The Artisan is one of the seven soul types or roles in essence. Artisans have a natural talent for creative expression, bringing to life new and original ideas.
Happiness… it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort. ∼ Vincent Van Gogh
Imagination is more important than knowledge. ∼ Albert Einstein
I dream for a living. ∼ Steven Spielberg
The Creative Soul
Artisan souls represent the essence of creativity and invention.
As with Sages, the energy of Artisans is expression-oriented — turning inner thoughts and feelings into things which can be perceived and enjoyed by others. But whereas the Sage focuses on the expression of popular wit and wisdom for the masses, what the Artisan expresses will tend to be unique and personal, the product of imagination and experimentation.
Artisan souls have an active and agile imagination that drives them to explore new forms and try out novel perspectives. They continually perceive alternative ways of constructing reality, and seek to realize (to ‘make real’) their ideas in interesting, tangible forms.
As such, Artisans are often drawn to professions where they can work creatively with the invention, design and development of new thoughts, new styles, new things: engineering, fine art, crafts, graphics, fashion and other forms of novel expression, more subtle forms including poetry, dance, modelling and athletics.
Many great actors are Artisans, often playing roles in which they portray other “Roles”, such as Kings. (Think of Daniel Craig as James Bond.)
Sport tends to attract both Artisans and Warriors — for Warriors, it’s an opportunity to get tough (they tend to go for rugby and boxing), while for the Artisans its more about flair, agility and honing their “craft” (football, tennis). David Beckham has perfected a Warrior-ike look for the camera, but his boyish smile is pure Artisan.
In society at large, Artisans are the experimental types who advance cultural progress in art, technology, entertainment, fashion, and so on.
In terms of their facial appearance, Artisans tend to have heart-shaped, almost child-like faces, with soft, droopy, dreamy-looking eyes, and an “intrigued” expression.
Note, for instance, the similarity between the following Artisans, despite their very different fields of expression.
This facial expression can vary between dreamy playfulness (see Marie-Antoinette) and one of struggling with complex thought processes (see Vincent Van Gogh).
Artisans – especially female Artisans – often go for striking hairstyles and very distinctive clothes as a way to express their unique individuality. This attracts attention and serves as a creative outlet, though it can also serve as a bold alter-ego for the more reserved personality inside to grow into.
Many male Artisans go for unkempt-looking hair and fuzzy beards.
Artisans also convey a sense of always reinventing life — i.e., whatever comes into an Artisan’s life will end up being new and improved. In a sense, Artisans live on the edge of chaos, which is the fertile zone in terms of creativity.
In fact, they are the only soul type to operate on multiple simultaneous channels of input (one looking at the current situation, the others following alternative trains of thought). Hence, their attention seems to be on many things at once.
And hence, to non-Artisans they can appear random, disorganised. Kings and Warriors especially might see them as “scatty”, “spacey” or “ditzy”. Their behaviour, like their thought processes, can sometimes seem completely erratic.
Positive and Negative Poles
[As a reminder, any manifestation of consciousness has both a positive pole and a negative pole. The positive pole is an expression of the true self or soul; the negative pole is an expression of the false self or ego.]
The Artisan is adept at crafting things from imagination and spends much time in their vivid and active inner world – in fantasy. The Artisan’s basic focus could be described as “applied imagination”. When it comes form the heart this leads to creation, the gift of genuine creative fulfilment. But when it comes from ego or fear it leads to artifice or craftiness – for example, using highly inventive lies or fantasies to deceive others for personal gain.
Another manifestation of negatively applied imagination would be to create a fantasy scenario and then step into it and believe it as though it were real. This is self-deception or delusion – when fantasy takes over from reality. Other roles are not so susceptible to these manifestations because they are less “involved” in their own imaginations, and less easily drawn away from reality. But an Artisan can easily get sucked into living in a world of fantasy or delusion, out of touch with everyday reality. Words commonly used to describe such people include “scatterbrained” and “ditzy”. An experimental writer, musician or artist might come to believe that anything he or she does, no matter how weird or nonsensical, is important simply because it is new and different.
In the positive pole of creation, however, an Artisan’s inventiveness and applied imagination are sincere, ingenious, insightful, and of value to others.
Artisan Soul Evolution
As a reminder, all souls progress through five cycles of self-evolution in physical form (see: Reincarnation: the 35 Steps.)
Artisans are society’s designers and architects – both literally and metaphorically. Artisans therefore find their feet on Earth during the second reincarnational stage, which is about organisation and structure. Baby Artisans, good with their hands, are usually drawn to crafts like metalwork, woodwork and other manual skills. One example from the entertainment field is the American singer and Christian activist Pat Boone.
In the third stage, Young Artisans like to turn their creative and expressive talents directly to the pursuit of worldly success, fame and fortune. Painters and sculptors, for example, will look for prestigious, high-earning commissions. Some will use their own body as a medium of expression. Well-known Young Artisans in the entertainment field include Elvis Presley, Cher, Bruce Lee, John Travolta, Lisa Kudrow, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kim Bassinger and Victoria Beckham.
Mature Artisans are drawn to use their creative expression in more meaningful ways, e.g. to understand and explore human emotions. They can be bohemian, highly inventive, perhaps avant-garde, and are often ahead of their time. Well-known examples include Michaelangelo, W. A. Mozart, Vincent van Gogh, Marilyn Monroe, Frank Lloyd Wright, David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Yoko Ono, Woody Allen, Leonardo di Caprio, Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, and of course Michael Jackson.
Old Artisans seek to explore and perfect their own unique approach to creative expression. What they express tends to be increasingly philosophical and spiritual. Examples include Walt Whitman and Paul Gauguin.
Incidentally, Gauguin appears to have reincarnated as Dutch artist Paul Teekamp.
A gallery of Artisans: