I was having a hard time writing this piece but something happened today that completely fit with this post’s theme.
If you follow this blog or visit occasionally you will note that I periodically post from Lyn Gordon’s card set 52 Ways to Nurture Your Creativity. I randomly select from the deck or, in this case I asked my husband, Jim Booth, to do so and then I post the contents here along with any thoughts I have regarding them. When this one was selected my first reading left me a bit discouraged but I post these items hoping that someone else will find encouragement from them. I meant to write this yesterday but kept putting it off.
The card reads: “Sometimes the best way to jump-start a dormant creative streak is to indulge in other people’s creations. Pull out the gallery opening and museum section of the local paper and head to that show on baroque ceramic miniatures. The work of others will perhaps inspire, perhaps annoy, perhaps make you wonder why you aren’t creating your own masterpieces. If nothing else, inhaling other’s work should partially demystify the process because others, with varying degrees of success, have done it.”
I’m not in a ‘dormant creative streak’. I’ve been as productive as I’ve ever been in my life and teeming with new ideas. I’ve spent less time in the studio this year than I would like partly due to preparing information for taxes and partly from discouragement in a lack of sales. I don’t have rooms in which to lock up paintings for posterity as did Picasso and while I have ten pieces on exhibit currently I’m running out of room in my small studio for more artwork. We have my work displayed in every room in the house and still I have work boxed up or in my only-expandable-so-far canvas print rack. I want to create more but I hesitate to add to the deluge.
Last year my husband, who is a writer, and I went through The Artist’s Way books by Julia Cameron. We both found it at times tedious but always beneficial and this ‘Look Out!’ card reminded me of her Artist’s Date Book. The two main objectives in Ms. Cameron’s process are to write in free association fashion three pages every morning and to have a ‘Artist Date’ every week. The former is designed to clear our heads of clutter and chatter; the latter to feed our creative souls.
We’ve been to the Rembrandt, the Still Life and Munch exhibits at our state museum. As I sit writing this my husband is playing the guitar which he has often done while I paint. Being part of a touring band, varying in size from four to two members, his repertoire is endless and includes not only the work of that band but of all the bands and musicians that he has been influenced by along the way – top on the list being The Beatles. We read together each morning from books selected to inspire and both have made a nice dent in our individual lists of books to read in 2013.
But today, in fact, just a little while ago I received a direct hit related to our need to view and appreciate other people’s creations. As a member of a group on Linked In dedicated to Artists and the business of Art I found a member posting a request for everyone to share their Facebook Business pages. In the past few minutes I’ve enjoyed wandering through the creative worlds of several other artists. While it may not solve my space issue it is a reminder to get out there and look – even if you do so from the ‘window’ of your laptop. The world of creativity awaits – it is vast and .exhilarating!