Thursday, May 30, 2013

Flash Fire Challenges...

I was talking with a group of artists and writers not too long ago and we were all joking around about how we were "professional procrastinators" and how our best work is achieved in the scramble of the eleventh hour.  That little discussion planted a seed in my brain.

Not long after that, I recalled a conversation I had with artist, Amy Myers.  I met her years ago through a summer residency program and was fortunate enough to work under her guidance.  She said that one of the ways that she keeps motivated is by setting deadlines for herself and "psyching" herself up for a show, even if one isn't scheduled.  Not only did it keep her prolific, but the pieces never "went to waste", as they somehow always found a venue or project to be showcased in.  I guess it's a form of active visualization.

And it got me thinking... why not create a series of blog challenges to help grease the wheel?

I participated in the Fusion Beads 30 Day Bead Challenge and was popping out new work left and right.  I had a lot of fun in the process.  The daily challenge was at times... a little too challenging, and I didn't think that I could keep up with it for an extended period of time, let alone inspire others to play along with me on such a tight timeline.  On the other hand, if I allotted too much time, it'd lose the urgency and therefore lose some of the magic.  Frankly, if there are months and months to work on a project, I usually space out until the last minute anyhow.  (See the first paragraph of this post.)  So, I thought that I would reignite the old Weekly Word template and post a new prompt every Monday.  It would give me and those who are interested seven days to make "something".  It doesn't have to be anything overly complicated or time consuming... it just has to be something made inspired by the prompt.  It could be a piece of jewelry, a drawing, a poem, a song... anything.

As far as the prompts go, I was going to use words on pretty background again... BUT then I thought that I would take the opportunity to share some of my favorite artists, pieces of artwork and fashion designers.  If you're looking for a more cerebral and literary-based challenge (with a longer timeline), check out the Inspired by Reading Book Club.  It is a monthly challenge where participants are asked to create something inspired by the assigned reading.  To find out more about that, CLICK HERE.

Anyway, the Flash Fire Challenges are meant to spark creativity quickly... thusly, the "Flash Fire" part of the name.  The aim is for this project to be fun and informal.  If you make something for the challenge, leave a comment (to the corresponding post) with the link to your creation or send me a picture.

On a side note, the banner I made to designate the posts includes a background that I originally made for an online competition that I didn't win.  Folks were asked to redesign the banner of a blog and I ran with the "sparks of creativity" theme.  Even though I didn't take home the top prize, I liked what I made and decided to tweak it and give it a new life.  See!  The piece didn't go to waste!  Just like Amy said!

The first prompt will appear on Monday, June 3rd and will pick up from there.  Even if folks don't get involved, I'm still happy to just share what inspires me.  With that said, I do hope that you consider to join in on the fun!

I can't wait to see what you make!


Naomi Rose Designs said...

This sounds fun.
Thank you.

Sarajo Wentling said...

I'm very curious to see what Monday brings... we're getting into a very busy time of the year for me (summer reading at the library!) so we'll see how often I get suckered in! :) I have a hard time walking away from a good design challenge though... I think I need the focus, plus it's fun to see what everyone else comes up with from the same starting point.

Anonymous said...

Oh Yay! Your weekly Word is Back ;) Awesome prompt. I like how it can fit all art forms and sometimes...musing? on those days we can't create...or where the word is provocative.

Unknown said...

Great idea, and a week is a good timeline, not too short and not very long, so you still have to get at it. Thanks