Need to Create

Creative individuals, in whatever medium they work in, need to create.  Having said this, sometimes the saying is much easier than the actual doing.  This inability to create can be for a lot of reasons: changing careers; new baby; elderly parents; a toxic relationship; legal issues; financial problems; health challenges; and so much more.

I have also found that our view of what creativity is affects our ability to be creative.  So often we have this idea that creativity is Capital A Art: Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Frank Lloyd Wright, Mozart, Beethoven, Imogen Cunningham, Ansel Adams, Emily Dickinson, Vera Wang, Martha Stewart, Steven Spielberg, and the list goes on and on.  When we compare what we are doing with others that have spent years perfecting their art… say that what we are doing is unfair to ourselves is a major understatement.

Creativity is so much more than the box we put it in.  Every single time I say that I am an artist, that I teach creativity classes and am a creativity coach, there is ALWAYS someone who says, “I don’t have a creative bone in my body.” or “I can’t draw a straight line.”

The problem isn’t your ability to draw.  The problem is your inability to see.  Creativity is about possibility and choice.  Seeing things in a unique way.  Creativity is so much more than Capital A Art.  It is in the thousands of small decisions you make every day.

One of my advanced students, who has become a friend, recently shared that when she came to the first creativity class she had this idea that creativity for her would be drawing, painting and doing music and video again.  But after taking the class she realized that creativity is so much more.  This shift in thinking gave her the confidence to redo her kitchen.


This is how her kitchen looked before.  The following photos show the changes she made.


Strainer Light Fixture.



Mason Jar Light Fixture.


She made the pot rack that hangs above her stove.


She redid her cabinets in such a unique and beautiful way.  Her new kitchen is bright, cheerful and as unique and creative as she is.

It’s not what you are creating that matters.  It is that you are creating.  I bet right now in your life there is something that you are doing or working on that may not seem very creative.  I challenge you to change that assumption.  Consider thinking of it as being VERY creative.  Does that change the way you look at the project?  Does the project itself become more fun?  Does changing one project to be a creative project change the way you look at other projects?

Remember……. Creativity always finds a way!




Valley of Fire State Park

There is so much more to Nevada than Las Vegas and “the Strip.”  48 miles North of Las Vegas is a state park that is well worth the drive to visit: Valley of Fire State Park.

According to the park brochure Valley of Fire derives its name from the red sandstone formations found within the park boundaries.  These formations were made from great shifting sand dunes during the age of the of dinosaurs, 150 million years ago.  Uplifting and faulting of the region and extensive erosion created the geological formations that is the landscape of the park today.


Other rock formations include limestone, shale and conglomerates.


When hiking along a canyon behind Atlatl Rock, we came across three big horn sheep.  They were very curious about us and we didn’t want to be in their way.


Arch Rock


Petroglyphs from the canyon walls along a hike to Mouse’s Tank.  The rock art in the park is from prehistoric cultures which include the Basket Maker People and the Anasazi.  It is estimated that people inhabited the region between 300 B.C. to 1150 A.D.  Though due to scarcity of water these groups did not stay in the region year round.  They would have limited their length of stay and used the region for religious ceremonies, food gathering and hunting.

The lack of water did not stop an outlaw from using the area as a hideout during the 1890’s.  There is a hike to Mouse’s Tank which is a natural basin formed in the rock.  Water collects in this basin and sometimes remains there for months.


We were to early in the year to catch the springtime blooms.  However, I was very delighted with the color contrast of the orange sand and the beaver-tail cactus.


The White Domes area of the park has sandstone formations with contrasting colors.  There is a hike in this area that includes the slot canyon pictured above.


This picture was also taken along the White Dome Trail.

If ever you are in Las Vegas, Nevada and are looking for an escape into a unique landscape of vibrant colors with links to past, plan to visit Valley of Fire State Park.


Antarctica: A Year on Ice

I just watched a documentary by Anthony Powell called “Antarctica: A Year on Ice.”  The film was released in 2014 by Music Box Films.  The filmmaker states at one point that it took 10 years to capture all of the images of this film and thousands of dollars in cameras and film equipment (specially modified cameras, time-lapse photography and cameras he made himself).


In the beginning of the film, Anthony Powell talked about how he wanted to capture the experience of what living on Antarctica all year was like.  Many of those interviewed in the documentary stated how difficult it was to explain the experience of living there to their friends and family who live in other parts of the planet.

Those who live in Antarctica year round are not just scientists, but technicians, tradesmen and craftsmen.  They are often isolated from the rest of the world.  They endure months of darkness during the winter, to then face summer and periods when the sun never sets.  It is easy to forget how cold Antarctica is when watching images full of sunshine.  The people living on Antarctica live in temperatures that make the -6 degrees Fahrenheit that I am experiencing today seem breezy and warm.

To say that this documentary is beautifully filmed seems like such an understatement.  This film is truly a visual feast.  Be prepared to see stunning images of Mt. Erebus, penguins being penguins, hellacious storms, the night sky like you’ve never seen it before and the pristine beauty of nature.

One part of the film that I found particularly intriguing was when Anthony Powell talked about noise pollution and how quiet parts of Antarctica are.  (Especially when the wind isn’t blowing.)  I like knowing that there are places that one can still experience silence.

This film is successful in sharing the experience of life on Antarctica for a year.  Not only are the images of Antarctica stunningly beautiful, but the stories shared by the people who live there are deeply moving.  I highly recommend this film.  Not only is it creative and beautiful, but it captures the adventurous human spirit.

The following sentence taken from the Rotten Tomatoes Website description of the documentary and sums it up perfectly:

“ANTARCTICA: A YEAR ON ICE gives testament to the planet’s natural wonders, humanity’s thirst for adventure, and the emotional extremes that accompany a year within the last pristine wilderness on the planet.”