and allow thoughts and images to emerge unedited.”—Betsy Dillard Stroud
What exactly is your artistic muse? For me, it is that burst of artistic energy that takes over and compels me to create—many times not just one project but several projects at the same time. I get an idea and am able to express it perfectly; the proportions are exact, the wool is cooperative and even eyes are felted with ease! I can move between projects with complete inspiration. It’s as if my artistic flow is in sync with my soul and mind and anything I imagine is possible! It is when my space has just the right energy to support my artistic feng shui.
Sometimes I find that no matter what I am working on, it just isn’t coming out right. At that moment I know that I have lost my muse. It’s time to check the Lost and Found box! I have learned that when this happens it is time to put the needles down and walk away. No matter how many hours you sit there and poke that wool, you are not going to accomplish your goal and will ultimately end up with a great sense of frustration and unhappiness.
How do you find your energy and inspiration again? Sometimes taking a break will do the trick. Maybe you need to get some fresh air by taking a walk. When I lived near our local township nature trails I enjoyed taking a brisk walk, usually with my dogs. I always noticed the natural habitat on the trails: trees, foliage, leaves, streams. As an artist I see my surroundings as somewhat of a living painted landscape. I notice the slight sway of the trees and the light breeze as it rustles the leaves. I follow every ray of the sun that seeps through the tops of the trees and finds its way to the ground… studying the array of colors. I see notice how my white dog isn’t really white but fifty shades of white because white is never really white. I also breathe in the smells as I walk along the trails. I find a simple walk like this recharges the mind and reconnects my artistic muse.
I recently moved into a new home and I was having difficulty with my muse. I don’t have a room devoted for a studio so finding the right place in the house to work on projects was difficult. You can’t just pick a room and call it a studio. You have to find the right space that feels right and one that you can be productive in. It has to be comfortable. You can’t just say the garage is going to be my studio or choose the dining room table to work on projects because there is so much space. You can’t just assume that either of them will be the right place. It just does not work that way! I cannot sit at the dining room table and be productive at all. I tried. This may sound funny, but to me the space is too big and I’m creating a mess. I feel disconnected with my surroundings. And needless to say the kitchen is close by and if I lose my muse I certainly do not want to end up cooking! (I am a pretty good cook too!) I need to have my art desk and supplies within reach. I also need to have my computer/printer within close proximity because when I work on a character I like to have dozens of photos on the screen of all angles of a piece I am interpreting in needle felt. I also don’t like to be near a door or be distracted by my little monster dogs when they want to play or constantly want to go outside! There are just too many distractions to deal with. I decided to move into the corner of my room where I can have a tidy compact space and listen to music, or the background noise of reruns of Law and Order Criminal Intent/SVU on the tv. I know that might sound odd, but it is what works for me!
AND that is precisely my point… you need to find what works for you! Discover what enhances your muse and what set up lets your artistic feng shui flow! I hope you find your artist muse!
Have a HaPpY day!