Monday, July 8, 2013

Challenge 14: Operation Inspiration

The last couple weeks we have had some pretty intense challenges here on the blog.  We've let ourselves dream about the mountains we'd like to reach with our creative lives, and then took the time to figure out just how in the hell we are going to actually get there.

That stuff is all fantastic and really great for us, but let's face it… for the most part it isn't very fun.

So this week we are shaking things up again and injecting just a bit more fun into the weekly challenge.  And yes, as I'm sure you have so masterfully deduced, it has something to do with a camera.

Here's the thing about inspiration, as much as it may seem like the metaphorical lighting bolt to the brain at times, really it's just a collection of slow hunches.  These hunches simply have had enough time to sit around in your brain getting to know one another until one day all the pieces you've already gathered meet in just the right way, click together and form an idea.  If you don't believe me, Steven Johnson wrote an entire book on the process. We've even talked about this before on the blog HERE if you want to find out more.

So now that Mr. Johnson has so kindly shown us how good ideas come into being we can make two pretty powerful observations:

1) Art and inspiration cannot be created in a vacuum.

2) We actually have to work at gathering thoughts and ideas for our brain to have the fuel it needs to be inspired.


I think a lot of times as creative people we spend WAY to much time locked up in our studios trying to work instead of out gathering fuel for our creative brain.  To be a successful creative we need to have both a strong work ethic and the heart of an explorer/collector, one without the other usually leads to trouble.

So for your challenge this week we are going to simply gather some fuel for our creative flames by going for a walk.

A walk!? Yes a walk.

I know, I know, this sounds more like exercise than a creative project, but stay with me.

Here are your guidelines (because rules are for the man):

1) Pick an area of your town that you have never explored before to have your walk in. 

WARNING: Be smart people, don't go walking around somewhere dangerous. That's not the imagination inspiration we're talking about here.

2) Bring your camera. (Boom foreshadowed camera coming into play!)

DSLR, point and shoot, cell phone cam, it doesn't matter as long as it takes pictures, we're not trying to be Ansel Adams here or anything.

3) Go for a walk, take pictures of ANYTHING that you find interesting.

Seriously, whatever strikes your fancy, photograph it.  Pile of colorful trash? Boom, photograph it!  Interesting architectural detail? Boom, photograph it!  You get the idea.

4) Share the photos you take by hash-tagging them #bravetheabyss!

That's it!  No deep emotional journey, no searching of your soul, just some good old creative fun in the sun, or rain, or whatever the weather may be where you are.

Happy Photo Walking!

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