By Doug Langille
Creating art is a curious and beautiful synthesis of observation and imagination. Too often, we focus on what what happens within our brain-case. The common saw that one should ‘write what you know’ is clearly suspect. If I did that, I’d write some terribly boring stories. I think it should be phrased: ‘write what you want to know’. Really, you should write what you love.
The wanting to know and the discovery of your future imaginings begins in observation. Taking the time to observe Nature and the world around you, being thankful for its bounty, is a great way to ignite your spark.
- Consider taking a walk through the woods, a park or a city street. Practice mindfulness. The world is flora, fauna and rocks. Notice all of it.
- Breath consciously and slow down time.
- Watch children play. Really watch them.
- Observe how your cat or dog interacts with their environment, their own sense of the present, mindfulness and play.
- Take pictures or sketches or notes. What do you see?
- Embrace the variety of things, the sameness and the opposition.
- Zoom in, zoom out. What changes with perspective?
- Shapes, colors, textures: how do they make you feel?
- Explore motion, your own and of that around you.And lastly…
Doug Langille is a husband, father, writer and shameless technophile living the good life in Nova Scotia. He’s also a grandfather, bird keeper, dog owner and cat butler.
He doesn’t usually talk about himself in the third-person, but when he does he tends to bend the truth.