Monday, August 11, 2008

Nature as Inspiration

Above artwork titled "Horizons" © by Rhonda L. Hall

Have you suffered from Artist's Block? Whether a writer, or visual artist, you most likely at some point have felt alienated from your creative muse to some extent... I have found that one of the best ways for me to find inspiration during dry spells, or any day for that matter, is to spend some time with nature. Inspiration is every where you look, even if it is just through your kitchen window as you are washing the dinner dishes. Just be slightly observant and the world can pass before your eyes in a moment. The flight of a bird, or the industry of a spider can spark a whole chain reaction that can lead to a whole series of inventive shards of thought. Or better yet, take a whole day for yourself! Leave pencil and paper, pens and Ink, paints and pallet, and maybe even the camera behind and strike out to really spend time exploring the natural world. Notice little things. Pay attention to the Universe. Commit to memory the feel of the breeze, the sun, the rain, how your fingers feel against a cool smooth rock, a velvety leaf, or dangling in a rippling stream or warm puddle. Listen to the sounds of a woodland or a thunderstorm. Inhale the scent of spring freshness, summer roses, autumn leaves burning or winter snow. You will go back to your studio refreshed, relaxed and full of glimpses of gratitude for life and all of it's miracles...the inspiration will come to your hand through the awe in your heart, the curiosity of your mind and the connectedness and love in your soul.

Lord of the far horizons,
Give us the eyes to see
Over the verge of sundown
The beauty that is to be.
Give us the skill to fashion
The task of thy command,
Eager to follow the pattern
We may not understand.

Masters of ancient wisdom
And the lore lost long ago,
Inspire our foolish reason
With faith to seek and know.
When the skein of truth is tangled
And the lead of sense is blind,
Foster the fire to lighten
Our unillumined mind.

Lord of the lilac ranges
That lift on the flawless blue,
Grant us the heart of rapture
The earlier ages knew--
The spirit glad and ungrudging,
And light as the mountain air,
To walk with the Sons of Morning
Through the glory of Earth the fair.

Carman, Bliss (1861-1929)

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