I will admit, I have been really busy lately. Too busy to write, too busy to paint, too busy to really take my time and cook a meal. Art A Fair has really kept me on my toes, and trying to keep art on the walls and notecards in my bins has become a full time job.
So the question I've had to ask myself is this: How can I possibly expect to stay inspired amidst all of the chaos? I'm not an expert on this, but so far the answer has been to allow myself to be inspired by the little things. Inspiration doesn't have to be some grand romantic, epiphanic thing (though, of course, that sort of inspiration is never discouraged), it can be as simple as a pretty reflection in your morning cup of tea. I have had to come to terms with the fact that inspiration isn't always specific, either. Creativity doesn't have a schedule.
So when I see something that sparks a bit of creativity in me, I try to take a second and close my eyes and really appreciate the moment. Savor the feeling it gives me, so that it lasts until the next moment I feel it.
Here are a few bits of inspiration as of late:
(Okay, quite a few... But that's a good thing, right?!)
Not all of the photos are in focus, and some of them don't even have an explanation. Looking back, it was all about the moment. Documentation was an afterthought.
I bought this little succulent for my mother. It's purpose was to grace the windowsill in her kitchen. Almost immediately, the poor little thing started to die. Over the last few weeks, my mother has nursed it back to health and it's a happy little beautiful succulent again. I love that she could see the little spark of life that was left, and used her ever-nurturing ways to bring it back from the brink of death.
Ooooh, tomato. I can remember eating heaps of tomatoes every summer. We'd pluck them right off the vine and bite into them like an apple. My mother used to make "tomato toast", a piece of toasted sourdough bread with sliced tomato, fresh chopped basil, and sharp cheddar cheese all melted on top. I love walking through our backyard, the air heavy with the scent of tomatoes.
Food and cooking are such a huge source of inspiration for me. I have my go-to snacks, and this is one of them. I read a minute by minute breakdown of cooking eggs in my favorite magazine, Bon Appetit, and have been hooked on this snack ever since. Toasted and buttered sourdough, smoked paprika, 6/7 minute egg, sriracha drops. Feeling adventurous? Put down a layer of avocado (slices or just spread) before the paprika. Welcome to yumtown, ladies and gentlemen.
I have a confession to make. I am a bit of a snob when it comes to espresso. I'm sure there are true coffee aficionados out there saying "yeah RIGHT. You definitely don't know as much as you think you do. You have no IDEA!"
Yeah, okay. I don't claim to know everything about coffee, I just know what I like. I know that I like the comforting smell of freshly ground beans, and I like the gorgeous rich brown color of the crema on a newly poured shot of espresso. And I LOVE the transformation of cold creamy milk into perfectly sweet and soft microfoam, kissing the surface of the crema, leaving beautiful patterns in its wake.
Okay, maybe I don't know how to pour the perfect latte yet... That doesn't make it any less lovely.
Whenever I wear this watch, I feel like I have a connection with history in some way. I bought this from an open-air flea market while in Italy with my mother. Along with it I walked away with two gorgeous old coins, and a small brass key. I remember the day perfectly: we were exploring the countryside and noticed an open field, littered with shops and stalls piled high with antiques. As I was looking through the wares of an older gentleman, he was surprised to find in me a young American that actually spoke italian. We chatted for a while discussing our families and lives, and I eventually asked him the cost of the small key I was so fond of. He closed my hand around the key and said, "for you, sweet girl." Sadly, his face has slightly faded from my memory, but I will never forget his voice. I am so inspired by acts of love and kindness from others.
So, what can be taken away from all of this? Small inspiration every day is so powerful. Take a few minutes every day to really open your eyes and see all of the beautiful things around you. Having the "big picture" in your head and new things on the horizon is a good thing. Sometimes though, if you're too focused on the horizon, you might miss the beauty at your feet.