“A dark side of being a creative and a performer, is to have access to certain emotional states that are the medium through which art is created.” – Psychotherapist Mihaela Ivan Holtz
How do actors and other artists make use of their inner emotional lives, including their shadow selves or dark sides, to be more alive and creative?
Actor Anthony Hopkins has talked about engaging with this side of ourselves:
I’m not a psychologist, but at the back of it I think there is a feeling that everything is uncertain, there is no guarantee of anything and that causes us great fascination and fear.
So we look into the dark side of ourselves and the world.
I think the healthy way to live is to make friends with the beast inside oneself, the dark side of one’s nature, and have fun with it.
What happens if you don’t address the darkness in you?
You become repressed, depressed and suicidal.
Anthony Hopkins: Hollywood Is ‘Full of Crazy People’ by Jeanne Wolf, Parade mag., Feb 11, 2010.
Carla Gugino has commented about one of the challenges of her profession – as well as for anyone who aspires to be authentic:
“As an actor, you’re naked emotionally; you’re revealing yourself emotionally.”
She has also commented about an experience which can apply to any of us and hold us back from more fully expressing ourselves: self-criticism.
“What I’ve realized is that we’re our own harshest critics. We give ourselves limitations.
“But I want to push through that wall, on a creative and personal level.”
[Quotes are from imdb.]
Mihaela Ivan Holtz , Psy.D., LMFT, helps creative people in TV/Film, performing and fine arts,
She also writes about the emotional and creative pleasures of their inner life – and its challenges – on her site Creative Minds Psychotherapy.
Here is an excerpt from one of her articles:
While some creatives and performers are good at navigating their career and still be emotionally up to the challenge, others may struggle.
Some develop depression, anxiety, addictions, and relationship difficulties.
And sadly, some may struggle to keeping up with their art without hurting themselves.
A dark side of being a creative and a performer, is to have access to certain emotional states that are the medium through which art is created.
At the same time, these emotional states can become a risky affair. As many of us have mourned the premature loss of artists we love.
Thus, a fine balance between navigating the emotional career demands and being in touch with one’s emotions may be hard to strike for some creatives and performers.
At the same this balance is at the core of creating, performing, and living with emotional freedom.
Read more in her article Living with emotional freedom or through “defensive mechanisms”….?
The photo is from another post of hers: Creativity is Courage!