getting inspired

In the last few days, I’ve had several people ask what inspires me so I thought it might be a good idea to post about it, i.e. give it some actual thought. Years ago I took my son to a talk given by Philip Pullman. He was absolutely brilliant. One of the things he talked about was that people often ask where he gets his ideas. He said something along the line of- the ideas come to my desk and if I’m there, I get them. If I’m not, I don’t. I loved that explanation! So much of the art is just being at your desk and working. I googled “Philip Pullman inspiration” and I didn’t get that story but got this explanation. (the first paragraph) Not as funny but also excellent.

I am inspired by materials (these days beautiful fabrics), things that I touch (robots with the sewing notions for details), the seasons, the little stuff going on in my life everyday, some odd thing that I’ve read about (example- fat fairies), the photos of what everyone else is doing all over the craft blogging world and Flickr, a new technique that I’ve learned, my family, color. And if I am working on something, and if it doesn’t have a face, I probably won’t stay interested for too long! If I hit a dead end, I have 2 ways of recharging that usually work. I go back to my older work, look through it and try to come up with a new approach or simply do another one. I have found lots of inspiration for the postcards by going through old photos of my pottery. The other technique is to go through all my materials. That way I get 2 things accomplished- clear out some stuff and almost always find something that sparks an idea.

4 thoughts on “getting inspired

  1. Great tips. I think I should also try to go through my materials to get inspired by the texture, color and pattern of them, especially from the fabric. I usually get inspired from reading…unfortunately, I have to read lots of philosophy three weeks ago, and now I have to loads of consumption related course materials…I also get inspired by people around me. How they dress and behave. I got a lot inspiration from my philosophy professor. He’s just a cool and sweet old man, think I should make a doll of him, after I receive the grade from him…maybe I will lose the interest then, heheheh

  2. Fantastic! I love Philip Pullman and he is such an interesting person to hear talk. I haven’t heard him in person, just on the radio etc. We’ve read everything by him and wait excitedly for anything new. His Dark Materials series are the only books I have reread in my life.
    I looked at the link to him and found much of interest.

  3. Great topic, and thanks for the link to PP’s site. I believe that working in series (for example making multiple postcards about the seasons, each with a similar design) is a fantastic way to develop technical skills and artistic merit. You’ve got this one nailed!

Comments are closed.