8/11/2010

What inspires you?

Blue Ridge Mountains

What inspires an artist to create the works that they do?  For many, it is personal and as close to them as their own back yard.  For others it may be distant lands or the change of season in the mountains.  I've asked our members to share with us what inspires them.   Lee of OneClayBead finds inspiration in the Blue Ridge Mountains, her backyard, and white water rafting.


"Each day I spend some time here, and a novel of activity unfolds. The squirrels are planning a new assault on the squirrel proof bird feeders. The crows comment with their "haw, haw,haw." Butterflies, newly born, land in my hair and on my arms. If I am very still, a raccoon sometimes climbs on the picnic table bench and suns himself beside me, almost touching my bare thigh.

In fall, tourists from around the world converge on Asheville to gawk at the foliage. I saw a family from India, huddling close for snapshots, saris as bright as the turning leaves. I saw two city girls clutching bouquets of gathered leaves as if they were expensive Tiffany jewels."


"The river gurgles, bends, demands one's attention to rocks of impending danger or white egrets by the banks. I lose myself in fun and unspoiled beauty every time.

My pottery flows from the place where I have immersed myself in the natural world around me. I lose myself in nature as something wondrous and filled with awe emerges. The pleasure for my customers is in owning a piece of lasting whimsy or beauty, and the pleasure for me is having the stream of petty complaints in my head melt away."


For SarahJohnAfana inspiration comes from a visit to her family's hauntingly beautiful almond orchid on their ranch.  From the ocean as well as the energy from an outdoor concert.


BlueTerracotta says: " I'm inspired by trips to my many favorite museums. I like to think I'm just one of many in a long line of artists who throughout the ages have felt the same magic when creating beautiful objects."


And the result of this inspiration?  I visited each shop to pick something that felt related to what these Artisans listed as their inspiration.  For Lee it was obvious with her crows pieces so I looked a little further and found her beautiful Celtic Knot Yunomi (Tea Bowl) in Seafoam and White stoneware pottery.  Seafoam, like the rushing water while rafting; the relationship of clay, earth and water and the meditative quality of gliding down a river.  In looking at Sarah's shop I was drawn to her Dancing Trees; the rich colors and immediate sense of texture shows an intimacy with trees and nature that has me imagining her walking in that almond orchid and feeling the bark, looking at the change of season and getting loads of inspiration.  And over in Laura's (BlueTerracotta) shop I was drawn to this Mosaic Relief of an African Bird.  The shape and personality have an old world feel of a people who communicated what they saw onto their walls and in their sculptures for future generations to 'read'. 

I would like to thank SumikoShop for inspiring ME to do this post.  She wrote a 'Be Inspired' post on her blog last week and I loved it.  


What inspires you? 



12 comments:

terraworks said...

I love this article and can resonate with nature = inspiration. Last summer our family was going through a lot of heartache and sorrow. My oldest son was in a accident that left him with a mild brain injury. I went on a road trip through the southwest and later began making various clay Santos. Totally inspired by the southwest and my need for hope. This summer I got my son back (mentally, physically and emotionally). I am so happy and thankful and believe it shows in my current works. Inspiration is amazing and can be visual but also spiritual. Thank you for the article- LOVED it.

BlueTerracotta said...

This post in itself is inspiring! We can see how inspiration can come from anywhere, very accessible places and events.

Terraworks, I'm so glad your son has recovered!

paula said...

thank you Terraworks for sharing your inspiration, yes, we are glad to hear your son is back! love hearing how healing the southwest was and inspiring...

*Evelyn* said...

Thanks for entering my name
these enchanting places are beautiful and unspoilt
I would be there,
thank you very much

Sarah John Afana said...

What a wonderful way to share our inspirations, thank you Paula.
Those Blue Ridge Mountains look spectacular.

WolfeWoman said...

Thanks, Paula,
I love this! I am now inspired by what inspires others, too :)
Lee/OneClayBead

anakim said...

Thanks so much Paula, I love this post!

Sigmosaics said...

I am captivated by those blue ridge mountains Lee .. Paula, this is a wonderful post and I thank all three of the artists for making my evening a delight - a good reminder to take in what is around us. thank you :)

Waterrose said...

I so miss those mountains. We use to spend a lot of time there when I lived in Ohio. A lot of my inspiration comes from memories of Ohio. Living in the desert, while it has it's own incredible beauty, has not inspired me yet....

Roxana said...

Thank you Paula for posting this and cheers to the network of inspiration that you were able to birth forward !It's fantastic to read about our fellow team members from all over the world and the diversity of those sparks of inspiration.

glazedOver said...

Such inspiring inspiration. SarahJohnAfana's family's almond orchard is speaking to me!

Victoria Webb said...

It's so interesting that nature itself inspires so many of us. Place is an important part of my work as well and everywhere I've lived has a different and unique impact.

The adventure of connecting with nature up close seems to be universally a part of being an artisan.