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 last of four posts to answer this question.
Cory Celaya I’m always in a creative groove...I even create in my sleep. Sometimes I wake up with an idea in the middle of the night. I either write it down or get up and work on the idea before it leaves me.
Martha Marshall I have to make sure the dogs have been out, turn on some music, turn down the phone, ignore the doorbell, and close out my email program. Even then, if I don’t feel particularly creative or inspired, it’s important for me to just do something – start moving some paint around. Pretty soon it’s a grooving thing.
Roxanne Stout To get into a creative mood I like to listen to music, usually NPR or artists that I discover there. I like a breeze coming in from outside, and afternoon light is the best. I get my work area ready, clear a space for my projects and look out my windows for a while. The garden is usually very active with bumble bees, humming birds and swallowtail butterflies. Then I begin to work. On a good day I can work for a few hours without stopping. Ideas have usually come to me the night before so I have an idea already circulating through my mind before I begin. I love to go out and water when I need to get re-energized or refreshed. Books are always around me and pages that I've torn from old magazines. I can get really inspired by other artist's blogs! I love the way we all have our own style and support and encourage each other.
azirca I guess it depends on my mood. Often it begins with an idea that has been floating about in my mind, a word or a phrase or something that has just popped in my head, it usually happens when I'm lying in bed trying to get to sleep. It can be like one of those eureka moments, I have to get up and jot a few ideas down, otherwise I wouldn't be able to get to sleep! Sometimes, seemingly out of nowhere, I just have a sudden urge to create. Those pieces are usually something that are created fairly quickly as I don't have as much time to think the process through, it's all about getting the idea and out and turning it into something three-dimensional before the creative mojo goes. Music, melodies and lyrics also really inspire me as do colours, shapes, textures, shadows and light. If all else fails and I'm lacking inspiration, a strong coffee works wonders!
Chris Miser I draw inspiration from reading about and viewing art. Oddly, because I’ve been a writer all my life, words can inspire me quite a bit. Occasionally I will listen to music, but that doesn’t get me started as often or as readily as it does many other people. I also am inspired by past projects. I tend to retain the memory of a process that I particularly enjoyed. I may have created something to give away, but the ideas that grew during that process stay with me, almost as if the project is urging me to work with it again. So, I guess I’m inspired by my own journey!
grrl+dog I tidy the house to tidy my mind.
I put the tv onto the movie channel
Burn some incense
edge closer to the table by fiddling with some corner of it.
Then go in full bore.
Sarah Whitmire I have no clue… LOL…it just comes and goes. Mostly I just have to work a little everyday whether I am feeling it or not.
Leslie Marsh Gosh, that really varies. Sometimes I have an idea in my head and just go right for it. Other times I may not have a thought, and I'll turn to blogs or to my collection of magazines and books for inspiration. Music helps once I've settled into my mess of stuff, and just surrounding myself with the things I think I might want to use in a project helps to inspire me.
Deana Hager I have to go with an idea or project the moment it comes to me or it doesn't happen (which tends to happen a lot)
Karen Cole I like working with others (is that from kindergarten?). I love taking classes, collaborating with other artists or checking out other artists work in galleries and on line. I have many friends that need to be alone in order to be inspired. I prefer to share my experience. Blogging has been an inspiration in itself.
Marion Bockelmann Music is important to get into the flow. Then words, words, words. Visiting blogs, reading art books. And I love to take part in challenge blogs: Isn´t it wonderful to have a theme and do it your own way? I´ve loved that since my schooldays. It´s not that I didn´t have any own ideas, I just love to start a weekend or an arty session with a challenge. And that´s what Round Robin projects are - someone gives you a theme, and you start thinking about it ... I love that! Taking any given things and making them your own, isn´t that what collage is all about?
Joanna Olson Either being commissioned to do a painting or being asked to participate in a charity auction sends me into research mode. I love the research. My best work has been the result of exploring new subject matter usually providing me with enough material to present the project as well as enough to continue a new series on my own. It introduces new color schemes and new subjects I may not have come up with otherwise.
