Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Creative Sustainability

"Environmental sustainability is defined as responsible interaction with the environment to avoid depletion or degradation of natural resources and allow for long-term environmental quality. The practice of environmental sustainability helps to ensure that the needs of today's population are met without jeopardizing the ability of future generations to meet their needs." - study.com

some of my natural inspiration 
Whether you believe climate change exists, or you think it's a hoax, there's no denying the weather extremes we've witnessed around the world in recent years. We've had more than our share of severe storms, floods, wildfires, and more in every corner of the world.  And if you're wondering "what could I alone possibly do in my everyday life to make any kind of positive impact on the weather (i.e the environment)?", I have a take on that.

Vincent Van Gogh said, "Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together." My takeaway from that is that a habit is easier to form [and keep] when it's tackled in manageable baby steps. Or more simply, good things take time. Even the biggest change-makers can't do it all overnight. But bite-sized wins make anything feel more accessible. It also helps if there's some form [even small] of instant gratification.

it's possible in paper & more!
 My answer to that is to create things from salvaged materials that help us incorporate desirable sustainable things into our everyday lives. To fix instead of throw away. Remake instead of make new. To lessen the burden of waste on our communities and our planet by rescuing good materials that don't have to be discarded to make things we can use. And if I form one habit that lowers my contribution to mounting waste, and then another, those small things grow to help the bigger picture.

Sustainable art is the creative practice of making artwork that are not harmful to the environment as well as works that address topics such as climate change, waste and social issues. - artterra.ca

Personally, I encounter choices on a daily basis that could have a positive or negative effect on our environment, and I sometimes have to choose the option that's not the best environmentally because of time constraints or other factors. But some of those daily choices are definitely for the good. And that's a start!

Yes, I believe in art for art's sake. But maybe I'm greedy and I want something two-fold for my time. So if I can create art and handmade objects that bring joy to people and their spaces, but things that also remove a tiny speck of weight from the pile that is mounting waste with nowhere to go, I want that, too. And I want to inspire others to give sustainable art and handmade goods a try.

the tiniest helpers
So I work to consciously incorporate salvaged materials into my pieces and to find better,  more eco-friendly ways to produce and deliver them. Yes, I realize I'm one person and my efforts are just a drop in a mighty big pond. But little efforts on the part of many could snowball into a brighter, cleaner future for this planet we call home. 

You can help! What type of art, objects, or goods would you enjoy? What would give you a sense of inspiration to own or give knowing it was created from recycled materials? Share in comments!

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
Margaret Mead

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