I was thinking about inspiration, and trying to define it for myself so that I could locate something inspirational to write about for this blog. I think that inspiration comes from little bits and pieces (or bytes, if that is part of your preferred vernacular) that we collect and file away to draw from later. I have always thought to describe the creative process with words like absorption and regurgitation. I think we draw from everything we experience, filter it for different uses, and then produce what ever we produce from the experience.
Here is my inspiration for today. I don’t know how it will affect anything I produce directly, but I do know it prompted me to write this post. I think for me, inspiration works like six degrees of separation. One thing always leads to another, and eventually something unique is produced.
So, here is how it happened:
I received an email from Facebook sent to my Gmail account, that I read on my iphone after it had been filtered through my Mac Mail server. It was from a person who I used to work with at a restaurant in Dallas. Her name is Quinn, so we all started referring to her as “The Mighty Quinn” and really didn’t put much thought into it at the time. Looking back on it, I realize that I knew it was the title of a movie, but that I had never seen it. I immediately, went to You Tube and typed it in. A clip from the movie, staring Denzel Washington, came up second in the queue. First on the list was Manfred Mann singing “The Mighty Quinn.” I played that instead. I hadn’t thought about Manfred Mann in a very long time. I decided that I should watch another Manfred Mann video, and picked one of the other videos that were presented with his name attached to it from the list on the right of the web page. I clicked on “Fox on the Run.” It was the third one listed and had a picture of a fox on the preview.
I was particularly struck by this video as an example of inspiration. Someone referring to themselves as “janschro” on You Tube, decided that there should exist a video which depicts foxes and corn with “Fox on the Run” as the soundtrack. I wonder which one came first to inspire the addition of the other, the pictures…or the song?
After further investigation into the profile of “janschro” on You Tube, I discovered the following information:
The creator’s name is John. He is 56 years old and his country of origin is Australia.
He is now real to me. He exists as I exist. He has a name and I have a name. John likes things and I like things. John likes to put things together to make new things. John likes to share his new things with strangers; Strangers like to tell John what they think about his things. They are no longer strangers. John makes new friends by making new things.
Maybe I will keep looking at the things John makes.
Maybe I will make something for John.