Are you ready?
For this week’s instalment of Stimulating Sundays, I’m going to write about the fantasy genre and provide a relationship between it and the development of creative ability between family members, dear readers.
The story I’m about to weave could very well be rather complex or overly simplistic, the only way to know is to stick with me and see this through. I have no doubt that you will get there.
I also know that by the end of it, when all is writ and your minds are full, not only will you be satisfied with the results; you will be just a tad more knowledgeable and considerate about the subject we’re covering this evening.
That’s right, this is part 2 of last week’s entry on assumptions.
When I think of fantasy, I cannot help but stop to ponder the Vertigo comics title Fables – I was first introduced to these stories by my mom (who never reads comics) back in either the summer of 2004 or 2005, I can’t remember which, but that isn’t super important for the purpose of this point.
It does provide a cool anecdote about the length this series has been in my mind though.
If you haven’t read the title before, I would highly recommend the series because it takes characters from the public domain of folklore and mythology and gives them a fun new twist. Regardless if you loved these kinds or stories or not growing up, one of two things will happen when you invest some time in the series (or possibly both). First, you will get reacquainted with familiar characters and have a grand time. Alternatively, you’ll enjoy the stories and the artwork, thus gaining an appreciation for their source material. Or as I said, both things.
So what does this have to do with artist families you ask? I’m getting there, I promise.
Now that I’ve got you thinking about magic, castles, princesses, and morality tales, it shouldn’t be too much of a stretch to bring up the concept of classes within the form. As we know, fantasy is a genre of fiction that uses magic and the supernatural to help tell a story or which features it in the theme.
The classes of fantasy are pretty straightforward, comprising fighter, magician, rogue, cleric, and ranger, with several variations thereof, as well as specific classes that exist in certain worlds. If you want a more detailed list – check out TV Tropes for more info. Just don’t get stuck there.
Great, so for the purpose of the remainder of this post, let’s assume that artists represent the magician class of a fantasy story, okay?
Which also helps because magic is central to the universe these characters inhabit.
Well, there are a number of reasons why people become magicians, and while most of the time it has to do with natural ability, authors recognize that said ability doesn’t just appear out of thin air. It takes significant time and/or another type of sacrifice in order to gain the experience needed to wield that ability.
Just look at this handful of resources I found about the topic. They all suggest different reasons for why creativity abounds in certain individuals, but the conclusions that nurture plays a role in the development of artists in truth throughout.
- Is creative ability determined by our DNA?
- Is Art Hereditary? The Mounts, A Family of Painters
- What Makes a Family of Artists
- Decoding Creativity – It’s In the Genes!
- Are some people born creative?
And just for fun, an article for you to check out and for us to come back to regarding artistic spaces. Cleanliness versus mess.
Article number 5 raises an excellent point about why creativity exists
But while creativity may appear to be a spontaneous burst of new ideas, it is really the art of deriving the new from the old – the relentless reassembly of information we already possess.
So for the sake of argument, maybe magicians exist in fantasy because that material needs to be assembled and reassembled, to be used in a way that it takes form and has function. Whether aesthetic or practical. It’s potentially an obvious association, but one that helps to tie back into creativity and why it continues to persist in our genetics.
We need people to exist who help us innovate and evolve. Who move us onward and upwards. As culture shifts, we need pioneers who can help define the way and take problems head on.
Environments that produce generations of artists can provide that role, but the parents/predecessors need to be especially cognizant of their stake in the process.
I think we will also discover that out of opportunity do artists find ways to exist. For example, my loving childhood home of convention and specific moral qualities allowed not only myself to pursue the arts but both of my younger brothers. But that’s a theory for another day.
What do you think of that theory folks? That creativity harnesses from the created world and furthers the creative cycle?