Art and a Place to Create

Art and Place to Create | Rod Jones Artist

Art and a Place to Create

There is this perfect place; where everything creative just magically occurs. Is it a destination? Perhaps for some; it’s a dream of an art studio in Florence Italy. Maybe it’s an artist’s garret with a skylight overlooking the Champs-Élysées in France. Could you create it in a mountaintop studio in Colorado overlooking the Rockies and experiencing the four seasons?

If you’re a writer; maybe you would like to write the Great American novel, living in Hannibal Missouri overlooking the Mississippi River. Could you be creatively writing at the Sun Valley Lodge in Idaho? Or a favorite idea would be to paint and write on an “island in the stream.”

Four composers: creating compositions in Prague or maybe, better yet in Austria; historically you would be in good company.

Just about everyone who creates dreams of having the perfect place and location to bring forth the creative muse. Interestingly enough, great novels, great art and great music have emerged from some pretty unsavory environments. With just a little bit of research on your favorite artist, writer or composer, it just might give you an idea of how challenging it can be to find a location where you are perfectly content and stimulated to be the master of your craft.

Sometimes the obsession of where you are can destroy who you are as a creative person. Creativity should always come from within, and most likely with a lot of help and guidance from the heavenly plane.

Few have the opportunity to create in the most stimulating environments. Claude Monet built a home and garden in Giverny France. It was a Shangri-La for any artist, or writer for that matter. Beautiful in every way but a heck of a lot to maintain. Monet’s art changed; especially from his masterful plein air days. Perfect environment but his art suffered. 

There have been a whole bunch of writers of extreme notoriety, that wrote on the kitchen tables or on a small desk in the corner of their bedroom. Many of these writers had tons of children running around making all kinds of demands. How many children did Tolstoy have? 13 to be exact, while he was writing some of the greatest novels ever written.

Maybe just traveling to Florence Italy, as I have, is enough to charge your creative spirit. It did but I don’t know if I could set up shop there and paint and paint and paint. There is a quote by Mark Twain that suggests the power of travel. He equates travel like putting a razor on the shelf and not using it for a while; all of a sudden when you pick it up again it seems to be sharpened itself. According to him periodic travel sharpens your creativity, it certainly worked for him, and probably has done me some good too.

All creative people seem to be looking for that elusive nirvana of a location to create in— or at. We are all voyeuristic when it comes to looking where other people create. I like looking at artist studios and I love looking where writers write. It seems like we’re all hoping to discover something that will give us the creative edge they seem to possess.

I have come to understand that true creativity comes from within; yes it’s true you can see something that triggers a thought or an idea. But when you’re sitting alone at the keyboard of your piano, or in front of your easel, or you have spent time looking at a blank sheet of writing paper, wondering what to say that will be meaningful to others; you realize you are all alone with your thoughts— good ones, bad ones and indifferent ones. Sooner or later the creative muse within your soul ignites. The flow begins, sometimes it’s hard to determine what stimulates creative thinking, there have been numerous books written on the subject, but I’ve come to think: “You are what you think about all day long.” Maybe you’re hoping for guidance from a higher source, and believe me it happens! Ideas can appear virtually out of thin air. I have never known the physical environment to be the final arbiter of these inspirations.

We all play the self talking game. “If I just had: better art stuff, better computer, better piano, better education, lived in a better house or neighborhood— and  the all-time favorite;  if I was just born into the right family.” And then I would be more creative, more talented, more admired and of course totally, totally cool and loved by all.

Will the right location make or break your creativity? I sincerely doubt it. History has clearly demonstrated brilliance is not beholden to the perfect location, the perfect environment or for that matter the perfect family.

The perfect destination to be the most creative? Try this one on for size; simply just “bloom where you are planted.” Creativity is a behavior that clearly comes from the mind and soul within. You can however— get a lot of extra help if you tune into the right heavenly channel.