The invisible safety net. It's something my dad used to say. I believe it was a concept of parenting he tried with me and my brother, and who's to say what works and what doesn't... but here's the basic idea, as I understand it: Let your child think they are taking risks, but make sure there is a safety net in case they fall. But make it invisible to them. Because when those risks feel real, the rewards are much greater.
I did a drawing. Well actually I did a lot of drawings, but for the sake of simplicity...I did a drawing. Then I refined it to the point where it felt complete. But it wasn't. And I didn't want to go any further....cause then it would be...*insert really dramatic musical swell*... ruined. So I scanned it. Then I made some prints, mounted them to wooden boards, gathered sand paper, pastels, paint....anything I could get my hands on that made me excited or curious.
And I went to town. I messed them up...and I kept going. I wasn't afraid of ruining a drawing I had spent hours on...because I had built myself a safety net. And while it's not quite the pure Buddhist approach, it's progress. I was able to be wreckless and free, and each piece now has that expressive hand quality and energy I was missing from the original drawing...the one I was so afraid to destroy.