Being an artist means training the ego. I believe the defining characteristic of a great artist is originality. Think of any great artist, in any genre: music, painting, poetry, literature. Then ask yourself if anyone like them ever came before them. The answer is no, and that is what makes them great.
The question then is how do you become original? You don't become original. You were born original. No one, ever in the history of the world has experienced the Universe exactly the way you have. That means you have a unique perspective. What clouds your unique perspective, and robs you of your originality, is your ego.
All egos are the same. They have one objective: to get all of the money and all of the pussy. We all have the same base impulses. There is nothing original about them. When the ego is talking, it doesn't have anything original to say. That's why I can't stand hearing rappers talk about money and pussy. It's all ego, and it's all bullshit. There's nothing original about it.
"Originality" is really just another word for "authenticity." To become truly authentic requires deep spiritual work. All great art comes from deep within the spirit. To connect with the Spirit, you have to look beyond the ego - beyond your own thoughts and emotions. All great artists, including those with big egos, did their best work when they were able to see past their own thoughts and emotions connect with the Spirit. The Spirit gives you an objective view of yourself.
You connect with the Spirit when you are in the space between your thoughts. There are many ways to do this. Athletes connect with it when they get in the zone. Musicians get in the zone too. So do meditators. So do artists. It's all the same. It's a state of flow and you can get to it any time, any where by going to the space between your thoughts. You train this mechanism through meditation.
Any time you are so focused on what you are doing that you lose track of your thoughts, you are connected with the Spirit. Meditation allows you to connect with the Spirit and focus on what you are doing, by training you to think about nothing. You don't think, you just do. When you do things right, it feels like you aren't even doing them at all. They're just doing themselves. That's because your ego - your thoughts and emotions - are out of the way and the Spirit is in control. Great art is made when the Spirit is in control.