Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things. —Steve Jobs
I'm often asked how I come up with new designs and I identify with a certain feeling of guilt that I really don't know how I do it.
I am wired in such a way that I try to make sense of all the stories I find myself in throughout my day...the day I made these Eyeglass earrings I was focused on looking back to a moment in my life, when I was around 12 or so, when I was fitted with contact lenses for the first time.
I ditched my glasses so that I could have peripheral vision again.
|Perspective Sterling Silver and Brass Earrings (2016)|
My early childhood is rich in memories of being in nature because of my penchant for trying to see my world from every perspective I had access to.
I clearly remember spending hours on the ground in our backyard, imagining life from the perspective of what I used to call the Roly Poly, or the Pill bug. These little creatures would transform into a ball when disturbed, and I was a master at disturbing them.
I was gifted with time as a child to do...nothing structured.
Lots of time spent outdoors, investigating the world as it presented itself to me afforded me the freedom to 'see' life from all angles. I climbed trees and learned on a cellular level what it means to take the 'higher perspective'.
It's timeless up there. I was able to see both sides of an outcome in real time.
My cat, Sylvester, was an expert hunter. One afternoon, sitting in my favorite tree, I watched him stalk a field mouse.
I could see Sylvester deliberately stay out of the mouse's line of sight while watching the mouse do its little mouse things.
I could see from this perspective of height the trajectory of both Sylvester's actions and the ultimate fate of the mouse.
The mouse never saw it coming. He never had a chance, really...my cat understood his limited perspective and took advantage of it to secure a fresh meal.
Learning how to see your life from a higher perspective allows you to perceive and 'see' your own blind spots.
You 'see' your life from all angles and aren't as likely to get pounced upon by someone or something that takes advantage of your blind spots.
But to live all of the time from the higher perspective means you don't get to engage in the drama of life.
And learning in real time happens on earth, not in the heavens.
So before I was able to master climbing trees without falling out of them, I spent a lot time on the ground.
We had a back porch and the Roly Polies were prolific. I would spend hours on my stomach, stretched out, looking at the world via the perspective of those little balls of buggy life.
I learned how to focus by doing that.
It was consuming.
Their way of sensing the world is via vibration and touch. I don't even know if they have eyes...but they continually bump into things and if the vibe is wrong, they roll up in a protective, shell-encased ball.
While they are rolled up, they are moved by outside forces...in this case, it was me. I would flick them to and fro, playing with them as if they were marbles.
Roly Poly bugs are reactive. I learned that if we are reactive all of the time, rolling into a protective ball at the slightest provocation, that life will flick us to and fro.
Direction is left to fate, or the wind, or the playful flick of a 5 year-old child with nothing but time on her hands.
Two different perspectives...as different as night and day.
The game we are here to play, I believe, is all about the gray. The play of light and shadow.
All the angles in between heaven and earth are our playground, our learning environment.
Real creativity is the ability to continuously shift our outer/inner sight from earth to heaven.
All those perspectives have something important to teach us and how we mix and mingle them on a daily basis is what living creatively is all about to my thinking.
I like where we live because I see kids outside, sometimes doing nothing but watching the world like I did as a child.
If we want to instill more creativity in children, they need unstructured time to play with shifting their sight. They need the natural world to teach them how to 'see'.
Schools and day care centers and the like can't teach this seeing.
Nothing structured can.
It requires one to leave behind the ways of encasing and enclosing an experience and instead, allowing an exchange to happen that is right for the individual being to occur in the natural world.