May has been a month of contrasts.
At this point we’re about equidistant between both the longest day and the last snows. Finally everything is green and growing. It’s a creative time of year and creativity needs to be practised:
“Creativity is a force moving through us, and only through practice do we learn how to cooperate with it. The ‘process’ is like a muscle. It needs to be exercised in order to function effortlessly.” –Shaun McNiff
So how do you exercise your creativity? What do you need? Sometimes finding (or creating) the right environment can help. This could mean making a space of your own in your home or workplace. But it could also mean finding a place elsewhere, perhaps outside in a natural environment, or in another kind of building such as a coffee shop, art gallery or library.
Journal prompt: Where do you become most creative? What is the environment which best allows your creative self to flourish? Describe your idea of a perfect creative space.
Then list the steps (however small or big) you need to take to create this out of your current environment. What can you do right now?
In practical terms, for many of us, this place already exists as a studio, office, or corner of a room that is ours. However, it might require a certain amount of organising, rearranging, sorting, tidying. A good purge of an area, however small, can be a most satisfying experience. I know I work better when my desk is well-ordered and without too many guilt-inducing, uncompleted tasks (although it certainly doesn’t need to be clear).
Perhaps looking at our space through the eyes of someone else can help:
Journal Prompt: In Journal to the Self Kathleen Adams suggests investigating your house as if you were a private detective. Let the detective wander through your creative space observing and making notes. From the evidence of the notes, write a character sketch of the person who occupies that space: what personality traits can be deduced? What physical characteristics are suggested? What are the likes/dislikes of this person?