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Articulation 7/2/04 - Big Fish and Your Creative Power
July 02, 2004
Hi ~

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Big Fish and Your Creative Power: A Mini-Article

A couple of weeks ago, I saw the movie "Big Fish" (cool movie, by the way), and was reminded of something I had heard a long time ago...that a goldfish's growth is directly related to the size of its environment. A goldfish in a bowl will stay small, and a goldfish in a pond will grow to be quite large.

I attempted to research this on the Internet, in preparation for this article, and found myself in the middle of what seems to be a heated debate among...I don't know who, goldfish aficionados, I guess. Some completely believe in this theory and break it down into factual information, point by point...others dismiss it as myth. Either way, it still is a powerful metaphor for the topic of expanding our capacity, both mentally and physically, so that we may grow the size we desire.

Let's look at the mental part of the equation, first. If you hold a desire (even a secret desire) to BE have your art, writing, or creative work make a big splash in the world, why the heck shouldn't you be big? It's important to accept that desire as being ok, which often means combating some long-held beliefs about being grandiose, self-centered, or greedy. I believe that the Universe wants us to be as big as we want to be. The people who really, truly care about us want us to reach our potential. And perhaps most importantly, those whom our work will touch DEPEND on our reaching wider so that they can be affected by our gifts. If all these entities want us to be big, why shouldn't we?

One of my favorite quotes of all time comes from a letter written by Martha Graham to Agnes deMille. Here's a portion of it:

"There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action. And because there is only one you in all time, this expression is unique. If you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep the channel open." - Margaret Graham

"Keeping the channel open"...stepping into your BIG role...that is what the mental side of expanding your capacity is all about.

Expanding your capacity also has to the do with the practical, tangible things that you can do to get out of a bowl and into a lake, so to speak. Coming into the role of "playing big" takes an internal alignment, but it also requires positive actions that support the desire. This is where outside support can be very helpful. It's hard to "start from scratch" to figure out what can you do, tangibly, to get yourself in a bigger pond. There are many resources that can help with this pond-building. A book, coach, course, or advice from a mentor can really make a difference.

Here at Artella, we'rem driven to provide tools to creative individuals that support the "inspired actions" that make their dreams a reality. Two upcoming e-courses, YOU * U and Goalar Energy, are geared to bridging the gap between big goals and big success.

Jenny Ryan, a participant in YOU * U, found how helpful it was to have some guidance in hopping into that bigger bowl: "I have had ideas running around in my head for the last 2 years, but I never did anything about them. YOU * helped me break down into manageable pieces the process of turning ideas into reality, while providing powerful support every step of the way. YOU * U gave me all the practical instructions I needed to start developing e-education products of my own."

For more information about these two courses, you can visit

Another new resource that I highly recommend is Suzanne Falter-Barns' new eBook, Get Known Now which is full of practical tools for building a platform for yourself or your business, and dramatically increasing your exposure. I have it myself and think it is excellent. Check the Artful Links section below for more information.)

Here's something very important to remember: the size of your bowl up to this point doesn't matter at all. It doesn't matter if you've been a huge success at making money from your passion or if you've never been able to get out off the ground. The only thing that matters is RIGHT NOW and the work that you are doing to get yourself in the bigger bowl.

Forget about the old patterns, the story, the successes or failures. Henry David Thoreau said, "If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them."

It's never too late to build a foundation for dreams in the sky. It's never too late to hop out of the fishbowl and dive into the vast, clear ocean.

  • In what areas of you life do you "play big" and "play small"? Do these choices accurately reflect your desires?
  • Are there beliefs that are limiting you from taking your creative work to the next level? Can you identify them and get a sense of how they need to be addressed?
  • Make a list of the ways you could get support and guidance for the tangible things that you could do to fully step into your true power. What books, programs, practices, courses, and mentors could help you? After you make your list, determine one step that you can take right now to move you a tiny bit closer to utilizing one of these resources.


If you are in any of my e-courses or on any of the Artella discussion boards, you know that my father, who has been sick for some time, went into ICU on Monday and I am in Dallas with my family for an undetermined time. (If you are an Artella reader, my father is Dr. Lonnie Kliever, who writes the "a philosophical riff" column.) The past two days have shown some significant improvement, about which we are all very happy. Thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers for our family.

It's been a strange few days in terms of how I have experienced time. This week's art-splash, Some Time , reflects this.

You can find it at


1. Sizzlin' Going Strong! Our "Sizzle Into Summer" sale has been getting a tremendous response from all of you and is still going on right now, through July 7! Also, the download links for the four Gift Packs are now READY! If you've bought or renewed your subscription and picked your pack, Zura has already sent you the download link. (If you never received it, write Zura directly at

If you haven't checked out the special at, be sure to visit that page and take our QUIZ to find out if you are an Adventurous Artist, a Wild Writer, a Hip Entrepreneur, or an Inspired Seeker!

2. e-Course Updates! Here are the highlights, which you can find on the Workshops page (click the "Stretch Your Soul" link from our home page!)
  • "Creative ManiFestival" and "Miracle Soup" launch THIS WEEK!
  • YOU * U has been postponed a week to accomodate vacation schedules, and begins July 12. Save $100 through Monday...and email me to request a free sample chapter from the textbook!

3. Artella staff changes! Our beloved Deb Silva (formerly our Administrative Assistant) is now Artella's Creative Projects Manager! Deb will still have her hands in various Artella projects but will also be directing creative intiatives to help Artella grow. And Zura Ledbetter has hopped on board to assist both Deb and I in a variety of tasks. Bobby remains the most excellent tech support specialist and Web team leader that anyone could ask for. I offer my huge thank-you's to all three of them!

In addition to being part of Artella's team, these three are all sellers in The Shoppes of Artella, too! Support the wonderful work of Deb, Zura, and Bobby by visiting their pages to read about their terrific products and services!


Our featured artist this week is Tammy Vitale, whose earthy, powerful art truly stirs the soul! Tammy's entire product line is 10% off this week, so be sure to check it out!

Partner with The Shoppes of Artella to expose your work to thousands of customers every month.!


If you use glues or various media on inkjet-printed images, you've probably found that the ink runs. While sometimes this is a cool effect, it can also be very frustrating! The solution: spray your paper with either a fixative (such as Krylon fixative spray) , and let the spray dry completely. Then run it through the printer. It prints perfectly, and you can say goodbye to ink runs!


When writing fiction, you can help keep the plot moving forward by constantly asking, "What does this character want?" Just like in life, characters' desires make things happen. Keep going back to what each character wants and, if they aren't getting what they want, examine what is getting in their way.


1. In the feature article above, I mention Suzanne Falter-Barns' eBook Get Known Now, which she is promoting from her new Web site, I am very impressed with this book and recommend it highly! I've already put into use some of the tips, with great results. Tell her Marney sent you! :-)

2. SARK, the author and creative Muse, has a brand new Web site called, and it's great! Check out this site when you need some creative rejuicing.

3. If you're in need of a creative escape this summer, Art Unraveled is a fantastic art retreat held in Phoenix, AZ, at the end of August. I'll be there myself, during the Shopping Extravanzga event, and I would love to meet you! Check out the Art Unraveled Web site to read about the mouthwatering workshops and special events!

Thanks again to all of you for your thoughts and prayers. Since my online time will be scattered for a bit, if you have any Artella-related needs, you can contact Deb at My Dad has been my biggest Artella fan from the beginning, and I know he's happy to see things continuing to happen in this bustling community.

~in the moment,

Artella Founder/Editor

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