“I wonder… I wonder if it was worth it. Whatever happened to me in my life, happened to me as a writer of plays. I’d fall in love, or fall in lust. And at the height of my passion, I would think, “so this is how it feels,” and I would tie it up in pretty words. I watched my life as if it were happening to someone else. My son died. And I was hurt; but I watched my hurt and even relished it, a little, for now I could write a real death, a true loss. My heart was broken by my dark lady, and I wept, in my room, alone; but while I wept, somewhere in side I smiled. For I knew I could take my broken heart and place it on the stage of the Globe, and make the pit cry tears of their own…” -Shakespeare in Sandman #75
One way of interpreting art is that art captures a thing; sometime’s it’s a memory, an impression, an emotion, a fleeting thought, a dream, a mindset and sometimes (or all the time), just life itself. And people think that all an artist needs to do this is talent and practice.
But what most people, even artists themselves sometimes, don’t realize is that the net they use to capture beauty is themselves – a net that is weaved from the artist’s own experiences and memories. The price the artist pays for creating beauty is the price of himself. For each piece of art he creates, he divorces it from himself, like a horcrux. By using a part of himself as his art, he reveals it to the world and preserves it in a legacy. But in so doing, he taints that part of himself in a way that it can no longer become pure again. He takes it, clinically detaches it, then crafts it like the way a jeweler cuts diamond – precisely, delicately, economically. And in that process, that part of the artist no longer belongs to him; it belongs to everyone else.