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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Chasing the Muse

The itch to create has struck. You're sitting there, ready and willing to make something stunning. It's raining outside. Maybe your kids are driving you nuts. Maybe, the dog is snoring and getting on your last nerve. Or, your significant other is chatting away, not knowing that you are desperately trying to clear your mind enough for that show stopping design idea to pop up. For whatever reason, the muse has left you dry. What do you do? No, really what do YOU do?

First and foremost, I go through my box-o-rocks. I pick out a few, roll them around in my hand and maybe put a few in a pile of "maybes". When I'm done with the box, I go through the "maybe" stack and pick out a few of those. One or two of those might make it to the tracing stage where I plop them down on a fresh and inviting piece of paper and carefully run my pencil around it. OK, one survives this stage. So, I sit and look at it. I pick up the pencil again and start drawing a few lines. Time to erase. Time to draw, again. Time to erase, again. After doing this and turning the paper around a few times and after thinking, maybe if I do this or maybe if I do that, I admit defeat and chuck the rock back into the box.

Rocks inspire me the most, so I go looking at a few sites with rocks that I know inspire me. But, they entice me buy them, so I move on.

Next, I look through pictures of my old work. (Another good reason to have pictures of all your pieces!) Nothing really happening there.

I sort through all the loose and unorganized sketches and jots of ideas and find nothing to entice the muse.

I go through a folder of eye candy for inspiration. Nope, ain't working.

My bookmark folder is full of sites with interesting designs. I find more inspiration in traditional silver and goldsmithing than I do in wire work (oddly enough) so I check out a few favorite sites-- to no avail.

Then, with the utmost frustration. I pick up a rock that doesn't inspire me in the least. Yup, I pick out the lowliest of my rocks and run tape around the edge. I place the tape down and pick up my wire. I start cutting, making marks, turning wires and before I know it, I have finished a piece. Is it my best piece? No, more often than not, it is as uninspiring as the rock. BUT, working with the wire and getting into the creation "zone" has stirred my mind and muse. Now I have a few more ideas that I am dieing to try out. And sometimes, yes; sometimes, that lowly rock was transformed by my wandering and seemingly aimless hands into a gem of a design.

The moral is, "Just do it!" You have nothing to lose and the return of your muse to gain.

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