This weekend I attended a workshop about creativity and writing that was facilitated by Julia Cameron. We looked at various creative endeavors and explored how we express our creativity. In that exploration we reflected on creative outlets we once pursued and then made a U-turn during which that mode for creativity stopped. For me that creative endeavor was photography. In college I was fascinated by this art form and then because of a lack of a mentor and some unconstructive criticism I stopped. And really haven’t gone back, except for the occasional snapshot of a family member or friend.
Photography is an art form that is of interest to me, but it looms unavailable---possibly because of fear, partly because of time—probably because of a combination of the two. I decided to take a small, baby step in the direction of developing the eye of a photographer. The small step for me was simply to notice beauty. I talked about this action in a small group at the workshop and Sarah gave me a brilliant piece of feedback that turned out for me to have strong overtures toward play.
Sarah suggested that noticing beauty is a big and vague concept if you live a hurried life and don’t stop ro notice during day-to-day existence. She invited me to take one small step toward that expansive creative space called beauty. Beauty is big—if it is not usually seen and captured. She told me to instead look for something small--to notice the color red.
And that is exactly what I did today which turned into quite a playful activity for me.
Today I Celebrated Red!
Red, red everywhere
On the streets and in her hair.
Stop signs, ribbons, red sunrise
Red revealed in many a-guise.
Red letters, red book cover, red spice in my food
Red is a color to match many a-mood.
Angry red, kissing red-rover-red rover
Red is everywhere—10 times over!
Red cardinal in flight in a tundra of white
Color incarnate—such a beautiful sight.
My world was filled with strokes of red
Splashed throughout and so widespread
Red pops out from its blended existence
As I choose to look with an ounce of persistence.
Today I noticed the color red
And, oh, the delightful directions it led.
Thank you, Red, for playing with me.
Your beautiful essence is helping me see.
Celebrating red is amazingly playful. Red always was there but today she called out to me and I followed her beauty throughout all of the steps of my day. What is calling you to play and be noticed?
Play-titude #4: When I notice that I have taken a detour from a path that was once creative and playful, I take one small step back on the road.
Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for dedicating space and time for teachers and teachers of writing to come together to share ideas, practice and life experience.