As much as outside forces serve as sources of inspiration, naturally occurring inward inspiration is essential to the creation process as well. In my experience it is this form of inspiration that drives me to do and continue to do.
This past week as I was having fun with pencil skirts and finishing up a custom order, a sensation overcame me that was reminiscent of my early days of designing. That was a time period when I was ON.IT! Motivation to do the work was frequent and unyielding. Creativity flowed, and I was the willing recipient of its blessings.
Two customized flyTie Clothing classic styles created for a full figured goddess of great height!
Over time, as my development unfolded and I began to engage in other activities related to my life--working in public education, community work, pursuit of different interests, self exploration, obsessive daydreaming/time traveling, and just...stuff--creative blocks were frequent and long-lasting. There were times when I would go months without engaging in activities related to my work as a garment designer/producer. I'd struggle to stay active in that work but would eventually give in and exist with the flow rather than go against it.
Lately I thought I was moving back to that space. A couple of weeks ago I was recruited to serve as a semi long-term substitute teacher in an eighth grade social studies class at a local public school (not sure if they knew what they were getting themselves into with that one, but the creator did/does ;-). Education, truth, learning, teaching, knowledge, and the application of knowledge are all other sincere passions of mine, so such an opportunity is in line with my values. However, my energies started to move in the way that had me feeling like I'd put my designing on hold and throw myself into my educational work full-time. I thought that this was what I was being guided to do.
This past week, though, something happened as I took advantage of the newly implemented week-long fall break set forth by the school system. As I pushed myself to start and finish various pieces a craving set in that inspired me to do more. There was a passionate need to create, and it's almost as if I--the hands-on, creative, designer me--was fighting for survival. It wanted to preserve itself and not be abandoned or put on hold. The inspiration and ideas for more and more pieces and the urge to sew more and more poured in, and I found myself in my studio doing the actual work for long time periods that were reflective of the designer me around 2006/2007.
In that moment I realized for sure that this work of mine--despite all my doubts, insecurities, and minimalization of its importance in regards to my other involvements--is what I need to be doing just as much as anything else.
It was within the process of actually doing the work that I was inspired to do more. True organic inspiration from the inside.
On a differnt but related topic, I'd like to recognize and say thank you to Ma Ma Yashi and HarvestGirl. Whether they know it or not, these two have assisted me with coming to terms with this part of myself--an independent garment designer--for many, many years now. As two who also do this work, I have always admired how they embrace this part of their creative selves. Although I don't speak of it often online and such, doing so has been a great struggle for me mentally and emotionally. I persist, though, knowing that the artistic visions that I'm given are to be shared.