2018 Finishes

Friday, October 9, 2015

Inspiration--where does it come from??

It use to be that when I would get stuck on a project, I would look for inspiration at a quilt show, or leaf through quilt magazines for options to get unstuck! What generally happened was that I became inspired. I would start a couple new projects while I waited for a solution to come to me for the initial project. I'd finish one project and have three or four started projects. . .hm mm. . .something was wrong with that picture!!!!! I'm supposed to be FINISHING projects. At the rate I was going, I was going to die with TONS of UFOs! :)

Thanks to working through The Artist Way exercises, I learned that it is important to have artist dates (AD) on a regular basis. ADs help keep fueling creativity. By regular, I mean one AD per week. At first, I felt that I wasn't worthy of taking time each week to get inspired. After a couple weeks, I also didn't want to spend a bunch of money on my artist date. In my post today, I'm sharing some inexpensive ADs!

I walk almost every morning. Meet Bailey, my walking partner. She is a year old Golden Retriever. She has such a sweet and loving temperament. If no one is walking or playing with her, she prefers taking a nap in the recliner. She is great at keeping me honest about meeting that walking commitment because she is so into routines! 
I've had some awesome ADs on morning walks.

For example, one morning, I was looking at the ripening blackberries and noticed that the berries ran the gamut of colors from a green, to pink, to red to dark purple. Even the dark purple had two shades with the duller shade being the ripest berry! I realized being more mindful of my surroundings can be inspiring

I took a trip to the local dollar store and budgeted three dollars to pick up something that inspired me. I bought a package of crayons, a package of construction paper, a tube of glue and then I PLAYED! Using simple art supplies can be inspiring.

I love sunrises. I snapped these photos with my phone during some morning walks.  These photos may inspire a quilt sometime soon. Photos can be inspiring. 

I have printed and mounted these photos on a piece of computer paper which I placed in sheet protectors. 

I wrote my impression of the photos on the computer paper. Words like: serene, bright, bold, warm, mysterious, happy and luminous came to mind. Sometimes, I'll write a paragraph about how that picture makes me feel. Words can be inspiring.

In the fall, I take pictures of leaves. I love the different colors of leaves both on the tree and off!
Color or lack of color can be inspiring.

I've pinned techniques, projects, quilting, etc on boards in Pinterest. Other people's works are so creative and interesting. Plus, I can pin in my pajamas and no one is the wiser! :) I also leaf through back issues of various quilting magazines. Sometimes an ad or a story will provide a solution! Other people's creativity is inspiring.

What inexpensive technique do you use to inspire yourself?? Do you have ADs?


  1. Great post Terrie. I'm inspired by all the things you've said and sometimes it's a piece of fabric and memory of a TQS show that sets me off. But it's mindfullness that makes a difference of all the things you've pointed out,looking at why it inspires me. Thank you

    1. Wendy, I've often been inspired by a presenter featured on The Quilt Show too! Thank you for your comment!

    2. Lovely blogpost. I warn you, once you open your mind to inspiration ideas come flooding in to the point you need to work out ways to organize and keep them. :D

      I use a pretty little journal book I found on Amazon where I kind of write to myself..sort of a diary of ideas...and spreadsheets to keep lists. Then attack them a couple at at time. That way I can actually finish something without worrying I will lose the concept. Sometimes the idea loses its appeal and I take it off the list, but ideas come to me from combing through images on the Internet, beautiful nature, like your pictures, talking with friends, and simply looking at things around me.

      I also get rid of UFOs and fabrics that I no longer like and have to make myself work on, about once a year so I can keep moving forward. There are places that like to take them to use in new projects or finish.

      Here's to inspiration! May it continue to flow. :D

    3. BJ, I am starting a journal book. Yes, sometimes I have a lot of thoughts!!!!! I need to do more organizing and eliminating old fabrics too. Unfortunately, I still like the fabrics in my stash!!! Thank you for your thoughts!!-Terry

  2. I love to take photos as an additional way to appreciate the moment and try to express my feelings either out loud or in my head so that I can remember the day. Other quilters and excellent teachers are also very inspirational to me.

    1. Joanne, I agree with you about other quilters and excellent teachers as being inspirational. Expressing your feelings out loud or in your head are good inspirational methods too! Thank you for your comment!--Terry


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