Category Archives: Painting

Sol Lewitt 1928-2007

DAILY MUSE | Sad news today. Connecticut’s own Sol Lewitt, modernist, minimalist and conceptual artist, died Sunday due to complications from cancer. Best known for his Wall Drawing series– those grandly scaled, vividly colorful drawings integrated into architectural spaces filling the frame of walls from edge to edge– he remained constant in his themes throughout his career; geometric and repetitive shapes, timeless childlike constructs on paper or in “structures” (as he referred to his sculptural work) that almost seemed obvious or inevitable. Their simplicity conjures up a sense of “I can do that!”. Not in that horrid, insulting way that is often applied to artists, but in the best sense… in that it offers permission and confidence to a viewer to step in and do it too. In that respect, his work always inspires creativity.

Lewitt’s work, while part of the minimalist and conceptual schools of thought which often inspire work so heavily intellectual that it can alienate viewers, never had that effect on me. His work was always humble and joyful– never pretentious.

Please enjoy some images of an enviable oeuvre from a masterful artist.

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TODAY’S MUSE: Childhood Food and Fare

DAILY MUSE | Connect with your inner creative child today by connecting with your own actual childhood– savor some of your favorite childhood food and fare. Some of mine were Fluffernutter sandwiches, chocolate milk and Alpha-Bits cereal. What were your favorites? What do they taste like now? How do they make you feel?

Fluffernutter image via Melissa Glick

UPDATE | These artists seem to be drawing inspiration directly from their childhood fare.

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TODAY’S MUSE: Connect With A Creative Ally

DAILY MUSE | It’s easier to be creative in community– with creative allies who will give you the permission to show up as the creative genius that you are. As allies they’ll give you the space to reinvent yourself- or the space to just show up and be great. They’ll listen to and honor your ideas. They’ll mirror them back to you. Sometimes magnifying them and expanding them. The more you surround yourself with creative allies, the more permission you will have to show up as creatively.

List all the people you know. Who among them are your creative allies? Or have the potential to be one? Connect with one today. Now, in fact. Pick up the phone. Make a lunch appointment. Or a date to go to a museum. Or to a play. Honor your current creative allies. Reach out and cultivate new ones. And also look to see who you might be a creative ally for? Reach out to that person. Be generous with them. Create and give them the space to just be great in.

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DAILY MUSE | Write a letter to your future self.

TODAY’S MUSE: Organize a Creative Workspace

Artist’s Studio by Jan Vermeer

DAILY MUSE | Part of allowing creativity into your life means setting aside space for creativity to easily occur when it moves through you. Today, set aside a space in your home. A desk. A workbench. A chair or a corner. Provide yourself an adequate work surface, and adjacent to it gather all the tools, supplies, instruments or equipment needed for your creative endeavors. Have them easily accessible and organized. Have the space clear from any clutter other than what is needed for you creations. Set it up so that it is always ready to go when you are moved to create. That way you can begin creating at the time the spirit moves you, rather than expending amounts of your creative energy in clearing the space of clutter at the time you are wanting most to create.

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TODAY’S MUSE: The Discontinuity Principle

Belvedere, by M. C. Escher

DAILY MUSE | via Creativity Web | Disruption offers creative possibilities.

The more you are used to something, the less stimulating it is for our thinking.

When you disrupt your thought patterns, those ideas that create the greatest stimulus to our thinking do so because they force us to make new connections in order to comprehend the situation. Roger van Oech calls this a “Whack on the Side of the Head”, and Edward de Bono coined a new word, PO, which stands for “Provocative Operation”.

Try programming interruptions into your day. Change working hours, get to work a different way, listen to a different radio station, read some magazines or books you wouldn’t normally read, try a different recipe, watch a TV program or film you wouldn’t normally watch.

Provocative ideas are often stepping stones that get us thinking about other ideas. Abutting ideas next to each other, such that their friction creates new thought-paths a technique that flourishes in the east (haiku poetry and Zen koans) but causes discomfort in Western thinking.

Learn other creative techniques here.

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Beware the Blue Meanies

DAILY MUSE | Here is a link to a full length version of The Beatles Yellow Submarine. Very creative graphics. Someone must have been trippin’. Enjoy! But beware the Blue Meanies.