Speaking from my own perspective, I've found that creative energy tends to come in bursts---after what can sometimes feel like months of faded inspiration. Way too often, I give into the urge to turn on auto pilot, going through the routine motions proven to get me through a day/week of work--waiting passively for inspiration to return. Unfortunately in my experience, I've found that this approach tends to not only drain even more color from creativity, but can also be incredibly disheartening for those waiting for inspiration's return.
So if you are feeling uninspired, unmotivated, and generally faded, why not actively do something about it? Sometimes that means forcing myself to go through the motions of creating (which isn't always the easiest thing to do). But more often than not, my best and fastest solution to bringing back some color into my life is to GET OUT.
John R. Stilgoe, in his book "Outside Lies Magic: Regaining History and Awareness in Everyday Places," elaborates on this process of "getting out." He writes:
"Get out now. Not just outside, but beyond the trap of the programmed electronic age so gently closing around so many people at the end of our century. Go outside, move deliberately, then relax, slow down, look around. Do not jog. Do not run. Forget about blood pressure and arthritis, cardiovascular rejuvenation and weight reduction. Instead pay attention to everything that abuts the rural road, the city street, the suburban boulevard. Walk. Stroll. Saunter. Ride a bike, and coast along a lot. Explore...Flex the mind, a little at first, then a lot. Savor something special. Enjoy the best-kept secret around--the ordinary, everyday landscape that rewards any explorer, that touches any explorer with magic."
I could easily continue quoting Stilgoe's writing regarding the art of exploration, but will force myself to stop here. Although the act of going outside can often initially require some deliberate movements (particularly if the weather is not cooperating), once you're out there, the sites, the sounds, and the act of forcing yourself to slow down inevitably brings inspiration and renewed creative energies. Below is one of my most recent paintings--inspired by our first snow storm of the year. Did I mention this week this week is in the 70's--sunshine and blue skies? Gotta love fall in Wyoming!