‘Everyone is born creative and every day is an opportunity to perform a new creative act.’ So begins Julie’s Imperfect Manifesto. This year Julie has seized that opportunity every day by committing to a year-long art project on Instagram, inspired by Leonie Barton who was inspired by Shona Wilson. It’s called One a Day and it’s a creative commitment that takes around 50 minutes a day to make an ephemeral artwork using only what she finds on a walk. Every day in 2016 Julie has to create the work in the moment, no tools, no filters, no rigamarole, and she leaves it behind for other people to find. It’s a discipline, a creative practice and a kind of daily channelling of Andy Goldsworthy.
Some days Julie says this feels like a tough gig. Going on the walk to find materials with Harry the dog can be a bit of a challenge. Sometimes it’s really cold or wet, and sometimes she’s so busy that taking the time feels indulgent or irresponsible, but it’s not, of course. Committing to this creative practice has been grounding and meditative and nurturing. It has given Julie the chance to discover and explore new places, it’s stretched her to see the possibilities that exist within the limits each walk affords. It has helped her to take even greater pleasure in the ordinary everyday details.
What’s great is that Julie has encountered very little skepticism, very little ‘meh.’ People love this work and look forward to seeing what she produces every day. Many of them tell Julie that they are not creative and how much they wish they were. Fact is though, creativity is not a gift, it’s a muscle. Julie’s #patersononeaday project is like going to training at the gym. It keeps her match fit, it builds strength and flexibility, and most of all, it makes her feel good.