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Cynthia Morris : Summer's Creative Exuberance

Summer's Creative Exuberance

By Cynthia Morris

If summer isn't the best season to foster creativity, I don't know what is. Okay, you could make a case for the cocooning qualities of winter. You could say that the freshness of spring inspires even the most jaded artist. And then there's the letting go of fall, which could provoke me to give up art entirely. I mean, why bother?

But summer, with its uncontainable exuberance, is the best season for the creative. Who wouldn't be inspired by the bounty of a farmer's market? How could the light pulsing off the highway in the middle of the day in the middle of the country not extract a deep sense of mystery in any artist? And what about the sense of freedom that you get when all you're wearing is a tiny bathing suit and there's nothing to do but dip yourself in the pool one more time.

I vote for summer as the season most likely to spawn creative progeny. In fact, summer invites us to regress to our purest child-like impulses. We all know that to be deeply creative means connecting somehow to that child in us. It's that part of us that loves messes, that doesn't need to know where we're going, that has no concept of the bottom line, let alone a concern for making money. Reach out with both arms like a hungry, greedy child, and wrap yourself in summer. Make this your most creative summer yet. Here's how.

Get messy. Eat watermelon and let the juice and seeds splatter all over your shirtfront.

Hang out outside. Sit in the grass with no agenda. Stay there for a few hours with a book, a notebook, or whatever melts you into a creative puddle. And speaking of puddle…

Get into water. We know that water stimulates our creativity, but we can set that aside. Get in just because you love it and it feels good. Splash around. Choreograph a water ballet. Play.

Don't you love how summer days just go on and on and then when the night comes, it's even better? The air is so warm and the sky so full of possibility. Get out there in the night. Ride your bike or take a walk.

While you're outside, chase down the ice cream truck. Get one of those novelties that is not on your list of doctor-approved foods. Let it melt on your chin.

I could go on and on, but you get the idea. Unleash your creativity and let your inner child out to play this summer. Your art making will be enhanced and if not, at least you've enjoyed yourself. •

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5/14/07