Inspiration


posted on 21st of september, 2007

This is my first blog entry on Dreamstime, please don't think it pretentious, I do think about "inspiration" all the time. What inspires us to take risks and make new things?



Inspiration for photographs seems to come from many possible sources.

First, while at times inspiration graces unexpectedly in a moment of solitude or near-sleep or near-waking, it most often comes from outside rather than some independent internal awakening.

Most often, inspiration comes from being prompted by someone else's inspired articulation. Not in an effort to reproduce or mimic what they did / said / created, but in a new expression which is inspired by their own expression.

By definition of course, inspiration is a stimulation or prompting, it comes from outside the person being inspired.

In today's world, some people have a notion that you can conjure up inspiration on your own, you can somehow follow some recipe and coax inspiration into your reach, then benefit from it, all on your own initiative.

I don't think so, any more than a person can conjure an orange tree to produce oranges.

Yes, inspiration comes from external sources.

However, it's available to anyone and everyone, it's not exclusive. Inspiration doesn't care about economic or social status! It doesn't discriminate on the basis of race or lifestyle.

I would argue that it comes from a higher source. Ask me about this some day maybe, I have more to say (and to ask) about this, but don't want to shovel my thoughts (or questions) on anyone.

Exercise: go to any museum or gallery. See if you are not inspired in some way by the external influence of the things that are expressed there. (If not, maybe don't go back?)

Part two of this idea, though, is that external inspiration on its own is not much more than titillation. If it's just "in" without any creative output or outcome, it's not productive. That would be merely consumption, which is one of the world's most uninteresting things ever.

It takes an interaction with a person's own creative mind (creativity comes from somewhere right? hmm....) for creativite impulses to produce interesting fruit.

Some human person (possibly created by a divine being?) moved the following dictionary definition of "creativity" to number FIVE on the list: "Divine guidance or influence exerted directly on the mind and soul of humankind."

Bizarre, isn't it, that a human being is defining, in finite human language, what divine guidance is all about. Maybe. We think.

More later...

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Photo credits: Barry Sherbeck.

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