Thursday, January 3, 2008

Finding Inspiration

This is winter the way I like it. We've had a snowstorm at least three times a week while I was on vacation. The large, slow flakes are so beautiful to watch and I have a tradition when it snows like that. A friend made me a tape about 15 years ago with all her favourite classical music on it. One winter evening when I was still living at home we had the woodstove on, that tape was playing, and everyone was in the same room. I was embroidering, my mother was spinning, my brother was drawing, and the youngest was reading. The heat and crackle of the flames were hypnotic and we'd stopped speaking. It was night and when I looked up and out the window, I saw the big, fluffy snow flakes lighted up by the streetlamp. They fell very slowly, spinning in time to the music. It's been one of those moments that are eternal. It probably only lasted a few minutes, but I don't know if I've ever felt a moment of greater peace. It's one of those brain tattoos that end up being the big things to remember in life. Now my tape, is warped and goes out of tune in plenty of the songs. I've lost the play list so I can't replace it, but it's my tradition to put it on because I can always tap into the contentment of that memory.

I de-cluttered my studio. Tricky thing to do if you're into collage and mixed medium. That one inch scrap of Japanese paper could come in handy later...At the same time a room bulging over with scraps of this and that feels burdensome. I need breathing space to create. Tiring though it was, it was a step in the creative process. Picking up and looking at everything to decide do I keep it, or purge it stimulates "hmm, What could I do with that? I've been meaning to use this. This might make a good..." It's like I've put the pot on to simmer and giving it time will make those ideas mature.

Check out Juggling man's blog where I had the opportunity to guest write, "Can fine artists find inspiration from designers?"

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