What draws one person to another? Is it true opposites attract, or do we look for a little bit of ourselves in our partners?
Any attempt to quantify what connects two hypothetical hearts is beyond me. But I couldn’t help but observe on my cross-country U.S. road trip interviewing creatives that of those who had significant others, their partners frequently were highly creative as well.
Take Elliot Mazer and Diana Haig. I was two days outside of Reidsville, North Carolina, where I was scheduled to interview Elliot — the legendary music producer of artists such as Neil Young and Janis Joplin who was involved in the birth of digital music mastering — when he called with a suggestion I also interview his wife Diana. I quickly learned that she was an accomplished songwriter who is now an author of travel books allowing the reader to walk in the footsteps of historic figures.
My first thought was of the time this would add to my trip, not just conducting a second interview but the additional video editing (I edited the films while on the road, posting a 5-minute film, a state a day, usually about 3-4 days after the 60-90 minute interview was conducted). But I said yes, and was delighted to capture on film a dynamic and charming creative every bit the equal of Elliot.
A couple of weeks later I was in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to interview Andrew and Tara Barney. Tara is an artistic polymath who specializes in jewelry-making and knitting. Andrew is a landscape painter. I filmed them together, largely because they seemed almost like one, jointly marketing their art on their Red Door Creations web site and intimately involved in each others’ art. (When Tara designed a new line of jewelry made with colorful assortments of corn, Andrew drilled some of the tiny holes in the kernels.)
Tara and Andrew were friends for years, encouraging of each others’ creative passions. You must watch their video to hear their romantic story and see how lovingly they interact.
There was one other parallel I would draw from these two encounters — generosity of spirit. In both cases, these creatives invited a stranger into their homes and shared the stories of their lives. And both sent me on my way with goodies. Tara gave me a basket with a corn necklace for my wife, a print of one of Andrew’s landscapes (which I’m looking at on my desk as I type) and banana bread. Diana ran out into the rain after my car as I was about to drive away, blueberry muffins in hand. In both cases the food was my manna as I wandered long stretches of road with no food options in sight.
Do you know creatives who have found in their life partners another creative spirit? Do you look for creativity in a potential partner?