Play is freeness in creativity. There can be a carelessness and breaking of boundaries. With the absence of fear and over thinking it leaves space for a flow in creativity, fun and laughter. All of these things can leave us to building new relationships wether they be with people or materials. We open doors to learning and expression that is just simply not possible without play.
It is not the first time that I have been reminded about the importance of play, especially within a creative practise. When I was training in Rubicon Dance in Cardiff. I remember starting our choreography classes, being given the space to create what ever we wanted. There were endless possibilities, we could create what ever we wanted, yet we all regurgitated the movements from technique class. Why??? the next time choreography came around, Paul (our teacher) took us outside to the children's play park opposite the building, with one simple instruction. Play.
Today my mind has been brought back to that day. As a few days ago me and my fellow MFA students had the most fun and arguably one of the most creative afternoons as a group through out the course so far. Poppy Jacksons workshop was a real eye opener. Giving us the opportunity to let go of inhibitions and explore ideas and ways of working that most of us hadn't done before and most of all HAVE FUN. Having expectations of an outcome erased allowed the exploration and play to be central to my creative process.
If this is the outcome of Play, then I cannot help to question why we do not make it a bigger part of our creative practises? I suppose I have myself to blame for it all, there is nothing to stop me from picking up some charcoal or paint and seeing what happens. Or spending a day in the park or Go-karting and seeing if that leads anywhere new... but it doesn't stop me from from wondering why the element of play is not incorporated into art courses more, if the outcome of it is so positive?
If I take one thing away from this, it will be to find an element of play at least once a week.
Jodi ann Nicholson
I am a multidisciplinary artist. my training started at the Contemporary Dance School, TrinityLaban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Continuing developing my creative practice at Cardiff School of Art and Design in their Masters in Fine Arts course.