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Thursday, December 3, 2015
Mind Altering Drugs in Art
It seemed a natural conclusion of colleagues that I had to take drugs in order to produce art at the rate that I so often work at. One person said he'd just been too shy to ask me prior to my posting the articles and that he figured it was my subtle way of saying "drugs help!"
In fact on further inquiry I found out that many just assumed that I must use something in order to work 18 hours at a hop in the studio and create +10 sculptures a month.
Soooo I will admit here for the official record and to the total astoundment of friends and associates what my true secret is...
Okay, I admit it. There is no secret. In fact I am so ridiculously virginal where it comes to drugs that I've never even experimented. I mean nothing, nada, zip. Not even a midnight puff when I was a teenager on a joint or for that matter even a cigarette.
From an early age I've been overly protective of this thing called a brain. I grew up very very poor. My brain was the only thing I had going for me growing up (sometimes I think it still is). I was not about to damage it in any way or form.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not bragging. I'm simply saying that this was how I protected what little I had. As I grew up, I realized that I really didn't need drugs. I was able to create a natural endorphin high merely by relaxing and letting it flow through me.
The funny thing is, most of the people in my life have been and are users of alternative substances and it doesn't bother me in the least. They've respected my limits and I've respected theirs. And they've remarked on more than a few occasions that I must be doing hits of acid under the table or something because I seem just as high as they were.
So this article is in no way written to put down the use of any alternative substance. My personal opinion is, if it works for you, do it. If your not destroying your body in the process then more power to you.
But at the same time I believe that artists in particular don't really need drugs. I truly believe that we can access parts of our brain that perhaps others can't access as easily and as a result it allows for that natural high.
I know for me that working 18 hours at a stretch and surpassing my limitations as an artist allows me to reach a level that most just assume must be done with drugs.
One thing I know for sure is that allowing my brain to naturally reach a high means that I suffer no down effects after the drug wears off. Sure I may get terribly sleepy if I've been pushing myself hard, but that is the bodies natural reaction. I suffer no lows and after rest can usually repeat the performance again. This is not something that the users of alternative substances can claim. There is always an inevitable down to every artificially induced high. And that is where I think the use of drugs for achieving huge levels of energy and creativity has its downfall.
Did drugs work for some artists? Yes. And in fact may have made them better artists. Again if it works for you, do what you must. But if it destroys you prematurely then use caution.
Should artists use LSD microdoses? I cannot say. But I can say that anything that may result in damage to the creative process later, is a dangerous path for an artist. We rely too heavily on our brains to start relying solely on drugs to help us create. There will be an inevitable downfall at some point.