Welcome to the third edition of The Pulse: an artist survey. This collaborative project aims to introduce you to new artists, help you get to know familiar faces even more, and allow you access into the creative hearts and minds of a very talented crew of individuals. For links to the sites of the participating artists, please click here.
Today's question comes courtesy of Debbie Mihalik: How do you get your creative groove? The following is the third of four posts to answer this question.
Shona Cole I light an incense stick. I put on my iPod and listen to Damien Rice, Jack L, Yael Naim, Glen Hansard, Eivor Palsdottir, Loreena McKennitt, Fiona Apple. Before I write I listen to or read poetry like B.H. Fairchild, Billy Collins, Claudia Emerson. Often I will browse craft books/magazines/blogs to remind me I am part of a larger group of creatives and that makes me want to get to work.
Traci Huskamp Being out in nature, listening to music, reading books and magazines always gets the wheels turning in this brain of mine.
Harry Bell It just comes to me mostly. I spend a great deal of time just wandering around, looking and remembering. Eventually some of this stuff rises to the surface and I know what I want to do with it. Attempts to kick start this process usually meet with dismal failure.
Kristy Christopherson I turn on loud 80's music and it gets me in the groove. Somehow turning it on, getting my table ready with my supplies and such, it always gets me going.
Barbara Kleinhans Sometimes it starts from a place of resistance but I push forward because I know once I start painting my mind switches over to that wonderfully freeing and meditative place.
Jen Bradford I do a lot of puttering in the studio, reading, looking online, and tell myself it is getting me into a creative groove. But it isn't exactly true. It's useful, and I need to do those things. But just putting paint on a white surface and responding to that very specific moment is the only thing that gets a real groove going. It's a simple fact I have to re-learn every time I get feeling stuck. Once I'm in the middle of it, the groove is pretty easy to sustain. I love to paint.
Jonna Barnett Music - for detail type work I always listen more instrumental type pieces, softer, mellow. To get something started I usually listen to something that has more energy, makes me want to move and I just slap the paint onto the canvas.
Jen Worden I'm lucky in that all it takes is for me to walk out my door across the garden and into my studio to put me in the creative frame of mind. I have so many projects and ideas that I want to accomplish that I don't think I'll ever find the time to finish. Now just watch I'll go out tomorrow and hit a giant creative drought!
Marie Otero My creative groove usually arrives at around 1:30am when all is quiet and there is no risk of being compelled to do the laundry, answer the phone or pull weeds out of the garden. I do a lot of research during the day, read about what I might do next but it's in the wee small hours that the mojo arrives. I usually have my Ipod playing in the background or the radio tuned to a good 70's/80's station but sometimes I just get happily lots in the pixels with nothing more than a cat (or five) for company!
Nancy Baumiller Sometimes it is just simply seeing color combinations and of course other artists inspire me immensely!
Kathy McCreedy I simply go to my studio and play. I believe serious art require serious play (someone else said that, I cannot take credit for it, and likely that person was famous). Sometimes I go to Borders and browse the Graphic Design magazines for visual stimulation, but then I'm always tempted to buy something. I really just find time without an agenda in the studio is best for me. I purposefully go in there without expectations, and I never fail to have fun. Sometimes I even make something I'm happy with!
Cynjon Noah Quite simply, the groove happens on it's own any time that I have time to myself...be that in time alone at home, or just time *at* home. My work takes me all over the country, and often for months at a time, so I've learned to make the most, creatively, of the free time I do have.
Bridgette Guerzon Mills I think the most important thing I have learned is that I cannot wait for inspiration to hit. I have to just come to the table/easel and just work. The more I work, the easier it gets to get into the groove. Writing in a journal really helps me to hone in on what is going on inside of me, which is what ends up on the canvas. I have been using visual journal entries at the beginning of a studio session to loosen up and help me get going. I just throw some color down, glue a few images or scraps of this and that, and then write about whatever is going on in my head or write about my goals for that day. I have developed these quick thrown together compositions into larger paintings. I have also found color combinations through those entries that I may not have tried otherwise. I highly recommend this practice.
Deryn Mentock I'm blessed in that my creative groove seems to live with me constantly. My art time is limited so I usually get after it without much preparation.
David Castle Music. Cool studio temperature. Prayer. Coffee and donuts. Clouds and rain. Tears. Laying down big back washes. Mixing paints. Silence.
Kelly Parker Creative groove…sometimes I work in the gardens for inspiration, sometimes I talk long walks to look at the landscape, and sometimes I just work from intuition with music.
Judy Wise I sustain the fantasy. That life is good, that people are always kind, that I can accomplish anything I want. I believe it and then I do it, whatever I choose to do. I think you cannot create easily or well unless you are living right and by that I mean your work must be infused with love and compassion and you must be good to the people who need you. If your head isn't clear your work will not sing.
Lelainia Lloyd My creative time usually starts very early in the morning. I come into the studio between 5:00 and 5:30 a.m. every day. I usually check my email first and then get right down to work. It's not unusual for me to work in my pyjamas either. If I don't have any outside appointments, then I don't bother getting dressed-it's one of the perks of working from home. *grins*
I need to have music playing while I work. I have an extensive iTunes library so I usually listen to it through my computer. I tend to get into musical jags and will listen to the same album over and over and over. I always have a mug of Chai close at hand and I keep some snacks in a drawer in case I need something and don't want to leave what I am doing. Once I get working, it's neigh impossible to get my attention. (As my guys can attest to!)
Dina Wakley I listen to music, cranked up really loud. Sometimes the lyrics float around in my head and give me ideas. I also don't push myself. If I feel like creating, I do. If I don't feel like creating, I just do something simple like gesso pages or splash down some paint for backgrounds.
Maralena Howard Different ways. Usually I like to just spend a little while in a peaceful/relaxing state. Maybe sipping on some coffee, relaxing by a window – looking out and just letting my mind wander or equal out/balance. I like to enter into the piece (especially if it is a new one) unrushed and with a sense of free flowing rhythm. Once I am in that place within the piece – I sometimes like music in the background. Currently I have been listening to Govi. Flamingo gets my artistic motor running too. I really enjoy all the music from “Café Del Mar”… it sets the background for some of my work.
Kate Strickland I’d love to say that I get my creative groove by listening to some soulful music, writing down my creative ideas, talking to myself out loud, taking a walk in nature, being inspired by other people’s work, or sharing with another creative spirit. While all these things are essential to my creative process, the groove comes down to two things: deadline and solitude.