really thought of my twin sister as an artist. I was the artsy one and she was the book worm. She was always, always, always reading. And I was always, always, always making art. When we branched off to college, she received her degree in journalism, and I in photography. And only in recent years have I had the pleasure of seeing the authentically creative side of her. Turns out, she’s been collaging longer than I have! And it also turns out that she writes poetry on a regular basis. Good poetry! She just never really shows anyone or shares her work. And as we grow older and come to know each other even more deeply, I so enjoy the opportunity for us to discuss and share our art with each other.
Art is such a part of my life and I could talk endlessly about the process of creativity itself. I often write about this kind of thing in the ART TALK section of this blog. However, being an artist can be a fairly lonely existence. Making art is, for the most part, a very solitary experience. And unless an artist is collaborating in some way, which can be so magical, they are pretty much alone with their chosen medium. So, when two people who create on their own, can come together and exchange ideas, it’s super interesting to connect in this way.
MAKING ART TO HEAL
For me, art has always been a way for me to work through my own personal and spiritual issues. My mother has been my muse with regards to creativity, but not the way you think. Her place in my life was overall quite negative, and she became my muse in order for me to face my feelings about her head on. Through this process, I came to know forgiveness in a way I never thought possible. So for that, and for her, I am so grateful. Her being and her essence and her memory, continue to inspire me. And I have probably made the most amount of “mom” artwork, compared to any other work in my entire portfolio of expression.
© Libby Saylor, Mom 16, mixed media on paper, 2002
I also make lots of other kinds of art, and I don’t exclusively use art to heal. For me, making art is very natural. And sometimes, I get so inspired by something so beautiful, I just need to create something in its place, to capture that energy. But ultimately, my art is really always about me. I make art to feel better and to get whatever is festering inside of me, out! If other people are inspired by it, that’s a fantastic bonus.
MY TWIN SISTER MAKING ART
In this week’s podcast episode, by some miracle, I was able to persuade my sister to read one of her poems for all of you to hear! I didn’t even really need to persuade her. I simply asked. So maybe that means she secretly wanted to! And luckily, she felt comfortable enough to take this courageous plunge. We discuss in depth about her creative process on the episode, “Twin Sisters Discuss Art, Poetry, And The Creative Process,” so I hope you tune in. If you’re curious and would like a tidbit, you can listen to the short clip below.
LISTEN NOW TO THE FULL EPISODE
MAKING ART TAKES GUTS
Without giving too much away, I think my sister has struggled with feeling comfortable and confident enough to share her work with the world. And I do believe that her short experience in a “small town” poetry workshop, set the tone for this cautious outlook. And because this small group of people had very little reaction to her work (keep in mind, her instructor, the professional, LOVED it), I believe she took that for truth. And I would love for her to find her audience. People who know good writing and who know good art. People like you! You will get it, and you will know it’s good.
I also think my sister is brilliant enough to know she’s good. And we as artists can come up with all kinds of reasons not to create and/or not to share. And all of that is okay. It truly is, and we are all doing our best. But damn, her work is fantastic, and I think it would be such a shame for it to remain in the dark.
With my sister’s permission, she allowed me to share this with my audience. She chooses not to title her poems. And part of her creative process is actually using an old school typewriter. So, even the way the poem looks on the hand-typed page, is part of her creative vision. She is a true artist, and I am so proud to call her my sister.
I hope you enjoy this week’s podcast episode and please let me know what you think in the comments below.