Why do you create? Publish a post about your artistic raison d’être.
“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.”
Raison d’être is a French term, meaning “the reason or justification for existence.” I’m fascinated by motivation — the invisible force that gets us to take action: to write that post, poem, memoir, or novel, to draw the portrait, create the collage, or photograph the moment. Motivation itself — its source and its ebb and flow within us — is as unique as the things we create when it strikes.
In a recent Discover feature, emerging author Vanessa Mártir recounts the reason why she writes. After I read her raison d’être, I was not only motivated, but inspired and empowered to tackle creative projects that I’d let languish.
I write to take back my power. Every time I write, I take back my power in small and large ways, and I give voice to that little girl I was who felt unloved and unworthy. Every time I write, I am reminded that I matter and my stories matter. I can push back on those people that told me that my writing wasn’t writing, that my voice didn’t matter, because I’m a woman of color who grew up in poverty in Bushwick, Brooklyn when it was a pile of rubble. I can push back on those who looked down on my brother because of his addiction and his pain. Through writing I can show them that the addicts people give a wide berth to are human beings who have been through something so devastating, they turned to drugs to numb themselves and escape.
It’s why I return to the page over and over. We’re made to feel powerless in so many ways. The page reminds me that there are ways I can fight back. There are ways I can make myself heard. Writing is my way.
—Shaken baby syndrome by Vanessa Mártir
“Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” Miles Davis said that and it has guided everything I’ve ever done or made.
—Danny Gregory on making art.
This week, let’s focus on your raison d’être. Why do you write? Paint? Draw? Cook? Sculpt? In any medium you choose, publish a post that conveys your creative motivation.