Today, while waiting for Jiffy Lube to finish with my emissions test and inspection, I popped on over to Travelingmama to read Tina’s latest post on creative spaces. What a joy that post was! Not only was it fun to take a look at Amy Butler’s gorgeous studio, but it also started me thinking about a number of things. Too many things to simply post in a comment. (Although my comment on her post, then Sarah’s response were what really got me going!)

In her post, Tina said: “If only creativity were contagious and we could simply β€œcatch” a bit just from standing near it!”

What if creativity really is contagious? I know that before I started participating in design challenges and blogging, I only made a card when I needed one. But the first time I saw one of Kristina’s Color Inspiration Challenges, I just had to try it myself! I think it was a bit like yawning–reflexive. And the more I saw what you wonderful people were creating, the more I wanted to create. Not only to fulfill the urge to explore different colors, textures, and shapes–a need that I’ve come to think of as primal–but to be part of the online crafting community.

“If only creativity were contagious and we could simply β€œcatch” a bit just from standing near it!”

But wanting to do something and actually doing it are quite different things. After all, if I did everything that I wanted to do, I’d know how to surf. I admire people who can surf so much, and I dream of being able to do it. There’s something about the idea of riding the waves that speaks to my soul. However, you don’t see me at the gym working out to get in the physical shape to do it. And I’m saving up to go to Comicon next year, not to go to surf camp.

So what is it that moves someone from simply appreciating someone and what they do to being inspired by them–motivated to act in some way?

Sarah put it really well. Is it the “desire to succeed? To compete? To simply finish something?”

I’ve been thinking about this all afternoon, and I think I have my answer.

I started participating in design challenges during a period in my life of what could only be described as entropy. Layoffs at my work had been announced, but we didn’t know when they would occur or how many of us were going to be let go. We couldn’t start new projects or implement any of the ideas we’d been generating. We slowed down on the projects that were underway, if we didn’t stop work on them altogether. At home, Chris and I couldn’t move forward on the house–we didn’t know if I would lose my job and we would need the money that we’d set aside. So we all waited, and things felt like they were folding in around me. Stagnating.

“[Is it the] desire to succeed? To compete? To simply finish something?”

And then I was inspired.

I moved from simply appreciating the work that Kristina did–that all of you do–to needing that creative outlet in my life. What moved me was such a simple thing! It was the simple need to move and to grow in some way; the need to be passionate about something. I suppose that’s the need to create.

So what moves you?

7 thoughts on “moved

  1. Sarah Martina says:

    How awesome of you to dig deep to find the answer to that huge “Why” question! I wish it was that easy for me… I have so many reasons, and to be honest, I feel as though it changes from day to day. Some days I want to create simply as a means of escaping from the “outside world”…ok that may be more than just “some” days. Lol! Other days I create because I am so full of pride in my children/family, or b/c I’m excited that I captured an important moment in just the right photo… I want to ensure that the moment is preserved in JUST the right way. And then other days, I want to just see if I can do it. I see something, I say to myself, “WOW!” and then the “wow” is shortly followed by, “Hey I can do that…. I think.” When I first started, I would see what I considered the “pros,” and part of me would be amazed, excited, inspired, and then part of me would say, if she can do it, why can’t I? It’s just PAPER. It’s just ribbon…stamps, what’s so difficult about stamps? Come on! lol… I’m just being transparent here. I spent months and probably even years consumed in what everyone else was doing and how they were doing it. Only recently did I make a conscious decision to close my eyes and let the creativity come from within, instead of from some outside source. I think it’s paying off. I take huge pride in the pieces that I “birth” because it is a process for me. imagine. think. analyze. attempt. reevaluate. The only exception to this is if I have rushed the process just to finish or make a deadline… and in most cases you can probably assume I was not creating for myself.

    Anyway… thank you for encouraging and joining in this thought-versation. πŸ™‚

    I’m going to copy this comment over on Tina’s post also… yea I know I’m lazy, you don’t even have to say it! Lol…

  2. Savitri says:

    What moves me is this: It’s cheaper than therapy… even if I never send the card… I mean I make one at least every other day and I honestly do not know 180+ ppl πŸ™‚ My husband and kid can only take so many of them ya know πŸ˜›

    That’s my why. Plus, I needed a hobby πŸ™‚

  3. kelly marie says:

    I just love your card! The colors are gorgeous, and I love the sentiment!

    I also love everything you have written here. What a wonderful writer you are! Your post really got me thinking about how and when I started this wonderful hobby of ours, and I think I started card making so that I could heal. I had been very sick for a long time. I lost a lot of function in my right arm and my world slowly fell apart. I could no longer be a percussionist. The doctorate that I obtaining in Physical Therapy was no longer worth anything. Everything seemed bad. I was put on complete rest by my doctors. I began to melt away without something to do except get better, and therefore, I wasn’t getting better. I needed to be creative again, and I needed to be able to do it without using fine motor skills. I had always loved doing crafts, but the furthest I ever got into stamping was making thumbprint animals, so a year and a half ago, I decided to scour the internet for inspiration and knowledge. People’s blogs and youtube videos taught me about crafting. I started making cards, and my world started to slowly change. Am I still sick sometimes? Yes. Does my arm work that well? No. But now it doesn’t seem to matter as much because I have something that I love to do again. I can sometimes get drawn up into the competition of these challenges, but as soon as I do, I try to remember that this makes me happy, and that’s why I do it!

    Anyways, this is the longest post ever, and probably has entirely too much info in it, but I do think it is really wonderful to hear how and why people craft. Thanks for “listening”. πŸ™‚

  4. kim says:

    Thank you so much for sharing, Kelly! There is something incredibly therapeutic about making something — especially, I think, if what you create can make someone’s day!

    And, Savitri totally got it right. It’s definitely cheaper than therapy.

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