Arte Soleil

Why I Create

By Nancy Tingley

The thought of “why I create” has never come to my consciousness. Creativity is just what I do. If it was taken away from me, I wouldn’t be who I am. I did have a thought a few years ago about why my paintings and drawings actually happened.

If I think about it and analyze it too long, I lose the spontaneity. It becomes more of a job than the real reason I create. A job is not what I want at this stage in life. I spent 34 year working at a job that was the opposite of creativity. I was tied to a headset with strict rules and no personal input. When my boss wasn’t looking, I would take a small note pad and trace my hand over and over again. I must have done at least a hundred drawings. My hand was the only subject matter to draw as I was confined to a small cubicle. Luckily, I never got caught!

During this time, I also put myself through 7 ½ years of art school. I learned photography, illustration and design. In thinking back, I realize the confinement forced me to find an outlet. I found my creative self. Now I work as a freelance artist.

Finding Arte Soleil seemed like an oasis in a desert of commercialism. The neighborhood is slowly waking up to the fact that there is something unusual and good happening nearby. Our world has become so introverted and dehumanizing. The idea of meeting in a central location to share with other creatives is very therapeutic. Open studio space, classes, workshops are all available along with a place to showcase and sell our work. As Kris, the Creator of Arte Soleil says, “this is my idea of crime prevention. Even if someone just wants to come in and sit for a while…they are welcome.”