Here is a wonderful article by creativity coach Cynthia Morris who writes a blog on traveling as an artist called Journey Juju. It inspired me to think about how to spend my summer. Enjoy!
Summer's Creative Exuberance:
Ten Ways to Let Your Muse Out to Play
If summer isn't the best season to foster creativity, I don't know what is. Okay, you could make a case for the cocooning qualities of winter. You could say that the freshness of spring inspires even the most jaded artist. And then there's the release of fall, which could provoke me to give up art entirely.
But summer, with its uncontainable exuberance, is the best season for the creative. Who wouldn't be inspired by the bounty of a farmer's market? How could the light pulsing off the highway in the middle of the day in the middle of the country not extract a deep sense of mystery in any artist? And then there's the sense of freedom that you get when all you're wearing is a tiny bathing suit and there's nothing to do but dip yourself in the pool one more time.
I vote for summer as the season most likely to inspire creative thinking, being and doing. Summer invites us to return to our purest child-like impulses. We all know that to be deeply creative means connecting to that child in us. It's that part of us that loves messes, that doesn't need to know where we're going, that has no concept of the bottom line, let alone a concern for making money.
Reach out with both arms like an eager child, and immerse yourself and your Muse in summer. Make this your most creative summer yet with these ten tips.
1. Get messy. Mess is necessary for creativity. Eat watermelon and let the juice and seeds splatter all over your shirtfront.
2. Linger outside. Sit in the grass with no agenda. Stay there for a few hours with a book, a notebook, or whatever melts you into a creative puddle. And speaking of puddle...
3. Get into water. Being around water stimulates our Muses, who love to give us ideas in the shower. Find a pool or a lake or a puddle and get in just because you love it and it feels good. Splash around. Choreograph a water ballet. Play.
4. Relish the night. Don't you love how summer days just go on and on and then when the night comes, it's even better? The air is so warm and the sky so full of possibility. Get out in the night. Ride your bike or take a walk. Go pool hopping or star gazing or moon bathing.
5. Try a new art form. Maybe it's origami, or pastry baking or watercolors. Stretch out of your normal creative rhythm and try something new.
6. Use the summer as a frame to explore something. Perhaps you'll read a few classics this summer. Or give yourself a creative challenge like making art every day. How can you use summer as a frame for your creative abundance?
7. Immerse yourself in color. I love love love color and summer gives me ample opportunity to really soak in bright, saturated colors. Tune your vision to the brilliant greens, lush reds and vibrant blues of summer.
8. Plan outdoor excursions with friends. Picnics, markets and art fairs, sketch crawls, all offer an opportunity to fill your creative well. Doing it with friends is even more fun.
9. Allow for a sense-fest. The reason I love summer so much is the way it opens me to my senses. A breeze wafting in the window, the smells of freshly cut grass and barbeque, the sound of a baseball bat hitting a ball, the amazing freshness of the fruits and vegetables of summer....mmmmm. Your Muse loves when you pause and pay attention to your senses.
10. Be prepared for inspiration. You already know this, but I'll remind you: carry a notebook with you always. Use it to capture your ideas and impressions. Give yourself permission to slow down and relish life.
Unleash your creativity and let your inner child out to play this summer. Your art making will be enhanced and if not, at least you've enjoyed yourself.
Copyright 2009 Cynthia Morris. Cynthia coaches creative people to confidence and completion and inspires life as a creative adventure. Visit http://www.originalimpulse.com to get an infusion of inspiration for your art, writing and life.
Your Turn: What kind of activities do you have planned this Summer to inspire the muse to play? I have my big Japan and China trip but after that I have only three precious weeks until I have summer school classes. Why would I do this to myself? Oh, because I am trying to get a minor in Psychology. So I plan to use that three weeks for cleaning of the house and the spirit! What will you be doing?