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What is the Key to Creative Inspiration? What unlocks that Door?

So lets take a look at that most elusive of concepts - the artist's inspiration. Where does it come from? What causes it to happen?

a blck and white sign

Creative inspiration can be elusive, but there are several factors and techniques that can help unlock the door to creativity:

One of the most important ones, I believe is being curious. Be curious about the world around you. Ask questions, explore new topics, and stay open to learning.

Curiosity, a lizard curious

If we look at some of history's greatest creators, Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo for example, they had an insatiable curiosity to explore the natural world and use what they learnt in their art work.

Children already posses this quality by the truck load. If you've ever had anything to do with two year olds they are constantly trying to figure out how the world works. They pull things apart and eat raw onions just because they can, not to mention many other things.

When my middle daughter was around three, we were driving along one day and all these black round things began falling into her lap. She had stuffed a whole bunch of privet berries up her nose - unbeknown to us - go figure.

Curiosity can take many forms - although I'm certainly not an advocate of stuffing random things up ones nose LOL!

More relevant avenues might be used through the use of intelligent questioning, such as:

  • What would happen if ...........................

  • why is that thing in shadow now?

  • What is causing those colours to vibrate in that way and can I replicate that in my own work?

  • What is next?

  • Why does this subject appeal to me?

and so on ......

When was the last time you experimented with something because you were curious to see what would happen. Tried and true has its place, but as creatives we also need to push the boundaries and this is challenging because we are then venturing into unsafe territory. All those ugly questions raise their ugly heads -

  • What if it fails

  • what if its not good enough - and by extension - I'm not good enough

  • Aren't there already experts in this field - I'm too old, I'll never catch up

  • I mean really - who am I to think I can go down this path?

And so on - ad nauseum.

This brings to mind a quote from Georgia O'Keeffe, who said,

"I've been absloutely terrified every moment of my life and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do."

Sometimes, limitations can fuel creativity. Embrace constraints and use them as a challenge to come up with innovative solutions.

What are you not doing, exploring , being curious about because you are afraid of, terrified of doing it and what might or might not happen!

Do it now !

Pix Credits:

  • drew-beamer-Vc1pJfvoQvY-unsplash

  • katrina-wright-yMg_SMqfoRU-unsplash

  • philipp-torres-HUDFBjvbg1E-unsplash

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