30 Day Creativity Challenge

Do you feel like joining me in attempting to do one creative activity each day for the next 30 days? If writing is your thing maybe you can find some ideas in the file below:

But it doesn’t have to be writing, it can be anything creative and it doesn’t have to be a big thing – the challenge is in making the effort each and everyday and recording it in your blog. I am going to give it a go (partly as a distraction to the festive season craziness). I have also been absent from my blog for many months so this is a good way to get back to writing. I hope you will join me.

Could you please include a link to my blog so as I can check out what you have done (www.allaboutwordswa.com)?

Just popped in to say hello!

I haven’t written for a while. I keep meaning to and have had lots of ideas for posts (can’t remember what they were now!)

There is a lot going on at present. I am leading two University of the Third Age courses (philosophy discussion group and learning about creativity). I have also signed up to an online photography course – Digital Photography masterclass. Hopefully in time you will see some improvement in my photos.

For now I will include a few photos I took with my iPhone – spur of the moment shots. I love to see the trees in winter with no foliage but the bright blue sky beyond.

Going back in order to go forward

Barbara Mallon (A Year of Creativity) says that:

Sometimes in order to go forward you have to go back to earlier times when the path you were starting out on was still covered in virgin snow.

She poses the following questions and suggests you write your responses in your Creative Year Journal. I will include my answers to the questions in this blog.

My favourite childhood game was…. “let’s pretend.” This included dress-ups, shop keepers, TV characters …

The best TV program I saw as a child was … Lassie Come Home or Black Velvet or Mr Ed. I also loved Popeye cartoons …

My earliest memory of school was … my very first day! I did not want to stay there and I got stuck into Sister Kevin by kicking and screaming – much to my mother’s horror!

The toy I loved most was … paper dolls that you could dress in paper dresses (anyone remember them?), dolls & teddy bears, musical jewelry box and wind-up toys.

If I had the perfect childhood I would have grown up to be … the person I am now but maybe would have got there a bit quicker in a more favorable environment.

The best gift anyone could have given me as a child would have been … their full and undivided attention.

NB My answers included multiple items whereas the questions mostly asked for one thing. I couldn’t decide so included those strongest in my memory.

Even if you don’t want to blog your answers you may enjoy giving some thought to what your answers might be. My answers were a surprise to me!

Favourite Colours

What are your favourite colours? Do you have them liberally spread throughout your home?

The book, A Year of Creativity by Brenda Mallon asks:

Are you sensitive to colours (colors) that go together or colours that clash?

Brenda Mallon

That got me thinking about my home and the colours I have chosen throughout. I took some pics to give a sample of what appeals to me. None of these choices came from logic – they were all from the heart!

So there is blue, yellow, orange and white background. A long time ago someone told me that yellow or gold are positive, happy colours and I believe that is true. Mixing the golds with blue and orange, to me at least, is striking! When our gold curtains were installed I was rather shocked at their bold statement but I have never regretted getting them!

Trusting creative ideas? Mmm …

I have been revamping my room (formerly called ‘my office’) to be a more creative space. Recently I bought a lovely new mat and was concerned the wheels on my ‘office’ chair might damage it.

I started looking for a swivel chair without wheels. I looked at hundreds of sites but found very few. I found one that is quite unusual but discovered it would cost me over $200 to have it delivered. Then the company had 48 hours free transport. I made the decision to choose the unusual one and get it delivered.

It arrived today and needed some putting together but now I am wondering if I was too impulsive.

Should I have been more sensible? I have found a spot for the bears at least! This could end up being a bigger project with me totally reoganising my room to suit the chair. I think I will sleep on it (not the chair)!

Progress on the Creative Space

Recently I wrote about enhancing our environment to best support creativity. I am gradually making changes to my “office” (might need to change what I call the space!) to encourage me to be more creative.

This week I made a simple change and it has made all the difference. I have three desks in my room and I set up one with various creative projects that I started (and not completed). The space didn’t feel right until I moved my files for the two committees I do volunteer ‘work’ for. Once I moved them it felt so much better!

I also purchased a new mat for the floor. I was going to replace the carpet but the mat seemed so much easier and I got instant gratification without all the hassle of moving furniture etc.

I love my new mat!

Once the space felt right I spent some time there looking through my past projects. About four years ago I attempted to make a start on a memoir. I got as far as writing two pages of information for each decade of my life up until then. It made it seem manageable to do it that way. I printed out the pages I had written and put them in a nice new file. I found other bits and pieces (journal writing bits and pieces) that I was able to add to it. Who know where it may lead!

The two bears are there to remind me to have fun but also I don’t know where else to put them! I have been known for collecting teddy bears :).

Creative Enhancement

A little book called “A Year of Creativity” by Brenda Mallon (Andrews McMeel Publishing) sits on my desk. A friend has lent it to me for ideas for the course I will be leading this term. It is rich with ideas and suggestions to explore. It is divided into twelve chapters and I thought I would share Chapter 5 (or Month 5 as the book calls it) titled Creative Enhancement.

There is a little questionnaire below (with my responses) from the chapter:

  • Have you got fresh flowers in your home? NO
  • Have you got any pictures hanging on your walls? YES
  • Have you got any photographs in your room? YES
  • Are you wearing clothes that delight you? NO but they are okay!
  • Can you smell your favourite perfume? NO
  • Have you got an inspirational book by your bed? NO but does a book on Stoicism count?
  • Have you listened to any special music in the last 24 hours? NO
  • How long is it since you went for a walk in the countryside or by the sea? TOO LONG since I live in the country and close to the beach.
  • When was the last time your prepared yourself some special food? TODAY (some lovely fresh fish).
  • Are the clothes you are wearing comfortable and pleasing to you? YES they are okay.

The writer goes on to say if we are not cherishing these things then our lives may be diminished. I need to take note and work on the areas where I didn’t fare too well.