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Passion Portrait: Creative Collaboration

The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the creative act.

– Marcus Aurelius Antonius

In creative arts – visual, musical, etc., there’s pivotal, transformative moment in the creative process. After you’ve built something with your technique, your perspective and your soul, you then release it out into the world. This is the moment that a conversation has started. And hopefully, a connection. One that would have been impossible otherwise.

My brother, Dave has always been outgoing. So when he turned to the guitar in his youth (about 8th grade or so) his sociable nature held true. He had sung in a few bands and was energized by that feeling- the jolt of adrenaline from creating something from nothing, collaboratively. It’s a different feeling from solo creative acts. It’s similar, but heightened. He knew he wanted to have that feeling the rest of his life, and so, he needed to learn an instrument so hopefully, he could just keep playing. Punk music was his turning point.  It seemed somehow simpler, more accessible than metal or other kinds of music. It felt possible. So he played. And played.

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In fact, he’s never stopped playing since those middle school days. He’s been in bands for more decades than he’d like me to say, he’s traveled the world, and has made a career of playing.

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So how did an idea in the 8th grade come to be his life’s work? Dave explains, “There’s something about performing and creating with others. When everyone is playing the technical parts as they should, then add the stage, and the energy from each other, and it’s transcendent. It feels like a different state of being.”

What a perfect summary for the primary purpose of any creative art. It is to transcend our everyday. It should communicate and connect with other humans on a different level.  And everyone – the artist and the audience – should be changed for having had the experience.

Dave continues to play every day, without fail. And he now shares his passion and gifts with youths (some of them 8th graders!), inspiring them to find their own musical prowess. This is his portrait.

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Passions may start with you alone, but they can become more fully formed when shared with others. Thanks for sharing yours, Dave. Love you!

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