Breaking a Creative Block…Wine, Cheese and a Notebook.

I am at my torch nearly every day and very rarely do I take a day off. When I do, I feel detached. . .almost like a fish out of water and all I can think about is getting back to my torch so that I can create something. Still yet, it is no small wonder that sometimes I struggle for inspiration since I do make beads on a daily basis.

Most of my business is on Ebay, which means that in order to keep the attention of my regular bidders I have to keep coming up with new designs or exciting color combinations. It would be nice if I could organize my thoughts before a studio session so that I could create based on some random theory that I had thought about the night before. For the most part, that concept doesn’t work for me. Very rarely do I go skipping to the torch with an idea or color combination tucked in my pocket. Instead, my first hour at the torch is spent playing with different colors until I see something emerging that I feel might be worth repeating.

I’ve actually had days where I walked away from an eight hour session with nothing but a jar of broken glass beads and a frown. That’s a big hit to my creative soul too because it usually carries over to the next day. . .Instead of skipping to the torch, I have to coax my feet into taking the next step that will carry me down the steps and into my dark dungeon like studio.


The last time that I had this black cloud blanketed over my creative zen was on Monday of this week. I had been working with Reichenbach glass which is still somewhat new to me. The reactions are so very different than what I’m used to in Moretti and Vetrofond soft glasses, but I was finally getting an idea of how to make the colors more friendly with one another. That was good, but I began to feel that my ability to create something special had been lost in the process somewhere. . .Almost as if someone pulled my artistic rug right out from beneath my feet or something.

Monday night, I shut the torch down and walked away shaking my head and dragged myself up the steps for a glass of white wine, some nice cheese slices, a notebook and pen. I had been sitting at that cursed torch for nearly ten hours with zero success.

I sat down to enjoy my treat and do a little writing exercise in order to stimulate my creativity. . . At the top of my page I wrote the word “Autumn”. Beneath it, I began to write the first visions that popped into my head, no matter how random they seemed. The first was “Nana”. “Nana” was my grandmother. She adored Autumn. She often took me on drives up the Blue Ridge Parkway in efforts of sharing her appreciation of the beautiful colors that the trees so proudly wore during this magical season. Actually, Nana enjoyed her fall colors year round. . . In her home, she surrounded her herself with cool tones of green, blue and purple and often balanced them with warm beiges, browns and creams.

After I wrote “Nana”, I had a flood of memories. . . Too many to write, actually so I chose only one and it was “Wreath”. Nana had the most beautiful Fall wreaths that she made and hung on her door each year. They were always full of dried hydrangea, and accented by dried herbs and large rose hips. A bounty of color they were, remembering them gave me the inspiration that I needed to create something that really connected with my personal memories seasons past.

I would have called this set “Essence of Nana” but I think “Essence of Autumn” sounds better, although Nana might not agree.


2 Responses to “Breaking a Creative Block…Wine, Cheese and a Notebook.”

  1. rose h. Says:

    It is touching to hear the backstory of these beads. They are gorgeous and do bring images of fall to mind.

    It would have never occurred to me that journaling like that could lead to inspiration. The next time that I get into a slump, I might give it a try. I’m thinking the wine might be an essential element also, so I’ll be sure to have some on hand.

  2. lydiamuell Says:

    Thank you Rose!

    Oh yes, the wine is a big help until I get to the bottom of the first glass. After that, I get too lazy too even think, much less hold a pen to a piece of paper. I guess that’s why my lists are very short. lol

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