Where inspiration is found

Any creative knows that during the process, there can be drafts, cross-outs, re-dos and start overs. I know an idea is good when I carry it around in my head for awhile, admiring it, brimming with pride and pure joy of it's existence. Then I bring it to life. However getting to that idea phase to begin with is usually a different story each and every time. Some people I know keep a notebook for sketching when the idea comes. Joan Didion wrote in her book, The Year of Magical Thinking, that she and her husband would carry note cards in their front pockets, so as to get the idea down before it left their respective brilliant heads. Others look to nature for inspiration. I can confess that I never quite know when creativity will strike. For example the invitations above where commissioned with only one condition: to be designed in a modern-ish style (meaning not formal and no scripty font). Free reign = designer's dream! Thus I was left to be influenced by two other lovely pieces of design. I chose my Martha Stewart dishes for color and my quatrefoil patterned curtains for shape. Where and how do ideas spark for you? photographs by gina houseman

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