more than one voice

Sunday, June 5, 2011

inspiration - imagination

i paint objects as I think them, not as I see them - pablo picasso

Do you sometimes get stuck for inspiration? – You really feel like creating something, you have a story to tell but when you sit down there’s nothing there – blank, zero ideas, you find you don’t know where to start. 

I’ve found that when this happens i can invoke my imagination by relaxing, not panicking, taking a deep breath and sinking into quietness. If I remember that I have a vivid and powerful imagination and pay attention to it then I find ideas surfacing.  As a child I had wonderful imaginary games, with invisible playmates, - still do sometimes.  Paying attention to our imagination is a practice that we need to cultivate, to develop; it can help us summon up sensory experiences and emotional responses.

Our imagination is associated with our five senses – visual (sight), auditory (hearing), kinesthetic (how our bodies feel) gustatory (taste) and olfactory (smell).  Although we may favor one type of sense, when invoking our imagination we can learn to develop our other senses – helping us to give more substance to our experiences, enabling us to tell our stories with greater depth.

What sensations do I feel in my body, what would this experience sound like or what smells are associated with the story I want to tell.  All this information helps to build the experience; it gives an idea for the physical texture, the colours, and the emotions we want to explain.  I think it is important that as artists we collect this information, use it to build a repertoire of sensory data, we need to remember that art should speak to all our senses – that it is a representation of our imaginations and our reality. And then there is our sixth sense.... I have a sneaking suspicion that this is where it might all begin.


  1. She's lovely! Thank you for sharing how you find your inspiration! I liked the calm bit especially, we certainly need this one.
    Hope your having a brill weekend!

  2. wonderful post!
    I love the detail in the image - beautiful

  3. What a lovely artwork! I like how you've explained how we can invoke our imagination thru our senses. I agree about the importance of our sixth sense too, and as well as this, I also feel joy in my heart!! Wini xo

  4. This is a wonderful and inspiring thread of thoughts Clare - and I can see the lovely lady thinking them!
    Here please take a hug from me! :-)

  5. that's an excellent way to cultivate imagination. it gives it depth to add the other senses to whatever transpires.

  6. lovely painting!
    & yes, me too!...
    i will often receive inspiration
    when i'm napping or out on a
    casual bikeride & not "trying"
    to think! sixth sense to be sure!

  7. First thanks for the lovely comment on my blog, Second this piece evokes volumes, I see a pensive look I often find in my own work and a little of myself. She is quite lovely. I also so enjoyed what you wrote imagination really does involve it all.

  8. Inspiration is a funny thing. Everyone finds it differently. Your post is interesting and I'll give it a try the next I feel in need. Thanks for sharing...wonderful painting!

  9. Clare, loved the idea of what Mona is up to,he,he!

  10. I believe you are right on. Fear, is my sixth sense.

  11. A very thought provoking post, Clare! I'm so familiar with "going blank" while my mind is filled with so many things. Fortunately, nothing a hot cup of coffee and soothing music can't fix. :)

  12. Clare, your girl is beautiful! I am finally able to post on your site! Blogger has not been nice to IE users! I thought your post was very insightful and helpful to me as well. Nicely done! Jessi xox

  13. Hi Clare! Thanks So Much For Your Sweet Visit And Comment Left At My Place Earlier! And I Have To Tell You..For Me, This Newest Post Of Yours Could Not Have Come At A Better Time. I've Been So Melancholy Of Late. My Muse Has Either Gone On Vacation Or Changed Addresses. It'll Be Nice To Follow Your "Very Sound" Advice On Getting Back In Touch With My Senses. Hugs Of Georgia Sunshine, Terri

  14. Hi Clare, so lovely to hear from you, thank you.
    Isn't it odd how we get stuck for inspiration. Like we a wund up clock and our art as ran down, until we wind it back up again. Then go for it.
    My hubby tries to help me and say I need a theme.
    Maybe we could go and visit Mona in her country home, what do think, maybe France?

  15. Wonderful post! And gorgeous artwork. I love the beautiful colors and textures in this piece. And your girl is amazing.

    Thank you for your comments on my blog. So nice to meet you!


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