Friday, January 26, 2007

My Muse

I'd like to blog more. I've run out of steam lately. So this meme seemed appropriate...
1. What inspires you?
All kinds of things, but mostly nature. Some people claim to be inspired by cities, other people, fabulous fashion... but I am most inspired by natural settings, of all kinds. Well, maybe also foreign cities, and sometimes other art. I got almost all of my jewelry color combinations from some kind of natural inspiration. I like doing that. For instance: Pond (at left). At first glance, it's just sort of nice natural tones, but it's got muted greens like the grasses at the edge of a pond, bleached by water and sun; murky blue like the sky reflected on the water; and various shades of brown and gold like the reeds and fallen leaves that were scattered near the pond that inspired this (by my massage therapist's office).
I like that. I like to think it helps bring out those quiet feelings of sitting next to a tranquil pond, watching small birds and maybe a frog, feeling warm sun on your back.
I am also inspired by the books I read as a child. I have this old 1920s Raggedy Ann and Andy storybook (sort of like a children's novel, actually), with the best vintage illustrations ever. I think more than actually trying to copy that style, I try to invoke the feelings that I had: enchantment, absorbtion, dreaminess...
Nature, art, books, and the occasional foreign land. Yep, that about covers it.
2. What blocks your creativity?
Without a doubt, boredom. It seems silly; boredom should not be able to exist with creativity, right? Like, you can't be sitting there trying to paint while you're bored, right? I think it's more like, if I spend part of my day being bored, I have a lot harder time actually getting myself out of that boredom and into being creative. Usually when I'm at home, I don't have a problem with boredom. But I get lulled into boredom at work sometimes, when things seem repetitive or really uninspiring. And then my brain turns to mush and then it's a lost cause.
Also, guilt and high expectations on my part also seem to kill creativity in me. I do okay with things like pressure and deadlines and challenges. But if I feel guilted (usually I do all my own guilting of myself, thank you very much) into doing art, it doesn't go well. For instance, "I should be painting, but instead I'm laying in bed reading. Get off your behind, Miss Bigshot Artist. I thought you wanted to be more creative. Put out or get out." Etc. That never works very well. Or if I start it thinking, "This is going to be the best painting EVER, it's going to knock my socks off," it's usually crap.
Also bad? Lots of noise. I like music, even loud music. But noise (street noise, office noise, TV noise): bad news for creativity.

3. Do you do anything special to get your creative juices flowing?

I just get out the tools. Setting up papers and pens and any reference materials usually is enough to get me going.
I'd love to have some kind of ritual or something, but truthfully I'm more of a 'just sit down and do it' kind of person. I like to just jump in. Sometimes it's fun to look through a magazine with great pictures, or do some sketching, but generally, it's just pick up the pen (pencil, brush) and go.

4. What time of day do you feel most inspired?

I don't know! I think probably mid-morning. Like at around 10:30. I used to be much more of a night person, and then I got old.
Ideally, I'd start my day fairly early, like at around 7. Some breakfast, some reading. Then a walk. Then some light housekeeping. Then settle in for creative time for about 4-5 hours. Then, be done for the day and do other things for the rest of the time. I think that sounds perfect.

5. How do you like to express your creative energy?
Hmm. For some reason I am confused by this question. I guess I like to create things. I like to make things, construct things, decorate things. I like to paint, draw, collage, stack, arrange, glue, reconstruct, miniaturize, anthropomorphize, beautify, cut, hack, wire, string... anything you can do with your hands. Well, I don't really like to sew (I want to like sewing, I really do). I like to cook, I like to handwrite, I like to clean, I like to build. I like writing, but I'm not really a writer. I like to play music, but I'm not really a musician, either. I'm an artist, as in, art done with hands and other items. I like to express myself in tangible things. And I like to give them away. I'd like to sell them, too, but I think I really like giving things away best.

No comments: