Opting to Matter

Deciding to matter is something that most creative people need to decide to have in their lives. It isn’t a cosmic expectation but it really is a conscious decision. If you are brooding about meaning, you need to change your perspective.


We must accept that as artists we have egos, drives, desires, dreams, talents, a brain, a heart, and a complete human interior that makes potent demands on us. This humanness should be respected and accepted.


Life gives us information and it is up to us how we will process the information. Come to your own conclusions about what life means to you and how you should act. We are the only arbiter of meaning.


We can only understand ourselves and other humans can not because they can’t be objective. We need to consider our biology and psychology. We can figure ourselves out by observing ourselves objectively. This can be a huge endeavor.


We need to live a righteous life, according to the sense of ethics we have developed. We are our own moral compass.


We need to find a  way to tap the energy needed to accomplish these goals.We must generate our own energy. We need to activate  our passion, our enthusiasm, and tap into our creativity.


We must live in the present moment. Let go of the past as it is gone and we can not effect it anymore. Do not spend all of your time focusing on the future. The future will never arrive and if it did, it would be the present. Your inspirations for your art are available in the present.


If we decide to opt to matter, we may have to tap into our courage and bravery. Accept that you may have to show heroism. Virtually no creative person reaches these high ideals. Most get mired in the first steps of opting to matter. We may have been born creative, but we have to choose to be good. Don’t fall into the pit of lording it over other creative souls. The gift of creativity does not mean that we can do whatever we please. This is where responsibility comes in. The creative person is subject to the same moral directives as the rest of humankind is. We may need to heal ourselves before we can use our talents to the highest level.


Creative people need to have a mantra and I suggest this one. Healing and transformation will make us into a person who can manage meaning effectively. ” This is who we are and this is what I choose to become.”  Follow this and you will develop a true passion for life. This passion will fuel your passion for creativity and enhance your art no matter what medium you choose to work in.






Allow yourself to shine.

Allow yourself to shine.



Sepia wine and cheese photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2014

Sepia wine and cheese photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2014

Now Where Did I Put That Artist

Oil Pastel by Barbara Mattio 2011

Here we are and where I live, it is the middle of the night. I worked on a painting earlier. At some point during my session I reached the zone. I believe it is an interesting place. It is where creativity and spirituality meet and become one.

“Paradise is at your own center
unless you find it there
there is no way to enter.
—-Anglus Silesius

The Buddha says, “We do not learn by experience, but by our capacity for experience.” The creative person has a capacity for experience. It is our ability to not just look at something, but to really see it. Is what we see exactly what we will paint, draw or sculpt? No probably not. There is a place within ourselves where the artist meets with the Divine. This is the place where the created and the creator blend. The blending of the two conditions is the place where we do not move our hands anymore to compose a song, write a novel, arrange flowers in a vase or paint what your soul experiences.

Due to economic restraints schools are reducing their art and music classes. Reading and math and science are totally necessary. What they don’t teach our children is not just to look but to really see..

Not seeing is becoming rampant is our culture.There are some who that when humans do not “really see” what they look at, Then they lose the ability to look at other humans and care about their sufferings or sorrows. They lose the ability for compassion.

When I draw a flower, it is not the little “I” or the ego which is expressing itself, it is the flower that is being able to express itself.When the creativity inside meets with The One, then we are really one with the Universe. We are part of the Creative Process which unfolds continually in Nature.No matter what your medium is, you become part of the cosmic consciousness. The eyes really see and the hand moves and we are in a state of grace. Here we stop looking at and begin firsthand seeing. At this moment, you find the artist you are looking for.

Angelus Silesius wrote the first Western haiku.
“The rose is without why
it blossoms because it blossoms.”

So exactly what am I attempting to say? I am saying that for creative/artistic people there is a point when their medium becomes meditation. It is actually meditation in motion. The hand and eye work in tandem. Quiet and solitude are not the place where art and meditation meet. So if you haven’t seen the artist within for awhile,simply start living the “artist within.” Peace will descend and your work will pour out of your hands. M.C. Escher did a plate of his hands and it is my favorite. The amazing energy which flows from his drawing makes you know you are standing in the presence of Divinity.

Just be yourself, the unique and creative person that was created out of star dust and allow the creativity to flow out of your soul and into your work.