How Other Areas of Creativity Enhance the Artists of Film and Theatre

Perhaps you are a writer encountering a creative block, an actor stuck in the hustle and bustle of auditions or a filmmaker looking to generate ideas for that next movie to make.

Having a strong level of focus in your work is extremely important but there may be times when you can be pushing too hard and feel as though you are reaching a dead end.  Common advice is to take a break by going for a walk, meeting with a friend or going out to an event.  There are unlimited activities to partake in when stepping away from one’s passion.   Taking such breaks makes room for the subconscious part of your brain to open up and refuel, before diving back in with conscious force.

Why not also try to unlock your creativity through other means of creative experience?

A wonderful option to consider when exploring your creativity would be taking a class at the New York Studio School, a haven where painting, drawing and sculpture are being taught to anyone who has a passion and interest in the arts. The school’s goal is ‘…for artists to find their own personal vision through the investigation of art and the visual world around us. Abstraction and figuration rub shoulders and often interchange. Perceptual deeds and conceptual ideas cohabit’.

The atmosphere serves any creative with the necessary environment to receive nourishment, meet with interesting minds and enjoy the process of creation.  Bringing yourself to such a place, where committed and aspiring artists frequent in the discipline of drawing, painting & sculpture, will help you awaken your own inner creative energy and heighten your senses.

The New York Studio School has a wonderful history and came together in 1963 when an article first appeared in ARTnews from painter/educator Mercedes Matter entitled, ”What’s Wrong with U.S. Art Schools?” in which she criticized the phasing out of extended studio classes which served “that painfully slow education of the senses,” which she believed essential to the craft and journey of the artist.

The article brought together a team of Pratt students who wished for a school to be formed based on her ideas.  In 1964, the official founding of The New York Studio School was born and quickly gained the support from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Ford Foundation and the Kaplan Fund.

The early faculty included Charles Cajori, Louis Finkelstein, Philip Guston, Alex Katz, Earl Kerkam, George McNeil, and Esteban Vicente for painting; for sculpture: Peter Agostini, Sidney Geist, Reuben Nakian, and George Spaventa; Nicolas Carone and Mercedes Matter for drawing, and Meyer Schapiro and Leo Steinberg for art history.

You will find that The New York Studio School’s curriculum is based on the atelier-system and a group teaching model for both the full-time and part-time programs.  Scheduling is quite flexible and there is an abundance of wonderful instructors who provide support and knowledge.

As filmmakers, writers and actors, we all tend to somehow seek an outlet when we are too wrapped up in our creative worlds, for some it may be walking for hours, for others it may even be therapy or meditation, however, painting or drawing can be extremely therapeutic and can perhaps open your mind to visualizing your script more accurately or developing a particular character even further.

Challenging yourself to other creative practices outside of your own specific craft can help you sharpen your own process of creative thinking and problem solving.

The New York Studio school opens it’s doors to the public and to those from all aspects of the arts, offering classes in its serene and old school setting. These classes tend to range between 3-4 hours, allowing the time necessary to fully immerse and engage in the work at hand, some materials are provided by the school but mostly you are to bring your own paints and canvases.

Situated at 8 West 8th street, in Greenwich Village, Manhattan, New York City, the School also presents an Evening Lecture Series in the Fall and Spring semesters, featuring an international roster of speakers including artists talking on their own work.  Even if you visited the school for it’s exhibitions, there is simply so much to explore and gain.

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