Dare to Share: Giving the Gift of Creativity to Others

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This article is written by Laura Thykeson

As artists, we may have endless amounts of Vision, Talent, Techniques, etc. that we use when creating something magical from nothing more than a thought. Such is the miracle of art! But there is one more piece to the recipe that has to be included in order to be productive, starting from the first time you began creating, all the way through your creative journey right up to the end. It is this particular attribute that I wish to address.

The final item, often taken for granted, is DESIRE! We must have the “desire to create” something physical driving us to take action or we would never complete a creative project! Our wonderful, unique designs and abilities would just drift through our imaginations forever and never see the light of day, much less be shared with others in a physical, tangible form. Desire drives us, compels us, even obsesses us to try capturing that ephemeral bit of idea and create and form it into some substantial, artistic representation that can be touched, seen, shared with others for moments or even decades. Something solid and permanent that will remind the world for years, that “We were here”. This Desire is what I feel we should consider sharing and passing on to others and has little to do with “talent”. It could be that driving  “desire to create” that may be the main quality we should think about fostering in others when sharing our gifts with others. People of all ages and walks of life may be hungry for even the simplest form of self expression but don‘t realize it yet. That is where we come into the mix. We need to bring to others the desire to begin, and a few items to begin with. I have some ideas for accomplishing this, and all it involves is a little bit of effort, things you are going to be doing anyway because you can’t help yourself, and a tiny bit of brainwork or networking with different groups or gatherings of people.

Laura Thykeson suggests we can spread our creativity by giving some mixed media materials to help our friends start their journaling process

First, gather some inexpensive items to include as “artistic desire supplies“. I suggested the items below, feel free to change it up to better suit the recipients. Remember-those receiving the items don’t yet know that they are going to develop the Desire to use them, all they know at first is they received a “gift”. Later, they will realize what the REAL gift is! Anyway, here’s the basic list, all are sold at dollar or discount stores:

A bound book with blank(lined or unlined) pages. (I use plain composition notebooks. They are sturdy and cheap, fun to embellish, handle collage and light watercolor decently)

Mechanical pencil(s) and 2 permanent black markers (Sharpie works great)


Glue (gluesticks and/or school glue- I add 1 or more of each.)


Children’s pan watercolors (Crayola makes a great set for kids or adults for less than $5)

Waterbrush or 2 inexpensive brushes and a small plastic bottle of water (for the watercolors)

Magazine(s) with suitable words and pictures for collage work

Finally,  you need a container. You can find great used totes from resale shops or garage sales, get blank canvas totes and embellish or leave blank for the recipient to personalize after they are consumed with the “desire to create“! Finally, not fancy but functional, use a large ziplock bag.

Laura Thykeson suggests we can spread our creativity by giving some mixed media materials to help our friends start their journaling process

To jumpstart the creative process, inside the book you included, do a page(s) yourself in SIMPLE collage, combining images and text, done on an easy, colorful watercolor background. Have the collage convey an emotion, or simple theme. Handwrite a word or two on the page in black marker.  Lastly, (do in Word, then print copies), include an artist bio and mission statement, and include your email address, along with an idea of the “real” gift you are hoping to pass on.  A few ideas on using supplies and tips for how to get started are helpful. Then, it won’t be long before the “desire to create“ hits them and off they go! Underprivileged or at risk youth groups, hospitals, assisted living and nursing homes are all great places to put this project to work! You never know whose life you may change!


Laura Thykeson has been totally immersed in mixed media art for many years. She discovered altered books and art journals about a year ago and have been hooked ever since! She has always loved mixed media art because of the variety and the “no rules” aspect! Laura lives in Granbury, Texas USA.




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