I wrote this post several years ago but its just as true today as the day I wrote it. so i thought I'd repost it as I'm taking off for Key West in a little over a week.
and YAAAAAHH--- tomorrow will be the shortest day of the year. on the 22nd the days will start getting longer and longer! don't know about you but I needed that bit of "sunny" news!
today i want to discuss a little talked about subject in the artistic realm, and thats your muse. a muse is commonly referred to as some impish pixie that makes you want to paint, play music, write and create (in general)
your muse is very important to the process. have you ever had a spell where you just didnt want to create anything. some use the word inspiration, as in "i had no inspiration". i know what they mean but you must remember the old adage "painting (writing or whatever) is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration" this is certainly true if what you create also feeds you and puts gas in your car. i think working everyday at your craft is what gives your muse something to work with. and travel to places that your muse loves. for me thats key west. i love key west for several reasons, a million really. its a creative town. my muse works overtime here. i want to paint. i want to play music, also to think about life in a far different way than i do in northern latitudes for some reason. the tropics have a way of reminding you to cheer in unison with people nearby when the sun goes down. when's the last time you cheered the end of a beautiful day? appreciate the little things that make life, well, life.
it reminds you to take a nap in the middle of the day, when its so hot. and without guilt because you know you'll need the energy for the nighttime (day part two) that happens after another breathlessly beautiful sunset. down here you are constantly running into poets. musicians, artists, writers, and their overactive muses. a menagerie of eclectic "characters" assemble here, in this judgement free zone and can range from the buttondown polo shirt crowd to barefoot, shaggy haired, beachbum types all attending the same event. also noticed that signs telling you not to do things are an oddity here. probably because it wouldnt do any good! its the 21st century version of the wild west pretty much.
i said all this to say. if you have a hard time getting your muse to help you out, take him/her/it to a place where there are thousands and thousands of other muses running amuck. yours is bound to get excited and start giving you words, music, paintings galore.
but for me right now....its getting hot and its past my naptime!
then gotta get up and paint that golden hour painting ive been wanting to do for weeks. go muse!
Thanks Mike. I enjoyed this post.(made me want to go to the Keys).
a great place to live in the winter and paint!
I'll be there!! You describe the atmosphere of the Keys perfectly. I've signed up for the Palette class in Feb. and sorry that your Plein Air class isn't until March. I'm ready to paint, paint, paint! I really got a lot out of that class last year.
Such a good post! Sometimes artists can be reclusive types, and it's good to mingle with other creative spirits and share energy. It's the place, it's the people, everything.
Looking forward to more beautiful Key West paintings from you this winter.
robin- I do private lessons if you want to paint plein air in February. let me know when I see you in class for knife painting
marla-yeah I can be reclusive when I'm painting too. its good to co-mingle with other creative types of all kinds to keep from going nuts. youre right there is such an energy in certain places at certain times!
thanks for sharing this again. Much needed at this time of year.
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