Thursday, 12 May 2011

the Joy of repetition

The Halloween invitations comprise 72 pieces (for 6 invitations), which all need to be handcut, and this is just to create the basic invitation.  There will then be roughly another 6 embellishments, I'm thinking, per invitation before they are finished.

Following a pretty dire day at work, I took myself off shopping, bought the necessaries and spent a very happy evening starting to cut out some of the pieces for the invitation.  As I did so, I mused, and pondered, and chatted to the boyf, and thought, paid scant attention to the TV, and found myself gently unwinding from the day whilst peace was restored to my psyche.  Be it a brush stroke on canvas, a stitch in thread, a bead or button sewn, even the letters that I type now; repetition is at the heart of creativity, and for me, the repetition of a creative action is when I relax and find my peace.  It is my personal meditation and prayer.  

In learning something new there can be excitement but anxiety; in repeating the action, there comes mastery, confidence and efficiency.  That in turn quietens the mind and, at that moment, opens it up; you can look at what is around you, see with fresh eyes, think with increasing clarity as the momentum of your actions builds, be free to allow your creativity to flow anew.  A work takes on "a life of its own" or, as one project is taking shape, the mind will brainstorm new ideas endlessly. 

I think that most creative people would agree with me?

It flows into other areas my life too.  I like to clean (particularly calming when I feel overwhelmed) and love to cook; washing up is far more pleasing than drying and putting away (too many variables!); each step of my walks with the dog, following the same paths and seeing what is new; and whilst tumbledrying is a sad necessity, I love to hang washing on the line: dip, pick, hang, peg, dip, pick, hang, peg... and look, the sun is dancing through the laurel tree's leaves.
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