Zen, and by extension the Zen aesthetic, show us that all things are perfect and complete just as they are. Nothing is lacking. In trying to realize our true nature, we rub against the same paradox: we don’t know that we already are what we are trying to be. In zen, we say that each one of us is already a buddha, a thoroughly enlightened being. It’s the same with art. Each one of us is already an artist, whether we realize it or not. In fact, it doesn’t matter whether we realize it — this truth of perfection is still there. Engaging in the creative process is a way of getting in touch with this truth, and let it function in all areas of our lives.
If I were asked to get rid of the zen aesthetic and just keep one quality necessary to create art, I would say it’s trust. When you learn to trust yourself implicitly, you no longer need to prove something through your art. You simply allow it to come out, to be as it is. This is when creating art becomes effortless. It happens just as you grow your hair. It grows.