It’s time to kick off the New Year with new inspiration! Every year, millions of people resolve to do something new or unique. They decide it’s time to shed some pounds, eat healthier, exercise more, create more or find more time to relax. Instead of creating resolutions that are broken within the first few hours of making them – let’s just be great examples to everyone we meet. Share, care, love, laugh, live, inspire, create and educate. We have the ability to make the world a fantastic work of art, so let’s come together and make it so.
Not long ago I posted a beautiful picture of red rocks, roots and desert brush on Instagram. One of my friends was inspired enough to want to paint the picture…. So immediately I exclaimed, “Go for it!” This brought into the question of rights and usage and she pondered, “Are you sure?” - which got me thinking. We live in a world of copyrights, laws and owners rights claims that stifle even the inspiration of our friends. My answer was (of course) that she should paint it immediately and don’t bother with ‘credits’ because inspiration comes from all around us. I’m sure that response could begin a heated debate of copyright law and questions like, “What if she makes a million dollars off that image?” or “Who owns the original rights?” But that’s not the topic I’m covering in this blog.
I want to talk about inspiration. I am fortunate enough to be influenced at work daily by artists using different mediums – everything from paint to clay to metal. The inspiration doesn’t stop there though, because as I flip through social media each day I see creative words and works that influence me even more. Then I proceed to be inspired by my wife, my children, my neighbors, friends, Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart. The world around me helps to shape my creative flow that culminates in the creation of words, images or a new thought process that will undoubtedly influence those around me as well. We inspire each other with every action we take and with every painting we paint. Are these creations solely ours, or a part of a collective universe of all the matter we see, feel, hear and touch around us? Or is this all simply a part of the human ego?
I’m sure I can easily be challenged for asking this question. I dare not delve into the world of ego too deeply within this blog (especially since I mentioned Stephen Colbert – You’re welcome Stephen, for the Klymenko *bump*). I will, however lightly brush the surface of this subject ever so gently for the sake of completing this thought I started...
I am most definitely aware of any reason we would carefully ask for permission before using images, words, etc. As the marketing director of the arts center here – I know how important it is to artists, copyright-holders and corporations to carefully monitor their works. Again, I’m not going to jump into that world today. What I am talking about in this blog is the simple parting of the ego for the purpose of creativity.
I often give things away for free. Even this is a freebie to you: “Share your creativity in whatever way you can with at least one individual.” That’s right – give someone something for free and let it be something good. Inspire others to create thanks to your creations, ideas or dreams. Let someone paint your photograph or sculpt your dog. Expect nothing in return. Ask for nothing in return. Freely allow yourself, your work and your words to be an inspiration for others so that the creativity continues to flow through the veins of everyone around you. You don’t have to sell yourself short to be a part of the collective creative world around you.
So everyone go ahead and paint my photo – I would love to see what you come up with.
Remember: grow; learn; conserve; preserve; create; question; educate; change; and free your mind.
About: Kelli Klymenko is an artist, teacher, marketing director and free thinker experiencing life in one of the most inspiring and picturesque places on earth with his fabulous wife and children.