Sometimes artists who can’t find inspiration to paint will ask me how I stay so creative & productive in my art. I think the truth is that I’m pretty easily entertained and sometimes the inspiration just pours in so fast that I’m overwhelmed and have no idea what to paint or create first. Yesterday was one of those days. It seemed that everywhere I went I was surrounded by things which fed my soul and will be reflected in my art somewhere down the road. I hope you enjoy this little adventure with me.
I started at one of my favorite shops, Soul Scape, which has wonderfully creative displays. The giant statue of Ganesh greeted me as I entered. This day one of the things that captivated me was strands of paper animals & flowers stitched together to be hung. There were colorful dragons, horses, elephants & seahorses. I treated myself to the little white paper swallows, which reminded me of a spring garden wedding. I decided that they would be a lovely addition to my home just to celebrate the arrival of spring. & they were. Part of the creative process is remembering to treat yourself as a special person, because you are.
I also purchased a book of poetry by Hafiz, which I think will show up on my Japanese etegami cards at some point. “We were once all like moons, Often full & bright.” – Hafiz
I continued on to a delightful shop, The David Allan Collection. David Alan, the owner, brings back wondrous & mysterious things from all over the world. He also has a travel blog online, which is wonderful to read. His articles touch on his travels and acquisitions from the Silk Road, Treasures of Tibet, Japanese antiquities and Folk Art of Java. When I read his blog, I am reminded of reading fairy tales as a child. Greeting me outside the shop was a band of mischievous monkeys made out of branches. They looked as if they had leaped from a fairy tale page!
Entering The David Alan Collection is like walking into an Aladdin’s Cave full of treasures & trinkets. The energy & spirit of this shop can’t help but inspire my creativity. It is armchair travelling at its best. & By the way, all of the people who work inside these favorite shops of mine are really friendly & welcoming & obviously love their jobs. What a great thing to love the work that you do. Spending even a few moments with people who love their jobs & share their happiness of their life is really joyful. Having joy inside my heart & soul helps me paint from my heart.
A mysterious creature from Indonesia lets my imagination soar.
A group of folk-art rabbits from Java sitting on petrified wood from Indonesia seem to wish me a Happy Spring as I go on my way!
My next stop is SOLO, which is an open & airy warehouse with lots of coffee table art & travel books, cook books & accoutrements, vintage type print, hinges, and signs, along with candles & stationery. I really like to go here to see what Ruby Lang is up to as she changes her booth depending on the season. I have seen Ruby Lang decorate SOLO for the Day of the Dead with marvelous & creative homages to the loss of pets and loved ones. Today I am expecting to find Easter & spring décor and I am not disappointed.
I imagine this is a Goddess of Nature & spring.
Thrift shops are also a wonderful source for me of Trinkets & Treasures. Today I stopped at a large one and was rewarded with a Japanese jewelry box. Now I have two! After I returned home, I realized the new box outshines the one I already had. A lucky find for only a few dollars.
Spending time organizing my costume jewelry into the new box was fun. I even managed to put a red tassel on the key that came with the new box. The colors & textures of all my costume jewelry & putting the fragile necklaces in little gossamer bags may seem a waste of time to some people. Time is a luxury that we don’t have enough of, but everything we do in life does not have to have a purpose. Remember playing as a child and how time seemed an endless commodity? As an artist it is important to spend time letting the child that still lives within us come out & play.
Sitting down and painting art isn’t in the cards today. Perhaps I have a bit of spring fever. I decide to go to Green Gardens and wander around all the pretty spring flowers just calling to be taken home and planted.
The delphiniums were truly glorious.
My fingers fairly itched to take some of these beauties home and do a painting.
Beds of flowers everywhere. Why don’t I have a yard to haul home a truckload of these lovelies? Perhaps “window shopping” is really best. I remember reading a Georgia O’Keefe quote that she was glad she lived in a desert environment and couldn’t have a flower garden, because she would spend all her time gardening instead of painting.
The resident cat comes to say Hello, but seems to wonder how I could resist taking home an armload of plants.
As an artist, the truth is that we can’t have it all if we are to allow ourselves time to create art. The house isn’t quite clean, the car stays unwashed, we open cans of soup to eat and some of the things we used to enjoy must be pushed by the wayside. An artist’s focus must remain on creating art in order to fully use the gift that we have been given. The gift of art that makes our souls sing. & I want to sing with an open heart that will resonate in my art.
I peek inside the garden gift shop & spot this mermaid by-the-sea with a wreath of sea shells. It is time. I have had a lovely day & my heart is happy. Home is calling me & paint brushes are waiting for the moment when I paint from my heart, which is filled with gratefulness for this life of mine as an artist by-the-sea.