When I sit down to create a work of art, the thought of an outside influence guiding my beliefs rather than my own unique vision never crosses my mind. I have never compromised my artistic integrity for the sake of what could be more popular or what could be considered the "trend" of the day. I believe if you stick to your style and remain true to yourself, the rewards will far outweigh the risks! In fact, the more we stay on course, the more personal moments of creative inspiration will enlighten our attempts at achieving something new or different in a quest to stay true to our creative individuality. If we look at past artist's who have struggled to make a distinct impact on culture and ultimately having their art survive the test of time, they never swayed from their style and visions even in the face of critical adversity. Some examples that pop into my mind are Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel, when at the time, his approach was considered radical to a degree and the immense complexity of color and forms dancing around the ceiling made way for one of the most influential works of art ever created. In the face of never ending obstacles, he forged ahead with the torch of his passion guiding his sight and made way for an extraordinary breakthrough in art history. His work slowly blossomed amidst a storm of distraction and criticism, eventually reaching an innovative climax of beauty and transcendence.
The moral of this story, in my opinion, is that the norms of society will gravitate their opinions toward that center nucleus based on what they have perceived through mass marketing channels and through their own sense of understanding. We all are inevitably challenged by external trends and societal gravitation towards the center of thought and this can eventually lure many into this circle of what is expected. A good example of how we react to creative art is our minds acceptance of reality over abstraction. Looking at life differently and turning it upside down and inside out can make many feeling uncomfortable based on external influence and acceptance. Our instincts have been socially and biologically constructed over the course of evolution to gravitate towards these recognized forms and it pleases our senses more comfortably. Abstract forms that are broken down into dynamic reflections of the underlying scientific properties challenges people on much deeper levels and for those who aren't the cerebral types, this could be the end of a new beginning in their search for the truth.
The common denominator for all artists is the emotion and intuitive feeling we all put into our creations, regardless if it's recognizable or not. But in the end, are we challenging ourselves enough to break free of the limitations and demands of society to create work that speaks to our unique vision that meets halfway between what is expected and what we want to achieve. When we make a decision to wash away the constraints of what everyone thinks we should be doing from how we could perceive the world, we open our eyes to the unique possibilities of what we offer as creative beings. So ask yourself this question: Why not explore your own independent way of thinking and seeing the world without worrying about what others will think or say? Set yourself free of those limitations and you will find a world inside you screaming to swim around in the darkest confines of your imagination. Let your mind, spirit, and soul take that plunge from the cliff of expectations and plunge into the unknown. Go to the deepest levels of your ability until there is no more room to swim around. Just remember, the ocean is vast and exploring even the darkest areas of your imagination could take a lifetime. Have fun on your journey and I hope you find the heights of inspiration.