WATCH: This Artist Overcame Adversity To Make Art That Will Blow You AwayWhen Limits Spark Creativity Ideas are not set in stone. When exposed to thoughtful people, they morph and adapt into their most potent form. #tedweekends will highlight some of today’s most intriguing ideas and allow them to develop in real time through your voice! Tweet TEDWeekends to share your perspective or email tedweekends@hufﬁngtonpost.com to learn about future weekend’s ideas to contribute as a writer. Hamburger grease and live worms are just some of the materials artist Phil Hansen uses to create his stunning artwork. Find out how limits fuel his creativity and see his unbelievable creations for yourself.
How My ‘Shake’ Opened My Eyes To The True Meaning Of LifeWhen Limits Spark Creativity Click here to watch the TEDTalk that inspired this post. In this week’s TED talk, artist Phil Hansen reveals how his greatest limitation–permanent neurological damage that caused his hand to quiver and defeated his ability to create the pointillist pieces he so loved–evolved into his creative liberation. His advice? That we all should “embrace the shake,” accepting our shortcomings and letting go of expectations. My metaphorical shake began when I was 32 years old. Up until that time, I had enjoyed a pretty blessed existence. I had a loving middle-class family that sent me to great schools. I excelled as a student and involved myself in dozens of activities. I cultivated a large social circle. I was happy and successful. Whatever goal I aimed for, I achieved. I believed that with hard work and a positive attitude, anything is possible. Rather than viewing my ego annihilation as a tragedy, I began to view it as a gift–perhaps the greatest gift of my life. — MeiMei Fox Then failure struck me down like a tree felled by a winter storm. My parents got divorced. My six-year marriage dissolved into a puddle of betrayal and misery, and I left all my possessions–including my dog–behind in LA. My father was convicted of a crime and placed under house arrest, his photo plastered on the front page of the local newspaper. All this happened within a matter of months. Suddenly, I didn’t know who I was anymore. All I had known was success. What could I claim as my identity now that these public humiliations had toppled me from my self-assured perch? Like Phil Hansen with his uncontrollably jittery hand, I developed an uncontrollably jittery soul. Anxiety became my constant companion. I couldn’t sleep without pills.