For this “Outside the Box” Saturday I give you a picture of when I was attacked by a giant spider! Well, not really, but it was a 30 ft or should I say a 10-meter high sculpture of a spider. This photo was taken in Ottawa Canada when we visited there a few years ago. The sculpture is called Maman and is located at the National Gallery of Canada. There are so many sites in Ottawa to see. We spent four days there but that really wasn’t enough.
Crystal Bridges is an art museum in Bentonville Arkansas created by the Walton Foundation. It gets 3 million visitors a year and is free admissions. It is a celebration of American artists including significant contributions from Native Americans.
For this Artsy Saturday, I want to give you some photos of the buildings themselves. They are works of art and deserve their own accolades. If you visit the musuem I suggest you do so during a weekday. The crowds on the weekends are almost insufferable, at least to a guy with some Aspie traits. 🤣
I don’t try to understand how my mind works. But, I am totally happy that I get quick broad streaks of inspiration on a regular basis. Sometimes I get quick mental flashes that interrupt whatever I was doing that demands my immediate attention. In the past, I would most likely decide to write it down when I got back to my desk. But, of course, most often the thought would vanish as quickly as it appeared. So, now I immediately jot them down.
Getting to the point of the post, I have always admired those who can take a pencil/pen/brush and create something beautiful. I think I do a pretty good job of that with words but just never accomplished it in another medium. To try it once again I am experimenting with different apps as possible tools. I know what you are probably saying, “just take a pencil or marker and do it. You don’t need an app!” Well, there is truth to that but at least for me, more technology makes it more appealing.
So, here I am with Adobe Photoshop Sketch. Don’t ask me what the above “artwork”, if you want to call it that, is about. It was just letting my brain wonder wherever it wanted. I kinda think the overall effect is interesting and colorful if nothing else. Maybe my next project will be a Picasso style self-portrait. That is if that is where my mind wants to go…. 🙂
Because I am deaf I have a game I play quite often when I am around people, especially those I don’t know. In my early years of deafness before closed-captioned TV was widely available is when this thing started. Since there was no sound to what I was seeing I made up my own storyline. It would have been interesting to discover how closely my story matched up with the writer’s version but of course, I never was able to discover that.
Getting slightly off the subject for just a little while, I never used to think that I was a creative person. I think part of that belief was beaten into me in my youth by some pretty uncreative parents. I know I tried to draw some in my youth and was never pleased enough with the result to show my parents or anyone else for that matter. It would take some years and experiences to realize that creativity is not just one thing but can appear in many different areas of life. Making up stories is one of those areas I have become quite good at.
Getting back to the subject of the day, I kind of liked the idea of imagining stories which I was not really privy to so I started doing it in real life. I can look at someone in a restaurant and make up stories about why they looked or acted the way they did. Its easy in today’s world to imagine them as selfish, self-centered or other negative traits but I kinda do the opposite, at least recently. Instead of seeing speeders as self-centered people I give them the benefit of the doubt and imagine them as doctors on the way to the hospital to save someone’s life. I am a dreamer so to me it is just more enjoyable to imagine good things than to fear yet someone else as terrorists, serial killers, or just plain selfish people.
Getting back to the starting thought of this post, It is not easy for me to start up a conversation with someone, especially someone you don’t know. It used to require them to write down what they say. Most people are just not willing to do that. Now, I have a couple of apps that turn speech into text. They don’t work great quite yet but are much better than paper notes. But even with these new tools, it is almost inevitable that when another hearing person joins the group I am pretty much ignored from that point on. So, I end up watching other people or make up stories of what I might be missing. It beats just sitting there like a bump on a log. 🙂
I am finally convinced that I am a pretty creative person as my mind constantly wanders into unimagined areas of thought. In my retirement years, I have done a pretty good job of cultivating my creative processes. But I am always looking for ways to unleash my creativity to new areas and levels. When I ran across this article from the New York Times it gave me a different way to think about creativity.
We all have fantasies or, if you prefer, ideas. I will give them a different word: “Seeds.” These seeds are the germ-line of books, short stories, songs, the faces in a painting. Sometimes, when the idea is for a gadget that might, say, keep that guy in the car next to you from texting and driving, it’s the seed of an app or business. If it’s a doodle made during a boring corporate meeting, it’s the seed of an art project; the mixture of the barbecue sauce with the onions and the lemon might be the seed of the next, great slow-cooking invention…
Another quick tale to make the point: A family friend once told me that, in college, he was curious to find out whether he was creative so he picked up an easel at the store. He painted for 10 minutes, put down the brush and declared himself not remotely creative. But he went on to make tens of millions of dollars as an entrepreneur. He had mistakenly conflated artistic creativity with any type of creativity. But not all creativity looks the same, and it doesn’t take the same name.
I have been retired from the corporate world for a while now and therefore have a lot of time to create “seeds” and indeed I have created many of them. It is not as if I didn’t do it before but then as the bible says the seeds mostly fell on rocky ground and quickly died. Being able to concentrate on something as long as you want is one of the premier joys of retirement.
These seeds when they come are now quickly written down and then planted in my brain to see if they sprout. Sometimes my desktop looks like an advertisement for post-it notepads. Sometimes my mind is so filled with seeds its hard to do everyday things. 🙂 One of those seeds that ended up being a five-year project as documented in my blog RedLetterLiving.net. That is where I studied how Christian organizations did or didn’t follow the words of Jesus.
Of course, most of the posts here on RJsCorner also started as seeds. Looking at the current standings, I have 3,240 published posts, 35 drafts/seeds in various forms of completion, and a dozen scheduled posts. That is a lot of creative seeds as far as I am concerned!
I have about 20,000 photos now that I use my creativity to take and enhance. Many of those now reside in my Flickr account and many are here on RJsCorner.
Not all creativity looks the same. What do you do with your creativity??
I am an old country boy at heart so when I visit NYC it seems like a different world to me. I have put together a few photos that make that city seem like a beehive. There is the hive which contains thousands of cells, the worker bees and of course the Queen bee.
What do you think? Can you see the connection?