Elizabeth Bunsen I get into my creative groove by BEing, DREAMing and PLAYing - yes truly - I dream my way into many a project and play is how it unfolds and through the deep listening I connect the dots.
Doreen Grozinger Inspiration can come at the oddest time, through a conversation, a song, browsing the internet, or a book. I may just receive an image, which happens during meditation often. Other times, I just have to sit down, pick up the pen or brush and see what comes of it. This has been my ‘creative groove” lately - I sit. Make a circle. I'm obsessed with creating mandalas, or zentangles or zendalas. These have been very grounding for me lately and from them, images bring up other possibilities for future paintings.
Paul Sears I think I get in my creative groove through repetition. It sounds kind of lame, I know. But really when I go out to shoot, it takes a little while before I hit my stride. A lot of times, the first 50 or so snaps are a little coarse, but then once I get going some good stuff usually starts to show up.
Steph Bouwers How? With books, with music, with art, with nature ...with the pain I feel inside ... To get focused ... Ideas usually flow and I usually get lost...
Debbie Mihalik For me it takes large doses of Starbucks and some
music playing in a nearby room. (If I play music in my studio I find it too intrusive - weird, huh?) I also seem to do better with a deadline. When I have
all the time in the world to complete a project, I drift around doing nothing. A deadline forces me to knuckle down and produce. I have made some of my best pieces when working under a time constraint. I think it frees up the critical side of me because I don't have time to agonize over each step.
Kelsey O'Mullane Magazines and books play an important part in my life if I find my muse has taken a bit of a holiday without telling me! The wonderful array of blogs out there also has an inspiring effect as does just having a day in the studio with a “what if I do this” attitude towards playing around with techniques. I’ve found with this mind-set, making mistakes along the way can lead to some wonderful discoveries
Patty Szymkowicz Inspiration is everywhere, from a cheese display at the local supermarket to wild berries growing alongside a path where I take walks. A song or quote, even a rusty watering can might spark my creativity…..I do find that I create best by myself in my own space and in my own time....the freedom to create is an important ingredient.
Ginny Carter Smallenburg By accident! Sometimes the oddest things will inspire me, even the juxtaposition of the items laying on my desk.
Kathleen Botsford All I have to do is visit a blog or two and I am off to the races! When I design jewelry, I have a little ritual I follow. I light incense and candles and play spiritual music. With paint and paper, I just start ripping!
Sarah Fishburn I suspect my methods may be contrary to many artists. I hear some retreat singularly to their fabulous studios, shut the door, turn off the cell, crank up the music, then work for hours, uninterrupted, with neither food nor drink nor bathroom break. Maybe I envy that. Agh, who am I kidding? Maybe I don't. My creative groove reveals a distraction - procrastination style. For the most part, I work all day, every day, on multiple projects at once, but when the phone rings (a dozen times or more) I answer. When an email arrives from someone requesting help with a technique, I respond. When the neighbors stop by, they're invited in for lemonade and we discuss the news on the street. I ride my bike to the Post Office. I take kids to school in the morning, and pick them up in the afternoon, and then we have teatime. Anytime a small boy runs through the door, I may stop for a game of double solitaire. I have to stop if it doesn't rain to water my garden and flowers. There's supper to get on the table. Chapters to read, new movies to check out, and old to revisit. Since I find all this (and more) provides me with a constant influx of ideas and purpose, how can I lock the door for even a second?
Lisa Dalke I think my groove is always with me...but if I'm feeling stuck, I turn to my art journal or spend some time cleaning up the art room.
Trudi Sissons Usually by looking at other art, the residue of a dream or having a strong feeling inspired by an image, a piece of music, something I’ve seen and photographed or a conversation with a friend. I do my best work between 4-7 am.
Seth Apter I get into the groove by seeking inspiration. Much of the time that is by sorting through my art supplies and piles of found objects. Sometimes I take my camera and walk a neighborhood in NYC on one of my so-called image safaris. Looking at the blogs of other artists also energizes me. And sometimes just picking up one piece, any piece, of leftover scrap on my table gets me moving.