Do you ever need to take yourself on an inspiration date? You may notice it has been quiet around here. Between some family difficulties and the unprecedented heat, I have not been in the creative mood. Everyone has seasons in their lives and you can tell when something has just got to change.
I had to set aside time to look for inspiration, or as Julia Cameron proposes, go on an artist date. With all the “stuff” going on in everyday life, it is hard to slow down and just look. I came up with many excuses as to why this was “silly” and inconvenient. “It’s too hot” and “there are bugs” were my two favorites. Already, it is a self-limiting plan because it assumes that beauty will only show herself on a rustic trail hike. Pretty determined, I got on Amazon and purchased a lightweight backpack and a folding stool that I could strap to the pack. I am going to go on an inspiration date or bust.
I googled “park near me” and found a natural area of 2000 acres that I didn’t even know existed. So, with my gear strapped on, I said “why not?” It was a pretty short trail beside a creek. There were a few other people. The trail was shaded and not too difficult. I actually sat on my stool in the middle of the creek and painted. I felt my spirit take a deep breath.
Another day, I went to a garden tour near me and gave myself permission to turn down any other little road “just to see.” This was my first time going on the garden tour and not quite what I expected but still lovely. You see, another thing that fascinates me is what lights up people, what is their “thing.” This one host had accumulated and propagated 1800 varieties of daylilies in the last 5 years. That is stunning! And his garden was amazing.
On one of my turn-offs, I found a boat ramp that I will definitely re-visit for a kayak trip. I sat a little while beside the lake and painted plein air. It was such a clear day, the water was gentle and the reflections clear. I was gently reminded that I love plein air watercolors of landscapes. Yes! So worth the effort of an inspiration date.
We have so much beauty around us. It is a shadow of our original creation, yes, but still there is beauty if you look. “For now we see in a mirror dimly…” (1Cor13:11) So, I highly recommend going on an inspiration date. Where have you been to get inspired? And what is keeping you from doing your thing?