Have you ever noticed a child playing? A toddler can find hours of enjoyment playing with a box. So can a cat, but that's irrelevant. Give a child some mud and rubber boots and you've lost them for a while. A rock becomes a plane. Pebbles other players in the game. Imagination. Creativity. The world is our canvas.
What happens as we get older that causes us to lose that sense of wonder? What happens along the way where we stop noticing and go through life? Day-to-day. Mundane. Why do we stop pretending?
As a performer it is important that I keep hold of the sense of play. That piece of me that is creative. My imagination. Without imagination I'm lost. Without creativity I'm mundane.
I'm no different than anyone else. I can get caught up in life and the doing of it that I forget the living and I stop noticing. I go for my outdoor walks (which I love) and will spend the entire time planning, thinking and not noticing a thing. Now that's not always a bad thing. I've come up with some of my best ideas while out for my walk. I remember reading that walking is a wonderful way to unleash your imagination. Its true! But, I can walk for an hour and not notice one thing while I'm walking. I'm so caught up in my thoughts.
I write lyrics. I write plays. I direct plays. I sing songs. I want and need to have a grasp on my creativity. Creativity and inspiration is lost in our hectic lives. It surrounds us if we look. If we allow ourselves to stop and notice.
Inspiration can come from anywhere. The title song for my album is Plush Red Chair. I remember walking into someone's house a while back and seeing a screen saver on their computer. It was a picture of an artsy red chair sitting in the forest. The picture spoke to me. I didn't know why but it did. I had to take a picture of it. I knew it was my album cover but I didn't know why. So I took a picture. Then I mulled and thought about it. I couldn't figure out why it meant so much but I knew that it did. I was at Bill's house a couple of days later writing songs and showed him the picture. "I've found the idea for the album artwork Bill!" I said. "That's a great pic! What does it have to do with the album?" he said. "I don't know. I know it does." and then a light bulb appeared over my head like a cartoon. "It represents me Bill. I'm the red chair." He looked at me like I was crazy, which perhaps I am. I continued, "I'm kinda artsy as in the cool chair, but I'm also very grounded. I'm happy with a martini sitting in a ritzy restaurant and happy mucking a stall in a barn." This picture represents me!
From that moment of inspiration I wrote the title song for the Album "Plush Red Chair". I painted a picture based on a lyric in the song. All from a screen saver at someone's house.
It doesn't happen every day but if we keep our eyes open. if we can be open to inspiration. Play. Be creative. We open up a different side of ourselves. Whether we are accountants in an office or a race car driver. We all have a creative side. We can all find inspiration in the ordinary. We can all unleash our imagination. I know I want to. We enrich our lives when we allow ourselves to create. To Draw. Doodle. Paint. Sing. Play. Write. Dance. Plant our garden. Start small. But start. Who knows where your imagination will take you? Or what mundane things will inspire you in the future? Go ahead! Exploit the ordinary. Unleash your imagination.