The Inspiration Train
September 29th, 2009
I've loved reading all the fabulous guest posts about inspiration this month. Thank you a million times over to all the fabulous folks who shared their inspiration with us while I moved. And thank you to everyone participating in the Creative Every Day Challenge for continuing to inspire me and so many others!
As I've pondered the theme of inspiration this month, I've generally felt like you can't wait for inspiration to create. That's something that I learned through doing Art Every Day Month (a challenge I run every November.) Through keeping a daily practice, I learned that when I sat down and created every day, there were some days when I was feeling juiced up and full of inspiration, but there were just as many days that I just wasn't in the mood. But when I created anyways, I learned that being in the mood or feeling inspired were not requirements of creating. What a revelation that was for me!
I think too often we wait around for that bolt of lightening to strike and tell us what to do (and that does happen, but for most of us, it's just not often enough.) But the beautiful thing is, that when we sit down and begin, despite our mood, things begin to flow. We only need to put pen to paper or brush to canvas and start. I'm continuously surprised by what comes when I simply allow myself to begin. And as a nice bonus, my mood is often a million times better once I spend some time creating or writing.
Yes, there are those fabulous days when inspiration is beating down your door, when it will not let you rest until you get moving on the idea that has come knocking. I had one of those days yesterday. It was a busy day too and I didn't have time to play with my idea until the evening. I was tired and was considering just leaving it for later, but I felt so restless and jazzed up about it, that I had to at least start even if I couldn't finish the piece.
I was on a roll, happily pulling materials from still packed boxes, finding things easily, putting the beginnings of a piece together, and then I was totally surprised when I looked up and saw how time had just flown by. I tweeted about how I'd felt such a strong urge to create and was enjoying riding the art train. It felt great to have started to bring this idea to life and with gluey hands, my muse was satisfied and let me rest. (The work in progress is above, just the beginning layers here. I'll write more about it as it develops.)
So, there are two things I want to say about this. One is, when the inspiration train comes for you, ride it out. Enjoy it. Stick your head out the window and feel the breeze. Follow it where it leads you. The second is, on all the other days, when the train hasn't picked you up, don't wait around for it, twiddling your thumbs and biding your time. Make your own ticket. Create anyway.