As artists, we are CREATORS.  

And your life is your greatest creation.   In his brilliant book Negative/Positive, Bill Jay wrote that artists are people who strive to become actually who they are potentially.   To become actually who we are potentially, I love that.   Who are you potentially? What lies inside you?   People look at my life as a creative nomad and ask, "How did you do that?" I travel all over the world, writing and making pictures, working with other artists.   Everyone says, “You’re so lucky.”   Let me assure you, luck had nothing to do with it. I created this life.   Am I grateful?   Every. Single. Day.  

At first, it was difficult to overcome the limitations and challenges that were placed in my path. Nothing came easily. It took work.   But the truth is, my journey began when I overcame the limits of my own imagination.   My journey began when I decided to trust myself, and to believe that it is possible to become the person who was living inside.   My journey began when I stepped out of who I was potentially and took steps toward who I wanted to be actually.   And you can too.   India.Arie sings:   If you create the game Then you create the rules And if you just be you There’s no way you can lose.

As artists, we’re all trying to get closer to the essence of who we are. Right?   Isn’t art the deepest, most true expression of who you are? Of that which lives inside of you?   I believe that your life can be art too. In fact, your life is your greatest creation.   So your ultimate goal in your art practice is to create a life that’s an expression of you.   Like the woman said:   And if you just be you There’s no way you can lose   If you just be you. If you become actually who you are potentially, there’s no way you can lose.  

Of course, the big question is 'How?'   How can you make a living? How can you attract what you need while also being true to who you are?   When I decided to use my creativity to make a living, I didn’t know what that was going to look like. I didn’t have any of it figured out.   But I did know that it would feel authentic and empowering.   So I created a mantra that felt authentic and empowering. And I repeated these 5 words all the time.   “I make money being Crista.”   It’s simple, but deceptively so.   Now you try.   “I make money being Richard.”   Think about who you are potentially and then repeat the mantra again.  

“I make money being Richard.”   If you just be you, there’s no way you can lose.   “I make money being Richard.”   How do these magic words work? I’m not sure I can explain it but I know that they do.   I know that when you align your heart, your intentions and your creativity to work together you become truly authentic. And life conspires to bring opportunities to you.   So repeat this mantra often.   And believe in yourself as you create your greatest masterpiece – your own life.   Because for an artist, there’s no greatest aspiration.

-Crista Cloutier
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