This is the fifteenth installment of The Curious Creative, weekly 10-minute writing exercises for busy individuals interested in exploring their creativity. For the complete rationale, click here.
Sometimes being creative feels like a matter of finding inspiration. Sometimes finding inspiration means taking yourself out of your usual pattern in order to witness something different than what you see everyday. This week, you’ll find inspiration by entering the different world of an old photograph.
- Take yourself on a date to a place that has old photographs. A museum will do, but even better is a coffee shop that has old books lying around, or an older relative’s home where you can peruse old photo albums.
- Make yourself comfortable and look through the photos until you come across one that gives you pause.
- Freewrite for 10 minutes about its story. What was happening the day this photo was taken? Who and what were not included in the frame; what was standing outside the shot and why? Your freewrite can take the form of sentences as prose, or you can brainstorm and list words and phrases like a poem. The goal is to keep your hand moving. Whatever comes out of your pen is just creating space for even better ideas to come. Feel free to speculate and imagine to construct a reality that may or may not be true.
How did you do? Did you enter a different world while freewriting, the world of the photo? Did your mind loosen up to imagine and create details of the moment the photo was taken? How did you feel after the exercise- engaged, alert, peaceful? These feelings are the telltale signs of what some might call “inspiration” and others call “being in the flow.”
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