As most creatives do, I live in constant observation. A constant craving for knowledge and inspiration feeds new ideas and in my opinion those that are most alert to the world around them make the most inventive creators.
One of my favourite memories from growing up was when my dad and I were waiting outside a bookshop and he taught me a game. He said for every person that walks past we're going to write their story. In that moment he taught me the power of observation and how to make something of it albeit as simple as a story. I still think of this often, and even play another game or two. And I think the reason it has stuck with me is not only that I enjoyed the creative process of making something of what I saw, it struck a chord with the urge inside of me to learn from others behaviours.
Cut to more recent times and I still love sponging up stories about other people. Thank goodness I live in the age of social media, where millions of stories are literally at the touch of a button (or touchscreen). But even before this became an influence books and magazines were always my source feeding my craving for inspiration. Recently I have tried to go back to these, as sometimes I feel like social media moves at such a pace that it's almost like the fast-food version of inspiration. Fads come and go at the speed of lightning and the next big "thing" is superseded before it even really begins. Where as books (or at least the best ones) get printed and reprinted, edition after edition. And for me, magazines don't just get tossed after each new release, I have always taken cuttings and held onto the articles and imagery that spoke to me.
This month I came across Unconditional magazine and I know that this is one of the magazines that I will hold onto for years to come. Even from my first read of the editors letter by Alexandra Nataf I felt it speak to me and the frame of mind I'm in at the moment. This copy (Issue 4) is based around the idea of the classics, or 'slow fashion'. The pages are filled with simple imagery celebrating natural beauty and eternal style, two theories in which I am trying to live by.
And the second source of inspiration for this month is The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. In a way it brings me back to that moment with my dad, the general sentiment to this book is to bring your mind back into a state of awareness and observation. With so many things going on around us, the stresses of life and countless sources of stimulation it is actually harder to be conscious than what Tolle defines as "unconscious" - in his words defined as being outside of the present, whether that be stuck in the past, worried about the future or falling victim to the ego or emotion lead mind. I am only half way through this one but each page has that 'aha' moment- mindfulness is such a simple concept yet the modern mind seems to fight it so much. Tolle knew this way before it became the buzzword it is today, it is actually quite hard to believe he penned it way back in 1948 when it seems so relevant to today's modern lifestyle.
Whilst these are the sources currently feeding my creativity I'm always on the hunt for more. If you have any recommendations I'd love to hear about them in the comments below.