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The Only True Genius in the Family - A Novel by Jennie Nash
'My Own True Genius' Essays : Amber Hand, Genius of Creative Inspiration

True Genius Essay Contest Runner Up!

Genius of Creative Inspiration

By Amber Hand

The Only True Genius in the Family by Jennie Nash"Describe a time when you felt the genius of creative inspiration."

My genius is in my empty year. My lines are drawn between skeletons and boxes, shading and black watercolor. I felt every line, every negative space, and every edge of that bony skeleton. Alone in a room filled with this empty still life. I am this empty still life.

My empty year, after my father left this world and moved on to the next. It was in those warm rays that balanced their meters across my face on that warm morning the summer we ran away to Scotland. In the photographs of buildings, towers, and doors scattered across the highlands. I am the frequent shadow creeping across the doorframe. Found in the print room, late at night, washing my broken heart in the screens we printed.

The mistakes we made, the prints we lost, the paper absorbing the tears I shed as the moon bathed me and dried our screens. In mixing colors that would never be able to mixed again. In these mistakes, on paper and in life, I learned the power of starting over. Starting fresh, stark white with rough edges. My creative genius was in filling my empty year, through charcoal, snapshots and paint through those mended screens. •

© 2009 Amber Hand