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Why Community is Important for Creative Families

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Today I welcome G.B. Sholander of The Markey Escape Rooms to the blog. I met her many years ago in the writing world and creative families like hers are worth celebrating! After all, it’s through creativity that we achieve innovation. Thus, I encouraged her to tell me more about her loved ones. The result is the wonderful guest post below, which includes focuses on why community is important to creativity. 

In our family, we value creativity. Perhaps that’s why we have writers, artists, and computer programmers in our immediate family. To keep moving forward and keep growing in these pursuits, we’ve found that community is vital. Let me explain.

We “Get” Each Other

In our family of four, we’re extremely lucky that we all get along. What’s more, we share common interests that bridge any age, gender, or personality differences. Theme parks, great fiction, fun art, good movies, board games, tasty tea blends, whimsical costumes – these are just some of the things we all enjoy. We find it easy to hang out together, whether traveling, working on a project, or just sitting around talking.

Adagio tea blend art

Why is community important? Making artwork like this one by Spencer Sholander for one of his tea blends is all the better for the help of family and friends. Image used with G.B. Sholander’s permission.

We Offer Much Needed Moral Support

And because we understand each other so well, and we share many common interests and pursuits, we’re good at giving each other moral support. Each of us understands that it can take a great deal of time to create a digital illustration, a book, a program, or a website. We never berate each other for how long it takes to make something. On the contrary, we’re highly supportive.

Creative families! Digital art by Susanne Sholander

Artwork by Susanne Sholander, who goes by ArtofZan. Image used with the permission of G.B. Sholander.

We’re There for Each Other Financially

Yes, we’re one of those creative families; two of us are in our fifties, and two of us are in our twenties. As freelancers, sometimes we make decent money, other times not so much. For us, living in community means watching out for each other. We don’t hesitate to help each other in tangible ways, including offering financial help. We also take on temporary jobs in different fields when we need to do so.

Here are examples:

  • When my kids worked at Disney World and I had a brief stint as a marketer, my husband had the luxury of taking some time off to develop apps.
  • One year when taxes were due and my husband and I found ourselves in a tight spot financially, our daughter helped out.
  • My husband, typically the highest earner in our family, frequently helps the rest of us financially.
  • When my son wasn’t earning enough writing, he took a job in food service for half a year.

Thankfully, the four of us are big believers in sharing. If we weren’t, it would be much harder for us to pursue our creative interests.

A Bit More about Why Community is Important

While we have wonderful friends and extended family in many different professions and vocations, we feel a special kinship for the people in our lives who also follow their passion in creative endeavors.

We’re close with individuals who sculpt displays in theme parks and shopping malls, who work in escape rooms, who write fiction, and who work in various entertainment and hospitality industries. Together we swap stories and commiserate.

We also talk about the challenges in finding work as well as that something inside that keeps propelling us forward. Sometimes we cook for each other, and we offer supportive “you can do it” words.

Final Words on Creative Families and Community

Sure, we’d be making more money had we pursued other occupations. But the joy we find from our unconventional paths, and the wonderful people we meet along the way, are priceless.

Does creativity seem to run in your family too? If you could pursue a creative passion full-time, what would it be?

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14 Comments

  1. robbiesinspiration August 24, 2017

    A wonderful post about the benefits of creative people working together. There is not enough focus on the creative side of life, Christy, and without it what a horrible world we would live in.

    Reply
  2. myexpressionofthoughtsblog August 24, 2017

    Indeed a heart touching and wonderful post !! Thankx for sharing

    Reply
  3. Resa August 24, 2017

    It all makes sense! As a creative person, I’m living a similar life. This is a wonderful post, about a fab family of artists. :star:

    Reply
  4. ghostwritingplus August 24, 2017

    Christy, thank you very much for showcasing our family in your wonderful blog, and for providing a forum to discuss creativity. A big thank you also to everyone who commented here or shared the post. Much love to each of you <3

    Reply
  5. Robert Matthew Goldstein August 24, 2017

    It’s the truth. A supportive creative community Is vital!

    Reply
  6. ghostwritingplus August 24, 2017

    Reblogged this on Ghostwriting Plus and commented:
    A big thank you to my dear friend, the talented writer & poet Christy Birmingham, for inviting me to write a guest post on her blog, When Women Inspire. Creativity has its rewards, and a community of like-minded individuals can be one of them.

    Reply
  7. Rajagopal August 25, 2017

    Interesting example of community living within a four-member family. One does not get to hear many such stories in the highly individualistic and competitive world of today inspite of the proverbial success in unity and failure inherent in divisiveness. The creative life of the Sholanders founded on community living is, indeed, a role model for others.

    Reply
    1. ghostwritingplus August 25, 2017

      Thank you for your comment, it touched my heart!

  8. dgkaye August 25, 2017

    What a fabulous collective of creatives. Great post! :) xo

    Reply
  9. Jessica Billiet August 25, 2017

    Awww! I loved this one! We all need help sometimes, and this is an amazing family! It is so great that you are helping each other achieve your dreams!

    Reply
  10. Joan E Wilder September 10, 2017

    Great post and what a creative family! In the end, when thinking of things that really matter, it’s all about family!

    Reply
    1. Christy B September 12, 2017

      Family means so much ~ I can tell you feel that way from you comment :) Thanks Joan!

  11. undefined66 October 11, 2017

    Love this

    Reply

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