In thinking of how to write this journal, I've had to clear out my headspace. I asked myself how could I possibly condense all the magic that is Auguste Rodin's work, into a mid-length post? I would be the only one reading it. I finally decided to share my feelings/experience from my walk through the building that once was Rodin's very own studio during the latter part of his life and what I came away with. To be honest, I struggled a lot (and still do) with so many aspects of the creative life, but I believe that my trip to Musee Rodin was meant to keep me on the questionable path ahead.
Wait, why did I start with this? This was THE most important take away for me because its what I fear the most. I learned that Rodin's unique style was shunned by the French Art Establishment. Work that he would pour all hours of himself into. YEARS he spent on the monument to the French writer Honoré de Balzac to be erected at the Palais Royal (this was sort of a big deal) "created a furor, and it was rejected by the Société". And yet, he continued to stick to his style and kept creating. Part of me now wishes I had this problem. But we will face rejection of our work, for one reason or another. So his reminder to me, was to get ready for it.
He who is discouraged after a failure is not a real artist. (Auguste Rodin)
2. KNOW YOUR THING.
Rodin was talented in many mediums - drawing, painting, sculpting and carving, but he was known as a sculptor. If anything, I struggle with finding out what I'm "suppose" to be doing. I'm always running around "diversifying" because, I'm afraid about not being good at one thing. Or maybe, I don't want to put the work into doing just one thing. But, if you find what that one things is, go for it with all your vigor.
Work lovingly done is the secret of all order and all happiness. (Auguste Rodin)
3. YOU GOTTA DO THE WORK
Great doesn't happen over night. I once heard on a podcast that when you first start out you're fueled by inspiration, but as you continue to produce more work, expectations start rising and you have to start relying on craft which unfortunately, takes a while to develop. I have a hard time with being patient with my craft. I think it's harder to be patient because we're always bombarded with other people's talents, and find ourselves trying to measure up. In actuality, everybody had to work hard for a long time to get to where they are. So take the time that you need to get where you need to go. The greats did.
You must always work. (Auguste Rodin)
He believed creation was a collaborative process. He had many assistants and apprentices who helped him create. It was a team effort. Obviously, like everything else, this didn't happen overnight but there's plenty of opportunity to meet other like minded creative people while you're working on your own.
6. SEEING WHAT IS UNSEEN.
This is one I had to chew on for a bit. Rodin's style wasn't merely copying what he could see with his eyes. He didn't want the subject to be frozen in time. He wanted there to be movement, a story, a past, present and a future. And his story was also woven into it.
For me, I've discovered that creating, is about being vulnerable and putting myself out there for the world to see. Some of us may have a hard time showing show up. We over think, and end up holding back, and there are still parts of ourselves that stay hidden. But when we create, we kind of share everything. It's scary. But in a way, its how we can have an honest and true reflection of ourselves, created by ourselves, from within ourselves and evaluated by no one but ourselves. How satisfying is that? Whether its poetry, writing, painting, sculpting, carpentry, photography, blogging, vloging, comedy and you put it out there for yourself or others, you're saying, "Here I am, here's my voice".
To any artist, worthy of the name, all in nature is beautiful, because his eyes, fearlessly accepting all exterior truth, read there, as in an open book, all the inner truth. (Auguste Rodin)
This was long, but believe me, it already went through countless revisions. If you actually took the time to read this, thank you for being a witness. As like all work we do, a big part of it is for ourselves. If you have any thoughts or questions about the Rodin Museum, feel free to let me know. Otherwise, keep creating...