Tuesday, October 23, 2007

My creative process...how environment turns into inspiration

As a freelancer, I often get the question, "So, what exactly do you DO all day?"

It used to be annoying, but now I just see the question as an opportunity to tell people how passionate I am about my work. I mean, how many nine-to-fivers get to walk in the park for three hours, then snuggle into a big wool blanket and sip a latte out of an antique pink mug--and still get a lot of work done?

The way I get inspiration to do original, amazing, creative work is to surround myself with beautiful things. To work well, I must have a completely inspiring environment. This concept has spilled over into every part of my life.

My car: I drive a lime green VW Beetle. Whether the color is out of style or not, it always looks spunky and puts me in a creative mood. When I change cars, I will never buy a boring one. It just wouldn't inspire me!

My clothes: You'd think that since I work from home, I could save money on buying clothes. This is simply not the case. I get up at 7 a.m. just like I used to, and put on the outfit that makes me excited to get to work that day. Stores like anthropologie and free people fill my head with with new ideas, with their unexpected color and texture combinations.

Entertainment: I stopped watching television a loooong time ago, because it really did not inspire me. After I watched a show, I would forget what I had just seen. Clearly, my time had been stolen from me. I stopped random internet browsing and shopping too, and learned to focus my viewing on blogs (like The Present Past Collection or Bella Pink Cafe) and message boards that would spark new ideas. The primary things I do to refresh my head after staring at the computer for hours each day include things like hiking:

(Last weekend at Great Falls, VA)

Or cooking:
(Making applesauce after picking apples in the country last week)

And definitely running
(racing in Virginia Beach, in March)

The moral of the story? Do things that give you passion. Only surf websites that stir up your thought process. Turn off the TV and make sure you're giving life your all.

What have my recent inspirational adventures produced? Well, here are a few things I've designed over the past few weeks!

(Christmas postcard, inspired by an autumn sunset)

(Citrusy invitation, inspired by this weekend's overwhelmingly fun orange-themed wedding I attended)

(Christmas brocade patterned cards, inspired by a friend's photos of her trip to Versailles)

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