Monday, March 24, 2008

Creativity and Inspiration

Tonight I will be speaking publicly for the first time about my upcoming book The Gardener's Soul. I will be presenting to the local Craftworkers Guild. I am focusing my talk on creativity and finding inspiration. The gardeners whom I interviewed for the book all find inspiration for their lives in the garden. Many are artists who also find obvious creative inspiration for their artwork. Others find creative inspiration for other aspects of their lives. One teacher brings what she learns from nature into the classroom, such as the milkweed seedpods she found in a field of wildflowers. They reminded her about her trip to Mexico to visit her brother and the waves of monarchs that hung from the trees there. She shared this with her students. Another gardener brings the meditative peace she feels in the garden to the troubled teens she counsels as an adolescent psychologist, teaching them about how to connect better with themselves and their world.

Creativity and Inspiration go hand in hand. When something excites us, a passion is ignited inside. When we connect with that passion and allow it to propel us we can release a burst of creativity. Creativity is expressing our passion to others. I see it as using your inspiration to try to ignite a passion in another soul no matter what the means. The arts, education, and even politics can offer a creative release. When something influences me I want to share it because I feel lucky (or wealthy) every time I discover something that gives me pause. If I am creative enough, I can find a means of expression that will allow me to share my insights in a profound way. I often use photography or writing as my means of expression. But I also garden, teach or talk publicly to announce my creative views.

Most of the craftspeople to whom I will speak tonight are not photographers. I imagine they are textile artists, seamstresses, knitters, and painters. Perhaps there will be a few gardeners (I hope.) We are all bonded by this desire to reach for our creative selves and to find inspiration. If my audience is not made up of gardeners, perhaps I can convince them that this is a worthy avenue for their creative expression. Or to at least, I can encourage them to look to nature for additional creative inspiration for the current work that they do.

Creativity is assisted by camaraderie. As humans, we learn from each other and are motivated by the things our fellows have to express. I have been motivated by all of the gardeners I met last summer for the writing of my book. As I plan my gardening season, my thoughts about my space are very different from what they were this time last year. I have previously written about the new vegetable and herb gardens I have planned, my new clover lawn, and my children's sunflower patch. All of these creative ideas were born from the things I learned from others over the past year. Their gardens and their views are my current inspiration. I hope to spread the wealth.

1 comment:

TopVeg said...

Other people and their gardens are a great inspiration , we agree! As we walk round our garden and see the plants others have given us, we remember them and the times we have had together! Such precious plants, and memories!