Thursday, March 4, 2010

Creating Inspiration

Often I find I feel the urge to create but I’m not sure what to do or what to make. I feel motivated but uninspired. Over time I’ve learned a few tricks on inspiring myself. Hopefully my experiences can help you develop your own tricks to inspire yourself.

Before I can begin to create I must be in the right frame of mind. For me creating is a nearly spiritual experience. In order for my creativity to flow I must first break down the dam. I have to purge the day from my mind, get relaxed and get in the mood.

I like to take long hot baths to relax my body and melt away stress. I like the start setting the mood with candles, incense and music. When I’m preparing to be inspired I like to play ethereal music like Enya, Dead Can Dance, or even Enigma. I even have a few of the “mood” CD’s from the kiosks in stores, you know the ones where you can sample the music by pressing a button on the display. The important thing is that the music is something that can take you away … combined with some Calgon! I like this type of music because my mind can wander, it facilitates daydreaming and thereby aids in the creation and inspiration process.

When I’m good and relaxed, or the water has gone cold whichever comes first, I’m ready to start jotting down some loose thoughts and ideas. I keep several notebooks around the house for that purpose as well as journal on my bedside table. Jotting down random thoughts helps clear the mind. When you’re not focused on remembering to pay the bills or running replays of an argument through your head, your mind can be free to create.

When I’m ready to sit down at my work area and start creating, I still work to create an inspirational environment. There are little things I do every time I create. I’ll be the first to admit I’m a ritual kind of person. There is something about repeating certain steps every time I create, that helps me switch gears. Again it’s all about creating the right mood.

Music, lighting, scents … they all play an important role for me. I don’t always listen to the same music every time or the same scented candle every time. But I have found that certain combinations work better for me. Certain combinations of sounds and smells and sights can influence the outcome of my creativity. Bob Marley + Citrus = Happy vibes. Cole Porter + Floral = Reminiscent.

If you’re like me and require a total sensory experience you may want to consider Scentsy. They’re a home party business that has cornered the market on wickless candles. Their electric warmers come in many beautiful styles. Toss a chunk of their exceptional scented wax in the warmer for hours and hours of delicious olfactory delights. You get the scent without the worry of open flame.

I will shamelessly plug a friend and member here! Our very own Amanda Fredrick is a independent consultant for Scentsy. You can order online or host a party to receive all the benefits of being a hostess. Contact Amanda on her website for more information.

I have a houseful of nutty children, so when I’m creating I like to pop in my noise cancelling earbuds. Creating for me is a process in which I lose myself and the art flows from within me. I am an active participant in the process but somehow separate from it. So I need to disconnect and find my groove in order to fully get into the process.

Another part of creating the mood is to have a place that does inspire you. I haven’t gotten around to fully developing my creation space, as I’ve been focused more on organization. It’s easy to overlook the importance of decorating your space, but if you give it some thought I’m sure you can think of things you can do to make your space more inspiring. I also have a length of ribbon tacked to the wall & I display many of my cards by clipping them to the ribbon with those awesome clothespins I'm always raving about!

For me I need to paint. My crafting space is a corner of my rather large bedroom. The previous owner had awful choice in paint colors in my opinion, and so my corner has one brown wall and one red wall. Not my idea of inspirational! So painting is definitely on my to-do list!

I also keep a bulletin board which I tack little mementos, pages ripped from magazines, and uplifting quotes and poems. I have photos of friends, birthday cards they’ve given me as well as anything that makes me feel warm & fuzzy tacked up there. When I’m down all I have to do is look at the board and remember …. Remember feeling loved, remember feeling inspired.

More to come later! But until then consider experimenting and see what works for you!

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