Inspiration cannot be forced, but it can be cajoled. When I need inspiration to come, here's what I do:
- Visit a Museum and immerse myself in art.
- Sit in the bookstore with a nice drink and a pile of magazines. (usually home decorating, art and fashion)
- "Shop" for color and texture ideas at a fabric store.
- Cruise the historic district for patterns or textures.
- Let my interests guide me. If something piques my interest, even if it's in a seemingly unrelated area, I follow that interest. Time and time again, that feeling has lead me to something inspirational.
- Go about your business. Act as if you aren't waiting for inspiration to hit. Inspiration likes to sneak up on you. It's no fun if you're expecting it.
- Relax! Take a bath, do yoga, meditate. You'll be busy enough soon with your new idea!
- Do your chores. Something that doesn't use a lot of thought. Dishes, vacuuming, laundry.
- Move your body. Go for a walk. You'll be surprised at what shakes loose.
- Write it down. Julia Cameron (author of The Artist's Way) recommends writing stream of consciousness for 3 full pages each morning to get the creativity flowing.
I don't feel I can take credit for my inspirational "hits". Usually they come on their own, without any assistance from me. Things I've read, seen, or even just heard about, somehow find one another in my head and come up with ways to work together. Then they let me know about it. I'm totally out of the loop. I'm innocently matching socks one day and WHAM! I have to run and get the idea onto paper ASAP. Not because I'll forget, (although my memory is getting pretty bad) but because the idea is so insistent that I have to do something with it RIGHT NOW!
So, how do you find inspiration?