When you see an image, a beautiful space, a piece of furniture, alluring shoes, a spot-on-outfit… something creative that catches your eye and makes you linger a bit longer than usual…do you understand why? Can you grasp why you stopped to take a second look, bookmarked the page or bought that pair of shoes? If you do know, how do you know? Is it simply a practice of what you’ve always done in the past? Have you exhausted all of the other options and this is the only available solution? Do you truly understand what you like and dislike? If it stirs something up in you, do you pay attention to it or just find yourself staring in awe, wondering why it is causing such a reaction? Do you impulsively try to copy or recreate it?
Recent life events have slowly urged me to dive in and question what really makes me tick, on a creative level. Have you ever heard the term ‘food envy’? It’s when you’re out dining with others and your food shows up, the waiter sets it in front of you, and it looks delicious, you’re stoked. Then you look around and you notice it doesn’t look quite as delicious as what the person across from you got…or the person next to you…and you find yourself completely unhappy with what you’ve ordered, wishing you had chosen instead, what they had. Maybe it’s just me, but I am trending towards the belief that we can all relate this to our everyday life. With the invention and explosion of personal style blogs, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram…we are constantly inundated with visual inspiration. We all experience a little ‘food envy’ here and there, whether we notice it or not. Personally, I am inspired on the reg by so many different things, yet I find myself reeling because I’m unable to grasp what I love about it and why it has inspired me. Why did it make me linger? What makes it unique and different than the last image I saw?
Lets talk envy. I have mentioned my new loft a few times here and elsewhere so you are all well aware that I am in decorating mode, big time. Recently, I spent almost an entire day browsing interior photos and clipping images that I loved. I also found myself wanting some of the exact items the space in the photo had. Not just one or two amazing items, I wanted to recreate the entire room…until I clicked to the next image, one that seemed to inspire me just a tad bit more. You guessed it, I then wanted that room and all the things inside it. Envy, you bitch. This is exactly the behavior that has us all chasing things we don’t really want, copying each other endlessly and not bothering to evaluate what it is that makes us uniquely and individually tick. You like what they have, and you want it – what part of that experience helps you understand yourself or define your taste? Not one part. This creates inspiration anxiety. It creates unhealthy competition. You lose a small piece of yourself. This phase of ‘food envy’ is a nice indicator that I just haven’t quite figured out what it is that makes me tick creatively. I can’t clearly define either my personal style or my decorating taste at this very moment. Sure, I have basic likes and dislikes, but I don’t understand my taste to it’s core. Yes its true, taste is constantly evolving, but as a general guideline, the fundamentals of your style never change. And my aim, my dear readers, is to find my basics. The fundamentals of what makes me linger…what inspires me, brings happiness, calm and most of all, ignites unique creation.
To start off this process, I took some time this past weekend to write out things I love about images I see, must have items and anything else that makes my creative heart tick. Once I started going, I was beyond amazed at what came out. So this is me, encouraging your to go seek out your own taste. Question your inspiration and get to the bottom of what you truly like and dislike. Don’t just be a copy cat replica of someone or something that inspires you, create your own way. I always come back to the quote below, when I get lost along my own creative journey, maybe it will help you along yours, too.
POSTED IN Design, Home Design, Life, On My Mind, Style