In my past I’ve been a journalist, interviewing people and telling their stories in print. I decided to play a bit of make-believe here and interview myself as I would someone I would write an article about. Sure, it’s kind of like talking to myself...but, who hasn’t done that? For those of you who don’t know me or are curious about my creative pursuits, here’s a little more about what inspires me.
What Inspires You? Q&A
Q: How do you prepare to create?
A: I get up nearly every morning when, aside from some muffled snoring, the house is still quiet. After stretching, praying, studying scriptures, and meditating, I focus on creating. Those quiet exercises are the warm-up for my creativity. I can’t help but be closer to figuring out how to incorporate a color, a line, or the value of a shadow after having spent some quiet time with myself and with God. If I were an empty vase, the quiet moments of the morning would be the time when I’m being filled up.
Q: What inspires you to create?
A: Sometimes the simplest things inspire me. I have an old piece of weathered wood I found on a beach hike that I keep on my art desk. This gnarled piece of wood has been worn smooth by wind, sun, and water. It’s simple, yet complex. Old and twisted, yet beautiful and intricate. I look at that wood piece often to remind myself that beauty is in the everyday, the mundane, and the nature all around us.
I’m also inspired by people. I love to watch people, especially parents and children.
Q: Who inspires you?
A: Since I was a child, I felt like I needed to create things. I created collages, obstacle courses, drawings, paintings, sculptures, Lego villages, you name it. These days I am inspired by my friends who are artists. They create in different mediums than me, and I love learning from them. Their process and their inspiration rubs off on me. I’m also a fan of famous artists from the past. Right now, I really love the work Mary Cassatt did of children and the amazing watercolor abilities of John Singer Sargent.
Watching parents and children interact inspires me. Kids and parents at the park, at the beach, or even just walking down the street. Their intimate interactions light me up. Seeing kids playing together inspires me, too. I want to capture their looks, their touch, their smiles when they look at each other. That feeling of joy is contagious to me. I love creating original paintings for children’s room or nursery.
Q: You are a busy working mom. How do you fit in creativity?
A: I was told once, by a teacher and mentor that you “fit art into the cracks of your life.” Ten minutes here, five minutes there. There are so many cracks that can be filled with other pursuits — social media has sometimes been one of my big time-wasters. When I set that aside and really focus, I can find the cracks and fill them with creativity. It takes discipline and vigilance, but it’s possible to fit in more creativity if I focus on getting it in when I can.
Q: What’s next for you?
A: I’ve been asked to work on illustrating a children’s book of poems for publication near the end of this year. It’s still early, but this project will be a lot different than the creative work I’ve done in the past. I’m excited to stretch myself and use different kinds of expressions to tell stories. I’ll share more news about this project as it develops. Meanwhile, I’m working on commissioned watercolors for the loveliest people.
I also just started offering extra-small commissioned watercolor sketches that would be perfect for watercolor art for children’s rooms or nurseries. These are 4” by 6” original watercolor sketch paintings from a photo sent to me and are only $75 USD.
I’d love to connect with you! If you have a question you wish I would have answered here, let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to get the latest from me every other week, sign up for my newsletter here.