“Its vital to establish some rituals (decisive patterns of behavior) at the beginning of the creative process, when you are most at peril of turning back, chickening out, giving up, or going the wrong way….
Its the simple act of doing something the same way each day that makes it repeatable, easy to do…one less thing to think about.
A lot of habitually creative people have preparation rituals linked to the setting in which they choose to start their day. By putting themselves into that environment, they begin their creative day.
All preferred working states, no matter how eccentric, have one thing in common: When you enter into them, they impel you to get started. Whether its the act of carrying a hot coffee mug to an outdoor porch, or the rock n’ roll that gets a painter revved up to splash color on a canvas, or the stillness of an herb garden that puts a chef in a culinary trance, moving inside each of these routines gives you no choice but to do something. Its Pavlovian: follow the routine, get a creative payoff.”
More goodies from the book, The Creative Habit, by Twyla Tharp.
This is an image of, what I call, my curiosity cabinet. It sits directly on my work table in my studio. When I sit at the table to either work or get on the computer, I can’t help but see the cabinet full of all sorts of curiosities.
For instance…there is not one, but five dried up vintage paint jars (that I picked up at an estate sale)…who would pay money for dried up paint?? Or how about an old card of buttons, a vintage package of staples, a jar of hat pins, a box with a sea urchin in it along with a piece of paper describing where it was found, old upholstery tacks, a very old matchbook with a Holsum bread ad, a vintage Maine highway map, a paper doll, a melon scooper, a vial of discolored glass beads, four boxes of vintage drawing leads (turquoise), five tubes of glitter, old souvenir slides, a rock, a shell and an old handle from a sink….and several other ‘inspiring’ things for me to look at.
They’re not treasures per se but I do find I take extra care when handling them.
And I love looking at it. Its such a curious collection…the colors, the textures, the memories – all of it inspires me.
Its hard NOT to begin to think a bit creatively as soon as I sit down.
Maybe I should call it my Pavlovian Pantry instead!