“All too often we try to push, pull, outline and control our ideas instead of letting them grow organically. The creative process is a process of surrender, not control.” - Julia Cameron (The Artist’s Way)
This week on the Inspired Woman Project we are featuring Anne Heaton, a singer, songwriter and classically trained pianist. With 6 albums released and a continuous schedule of tour dates, Anne knows a great deal about bringing her creative inspirations to life.
As a child, Anne struggled with a need to express herself within a family that did not relish emotional vulnerability. She was always drawn to music and when she finally allowed herself to just start, she found a whole world of people who honored and appreciated her message.
According to Anne, moving into that creative process involves quite a bit of surrender. “It is a feeling of being in flow that is part inspiration and part commitment. It involves staying open and knowing I’m not in control of the outcome,” says Anne.
The process and the outcome of Anne’s songs have changed throughout the years, initially culminating from a need to express her inner self and experiences and now with an intention “that it be like a transformation or a catharsis, (ultimately) an alchemy.”
Anne says the first key in her writing process is to “give herself permission to be creative. It could be waking up 15 minutes early three days a week or taking a walk on one’s lunch break and just allowing the ideas to surface. By allowing yourself and your mind to just wander, with no set plan, you can just see what comes up.” This is the first step in what Anne calls “the 3 keys to unlocking creativity and expression when life is busy.”
Anne outlines and explores each of these steps for out listeners, explaining exactly how she uses them and how they help her get to the next phase in her creative endeavors. She also shares a deep and vulnerable look into her story of becoming a musical artist, and how her definition of success has changed throughout her career.
Listen here to one of Anne’s amazing and soulful songs entitled, Jump.
THE INSPIRED WOMAN PROJECT: Anne Heaton
Anne Heaton, Singer-songwriter & Founder of Soul Songs School.
Classically trained pianist and songstress Anne Heaton has amassed awards and praise from critics, fellow artists and fans with her songs that are by turns “tender, barbed and spiritual” (Washington Post). Her graceful, vulnerable, and sometimes humorous pop-folk songs have captured audience imaginations for over a decade.
Heaton has played the Sundance Film Festival, Lilith Fair (2010), and was a featured artist on the New York Times Music Podcast. She has also played numerous times on NPR, toured throughout the US, and shared the stage with some of her favorite artists including Jewel, Sarah McLachlan and jazz drummer Max Roach.
"I love to write songs that go deeply into an emotion in order to then let it go. I love music that both gives comfort and urges one to take risks and grow."
To learn more about Anne Heaton, visit her at www.anneheaton.com