I’m still slowly navigating my way through this bout of artist’s block. It really is sort of a strange experience to look around at all of the things that usually get me wanting to throw myself into the work and feeling sort of…meh about them instead. So instead of tying to look around me to find inspiration, this week I’ve been focusing on the things that are already on my mind.
Like my feathered “alarm clocks,” heralding the (early) morning from the spruce outside my bedroom window. They wake long before the sun, the chickadees and the finches, and pull me out of sleep with their chorus. While this daily ritual used to leave me a little irritated, I now hear all of these little bird voices in my half awake state and simply make note of the time - morning is coming. It’s something I almost look forward to.
So - to get back into the swing of things I sawed up a pair of little chickadee earrings. Hammered and formed, filed and polished - may they shimmy and dangle below your ears from sunup to sundown.
And now, a few other little musing I’ve been toying with - though they haven’t manifested themselves in metal just yet…
1) Right at the beginning of July I started pining for fall. I feel like the switch happened overnight. Despite the heat, I had sort of been enjoying the green and the light filled days - but all at once I was imagining leaves falling and twilight at 5pm. The plants know when the light starts to diminish. Cirrus knows, and his coat grows thicker and shaggier as the days shorten. Do I, too, instinctively know that we’ve begun the long slide into darkness? At what point does the lessening of light become perceptible?
2) On July 6 Earth was at its aphelion, or furthest point from the sun, for the year. With the heat waves we’ve been experiencing this seemed hard to believe, and I’ve had to look at several diagrams several times to wrap my head around this concept. But there you have it. And now, though the days grow shorter, we are speeding through space towards the sun.
3) I continue to try and reframe my thoughts on photography. After realizing a few weeks ago how much I’m missing as I try to capture the “perfect shot” during important moments, I’m trying my hardest to use my camera as a tool to tune into the moment and be more present. Instead of simply documenting for later (so I don't’ have to pay attention to the now) I’m going slower. Taking fewer shots but making sure the ones I do feel like little artworks, celebrating the things I’m feeling and the little details that my eyes land upon on my adventures.
4) Daily, Eric and I have been watching the Tour de France - it’s a summer tradition that my family started years ago and that we are only too happy to continue. At first I mostly watch for the shots of the French countryside - the landscapes and the landmarks. But before long I’m remembering the names of my favorite riders. And then I’m hooked. It’s like a very long drama that plays out slowly over three weeks and I always end up completely invested (and, frankly, devastated when it's over and I have to wait a year to watch again!).
5) Perhaps not a musing - but I’ve been unpacking some supplies that just arrived. And the crazy thing is, they have nothing to do with metalsmithing! I’m not sure where this exploration is going to lead, but for the first time in a long time I’m going to be doing some making just for me - and this novel concept has my heart racing. So - if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some more boxes to open!