Ana's Thought: "To create Great Art, you must give it your Heart, Body, and Spirit, and all the love you have."
What compels the painter to rise each day and, in her diligence, chase after a feeling? What deep forces shift within the heart of a composer, stirring hidden symphonies waiting to be born? After a brilliant work is finished and praise from others given, why does the creative heart wipe its slate clean and begin again?
It is not the promise of reward that stimulates true artists - no accolade could sate the hunger that sends them back to work. For an artist, there is no urge greater than the desire to create, for it is the energy that lights them up from within. The love of creation is the purest adoration they can offer.
Detail from Ana Tzarev's Queen Lili'uokalani's Quilt.
As I have traveled the world and taken in the sights of so many magnificent lands, I have observed how important the love of creation is to each culture. ln Hawaii, for example, weaving is an intricate and unique art all its own. The love of creating present in this place is both practical and celebratory: from the beauty of woven flowers leis that adorn the island people to the strength of the handcrafted fishing nets that sustain them, this skill has been honed by generations and practiced with joy. Life and art cannot be kept apart from one another - they are braided together in the traditions of Hawaii.
Renaissance self-portraits of artists at work: Sofonisba Anguissola and Joachim Wtewael.
During the Renaissance, there was a flourishing of artists who made their livelihood from their craft. Among the countless portraits they made, steeped in rich hue and detail, history holds a special collection of studies: the self-portrait. Just as royals were painted with their regalia, so were artists shown with the materials that defined them - palettes, brushes, and canvases. ln finessing their work, they provided us with a glimpse into their truest selves. They are remembered for their masterpieces, but the self-portrait of an artist at work allows us to see the life behind their fabled names. They have frozen themselves within a moment, proudly sharing with all time their love of creating.
Detail from the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
High above the sea of pews that fill the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo's masterpiece shines as radiantly as the day it was completed. Among the most famous paintings in existence is the ceiling's centerpiece, a scene depicting God granting Adam life through the touch of His divine hand. ln that very instant, Man is endowed with endless possibilities to invent, create, and share. lt is the birth of awareness, the opening of a Universe that is still expanding today.
Through passion, devotion, and curiosity, a love of creating is what enables us to reach deep into our greatest potential - bringing us closer to the powers that shaped our world and every blessing that brightens our path. lt is the spark that burns within you and within all mankind. lf you devote your energy to a love of creating, your efforts will not be forgotten - you will take part in a sacred mystery, giving light to the world forever.