Inspiration, what is it?


  1. an inspiring or animating action or influence: I cannot write poetry without inspiration.
  2. something inspired, as an idea.
  3. a result of inspired activity.
  4. a thing or person that inspires.
  5. Theology- a divine influence directly and immediately exerted upon the mind or soul; or the divine quality of the writings or words of a person so influenced.
  6. the drawing of air into the lungs; inhalation.
  7. the act of inspiring; quality or state of being inspired.

I certainly have my moments of inspiration, and when it comes on, it is like a tidal wave.  There are times when my brain is so overloaded in the creative process that I can hardly think of anything else. This used to happen to me with music and song writing too. Once I got that feeling, I knew it was time to write, and if I did not write, my brain would give me no peace. When the wave of creativity subsided after a couple of days, it was time to put down the pen and pick, because anything I wrote after that was never as good.

If do find the same type of thing happens to me with woodworking too. But what sets it off? Or who can set it off? I wish I could control it better. I have tried going to museums, looking at web pages, but, for me, when that heightened sense of creativity is here, it’s here, and when it gone it’s gone. I went to learn with David Marks, and when I came back, it was all that I could do quell the images in my head at night to let me sleep. But why doesn’t that happen to me with all the other people I learn from?

Is inspiration directly connected to creativity? I create all the time, but the ebb and flow of my creative process is fickled. To get that wave of creativity is a blessing and a curse.

So what does inspire me ? When I am drawing, I enjoy listening to my favorite music. When the Police album, “Synchronicity”, came out my brain when into overdrive, I did some great drawing to that album. Radiohead’s album “OK Computer” also set off my brain for some great music writing. And I have other examples of this happening with other music.

Once I am “in the zone”, all time disappears. I am so focused, and the addition of right music puts me in a time wrap. I try to draw every day (except shabbos of course) and that has the ability to redirect my mind and make time pass quickly. Playing my guitar with a band can make that happen too. Sometimes, just the two of us playing together could suspend all time. What a great feeling that is, to create and hopefully inspire others.

Again I ask, so what inspires me? Sometimes it is just a glimmer of something out of the corner of my eye,  it could be an image, something someone said, (btw, right now I am listening to “Jokerman” from Bob Dylan. its good for a quick boost to the brain), or a fantastic mistake in the shop.

Who inspires me? Ultimately? HaShem does. How? He introduced me to David Marks, Albrecht Durer, JS Bach, Norm Abrams, Radiohead, Sting, Whistler, Green & Greene, Frank Lloyd Wright, and there are more.

So who and what inspires you?


About yaakov

Husband, Abba, Furniture Maker, Turner, Bookseller, and all around working stiff.
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