What Inspires Me?

IMG_0283That’s right ladies and gentlemen, the topic for March’s Blog-o-Sphere Think tank is a monstrous one.  What Inspires Me?  Whoofta….where do I begin? How all encompassing is that question? And yes, I signed up to write about this topic because it means so much to me.  However, I’m going to limit my response to just one thing and one aspect within it.

As an artist, my answer is one that may seem trite.  But it isn’t when you think about the scope of it.

What inspires me?  Nature!  It is at the top of the list.  Let me explain why.

My dad was a landscaper.  I consider him to have been an artist who worked wonders with landscapes of the homes in the town where I grew up.  My work is heavily influenced by my observations of him working his magic.   Manicuring an evergreen from something that was unruly and overgrown to a finely coiffed thing of delicate beauty, turning an unsightly back yard into a lush setting, taking great care and respect toward everything that grows.

Just last week a dear friend brought back a gift for me from her visit to Frank Lloyd Wright’s (FLW) Taliesin West.  A book filled with quotes from the man himself, FLW.  The first of his quotes that captured my attention was:

“I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.”

The next quote that spoke to me was:

“Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature.  It will never fail you.”

Where my art jewelry is concerned, those two statements are very true.  I found my artistic voice once I started creating shapes from things in nature.  Our backyard aspens have become the models for many of my pieces.

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As I prune our aspens, I save various branches to serve as my models.  The details preserved in the leaves and branches help me to capture them in metal.  I refer to them often as I work.
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The graceful way they flow out from the tree is what I try to capture in the cuffs I make that are part of my Botanical series.

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I don’t limit my inspiration to aspens.  Yet I do incorporated them frequently in my works.  I think these photos exemplify what influence and inspiration our aspens provide.  A single leaf is as unique as our fingerprints.  The details of the veins that bring life to every cell within the leaf.  God’s beautiful creation embodied in a leaf, a branch, a tree.  I find it wondrous.  So my work, just as things are in nature, is unique.  No two pieces of my work are identical because they are hand made by me.

I feel truly blessed that I can escape to our back yard and soak in the beauty of being in the great outdoors.  A view of Pikes Peak is in the distance.  During the summer months, I enjoy the whispers our Quaking Aspens make with those leaves.  The fresh, clean air with clouds traveling across a turquoise blue sky.  The occasional whinny of a neighbor’s horse.  One of our bassets batting at me for attention as I try to drink it all in.  Sure, a lot of artists say they are inspired by nature and yes, I am one of them.  It cleanses and refreshes my soul, my imagination, my creativity.  Just one of the many things where I find inspiration.

Now lets see what my fellow bloggers had to say on this topic.

Andes Cruz:  https://andescruz.wordpress.com
Pallavi Gandhi: https://studioat605.wordpress.com/
marie bell ::  www.pencilfox.com
Tosca Teran:  http://nanopod.me/2015/03/11/inspiration
Catherine Witherell:  http://happydayart.typepad.com
Beth Cyr – http://bethcyr.com/blog/
Allegra Sleep: http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/allegra-sleep.html?tab=blog
K. Skiles Studio: http://kaskiles.com
Shelagh Blatz: www.designsbyshelagh.com/blog

Namaste

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What Inspires You? ~ Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank Topic for April

The topic for this month’s Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank writers is: What Inspires You?

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Ya baby!

Oh, there are so many things.  To sum it up, life inspires me.  Especially when I am able to live it to the fullest!

Dan & I just returned from vacation in the beautiful, spectacular and stunning  Zion National Park.

The park is brimming with life, like this cute little guy who climbed all over my hiking boots trying to entice me to feed him some of my lunch, which is illegal so there would be nothing from me.  Plus, little did he know I have 3 adorable basset hounds who work me every day for more food than they should have, so he didn’t stand a chance and quickly moved on to other hikers on the trail.

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Mr. Chipmunk in search of a morsel of food.

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Spring unfolding.

I am inspired from all I saw and experienced; how will that manifest?  I’m not sure.   One thing I do know is the last time we visited Zion, about 10 years ago, I think my eyes were somehow closed to the spectacular beauty that is pretty much hard to describe in words. Maybe I wasn’t ready for the experience 10 years ago.  I just didn’t see, as strange as this may sound, the majesty present in the vistas.  This time I WAS READY and soaked it all in.  I’ll let Dan’s photos give you a glimpse of what await those who travel to Zion.

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Feeling like I’m on top of the world

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Mystical

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One of the views from Angels Landing

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The serenity of morning light

As an artist, I can tell you that during this trip, my eyes were opened to things that were obscured to them before.  I am so grateful.

Sure, so many people say they are inspired by nature that it tends to sound cliche.  I get that.  I also know that spending quality time in places like Zion revitalize my mind and soul.  Now that’s my kind of inspiration!

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Me with my husband and soul mate, Dan.  This is our idea of a perfect day/date.

I urge you to seek being nurtured by nature, and its abundant life, because it can provide more than inspiration for your mind, body and soul.  You won’t be disappointed, I promise.

P.S.  All the photos, except for the chipmunk and flower, were taken by my talented husband Dan.  He rocks!

Now lets see what my fellow Blog-o-Sphere Think Tankers have written on this topic!

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
pencilfox:  www.pencilfox.com
Shelagh Blatz: www.designsbyshelagh.com/blog
Christine Esovoloff: http://christineesovoloff.tumblr.com/
Kathleen Krucoff: https://kathleenkrucoff.wordpress.com/

Namaste.