05 July 2013

Creativity Journal - Day 1 (Start Small)

The first step is the hardest, so start small today and make something that fits in the palm of your hand using only the materials in your immediate environment.
Today I have gone out of my way to be creative with words, but I have also been creative with fabric (and scrap-booking). One advantage of not working for someone else at the moment is the time to complete projects. Even without the journal I have been reasonably creative.

My fabric creativity is an ongoing project. Some time ago my dad's sister gave me some embroidery panels that belonged to her mother or her aunt. Some are started, but none are finished. I rediscovered them just recently and currently keep one next to my armchair to work on while watching TV. I'm not really very good at embroidery, but I'm improving.

My creativity with words was inspired by a trip into the CBD today. I dislike the City. I always feel rushed and pressured. Visiting during Friday lunch time in the school holidays probably wasn't a great idea.

This was my initial idea. It is the palm of my hand (an outline, on paper, not my actual palm). The idea was for it to represent city blocks, but I kinda forgot to allow the streets to have any width.

As I was playing with this, lines from one of my favourite poems came to mind.

I am sitting in my dingy little office, where a stingy
Ray of sunlight struggles feebly down between the houses tall,
And the foetid air and gritty of the dusty, dirty city
Through the open window floating, spreads its foulness over all.

And in place of lowing cattle, I can hear the fiendish rattle
Of the tramways and the 'buses making hurry down the street,
And the language uninviting of the gutter children fighting,
Comes fitfully and faintly through the ceaseless tramp of feet. 

And the hurrying people daunt me, and their pallid faces haunt me
As they shoulder one another in their rush and nervous haste,
With their eager eyes and greedy, and their stunted forms and weedy,
For townsfolk have no time to grow, they have no time to waste.

"Clancy of the Overflow", by Banjo Patterson

My idea was to take a map of the CBD, create an outline of the blocks, superimpose the words over the city blocks, remove the lines. That is, have the words of the entire poem make up the city blocks. I hit a couple of snags:
  • The map of the CBD is always shown on an angle. The streets run almost 45° to the edge of a page.
  • The CBD is not actually a pure grid. There's lots of little bumps and alley ways.
  • A map the size of my palm requires a very fine pen and steady writing hand .
  • I figured the easiest way would be to print the map and then overlay a blank sheet to write on. I don't have a light box, and I can't find my handy-dandy piece of picture frame glass that I usually use.
I copied the CBD from Google; drew the blocks using the Draw facility in MS Word. I rotated my new very plain map and used MSWord to add the poem. It's not quite the end result I wanted. I think, ideally, this sort of image is best created with a larger map. After the words are added by hand, the whole image can be scaled down.

STILL, the purpose of the exercise is creativity. To do something creative, to think differently to the routine of humdrum daily life. This is not something I would have thought of doing of my own inspiration.

What fits in the palm of your hand?

1 comment:

ozjane@gmail.com said...

Like the idea and your execution of it...I started a gratitude journal which is brief...I use a diary each night to toss the day to an end in.
But I must have had a wee burst of energy last night...in a different craft....that of entertaining and cooking. I got all the vegetables ready for roasting and left container out to remind me to microwave peas and beans.....then I totally set the table except I left main plates and sweet bowls in a pile. I had a new set of glasses and found a vase for a small posy (artificial) of roses but looked good in a Bendigo Pottery vase...small enough not to spoil the table.
I put meat in oven before heading for Church then came home and got vegies through microwave then into roast...next time I am going to put them in at the same time as the meat as I only have the oven on 100c....I also mixed the fruit juice drink..and had it in the fridge...I guess it sounds funny to call this creative but it was and to be organized felt so good.
I also made a new recipe of Spiced Orange Almond and Coconut Cakes...in cute little patty pans. It is a similar recipe to the orange almond cake so I boiled two oranges while I was dressing and they were ready to blitz in the processor when I got home.

So that is my day of creativity from a different angle..tomorrow will try to do something creative with some of the paper warfare that often stops me sewing.
I did not mean to ramble on forever.
Keep up your good work.
Did you get the ebook from Amazon?